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What are Dual Credit and Dual Enrollment?
WHAT IS DUAL CREDIT?
Dual Credit refers to college level courses that allow students to earn both high school and college credit simultaneously. Classes are always taught by a high school instructor and are held at the student's high school. As a result, this option is ideal for students who would like to experience college work in a familiar classroom environment as well as those who may wish to avoid commuting to campus.
Students have an opportunity to experience rigorous academic coursework when enrolled in a Dual Credit course. Prerequisites and course content are the same as if the course took place at the Jefferson College campus, and instructors must meet the same academic standards as an instructor at Jefferson College and are classified as Jefferson College faculty. Dual Credit courses help students transition more easily to the challenges of a college schedule, enabling students to build self-confidence for continued academic success.
Most schools share the costs of tuition fees for Dual Credit classes with the student, so this option can dramatically lower student's economic burden. Because each course counts toward both high school and college credit, the time required for completion of a degree is also reduced.
HOW IS DUAL CREDIT DIFFERENT FROM ADVANCED PLACEMENT (AP) COURSES?
AP courses are similar to Dual Credit courses in that college credit can be earned from both. In an AP course, students must focus their efforts on passing a single national exam at the conclusion of the course. If the student does not receive a high enough grade on that test, no college credit is received. Instructors are not required by the College Board to have any special qualifications to teach an AP class. Also, some colleges do not award credit for even the highest marks for an AP course exam.
Dual Credit courses evaluate a student's entire performance in the course, awarding credit for successful completion of all coursework instead of relying upon a grade for a single standardized exam. Instructors of Dual Credit courses must meet the same requirements required of faculty at Jefferson College. In addition, course credits are guaranteed to be accepted at Jefferson College, and courses fall under the same guidelines for credit transferability as any other college course offered in public and independent institutions in Missouri.
WHAT IS DUAL ENROLLMENT?
Dual Enrollment refers to students concurrently enrolled at a high school and Jefferson College. Students should contact their guidance counselor to determine if they can earn high school credit for courses taken at the college level through Dual Enrollment. Classes are often held online, enabling students to continue to remain active in their high school activities while completing college coursework at times most convenient to them. Some courses and programs are held at a Jefferson College campus.
HOW IS DUAL CREDIT DIFFERENT FROM DUAL ENROLLMENT COURSES?
High Schools are limited in what they can offer as Dual Credit courses, as they must have staff at the school who are qualified to teach the courses. Since Dual Enrollment courses are taught at Jefferson College campuses or online, students can choose from a greater selection of general education subjects and instructors to best suit their needs. In addition, evening classes might better fit the student's schedule.
Students who wish for Dual Enrollment courses to also count toward high school credit should talk with their high school counselor. Jefferson College has agreements with several local high schools that allow students to earn up to 42 hours of college credit in general education courses or an Associate's Degree using a combination of Dual Credit and Dual Enrollment courses. More information can be obtained from guidance counselors at the student's high school.
See the Course Descriptions in the current College Catalog to view Course offerings.
Interested students should meet with a school counselor to learn about the Early College opportunities available to them. Options may vary by school.