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Dual Credit & Associate Degree

RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
These are good programs for average students but what are the pros or cons of these programs for high achievers whose schools have good AP or IB offerings and they are aiming for top colleges.
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Replies to: Dual Credit & Associate Degree

  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 24497 replies19 threads Senior Member
    You have to decide which program is best for your student. Not all schools offer IB or AP, so then DE may be the only option. The math at the high school may be limited and the community college can offer a more advanced class.

    My daughter was a very good student, but not such a great standardized test taker. I didn't really understand DE and now think that would have been a better option for her for English and history classes as she would have earned college credits and not had to repeat them. I didn't even understand that the classes were offered at the high school (she was a transfer) and I dismissed the option because I thought she'd have to go to a community college campus and had no transportation. Live and learn.

    Top colleges may not accept (or may limit) credit for any of those three so you should just take the option that gives the best learning experience. I don't know if the top college will care if the math was high IB or calc through AP or DE as long it is was the most challenging math available.
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  • damon30damon30 1147 replies5 threads Senior Member
    Typically both high schools and weight AP and DE classes the same. However the grades you get in DE classes with be part of your college GPA, so you need to be very sure you will get "A"s.
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  • Eeyore123Eeyore123 1863 replies22 threads Senior Member
    I would say that DE is a good idea for an above average student that is highly likely to go to a state university. For very high achievers, it is complicated. It depends upon the HS and the College that is offering the DE. It can also very by where it is taught (HS or College). At my DSs HS, DE at a CC would be a step down. Just remember, a class doesn't have to be an AP or IB to be rigorous. YMMV.
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  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    Yes. In our schools too, high achievers do AP & IB, only one or two dual credits for math wizards who are done with all available Math courses and even they often retake those dual courses at their colleges to benefit from advance level of the course there.

    In some districts, some of their students leave after 10th and enroll for associate degree through community college. In our area, either these students aren’t very good or their schools aren’t good and they do aim for local state school campus.

    For high achievers, these local state campuses offer free rides so they have no advantage in going to community college. Their school AP/IB classes are more rigorous then local community college and top colleges are more likely to give AP/IB credit than DE credit.





    edited May 2019
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5664 replies338 threads Senior Member
    Students in our district that plan to attend a Texas state school like UT Austin often take state required core courses that have no AP or IB equivalent at their local CC while still in high school (Texas State Gov, Intro to Art or Music). It's much cheaper to take these classes while still in high school and frees up time in college to take more interesting classes. By the way, there are plenty of "high achievers" in the UT system as I'm sure is true for other state schools.

    You are less likely to get any AP/IB/DE credit at any top private school than at a state school.
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  • scubadivescubadive 1091 replies3 threads Senior Member
    Dual enrollment can be very useful staying in state or if you are considering another state university that accepts the credits. As in anything a CC class can vary in quality depending on prof and course number. We have surprisingly found community college where we are in mathematics post bc to be extremely rigorous.
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  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    From this district, high achievers leave with 40+ AP/IB credits so saving money and time is not an issue for them, at least not at state schools. They don’t need dual credit.

    My original question is about benefit of associate degree for such students, not about few random dual credit courses.
    edited May 2019
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  • bopperbopper Forum Champion CWRU 14454 replies104 threads Forum Champion
    IB and AP classes are known and you can see right up front if a college will give you credit for various AP/IB scores.

    For DE, you don't know if a college will give you credit for the classes.
    You do know your State Us and Colleges will take the credit.

    So I agree with an above poster...if your goal is to save money on college and go to a State U ,then DE is great.

    DE is also good if you were, say, ahead in math and needed to take Multivariable Calculus which wasn't offered at your HS.

    I don't think there is a benefit of the actual Associates Degree in general...its benefit is that you have 60 credits of college done.
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 30224 replies59 threads Senior Member
    I do not know how this would affect admissions to the most selective colleges. For those kids who are at highschools and strings that do not offer much in the way of academic challenges, and are off the map of AOs at selective colleges, it’s extremely beneficial to show incentive in taking more advanced courses and looking for challenges. However, for those where such opportunities exist at the school and community itself, no clue how they appear to colleges.

