Dual Enrollment - State Profile

Dual Enrollment - State Profile - Montana

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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: December 2013

Data compiled by Jennifer Dounay Zinth: 303.299.3689 or jdounay@ecs.org.

Program Basics
Statewide policy in place Yes
Definition or title of program State has four programs: Running Start, Class 8 or Class B Alternative License, Concurrent Enrollment and courses delivered online via the Montana Digital Academy. Running Start allows high school students to take courses for dual credit or college credit at a postsecondary institution. Under Class 8 or Class B Alternative License, a dual credit course is taken at a postsecondary institution; course may or may not be during the school day. A course is offered by a faculty member with a Class 8 or Class B license. Concurrent enrollment courses are taught by high school faculty during the school day. The Montana Digital Academy offers a variety of courses, including online dual credit courses.

Unless otherwise noted, all provisions refer to Running Start.
Where courses provided
  • At high school (Concurrent Enrollment)
  • At postsecondary institution (Running Start, Class 8 or Class B Alternative License)
  • Virtual program (Montana Digital Academy, through the University of Montana system)
Postsecondary and/or secondary credit earned Running Start: Not specified. Interlocal agreement between district and postsecondary institution determines whether course is offered for dual credit or college credit.

Class 8 or Class B Alternative License: Both

Concurrent Enrollment: Both

Montana Digital Academy: Both
Students may take developmental/remedial courses through dual enrollment program Not set in state policy
CTE component Yes. A career/technical education faculty member who meets specified licensure requirements may teach a dual credit course in business education, industrial arts, marketing, technology education, or trade and industry.
Unique characteristics None identified
Offering mandatory or voluntary Voluntary
College partners can be 2-year/4-year/both Running Start: Both. Tribal colleges may also participate.

Class 8 or Class B Alternative License and Concurrent Enrollment2- and 4-year institutions

Montana Digital Academy: 2-year institutions
Student eligibility requirements
  • Student in grades 11-12
  • Other. Student must complete a Running Start application. The district must determine whether the student has the skills needed to succeed in the proposed college coursework.
Cap on number of credits students may earn Not set in state policy
Students/parents must be notified of dual enrollment opportunities No
Counseling/advising is made available to students Not set in state policy
Who is primarily responsible for paying tuition Running Start: Local decision. Either the district or the student/parent, as determined by the interlocal agreement between the district and postsecondary institution. The agreement must also state the tuition level the postsecondary institution will charge for each credit. A student is responsible for book and all supplies costs.

Class 8 or Class B Alternative License: Student/parent

Concurrent Enrollment Student/parent or district. Selected colleges may have no tuition.

Montana Digital Academy: Student/parent. Selected community colleges may charge no tuition for the first six credits if within that institution's service area.
How state funds participating high schools Equal
How state funds participating postsecondary institutions Equal
Ensuring Program Quality
Instructor qualifications component Yes. For various dual credit options, including but not limited to Running Start, regs define “dual credit-only postsecondary faculty” as faculty who meet all qualifications for faculty set forth by the Montana Board of Regents or the regional accreditation organization, and the employing institution. The postsecondary institution must hire the faculty member through verification of the educational attainment level and experience appropriate and required for the discipline and the institution, and compliance with the prevailing institution, system and state policies.

Class B/Class 8 Alternative License: Yes. If a postsecondary faculty member is teaching a course for which students will receive high school and postsecondary credit, the faculty member must hold a class 8 dual credit license, valid for five years. To obtain the license, the faculty member must provide verification of faculty employment from the Chief Academic Officer or an appropriate official of the employing regionally accredited postsecondary institution that the class 8 licensure applicant meets the requirements of “dual credit-only postsecondary faculty” above. The faculty member must also provide a recommendation from an official from a Montana or NCATE accredited professional educator preparation program stating the applicant has earned a major or minor (or equivalent) in an endorsable teaching area, the applicant has demonstrated competency by meeting criteria set forth in a rubric developed and published by the superintendent of public instruction in consultation with K-12 education and higher education, and has complied with specified nonacademic requirements for licensure.

Concurrent Enrollment: Yes. High school faculty must be approved by the postsecondary institution. (Mont.Admin.R. 10.55.602(13)(c)
Program reporting requirement Not set in state policy
Program evaluation component Not set in state policy
Public postsecondary institutions required to accept credits Yes. All courses developed by a Montana University System campus for dual enrollment or dual credit purposes, including online Digital Academy delivery, will common course numbered and as such, will directly transfer on a one-to-one basis across the Montana University System.

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