Dual Enrollment: Public Postsecondary Institutions Required to Accept Credits

Dual Enrollment: Public Postsecondary Institutions Required to Accept Credits

This database indicates whether public two- and four-year institutions other than the institution at which the student earned postsecondary credit are required to accept postsecondary credits earned through dual enrollment programs.

What these responses mean:

  • "Yes": state policy requires dual enrollment credits to be treated for transfer credit in the same manner as credits earned at the receiving institution, or requires dual enrollment courses to be included in a statewide guaranteed transfer list recognized by all public two-and four-year institutions in a state.
  • "No": Public postsecondary institutions are not required to accept postsecondary credits earned through dual enrollment programs.
  • "Unclear": State policy does not appear to address whether public postsecondary institutions must accept postsecondary credits earned through dual enrollment.

Why does it matter?

  • Dual enrollment courses live up to their potential when end-of-course measures ensure the level of content is equal to that of traditional postsecondary courses.
  • If courses meet rigorous criteria yet students are denied postsecondary credit, the value of dual enrollment as an option for students to save money and time to degree is negated.
  • Twenty-five states require all public two- and four-year institutions to accept college credits earned through dual enrollment programs.
  • Fifteen states and the District of Columbia do not require public postsecondary institutions to accept dual enrollment courses for transfer credit.
  • In four states, public postsecondary institutions must recognize credit earned through one state program, but are not required to recognize credit earned through another state program.
  • Policies in six states are unclear or silent on this issue.

Methodology: This information was collected from state statutes, rules and regulations, and state education agency Web sites. A profile was sent to each state for review and modification, as needed.

Last updated: March 2016

This database was compiled by Jennifer Dounay Zinth: 303.299.3689 or jzinth@ecs.org.

Public postsecondary institutions required to accept credits
Alabama No
Alaska No
Arizona Yes
Arkansas Yes, provided the course is an endorsed concurrent enrollment course and is listed as a “comparable” course in the Arkansas Department of Higher Education’s Arkansas Course Transfer System (ACTS). By definition, an “endorsed concurrent enrollment course” must be listed in ACTS. If the college/university offers the course at the freshman or sophomore level, the course is listed as a comparable course in ACTS.
California Both programs: Unclear

However, 2015 A.B. 288 creating the College and Career Access Pathways partnership includes statements of legislative intent that (1) allowing a greater and more varied segment of high school pupils to take community college courses could provide numerous benefits to both the pupils and the state, such as increasing the number of community college students who transfer and complete a degree, and (2)  dual enrollment partnerships, school districts and community college districts could create clear pathways of aligned, sequenced coursework that would allow students to more easily and successfully transition to for-credit, college-level coursework leading to an associate degree, transfer to the University of California or the California State University, or to a program leading to a career technical education credential or certificate.
Colorado Yes, provided a course is a gtPathways (Guaranteed Transfer) course. Students who complete a state guaranteed general education course with a C- or higher will receive transfer credits applied to graduation requirements in all majors at all public institutions unless a specific statewide articulation agreement exists. More than 500 lower-division general education courses in 20 subject areas are approved for guaranteed transfer.
Connecticut No
Delaware No. However, they have agreed to accept credits for courses in which students earn a "C" or higher.
District of Columbia No
Florida Yes. Any course that has a statewide numbering system number must be accepted by Florida public institutions as if the course were taken at their institution. Private institutions are eligible but not required to participate in the statewide course numbering system.

The department of education must develop a statement on transfer guarantees to inform students and their parents, prior to enrollment in a dual enrollment course, of the potential for the dual enrollment course to articulate as an elective or a general education course into a postsecondary education certificate or degree program. The statement must be provided to each district school superintendent, for inclusion in the information provided to all secondary students and their parents as required above. The statement may also include additional information, including dual enrollment options, guarantees, privileges, and responsibilities.

