Date of Award

May 2013

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Kevin McLeod

Committee Members

Suzanne Boyd, Eric Key


In this analysis we present the content in Math 095: Essentials of Algebra at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee that is aligned to the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. We find that the content in Math 095 is aligned to a small subset of the high school Number and Quantity, Algebra, and Function standards. We present a representative sample of homework and assessment items from the traditional lecture format of Math 095 and compare them to assessment items released by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and Illustrative Mathematics. We then discuss content from the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics that is absent from Math 095 or overlaps with Math 105: Intermediate Algebra. We conclude that overall the content from Math 095 meets the standards that require students to solve, graph, factor, rewrite expressions, and apply operations to expressions; however, we find that standards expecting students to understand concepts, model with mathematics, and explain reasoning are not met in the course content. We conclude by presenting recommendations based on our findings.