    I do know that certain highschools, ( my kids’ included) have some relationship with s local college. In our case, it’s with a university that allows top kids to take college courses on a limited based. My kids who did that got full college credit for those courses with no issues at all. I know s number of kids who got into the very top schools having taken those courses, but can’t say if they helped. No way to tell. They certainly did not hurt.

    I personally know of a young woman who graduated high school with an AA equivalent from a local college through some joint venture . She was accepted with a full scholarship to a state school with junior standing and accepted to a BA/Phd program there. Her gpa was excellent but had a 30 ACT. Was not accepted to the most selective schools. She has a college degree at age 20, however and on path for PHD in Psychology in 4 years.
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  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    These are great anecdotes but for these early college programs, you have to leave your high school to be a full time student at community college. It makes no sense for students who are at rigorous schools and doing well, they have a shot at top schools and if not then they can get lots of AP/IB credit at state schools often with top merit scholarships. By attending community college, they have to leave high school experience, competitive peers and shot at top schools without any real benefit.

    Some say it’s good for students who attend bad schools, without enough advance courses or aren’t competitive enough at their good schools and AP/IB programs. They don’t have a shot at top colleges or merit scholarships so dual credit can help them get credit at state schools.
    edited May 2019
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  • PurpleTitanPurpleTitan 13421 replies31 threads Senior Member
    @Riversider, it seems like you already have your mind decided so why did you ask the question?
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  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    @PurpleTitan

    To find out if my analysis is correct or do I need to re-evaluate.
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 24497 replies19 threads Senior Member
    These are great anecdotes but for these early college programs, you have to leave your high school to be a full time student at community college.

    That's not a DE program with the high school, that's a different program, an early college program that gives you a high school diploma when you complete those requirements and then whatever diploma or certificate you get for completing the early college program. Early college is different than DE. For about half the DE courses offered at our high school, the students don't even leave the high school. For the classes that were offered at a community college or state university, the students only took that one class on the cc campus (or online).

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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 30224 replies59 threads Senior Member
    The student know did not leave her high school. Was very active st her high school One of most active. Was able to spend half time at high school and then for 4 courses at local college. It was not a community college but a 4 year school.
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  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    I’m sorry. I wasn’t clear. My post is about full time 2 year early collegiate program at community college, not about taking some dual credit courses while in high school.
    edited May 2019
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 30224 replies59 threads Senior Member
    There are a number of homeschooled kids who take community college courses early. Also kid who outgrow their high school curriculums. Depending upon their stories, their grades and their test scores, it is possible to transition to a selective college.

    In California, transitions from CC to a UC are a designated pathway. In such an infrastructure, I have no idea how possible it would be to get early access to college level courses at a CC instead of high school.
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  • PurpleTitanPurpleTitan 13421 replies31 threads Senior Member
    CC and HS offerings, rigor, and pathways honestly differ too much by state and district across this vast country for anybody's experiences to be relevant to anyone else's on this thread, IMO. Not to mention that if you are in certain parts of this country, something like Harvard Extension School courses would be available to you in person while in other parts of the country, only online versions would be.

    So basically, if saving money isn't an issue, try to keep a kid challenged but not overwhelmed as best you can.



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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5664 replies338 threads Senior Member
    To go down this path other than a just few "random classes" you'd have to start at the beginning of Junior at the latest. Since OP's son is a raising senior this thread isn't likely relevant to them either.

    FWIW, I just read an article in our local paper that listed all the area VALs and SALs and two of them from an early start high school were the only high school students to received a Pharmacy Tech certification from our local CC they are both going on to major in Biochemistry at UT Austin.
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  • RiversiderRiversider 934 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
This discussion has been closed.

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