My son is a freshman at UW with a STEM major. He came in with a lot of AP credits, and should be able to graduate within 3 yrs by taking 15-16 cr per quarter. He will be taking many upper level classes in his major, so will be pursuing some rather rigorous coursework.
In order to rack up 15 cr/ semester, he will need to take 5 courses. At the semester-based schools with which I am familiar 4 courses is the standard load. 5 courses seems like a lot to juggle.
I have suggested that he ask around for recommendations for easier courses to take for his fifth course. But I thought cc might be a good source, as well. The courses don't even have to fulfill breadth requirements: he has that pretty well under control. It is the 120 credit requirement that he needs to address.