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Feb 18, 2017 10:11 AM EST

A significant number of college students enrolling to two and four year public schools are found to be unprepared and not ready for college level work, according to an investigation by the Hechinger Report. The organization found that more than half a million of incoming students had to take remedial courses in either Math or English, Campus Technology reported.

The study was based on 2014-2015 data from a total of 911 schools which admitted students who needed extra help before they were completely ready to take a full load of college level courses. The study has revealed a huge gap in the US education system and it only implies one thing: a high school diploma does not guarantee college readiness, according to PBS Newshour.

Colleges and universities have exerted efforts when it comes to closing this gap, as they try to determine the students who are not really ready for college and help these students to pick up as quickly as possible.

A total amount of roughly $7 billion a year are being spent by students, colleges and taxpayers simply because of the need to have remedial classes for the students who could not handle full load college level just yet.

In order to address these high numbers, institutions have tried several approaches. Some are identifying high school students who are not ready for Math or English with the help of their local feeder, then conduct certain programs to help these students. Another approach is that some schools try to shorten the length of their remedial classes and shift instead to open educational resources to be able to reduce the costs of remediation.

While these efforts may take time and energy CCBC President Sandra Kurtinitis noted that it is after all a good investment to be able to retain students who are completely ready for the college level.

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