Most community college students struggle to efficiently complete their degrees within the desired
time frame. While life factors are often cited as the most common reason for the delay, many students
simply don’t know the logical (and shortest) sequence for completing all the necessary courses.
One of the hardest, but most critical, parts of developing pathways is constructing the program maps
and meta-majors behind them. Institutional politics or history can get in the way, leaving student
goals by the wayside. And if the program maps and meta-majors aren’t right, subsequent reforms to
advising, enrollment, or course scheduling will be off as well.
To design successful pathways with students at the center, program maps and meta-majors must
be based on clear principles that eliminate institutional biases and maximize the amount of time for
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