The Washington community and technical college system adopted a statewide agreement offering high school students the opportunity to be placed in college-level coursework based on their scores on the Smarter Balanced Assessment. As part of this agreement, the State Board of Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) have developed Bridge to College transition courses in math and English language arts. These courses are designed to provide an additional route to college readiness for high school seniors who do not score at a college-ready level on the assessments. In the absence of Smarter Balanced scores, students can still enroll in the courses; see the FAQ list for additional information about who should take the courses if scores aren’t available. Students can qualify for automatic placement at college entry if they take the Bridge course and get a B or better grade.
Why adopt the Bridge to College transition courses at my school?
The placement agreement and transition courses will:
- Allow more students to save both time and money by avoiding the need to take pre-college courses once they’ve entered college.
- Allow more students to avoid placement testing in college.
- Improve curricular alignment between K-12 and entry-level college courses in math and English.
- Develop and sustain local college/school district partnerships and faculty/teacher collaboration.
Funding and professional development for teachers: Through the 2018-19 school year, high schools implementing the course received funding from OSPI (through a grant from College Spark Washington). Those grants have ended but participating schools are still required to support course teachers’ attendance in a 2-day summer institute and five professional learning opportunities throughout the school year in order to support strong course implementation. State partners are providing a regionally-based professional learning structure for training and supporting teachers throughout the year, which begins each year in August with a Summer Institute for new and returning teachers (a virtual Institute for 2021). For cost and registration details, see the OSPI Bridge to College web page.
Questions on how to get Bridge to College transition courses at your school?
Registration for the 2020-21 school year is open and available now through OSPI’s iGrants system. For more information contact Sally Zeiger Hanson, SBCTC Bridge Course Project Manager by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s a recording of a brief webinar describing the background of the courses and specific logistics about offering Bridge to College in your school:
To review more specifics about what’s in the Bridge courses, view this follow-up webinar:
MATH: For the Bridge to College math course, see the Bridge Mathematics Course Overview or the full set of course materials available on the OSPI web site. ENGLISH: For the Bridge to College English course, see the BTCE Overview document.
More For Educators
Bridge to College Mathematics Course Overview
Bridge to College English Language Arts Course Overview
Meet the Bridge to College course trainers.
Updated multi-year list of Bridge to College Districts and Schools (coming soon)
Questions on how to get Bridge to College transition courses at your school? Contact Sally Zeiger Hanson SBCTC, Bridge Course Project Manager Shanson@sbctc.edu