Ready to chat about dual enrollment for homeschool students? This is a great topic and one that has benefited my kids in many ways.
Here’s what I tell other families who are wondering what my best tips are for the high school years. Dual enrollment is right up there at the top.
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What is Dual Enrollment?
Dual enrollment courses allow a high school student to simultaneously earn high school credit and college credit when taking college courses before graduating from high school.
For example, if your teen enrolls in a college history course, he can earn one credit for history on his high school transcript while also earning 3 college credits to be applied toward a future college degree.
Dual enrollment college courses are one semester long, so in one semester, your high school student can complete enough work for one year of high school in that subject.
Here’s another example. A typical high school credit for English would take one year of coursework to complete. But, if taking English 102 college course, your high schooler would complete that course in one semester. So the length of time needed for one high school credit is shorter.
Listen to episode 231
On episode 231 of the Homeschool with Moxie Podcast, we deep dive into the topic of dual enrollment and the five ways it has benefited my teens.
Why Homeschool Students Should Consider Dual Enrollment
Dual enrollment for homeschool courses is a great choice for many teens. In the 11th and 12th grade years, my teens have all taken dual enrollment courses. Here are five reasons why they’re a good idea.
Dual enrollment can kill two birds with one stone.
We’ve already mentioned above that by taking one college course, your student earns both college and high school credit. My teens have taken courses that are general for most college freshman. So, instead of taking a high school world history course in our homeschool, they might take then History of Civilization course that college freshman are required to take at a liberal arts institution.
Or, instead of taking a 12th grade generic English or literature class in our homeschool, they’ll tackle English 102 or English 103 at the college level.
Dual enrollment makes college more affordable.
My teens have been able to complete one semester or two semesters at home during high school using dual enrollment. Many community colleges or other universities offer discounted prices for high school students taking college courses.
By taking advantage of these discounts, your students might be able to take a year or two off of their college finances by paying half price (or less!) for credits and also saving on room and board by living at home in the high school years.
This is how my kids have been able to graduate from college debt-free and pay for it themselves – by shaving off a few semesters with dual enrollment. My oldest entered college as a sophomore, saving himself boatloads of money.
Homeschool students benefit from an outside teacher.
Homeschool students do need to learn from teachers other than mom! It’s a great time in the high school years to branch out if they haven’t already and be accountable to outside teachers. Having their work graded by another teacher is also helpful.
Dual enrollment gives homeschool students rigorous coursework.
Most dual enrollment college courses will be more rigorous than your typical homeschool courses. Plus, the workload is done within one semester’s time, so the shortened timeline also adds to the rigor. Homeschool students can benefit while doing this more rigorous coursework little by little without also having to navigate life away from home in the college dorms.
By the time your student goes away to college, he’ll already have a good idea of what college courses are like if he’s done dual enrollment courses while in high school.
Students can learn study and organizational skills while still at home.
Again, it’s a great idea to learn how to study well and organize your notes, resources, and time while still at home. Dual enrollment gives teens the opportunity to dip their toes into the water while mom can still mentor and coach them.
It’s a bit like learning how to manage money while still living at home. You can afford to make a few mistakes while gaining this life skill.
Final thoughts on dual enrollment for homeschool students
Dual enrollment is one of those tips that I recommend all homeschool families at least consider! These are my top reasons why.
Want more high school homeschool help? Check out these additional resources.