PART 4 of 4
Degree planning, in contrast to high school planning, is when your teen’s courses are selected to meet the requirements for a college degree. Resourceful high school planning, something we’re especially focused on here, is considering those requirements while your teen is still in high school and thoughtfully injecting college credit into your homeschool program where it makes sense. Since planning a high school diploma is already a big job for most of us, degree planning can feel unachievable. In this 4-part series, I’d like to talk more with you about degree planning.
Transfer Makes $ense
If you’ve learned one key point in this series, it’s that transfer credit makes college affordable. If a college you’re considering accepts transfer credit in any amount, you have an opportunity to save significantly over the rack rate tuition they’re advertising.
- Most state colleges accept transfer credit or alternative credit for 50% of a degree. Examples of this are using your community college to complete the first two years of a degree and then the last two at a state college.
- Colleges with a generous transfer policy will accept transfer credit or alternative credit for up to 75% of a degree.
- There are three colleges with a VERY generous transfer policy, The Big 3, where the entire degree (except for a Cornerstone and/or Capstone) can be brought in as transfer or alternative credit.
The Same Thing Only Different
Occasionally, a college will “reverse” the way they state their policy, which can be confusing at first blush. For instance, a bachelor’s degree usually requires the completion of 120 credits. Their transfer policy may be written in several different ways, you might have to do a little math to help you understand what they mean.
Policy Example #1) A student may transfer in up to 90 credits
Since a bachelor’s degree is 120 credits, we can calculate that 90 credits will represent 75% of the degree. (120 divided by 90 = 75%) In this policy, a student may transfer in 75% of the degree, or 90 of the 120 credits required.
Policy Example #2) A student may transfer in up to 75% of the degree
Since a bachelor’s degree is 120 credits, we can calculate that 75% of 120 is 90 credits. (120 x .75 = 90) In this policy, a student may transfer in 75% of the degree, or 90 of the 120 credits required.
Policy Example #3) A student must complete 25% of the degree at this college
Since a bachelor’s degree is 120 credits, we can calculate that 25% of 120 is 30 credits. (120 x .25 = 30) In this policy, they are spelling out what you can’t transfer instead of what you can. It’s a little less direct, but by requiring you to complete 25%, they are allowing you to transfer in the remaining 75% (90 credits).
You’ll occasionally see variations and stipulations, but if you take a moment to understand exactly what they’re allowing, you’ll know whether or not it’s a good policy!
(1) Your teen can begin a college degree at home at any age.
(2) The cheapest credit is 100 and 200 level.
(3) You are your teen’s best guidance counselor!
Degree planning is tricky, but it’s not impossible – and it IS WORTH IT! A resourcefully planned degree can cost 1/2 of what you’ll pay if you just walk in and sign up for college.
Our Degree Planning class can help you save money and graduate faster!
Our Masterclass contains ALL 9 COURSES!
The rest of this series: