A recent article in Community College Week points to a study showing that dual enrollment programs provide significant benefits for high school students. Although more research needs to be conducted in this area, the study indicates that improved graduation rates, greater college attendance, and higher GPAs are all associated with taking dual enrollment classes.
I am not surprised by any of this. I am a big supporter of dual enrollment/credit programs. I have been working on expanding opportunities at my own college ever since I “went over to the dark side” of administration a couple of years ago. I have seen what can be accomplished from the faculty perspective with high school students in my college class. I have also seen it from the program side. I should also mention that it has been important to me personally. My older daughter graduated from a four-year degree in three years, partially due to dual credit ($$$ was saved). My younger daughter should have her Associate degree in pre-nursing by the time the rest of her cohort graduates from high school thanks to dual credit (and a lot of hard work on her part).
Where the article gets really interesting for me is in the discussion of technical students:
“Researchers paid particular attention to high school students enrolled in career and technical education courses, those who are traditionally considered not bound for college. They found in many measures, the gains documented for the whole sample also held true for career and technical education students.”
I will pass on the comment that CTE students are not college bound. Many are headed to health or technical careers that either require or benefit from post-secondary education. What is important is that they realized that CTE students benefit from dual enrollment just like other students. I already knew this was true, but the validation is welcome.
(On a side note, I was happy to see that my own technical college has already made progress on the recommendations of the researchers. It feels good to be ahead for a change!)No comments