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Is attending community college and transferring considered an acceptable option?

ucbalumnusucbalumnus Posts: 36,300Registered User Senior Member
edited March 2012 in Parents Forum
Is attending community college and transferring as a junior to a four year university to complete a bachelor's degree generally considered an acceptable option?

It does appear that doing so is viewed with disdain by many on these forums.
Post edited by ucbalumnus on
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Replies to: Is attending community college and transferring considered an acceptable option?

  • sbjdorlosbjdorlo Posts: 3,089Registered User Senior Member
    Most of the people in our circles do this. Most will either go to a Christian college, go to no college, or go to the local CC and then transfer to the local state or local UC school. It's very practical and the local UC has an excellent reputation. My son felt it was too big. We know only one other student who is planning on attending a selective private college.
  • LasMaLasMa Posts: 7,806Registered User Senior Member
    ucb, it's my sense that the disdain is mostly on the student forums where, as we know, there's a lot of strutting and posturing. IMO it's a smart way to go -- same degree for half the price. And the diploma doesn't say "granted by the University by way of the Community College"; it just says "granted by the University."
  • MD MomMD Mom Posts: 6,728Registered User Senior Member
    Half of the kids who go to college out of our public schools start at our community college. People's eyes pop out when the hear that figure. We have several four-year colleges that students could drive to.
  • chaosakitachaosakita Posts: 1,439Registered User Senior Member
    I think it's a good option, but I don't think it would be something I would consider to anyone with alternatives. I don't know why people always suggest going to CC instead of a lower ranked school when things don't go well for them. Personally, I would prefer to go to a 4-year college over CC so that I can be able to experience dorm life and whatever campus life is available. Obviously, not all colleges would have this, but I think any regular state school would. I think that getting the "college experience" is really important part of attending university, not just getting credits. Also, I dual-enrolled last semester, and my feeling whenever I stepped onto campus was just soul-sucking for me. I could not imagine going to a school for two years that makes me feel so depressed. It would also be incredibly hard, although not impossible, to make friends, which would be really tough on me, because all my close friends are leaving the state for school, or at least going out of town. (Although I think I could get an AA in one year with summer classes, previous credits, and lots and lots of driving) Personally, I am not ready to have a 100% adult life yet, and I think not going to experience dorm life and the like would deprive me of a critical growing opportunity. In short, I think going to community college would be a complete nightmare.

    Don't get me wrong, community college does have it uses (for people who want an associates degree, have lots of outside responsibilities, or lack the financial resources to attend a university), but I would definitely not suggest it to anyone who can afford anything else.
  • MD MomMD Mom Posts: 6,728Registered User Senior Member
    Some states have really good community college systems with nice articulation agreements that make the transfer very smooth. I do agree with the idea that college is also about the experience.
  • chaosakitachaosakita Posts: 1,439Registered User Senior Member
    I think it might be good to go to a community college in California if you want to get into a UC. Apparently, CC transfers are prioritized above CSU transfers. If I lived in CA and didn't get accepted to any schools, then considering a CC would be in my mind. It would be a very difficult decision though. I'm not sure about any other states.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 36,437Registered User Senior Member
    Well, it worked for my DH! He has had a very successful career and thanks the CC for getting him on the right track!
  • chaosakitachaosakita Posts: 1,439Registered User Senior Member
    I'm curious, besides the opportunity to live at home and cheaper tuition, is there something that a CC has that can't be found at a 4-year college?
  • MD MomMD Mom Posts: 6,728Registered User Senior Member
    For underprepared students, extensive transitional(remedial) courses are available. Some four-year colleges offer transitional classes.

    Community colleges also offer non-credit non-academic classes like cooking and hobby-type classes. Courses in the trades may be available too. CCs serve the whole community.
  • walkinghomewalkinghome Posts: 6,927Registered User Senior Member
    chaosakita, Just as all four year universities are different, so are community colleges. I always find it funny when people refer to CC's as if they were all one and the same.

    In our area many people do go to the local CC and all of their credits will go with them to a State U and there are also some privates that they have articulation agreements with. It's a huge cost savings and I understand that many of the Prof's also teach at the nearby four year colleges. Great choice for lots of people.
  • mom60mom60 Posts: 5,588Registered User Senior Member
    I am going through the admissions process with Child number 3. This time around I am hearing many kids who have done the college prep route who are making the decision to go to the CC. These are students who have taken the classes required to get into a Univ of Ca or a Cal state. I think economics are playing a huge part in the decision.
    Our local CC has agreements with a number of schools including some private schools. The student saves a large sum of money. Our local CC is also popular with students from out of the area who move here to attend our CC. I think it is also popular with international students.
  • Youdon'tsayYoudon'tsay Posts: 16,318Registered User Senior Member
    That's what I did. :)
  • chaosakitachaosakita Posts: 1,439Registered User Senior Member
    chaosakita, Just as all four year universities are different, so are community colleges. I always find it funny when people refer to CC's as if they were all one and the same.

    In our area many people do go to the local CC and all of their credits will go with them to a State U and there are also some privates that they have articulation agreements with. It's a huge cost savings and I understand that many of the Prof's also teach at the nearby four year colleges. Great choice for lots of people.

    I know that the vast majority of community colleges are non-residential, so at the very least, I would be missing out on campus life. Also generally, community colleges tend to serve older students who have other preoccupations in their lives besides school. Of course, there are exceptions, but those are the minority, and none of them seem to be located in my area.
  • FallGirlFallGirl Posts: 4,249Registered User Senior Member
    It worked for me and my siblings. We lived very close to a very good cc and all spent 1 or 2 years there. As for "missing out on campus life", after I transferred I was very active at my 4 year university (sorority/admissions tour guide/homecoming committee and more), it was just campus life for 2 years instead of 4. I didn't feel as if I missed a thing. Well, I did miss one thing...the lower cost enabled me to get my degree without any loans.
  • GladGradDadGladGradDad Posts: 2,794Registered User Senior Member
    It's a perfectly acceptable option. IMO it'd be 'nice' and even preferable, if cost and practicality aren't factors, to attend the 4 year college for all 4 years rather than do the CC transfer but if that isn't financially comfortable for the family or if the student isn't ready for the 4 year either academically or for logistical reasons (such as needing to live at home, work the job they have, etc.) then there's nothing wrong with the transfer option. It's very practical and is an option that makes 'college' affordable to virtually everyone (at least in some states - like California). At the end of the day they have the BS or BA from the 4 year college - just like the people who didn't do the transfer.
    ...if you want to get into a UC. Apparently, CC transfers are prioritized above CSU transfers.
    The CSUs are already 4 year colleges so it's not the norm to transfer from one 4 year college to another 4 year college - i.e. a CSU to a UC or vice versa. Of course it happens sometimes but it isn't the norm whereas transferring from a CC to either a CSU or UC is the norm. From what I've heard you're right though that a CC->UC may be an easier path than a CSU->UC but don't forget that there are people who sometimes choose a CSU over a UC anyway.
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