A university designated as a preeminent state research university may require its incoming first-time-in-college to take a 9- to-12-credit set of unique courses specifically determined by the university and published on the university’s website. The university may stipulate that credit for such courses may not be earned through any acceleration mechanism, including dual enrollment.
Georgia Yes. A January 2012 agreement identifies the general education courses that University System of Georgia (USG) and Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) institutions will accept for transfer between their respective regionally accredited institutions. These courses are to transfer between USG and TCSG institutions regardless of whether a student was a high school student when completing the course.
Hawaii Yes. All dual credit course credits that would otherwise be transferable but for a student's grade level, must be transferable to any University of Hawaii system degree granting institution.
Idaho No. If a student enrolls in a postsecondary institution after leaving secondary school, the postsecondary institution must award postsecondary credit for any course successfully completed for secondary credit at that institution. Other postsecondary institutions may award postsecondary credit for any courses successfully completed via dual credit.
Illinois Yes. The Illinois Articulation Initiative (IAI) is a statewide transfer agreement with over 100 participating public and private two- and four-year institutions. All participating institutions agree to accept credits for specific courses. Since dual credit courses are identical to any other college course, the transferability for them is the same as for any on-campus college course.
Indiana Yes, if the course is offered by a state educational institution and the course is listed in the statewide core transfer library (such courses are transferable on all campuses of the state educational institutions). The educational institution other than the one the student completed the course with must also grant credit for courses that are subject to an articulation agreement, and may grant credit for other successfully completed courses.
Iowa No. However, legislation requires the creation of an Internet-based information clearinghouse that identifies Senior Year Plus program course transferability and articulation between the various Iowa postsecondary systems.
Kansas Yes. Public postsecondary institutions are required to accept courses approved by the board of regents for guaranteed transfer. As of April 2016, the list includes 66 courses, with additions occuring each year on the recommendation of a statewide Transfer & Articulation Council. This guaranteed transfer extends to courses on the list taken through a Concurrent Enrollment Partnership. A full list of approved courses is available at kansasregents.org.
Kentucky Yes. Credit earned through dual enrollment/dual credit must be treated the same as credit earned on the college campus.

The Guiding Principles for the CPE/KDE Dual Credit Policy include, "Standardization of a course numbering system for KCTCS career and technical education courses should be established and maintained."

Under the Dual Credit Policy:
  • All participating postsecondary institutions must recognize dual credit general education courses pursuant to the General Education Transfer Policy and Implementation Guidelines and in accordance with accreditation requirements. All participating postsecondary institutions must recognize credit awarded for CTE dual credit coursework if the course has the same competencies and learning outcomes as that of a course offered at the receiving institution. CTE dual credit courses must be transferable to any participating community and technical college offering those courses and be accepted as meeting requirements for a certificate, diploma or associate degree within the related program of study.
  • Participating institutions must provide dual credit students and teachers with information about the transferability of credit for that course.
  • The CPE must create and monitor an accountability system with metrics related to student access, quality, affordability and transferability of credit.
  • Secondary and postsecondary institutions must jointly standardize the course numbering system for Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) CTE courses. The KDE must work with schools, districts, and the KCTCS to ensure the standardization of the course numbering system for CTE courses.
Louisiana All programs: Yes. The statewide articulation agreement between the board of regents and the state board of elementary and secondary education must provide for postsecondary institutions to accept credits earned in dual enrollment, and guarantee the statewide articulation of appropriate CTE programs and workforce development programs and transfer of course credits between secondary schools and technical and community colleges.

The board of regents must maintain a statewide course numbering system for postsecondary and dual enrollment education in all public secondary and postsecondary institutions, to facilitate program planning and the transfer of students and course credits between and among secondary and postsecondary educational institutions. Equivalent courses must be guaranteed to transfer to any educational institution participating in the statewide course numbering system.

