Traditional education experience is excellent for many students, but it's not the right fit for everyone. If you think you have some students who'd flourish with a little bit of a challenge (and a lot of structure, encouragement, and opportunity), dual enrollment might be the answer you need.
About Dual Enrollment
What is dual enrollment?
Dual enrollment is, essentially, a way to be a high school student and a college student at the same time and earn credits for both. Some students even graduate from high school with a college diploma.
What are the advantages?
Students who dual-enroll can get a head-start on life after high school. They'll have college credits, a better understanding of higher education, and maybe even a clear idea of what they'd like their career paths to look like. College credits are also cheaper if they're earned through a dual enrollment program.
Which students benefit most?
Dual enrollment, while a great opportunity, might not be for everyone. It is generally best-suited to students who want to go above and beyond in their educational careers and who are looking to fast-track their path to college or a career. Since the classes are college-level, they are more rigorous than what students might be familiar with--but dual-enrollment comes with many options for support, structure, and encouragement that can make the transition smoother.
What classes are available?
There are all kinds of options for dual enrollment classes, depending on the institution you partner with. Some of the subjects covered are science, economics, foreign languages, history, and specialized topics like web design. What makes these classes so efficient is that they are required for degrees in almost every discipline, which means that a student can benefit even if they don't yet know exactly what they'd like to major in.
What are the Benefits of Dual Enrollment?
Research tells us that dual enrollment has positive outcomes for students, including college enrollment and the persistent pursuit of a college degree, increased credit accumulation, and higher GPA's. According to a study done in Florida by the Community College Research Center, students in dual enrollment programs versus non-dual enrollment students saw statistically more significant increases in:
- Postsecondary enrollment after high school (67%)
- Pursuing Bachelor's degrees (35%)
- Persistence to go a second term (82%)
- and persistence to go a second year (76%)
Another benefit of dual enrollment is that it provides students with the opportunity to graduate early. Across the nation, fewer than 3% of students graduate high school early, according to USA Today.
So, now that you know what dual enrollment is and why it's such a great opportunity, how can you help students get started? Here's a quick look!
Step #1: Find a partner.
First, you'll want to choose a school with advanced opportunities to help with the dual enrollment process. This school will grant the student's credits. Think of it as finding a partner for you and the students; this is where you'll get practical advice, guidance in choosing and registering for classes, and support with the entire learning process.
Step #2: Create a learning plan.
Dual enrollment can seem a little overwhelming to students at first. A learning plan, however, can be a huge help--so start by sketching out a basic idea of what the student wants to gain from dual enrollment, where they'd like their educational journey to take them, and how they want to get the job done. This can be generalized or specific, depending on the student's needs, but there should be a documented path to help keep class sequences in order.
Step #3: Do the paperwork.
Once your students are ready to get started, it's time to fill out all the proper paperwork. Since there's a lot to know, this is generally where your partner school can step in and help guide you in the right direction--but don't worry. The process is more straightforward than it sounds!
Is your organization looking to partner with a local school for dual enrollment opportunities? We're here to help. Contact us today!
Are you a student or parent considering dual enrollment? Click below to learn more!