Pro Tip for Choosing a DE College

MANY of you are taking advantage of dual enrollment college options in high school. Resourceful high school planning is the backbone of Homeschooling for College Credit. Today’s tip centers around choosing your dual enrollment college.

If dual enrollment is part of your HS4CC program and you have the choice between a 2 or a 4-year university, choose the 4-year university. Keep in mind that no matter where you take dual enrollment classes from, that you don’t have to stick around and earn a degree, but there are some advantages at some colleges when you do. Here are a 8 reasons you’ll get more bang for your buck:

  1. Upper-Level Some 4-year universities allow qualifying high school students to take 300/400 (upper level) courses. If your teen is planning a 4-year degree, this category of credit is almost the hardest to access and the most expensive, so getting these “rare” credits for a discount (or free) is a HUGE WIN. Two-year colleges won’t offer upper-level credits because those credits are “higher” than the requirements of a 2-year degree.
  2. Keep On Keepin’ On In the event that your teen is very motivated, it’s possible to earn MORE THAN 2 years of college credit in high school. When that happens, some parents look for an associate degree exit-strategy option. That’s an ok plan, but if you’re at a 4-year program for dual enrollment, there is no need to “exit” simply keep working toward the bachelor’s degree (at a reduced tuition rate!).
  3. Faculty Education Faculty at 2-year colleges will hold a master’s in the field or a masters + 18 graduate credits in the field. (This is only true for arts and science courses. Applied science/vocational teacher’s credentials will vary). But, to teach arts and sciences at a 4-year university, a faculty/professors will hold a doctorate degree. (This is only true for arts and science courses. Applied science/vocational teacher’s credentials will vary.)
  4. Incentives Four-year universities that accept dual enrollment students are courting your teen. They are hoping that your teen will ultimately choose to stay at that university and complete their degree. As such, you can sometimes get special “perks” or “incentives” to make that decision. Common “incentives” may include:
    1. guaranteed admission
    2. seamless enrollment
    3. special scholarships for those who used DE
  5. Fancy Like In the case of very, very, very elite or competitive graduate school admissions (the degree that would come after a 4-year degree) there are some instances where specific courses taken at a 4-year university are looked at more favorably than those taken from a 2-year college. One example is that medical schools “prefer” (though may not require) lab sciences taken at a 4-year university in person. Clearly this won’t apply to most of you, but if you’re in this category, and it gives you a 1% advantage, you may want to jump on that!
  6. Free+ The average 2-year college costs about $150 per credit, whereas the average 4-year college is up close to $500 per credit. If you’re getting free dual enrollment tuition, you’re getting college credit worth more (dollars) when you use the more expensive college. *Note: If you don’t get free tuition, then you’ll want to look at the many VERY low cost 4-year universities on the HS4CC Dual Enrollment list. The lowest price university on our list only $25 per credit if you’re in high school!
  7. Advising Wherever your teen enrolls, they will have access to a dual enrollment advisor. This person helps them choose classes, register, and confirm that they are eligible for the classes they want. The advantage of using an advisor at a 4-year university, is if you let your advisor know that you’re staying there after high school, they can help you choose all your courses! This is an exceptional benefit because you won’t get access to other advisors at different colleges until you enroll there.
  8. Transferability Transferability of courses taken at a 4-year university into another 4-year university will be very good. If you stay put at the university to finish your degree, not only will you guarantee that they’ll be accepted, but access to advisors (tip #7) will help plan the correct courses.

Affordable Dual Enrollment: West Virginia University

In September & October, I’m going to highlight affordable dual enrollment programs. To make the cut, a program must be open to students from any state, available online, and charge less than $100 per credit. Today’s program is called “Access Early College” and it is offered through West Virginia University – it is the CHEAPEST…


Executive Director of Homeschooling for College Credit