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CUNY 3-Year Program Reduces Time- & Cost-to-Degrees, Increases Graduation Rates

In 2007, the City University of New York (CUNY) established the Accelerated Study in Associate Program (ASAP) to help boost the number of graduates and reduce their time to completion. In the 2009, the program expanded from serving college-ready students to include those requiring some developmental education courses. The program requires full-time enrollment and offers significant student supports and incentives. ASAP encourages students to complete their remedial coursework early in the program and to graduate within three years. The program offers blocked courses in the first year and provides a tuition waiver to cover the difference between the financial aid awarded and the cost of tuition and fees.

Beginning in 2009, MDRC conducted an evaluation of the program on three campuses and looked specifically at low-income students needing at least one developmental course. The 2015 report presents the findings from the full three-year evaluation, concluding that ASAP significantly improved student academic outcomes and almost doubled their graduation rates. Students earned more credits during the three-year period and the cost-per-degree was significantly lower.

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