Strong Start To Finish

Strong Start to Finish works to amplify a set of evidence-based Core Principles.

The Core Principles for Transforming Remedial Education Within a Comprehensive Student Success Strategy is a field generated document informed by evidence-based policy and practice. First released in 2012, updated in 2015 and refreshed in 2020, colleges and states across the nation are seeing dramatic improvements by implementing reforms consistent with these Core Principles. Building on this progress, we have updated the principles to focus even greater attention on the design, implementation, and scaling of practices that lead to significantly improved and more equitable outcomes for today’s students. This allows us to connect higher education systems and institutions with proven tools, quality technical assistance and financial and human capital resources to give every student the best start on the path toward their degree.

Our Core Principles:

Every student’s postsecondary education begins with a well-designed process that empowers them to choose an academic direction and build a plan that starts with passing credit-bearing gateway courses in the first year.
Placement of every student is based on multiple measures, using evidence-based criteria, instead of through a single standardized test.
Campus communities transform policies and practices to ensure that every student is provided with high-value learning experiences and with the supports needed to remove barriers to success—especially students from historically underrepresented, disenfranchised, and minoritized communities.
Program-appropriate college-level math and English courses are offered to every student through evidence-based, integrated support models designed to accelerate gateway course success.
Every student is provided access to multiple pathways, such as statistics and data science, that integrate rigorous math appropriate to different disciplines and to the well-paying careers of today and tomorrow.
Every student is supported in staying on track to a postsecondary credential through the institution’s effective use of early momentum metrics and mechanisms to generate, share, and act on finely disaggregated student progression data.
Efforts to improve the student experience, meet the evolving needs of students, and remove barriers to student success are visibly prioritized by the institution through the use of mechanisms that elevate the voices and lived experiences of students—and the entire campus community.

Working Collaboratively to Leverage Pre-College Momentum

Postsecondary leaders are increasingly working collaboratively with those who prepare their entering students, including K-12 education systems, workforce programs and Adult Basic Education providers.

Scaling Student Success Toward Meaningful Postsecondary Credentials

Our network is committed to working closely with state, system and institutional leaders to support implementation of the principles, improving academic success and student progression toward their degree.