Melodie Baker, Just Equations’ national policy director, was quoted in The 74 in an article analyzing calculus as an admissions requirement for some colleges while being dropped by others.
Ashley Pallie, Caltech’s executive director of undergraduate admissions, and two faculty members, who set admissions criteria, learned at a February conference on equity and college acceptance the extent to which the course is not available, particularly to low-income applicants, students of color, and those living in rural areas.
Pallie credited Melodie Baker, national policy director at Just Equations, an organization that promotes math policies that support equity in college readiness and success, for sharing the information at that gathering. Calculus still has merit, Caltech faculty concluded, but should no longer be mandated.
Baker, of Just Equations, said colleges and universities should always seek to widen the opportunities for bright applicants so they can one day help solve the world’s most complex and enduring problems.
“When math is used as it was intended, to cultivate and develop talent rather than rank and sort students, the future of STEM looks like a microcosm of the larger society,” she said. “It looks very different from what it looks like today: It looks well -represented.”
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