Dual enrollment is a program that allows high school students (usually sophomores, juniors, and seniors) to enroll in college courses for credit prior to high school graduation. College credits earned through dual enrollment can be simultaneously applied toward high school and college graduation and can be transferred to other colleges or universities. Dual enrollment procedures vary from state to state, but the following is a general overview of the program.
What are the benefits of dual enrollment?
The benefits of dual enrollment are numerous. First, dual enrollment allows students to transition from high school to college easily. Students can get a taste of what college is like without being completely overwhelmed with a whole new environment. They can ascertain how their high school classes compare to college courses and how college professors differ from high school teachers. Dual enrollment also provides high school students with a wider range of courses so they have the opportunity to explore different fields before declaring a major. These classes also offer a chance for students who do not qualify to take AP or IB classes to demonstrate a more rigorous courseload on their transcripts. Finally, one of the biggest benefits of dual enrollment is that it allows students to accumulate credits prior to entering college so they will be able to graduate from college early or on time.
Who is eligible for dual enrollment?
Since the rules for dual enrollment vary from state to state, students should check with their high school counselor to find out if they are eligible. Students should meet the requirements set by their local school system. Most schools require students to be at least 16 years of age and require them to have a minimum GPA of 2.5 or 3.0. Students should also have permission from their parents/guardians and high school guidance counselor or principal. Eligible students need to demonstrate readiness for college work by performing high on placement exams and in their high school classrooms. They should also complete any prerequisites.
Where are dual enrollment courses offered?
Dual enrollment courses can be offered on high school campuses, college campuses, or other approved locations. Students are usually responsible for providing their own transportation.
What are the financial obligations for dual enrollment?
Depending on where students live will determine financial requirements. Some states pay for dual enrollment tuition, while others require the students to pay. Some states require the institutions to pay for tuition, and other states let the involved institutions decide who pays. Students who want to participate in dual enrollment should check with their school counselor to find out their state's specific rules on who should pay for dual enrollment tuition, laboratory fees, and textbook costs.
Dual enrollment can be very beneficial for high school students. Interested candidates should contact their high school counselors to find out if they are eligible and to find out how to apply for the program.