Oconee Fall Line Technical College’s (OFTC) Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), Reading Transforms, strives to increase students’ reading comprehension. Three strategies will be implemented to achieve the QEP goal. The first two strategies, SQ3R (Survey, Question, Read, Recall/Recite, Review) and Text Connections (text-to-text, text-to-self, text-to-work), will focus on implementing critical reading skills in the classroom. The third strategy will utilize the interactive learning program, CommonLit, to increase students’ reading comprehension.
In 2017, OFTC began preparations for selecting a topic for the college’s QEP. The process began with an examination of strategic initiatives, institutional data, and input from college constituencies. The Steering Committee reviewed institutional data that included student learning outcome results for general education courses and college placement exam score results. OFTC selected reading comprehension as the topic of focus. Reading Transforms will provide students with reading comprehension skills that can transform their learning and positively affect their future career success.
OFTC will monitor the overall QEP goal of increasing students’ reading comprehension scores by assessing degree-level students using the HEIghten exam and assessing diploma-level students using the TABE Level D Reading Survey. OFTC has collected baseline data and anticipates a one percent (1%) increase each year of implementation with both groups of students. Additionally, OFTC established six student learning outcomes that will be assessed throughout QEP implementation:
- Students will apply the SQ3R strategy on a given passage as demonstrated by scoring at least 75% on a rubric.
- Students will show an increased score between pre-diagnostic and post-diagnostic after learning the SQ3R strategy.
- Students will apply the Text Connections strategy on a given passage as demonstrated by scoring at least 75% on a rubric.
- Students will show an increased score between pre-diagnostic and post-diagnostic after learning the Text Connections strategy.
- Students will apply reading strategies to answer questions generated by CommonLit and complete assignments assigned by instructor to score 75% or higher.
- Students will show an increased score between pre-diagnostic and post-diagnostic after answering questions generated by CommonLit and completing assignments assessed by instructor.
To achieve these outcomes, OFTC faculty and staff will use and teach metacognitive strategies that promote reading comprehension skills. Professional development will be conducted early in the implementation process so faculty are prepared to use the identified teaching strategies in the classroom. Through the implementation of classroom reading comprehension strategies and use of an online learning platform, OFTC instructors will incorporate reading comprehension strategies to develop critical reading skills in students. Each strategy will begin with English or Psychology courses for diploma and degree seeking students. Inclusion of dual enrollment students and occupational courses will be phased in over a five-year period.
Direct instruction and encouragement of reading comprehension strategies will help students read with purpose and develop critical reading skills needed in the workforce. The Reading Transforms QEP supports the mission of OFTC by enhancing students’ reading skills, thereby enabling students to become better prepared employees. Therefore, the Reading Transforms QEP supports OFTC’s mission of “contribut[ing] to the economic and workforce development of east central Georgia.”