Did you know Florida high schooled homeschoolers can take free classes at colleges and universities and get credit toward their high school diploma and an associate or baccalaureate degree at the same time? How exciting is this?!
The dual enrollment program allows high school students to earn credit toward high school completion and a career certificate or an associate or baccalaureate degree at the same time. While generally open to all high school students, some colleges and universities will only allow juniors and seniors to participate in this program.
Early admission is a form of dual enrollment that allows high school seniors to enroll in college or career courses at colleges and universities on a full-time basis.
Any public, private, or home education high school student may enroll in courses creditable toward both a high school diploma and a career certificate or an associate or baccalaureate degree provided they satisfy any course prerequisites and meet the following requirements:
- Homeschooled students must provide proof of enrollment in a home education program;
- Private schooled students need to make sure their private school has an articulation agreement with their chosen college.
- Students will need to obtain approval from the parent and/or high school administrator (may or may not be the same person);
- Students wanting to enroll in career courses must demonstrate readiness for career-level coursework;
- Students must hold a 3.0 unweighted GPA for college credit courses or a 2.0 unweighted GPA for career certificate courses;
- Students must pass the appropriate college placement test (SAT, ACT, or CPT); and
- Any other eligibility criteria as required by the college or university.
Tuition and Fees
Besides transportation and basic school supplies, the only expense to homeschoolers involved in dual enrollment is the cost of instructional materials. High school students are exempt from the payment of registration, tuition, and lab fees saving parents over $6,000 in costs. (Textbooks are provided at no cost to public high school students only.)
Who Should Enroll
Dual enrollment courses are college-level courses presented on an adult level, and the amount of work necessary to succeed in these courses is greater than in high school courses. It is important that your child is dedicated to his or her studies and understands what is expected before enrolling. Students must be self-disciplined and motivated to study outside of class. Dual enrollment courses become a part of your child's permanent college transcript and are calculated into his or her permanent high school GPA. Students who receive a failing grade may have difficulty meeting future admission requirements at colleges and universities and difficulty qualifying for financial aid and scholarships.
How to Enroll
Check with your local college or university to find out what the enrollment deadlines and procedures are. There are specific deadlines for applying for dual enrollment, placement testing (if your child does not already have qualifying test scores), and approvals. In addition, if your child is enrolled in an umbrella school and it does not already have an articulation agreement with your chosen college or university, you will want to have sufficient time for the schools to process the necessary paperwork.
Something to Note
Students who obtain an associate of arts degree while in high school may have admission priority or possibly guaranteed admission when transferring directly from a Florida public community college to a Florida state university, however, according to the FAQs published by the Florida Department of Education "Dual enrollment college credit will transfer to any public college or university offering the statewide course number...However, if students do not, upon high school graduation, attend the same college or university where they earned the dual enrollment credit, the application of transfer credit to general education, prerequisite, and degree programs may vary at the receiving institution." This means you should check to make sure your child's dual enrollment credits will transfer to your child's chosen university if he or she is planning to continue his or her education.