The College Puzzle Blog
Prior PostingsAbout
Dr. Michael W. Kirst

Michael W. Kirst is Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University since 1969.
Dr. Kirst received his Ph.D. in political economy and government from Harvard. Before joining the Stanford University faculty, Dr. Kirst held several positions with the federal government, including Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Manpower, Employment and Poverty. He was a former president of the California State Board of Education. His book From High School to College with Andrea Venezia was published by Jossey Bass in 2004.

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My blog discusses the important and complex subjects of college completion, college success, student risk factors (for failing), college readiness, and academic preparation. I will explore the pieces of the college puzzle that heavily influence, if not determine, college success rates.

High School Senior Year Curriculum Can Enhance College Success

Students who attend broad access colleges usually take light academic loads in their senior year. But more attention is being paid to not just to increasing academic loads, but also to help revamp what is in the courses. University of Oregon is designing reference courses based on what first year college instructors expect in their classes. These courses are fast paced with lots of homework and analysis. They compress 150 days of instruction in typical high school courses to 30 or more. Oregon also designs senior seminars that simulate intensive discussion and writing in college seminars. These kinds of courses should be designated as honors courses, in order to provide clear benchmarks for the flabby and undefined curriculum that now is designated for "honors" in high school.
Honors courses often seem to be a booby prize for not getting into AP. They should not have college credit like AP, but should simulate college work. Put University of Oregon, Educational Policy Improvement Center in a search engine to see more


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