College Milestones

Completion of Gatekeeper Reading: California

Percentage of 2000-01 California Community College students who were referred to developmental reading and completed a gatekeeper reading course within eight years, by developmental course level

What Is Measured?

Percentage of students who completed gatekeeper reading courses after eight years

Who Is Counted?

First-time freshmen who enrolled in California Community Colleges in 2000-01 and enrolled in developmental reading

What It Tells Us

Overall, more than one-quarter (29 percent) of students who enrolled in developmental reading courses completed gatekeeper reading courses within eight years. Students who enrolled in developmental reading courses two levels below the college level were the most likely to complete gatekeeper reading courses (36 percent), followed by students enrolled in developmental reading courses one level below the college level (28 percent), those who enrolled in developmental reading courses three levels below (25 percent), and those who enrolled in developmental reading courses four or more levels below (22 percent).

Why It's Important

There is general consensus that timely completion of gatekeeper courses, the lowest-level college-level courses in the core subjects of mathematics, reading, and writing, positively affects student outcomes such as attainment of certificates and degrees and transfer to a four-year institution. Completion of gatekeeper courses fulfills requirements for graduation and transfer as well as prerequisites for more advanced courses in various fields.

About the Data

Gatekeeper reading courses: Degree-applicable nontransferable reading courses.

Percentage calculated by author.

Data Source

State of California, California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office. (2009, September). Basic skills accountability report, 2009. Sacramento, CA: Author.