FORT KNOX, Ky. -- As high school students look to continue learning in a COVID-19 environment, the Army has provided an online option to help students prepare for college.
Whether or not a school chooses in-class or online learning, students can prepare for college using the Army’s college readiness website, March2Success, to augment their learning and study for entrance exams.
Students can take practice tests for exams like the ACT, SAT, Medical College Admission Test and Dental Admission Test. The website provides an alternative for students unable to seek a tutor or join a study group due to pandemic restrictions.
“The COVID pandemic saw parents homeschooling their students to end the current school year,” said Larane Guthrie-Clarkson, chief of education for USAREC. “And if a parent is not an educator or is not a subject-matter expert in a particular subject and a student needs help, then we can put them into March2Success.”
With many schools’ start dates shifting, more students must turn to online resources like the Army’s March2Success site, she said.
After COVID-19 forced nationwide school closures, active March2Success users dropped from 89,211 in May 2019 to 50,432 in May 2020, as many schools canceled some standardized testing.
During the summer months, the March2Scuccess site could still help students prepare for the upcoming fall semesters while remaining at home, Guthrie-Clarkson said.
The webpage offers a wide palette of resources for high school students or adults taking undergraduate courses for the first time. Future Soldiers can also use the program’s study aids to prepare for the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test.
While the program has materials aimed at students in grades 8-12, Soldiers planning to attend college can access the online educational tools to prepare for the entrance exams or use the materials as a refresher course. Students can access the website’s free services at www.march2success.com.
Students study at their own pace, take pre-tests to determine their aptitude level and help educators manage their learning. The program’s users prep for the entrance exams first by taking a diagnostic pretest to determine their strengths and weaknesses. Students will then develop a study plan with goals tailored to each user.
“Students can sit there and use it anytime,” Guthrie-Clarkson said. “So they're not restricted to a specific time of day unless parental instruction or teacher instructions work that way. For example, if I'm not good in, say fractions, I can practice fractions, and it should increase my score.”
The program also has resources for potential recruits who are considering joining the Army. Using the mobile app, Career Navigator, they can learn about Army careers and locate recruiters from their smartphones. Guthrie-Clarkson said there have been discussions on how to expand the site’s features due to the need for online learning options.
In 2018, the Army added graduate program exams, the Medical College Admissions Test, the Dental Admissions Test and various nursing program tests to its list of features.
The Stars Elements app allows students to build an educational foundation for chemistry and physical science with the use of interactive models, challenges and games.
Originally conceived in the late ‘90s, the program provides a convenient resource for students who have limited access to teachers and tutors. The program has added game-based learning to its curriculum, including sports-based apps GoArmy Edge Football and GoArmy Edge Soccer, where coaches and players can virtually design plays.
Recruiters have marketed the website at high schools across the country, though no commitment to military service is required. Guthrie-Clarkson said the Army provides the website as an education augmentation tool as a public service to the nation’s high school students.