Free refresher sessions help VC students improve exam scores

VC Freshmen Loriann (right) and Ashley (left) Harper both achieved higher exam scores after attending math refresher sessions last summer.

Victoria College is offering free refresher sessions for anyone who needs to brush up on their math, reading and writing skills prior to taking college placement exams.

Last summer, VC began offering math refresher sessions funded by a grant from the VC Foundation and saw students’ exam scores increase significantly. As a result, reading and writing refresher sessions are being offered this fall in addition to math.

“Our goal is to help students gain the confidence and skills they need to perform well,” said Brian Hutcheson, developmental math instructor.

The sessions give students the opportunity to skip academic foundation courses, which are designed to prepare them for college-level coursework. This helps students accelerate their ability to complete the required courses for a degree, certificate or transfer to a university.

 “Many of the students who attended one or more of the math sessions tested at least one level higher than their prior placement level,” said Babette Lowe, dean of academic foundations. “In a few cases, we have had students test directly into college-level math.”

Freshmen students Loriann Harper and twin sister Ashley both tested into higher foundation math levels after attending eight hours of math refreshers over the summer. Ashley is now taking the highest level of foundation math, Intermediate Algebra, while Loriann was able to skip Basic Mathematics and go directly into Beginning Algebra.

“The instructors gave us a simplified approach to solving problems,” said Loriann. “That really helped me when I took the exam.”

Test-taking skills, such as quickly eliminating answers that are clearly wrong, is another useful topic covered, said Ashley.

All sessions are free and open to the public, and registration is not required.

For a complete schedule of math, reading and writing refresher sessions, please visit or contact Babette Lowe at (361) 485-6807 or via email at

Published: Thursday, 04 October 2012

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