In addition, the board of supervisors of community and technical colleges must collaborate with the state board to ensure that secondary students enrolled in postsecondary CTE and industry-based certification courses offered through local public school systems and secondary schools are also eligible to earn academic transfer modules that can be applied to award a student with partial or full credit in an equivalent academic course offered by any public state community college.
Maine General program: Yes

Dual enrollment career and technical education program: Unclear
Maryland No
Massachusetts General courses: No

Commonwealth Dual Enrollment Partnership: No. However, CDEP-eligible courses are either credit-bearing courses that qualify under the MassTransfer Block, or are in the disciplines of computer science, technology or engineering. MassTransfer courses are primarily first- and second-year postsecondary courses that institutions regard as highly transferable, but are not guaranteed to transfer.
Michigan No. However, for a district to be eligible for payments from an appropriation to support students enrolled in a concurrent enrollment program, the district must ensure the student is awarded both high school and college credit at any community college or state public university in the state upon successful completion of the course.
Minnesota No. However, the Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) and the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota must, and private nonprofit and proprietary postsecondary institutions should, award postsecondary credit for any courses in a program certified by the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (this applies to courses taught at a high school and taught by either a secondary teacher or postsecondary faculty member). All MnSCU institutions must give full credit to a student who completes for postsecondary credit a postsecondary course or program that is part or all of a goal area or a transfer curriculum at a MnSCU institution when the student enrolls in a MnSCU institution after leaving secondary school. Once one MnSCU institution certifies as completed a secondary student's postsecondary course or program that is part or all of a goal area or a transfer curriculum, every MnSCU institution must consider the student's course or program for that goal area or the transfer curriculum as completed.
Mississippi Yes. Dual credit/dual enrollment courses use the same college subject/prefix when transcripted at the community college and university levels, and as such, are treated no differently from other college courses in the statewide articulation agreement and degree requirements.
Missouri Yes. Credits earned by students in dual credit courses that meet guidelines set forth in the Coordinating Board for Higher Education (CBHE) Dual Credit Policy fall under the same CBHE guidelines as that for credit in college courses subject to transfer between public and independent institutions in the state of Missouri. College credit earned through dual credit courses offered in high schools must be applicable toward associate and/or baccalaureate degree requirements and be eligible for transfer. All students’ rights and responsibilities as outlined in CBHE’s Credit Transfer Guidelines apply.
Montana Yes. The Montana University System has adopted Common Course Numbering. As such, all courses developed by a Montana University System campus will directly transfer on a one-to-one basis across the Montana University System.
Nebraska No
Nevada Yes
New Hampshire No
New Jersey No. While statute requires a public institution of higher education to accept the course credit of a student who successfully completes a dual enrollment course, policy is silent on how accepted credits should be applied.
New Mexico Yes. Any course in the general education core may be offered for dual credit. Dual credit courses in the general education core must be transferable to any institution, and must count as fulfilling a required lower-division course.
New York Unclear
North Carolina Yes. Career & College Promise has developed a college transfer pathway (CTP) with two separate track options – one of courses leading to the Associate in Arts and another of courses leading to the Associate in Science. Courses in each of the transfer pathways consist of Universal General Education Transfer Components (UGETC), as specified in the 2014 North Carolina Comprehensive Articulation Agreement and as such, must be recognized as transfer credit by all public two- and four-year institutions in the state.

CTE courses from CTE pathways may transfer to individual universities/colleges if a local/bi-lateral transfer articulation agreement between the community college and university/college has been established.  
North Dakota Yes. All dual-credit courses have equal transferability status within the North Dakota University System in accordance with the General Education Requirement Transfer Agreement (GERTA) and other transfer agreements.
Ohio Yes. Ohio's public two- and four-year colleges and universities must accept transfer credit for successfully completed (as defined in transfer policy), college-level courses from Ohio institutions of higher education which are accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the Higher Learning Commission, or other regional accrediting commissions recognized by the Council On Higher Education Accreditation.
Oklahoma Yes. The State System has a course equivalency matrix that allows students to see how a course will transfer among institutions. The institutions are committed to honoring this agreement.
Oregon No
Pennsylvania No. However, community colleges, member institutions of the state system of higher education and state-related institutions may not refuse to recognize and award credit for a concurrent course simply because the credit was earned through a concurrent enrollment program.

