Ramp-Up to Readiness™ is a school-wide advisory program that features an engaging and interactive series of Advisory Activities and Workshops focused on helping all students meet the Ramp-Up Outcomes by the end of high school. Those Outcomes are focused on the five pillars of readiness: academic, admissions, career, financial, and personal and social readiness. Ramp-Up helps students advance toward meeting those standards as they progress through school.
A series of weekly Advisory Activities at each grade level are designed to engage students in interactive learning that not only provide them information about college and career readiness, but also challenge them to think about their own engagement and decision making regarding their postsecondary plans.
Each Advisory Activity is designed to be 30 minutes in length. Activities cover an array of topics directly tied to one or more of the Five Pillars. A topic may span two to four Advisory Activities. Teacher advisors facilitate these activities approximately once a week throughout the school year during the designated Ramp-Up advisory time.
Activity Overview Sheets for each of the advisory sessions are included in the Implementation Guide. Activity Overview Sheets are clearly written for the advisor with the following sections:
Each of the Opening, Activity and Closure sections are given approximate time allocations. It is important for advisory teachers to review activities prior to facilitating them with students so that they are knowledgeable regarding the content and have an opportunity to prepare any of the resources needed for the Activity.
- Learning Target:
- Helps students grasp the purpose and importance of the Activity
- Resources needed for this session:
- States what additional resources (i.e., PowerPoint, worksheet or handouts) that may be needed
- Engages students in a variety of interactive experiences
- Traditionally an interactive activity that has students engaging with one another
- A summary idea that reinforces the main idea of the activity or question that asks the students to reflect on the information or themselves
Each year, students engage in one Ramp-Up Workshop that is roughly one hour long.
Workshops can be implemented at a time that works for the school. All of the Workshops have an Overview Sheet and a PowerPoint for the advisor to use.
Some Workshops are designed as guest panels, which require advanced organizing by the Ramp-Up site coordinator. Others involve students using computers to take college and career interest surveys.
The Ramp-Up Tools
To bring continuity to the Ramp-Up to Readiness™ Advisory Activities and Workshops, students will both monitor their own progress and plan for their future. The ongoing use of the Ramp-Up Tools helps to ensure that the Activities and Workshops are not random acts of college readiness but a coherent sequence of concepts and ideas that move students toward readiness in logical if not linear ways.
The purpose of the Postsecondary plan is to connect career, postsecondary and academic planning as students move from one grade to the next. The Postsecondary Plan is an individualized learning plan that takes into account all 5 of the Readiness Pillars. Students articulate, communicate, and update their plans for life after high school in their Postsecondary Plans. The Postsecondary Plan helps students ask and answer the question: What do I want to do with my life after high school?
Using the Readiness Rubric, students continuously monitor their progress toward being college ready by the end of high school. The Readiness Rubric asks students to assess their readiness in areas like grades, academic belief, self-management, effort and persistence, and standardized and college entrance test scores. The contents of the Readiness Rubric vary slightly by grade level, reflecting the skills and concepts that students should encounter at that point in their progress toward college readiness. The Readiness Rubric helps students ask and answer: What do I need to do to reach that goal?
Scope and Sequence
There is a sequence for both the Advisory Activities and the Workshops that not only follows a flow for the 9th grade, but vertically aligns to the program as students move through Ramp-Up. The scope and sequence also takes into account the use of technology for the Workshops and attempts to allow there not to be a strain on a school’s resources with all Workshops requiring computers for students at the same time. The Scope and Sequence found in this book is the one suggested by Ramp-Up to Readiness, though your school may move Advisory Activities or Workshops to accommodate site-specific needs.
The PREP—or the Personal Readiness Evaluation for Postsecondary–is a short survey instrument that is used to measure students’ developmental readiness for higher education early enough in the students’ journey to college that the information can be used to inform interventions that can in turn increase the students’ readiness for postsecondary success. The PREP is administered at the beginning and end of middle and high school to serve as a pre- and post-test for personal readiness for college. Research has demonstrated that academic readiness is not enough to ensure success in college, and that personal readiness has a great deal to do with whether or not students complete a postsecondary certificate or degree program. While academic measurements such as GPA and standardized tests such as the Explore, Plan, ACT, and SAT begin as early as 8th grade, students’ personal readiness for college such as their motivation, self-regulation, and self-efficacy are not measured in any standardized way prior to enrollment in college. Measuring a student’s personal readiness for college once the student has already begun college means that it is too late to intervene to ensure that student is able to succeed in college