Dual Enrollment FAQ
By Bridgeway Homeschool Academy
What is Dual Enrollment and how will it benefit my student?
If you find yourself asking this question, then you more than likely have a student who would benefit from dual enrollment classes.
What is Dual Enrollment?
Dual enrollment the opportunity to challenge high school students with more rigorous college level courses for a dual benefit–they earn both high school and college credit. In addition, when taken in a regionally accredited college, these courses can be transferred to other colleges and universities.
In the past, dual enrollment usually meant physically attending a college classroom or meeting in a high school with a college professor. However, more and more students are able to access dual enrollment courses on-line through homeschool academies. These students are able to take the college courses in the comfort of their own home, yet still participate in class discussions, work directly with professors, and experience the rigors college level academics.
Who can enroll in Dual Enrollment courses?
The “who” will vary from college to college; however, dual enrollment is generally reserved for high school juniors and seniors who are in strong academic standing and demonstrate an aptitude for college level academics.
Students are evaluated based on past academic performance and an entrance essay providing admissions officers a look at the student’s writing ability.
What are the benefits of Dual Enrollment?
Homeschoolers who take advantage of dual enrollment find the benefits to be numerous:
- It allows homeschoolers to experience college level academics before actually entering college.
- It smoothes out the transition from high school to college.
- Homeschoolers can ascertain how their high school level academics compare to college courses and to work directly with instructors.
- Homeschoolers can experience a wide range of courses and get a feel for different fields before declaring a major.
- Homeschoolers can begin to accumulate college credits before entering college and graduate college early or on time.
- When accumulating enough credits to complete a freshman or sophomore year, homeschoolers can by pass the competition and enroll in college as a transfer student.
What does the research say about Dual Enrollment?
- Research has found that students who take advantage of dual enrollment courses are more likely to pursue a college degree.
- Statistics show that students who participate in dual enrollment classes were more likely to go on to a second semester in college than those who did not.
- Statistics demonstrate that dual enrollment students’ grade point averages after two years of college were significantly higher than those students who did not participate in dual enrollment classes.
- Statistics also indicate that after 3 years of post-secondary education, students who participated in dual enrollment classes earned an average of 15.2 more credits than their non-dual enrollment peers.
How do I earn Dual Enrollment Credit?
This will vary from college to college; in some online colleges students earn their credit as soon as they complete their course. In some institutions, students do not earn credit until they actually enroll in college; therefore it is essential to speak with the college or high school counselor to find out how they handle the credits,
Can I Transfer Credits from one college to another?
Not all credits are transferrable to other colleges and universities. Check with the college to ensure that they are regionally accredited and recognized by other colleges and universities. If you know your intended major or the college you hope to attend, check with their admissions department to ensure that the courses you take are indeed required in your major or as a general education course.
Is there a limit on the number of credits I can earn?
In most cases there will be a limit on the number of credits you take each semester. Most dual enrollment programs restrict students to a total of 6 credits per semester.
Why? In addition, homeschool students are not balancing their dual enrollment course with a typical high school schedule where they must attend a school for much of their day before tackling their college level course.
Therefore, a number of online dual enrollment students have graduated high school with a full year of college under their belt; others have earned associates degrees while meeting the requirements for high school graduation.
How much do dual enrollment courses usually cost?
This will vary from college to college; however, the cost is generally lower than you would pay if you were taking the same courses as a college student. Plus, if you have been paying for a homeschool program, you save even more by combining the cost for both high school and college into one fee. In the end, you save up to $3000 per year in tuition dollars.
How do I know whether or not to try a homeschool dual enrollment program?
If you are motivated student who loves a challenge, who is looking for more advanced academics, who would like to work with a professor, or who would like to get a jump start on college then enrolling in a homeschool dual enrollment program is a great option for you. However, it will require a commitment and effort on your part. Do not assume that your college professors will go easy on you because you are still in high school. They will approach you just as they would any other of their students and they will expect quality work.
So if you are ready to give it your best and step up your academics, then you should definitely look into a dual enrollment program.
“The big conclusion is that we have some real evidence now that this is an effective strategy for helping students make a better transition to college and persist in college once they’re there,” said Katherine L. Hughes, an author of the study and assistant director of the Community College Research Center, housed at Columbia University’s Teachers College.