*Program currently inactive due to inadequate state funds*
Rhode Island Unclear
South Carolina Yes, provided a general education course is on the list of universally transferable courses maintained by the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education. For technical education courses, dual enrollment credit must transfer to other public institutions if the student enrolls in a technical college after high school which allows for such a course to be counted toward an associate degree, diploma, or certificate.
South Dakota No. However, the Board of Regents' Dual/Concurrent Credit Administration Guidelines provide that most Regental institution credits are transferable among all Regental institutions and other regionally accredited institutions. In addition, Appendix C of the Guidelines provides an agreement that may be approved between the South Dakota Board of Regents and another institution, requiring dual credit courses to be accepted for transfer if certain criteria are satisfied regarding course instructor qualifications and other measures of course rigor, and student eligibility requirements.
Tennessee Yes. Dual Credit: Students who pass dual credit challenge exams earn college credit accepted by all Tennessee public postsecondary institutions.

Dual Enrollment: Courses listed in the Tennessee Transfer Pathways are recognized for transfer credit by all Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) institutions. Courses listed as general ed. typically meet all TBR institutions’ requirements; the link identifies those recognized only at specific institutions.

A peer institution (i.e., four-year, two-year, or college of applied technology) must award the student credit for a dual credit course if the student passes the course’s challenge examination with a score equal to or higher than the cut score required by the institution. However, each higher education institution awarding the credit determines whether the class credit is applied toward a major or the requirements of a specific program, or as an elective. A postsecondary institution may also set the cut score on the challenge examination results that is required for the award of credit in a major or a specific program or as an elective at the institution.

Participating high schools and postsecondary institutions developing unique dual credit or dual enrollment opportunities (outside statewide courses) must notify students prior to such dual credit course being taught of the availability of transfer of the course.

Private postsecondary institutions are encouraged to assess the statewide agreement produced by the consortium and determine which courses, if any, qualify for award of college credit at the institution. If a private institution determines a course qualifies for award of college credit, the institution, in addition to any institutional publication made of this fact, may notify the department of education of the potential for award of college credit for such course at the institution, for the department to disseminate this information to LEAs for notification of high school students.
Texas Unclear. Each institution of higher education must adopt a policy to grant undergraduate course credit to entering freshmen who have successfully completed one or more courses offered through concurrent enrollment in high school and at an institution of higher education. Policy does not specify whether credit must be applied toward an institution’s general core or major requirements, or may only be awarded for elective credit.
Utah Yes. Statute directs the State Board of Education and the State Board of Regents to coordinate to establish a concurrent enrollment course approval process that ensures credit awarded for concurrent enrollment is consistent and transferable to all institutions of higher education. Statute also requires an institution of higher education to accept concurrent enrollment credits on the same basis as credits earned by a full- or part-time student enrolled at the institution.
Vermont Unclear
Virginia No
Washington Running Start: Yes. Running Start courses in the general transfer agreement are recognized in the same manner as traditional postsecondary courses. However, each public instiution in the state varies in general distribution requirements.

College in the High School: Not set in state policy
West Virginia Dual Credit/Early Enrollment: Yes

West Virginia EDGE: Yes. Each community and technical college must apply EDGE credit to appropriate certificate and/or associate degree programs. When a college credit has been assigned through an established EDGE course validation process by a community and technical college, other community and technical colleges not offering a comparable course may grant the same college credit for each validated EDGE course.
Wisconsin Not specified
Wyoming Yes

© 2020 by the Education Commission of the States (ECS). All rights reserved. ECS is the only nationwide, nonpartisan interstate compact devoted to education. 700 Broadway #810, Denver, CO 80203-3442

To request permission to excerpt part of this publication, either in print or electronically, please contact the Education Commission of the States’ Communications Department at 303.299.3636 or mzatynski@ecs.org.

Your Education Policy Team  www.ecs.org