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Earning College Credits in High School: Options, Participation, and Outcomes for Oregon Students

Region:
Northwest
Description:
To increase students’ postsecondary attainment, many states are promoting accelerated college credit (ACC) options in high school such as Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and dual-credit courses. This study describes the various ACC options available to Oregon students and the characteristics of the students who enroll in them. Using information from college websites and dual-credit coordinators—along with data from state agency and community college databases in Oregon—the study explores which students participate in ACC and examines participation by gender, racial/ethnic group, and eligibility for free or reduced-price lunch. Findings show that Oregon has a variety of ACC options available at public institutions, but cost, eligibility requirements, and geographic coverage of these options vary greatly across institutions. In addition, Oregon has higher rates of community college dual-credit participation than the national average and Oregon students taking dual-credit courses through a community college typically enroll and earn credit in multiple courses. While most students earn credit after enrolling in a community college dual-credit course, students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch pass those courses at lower rates than students who are not eligible. Also, community college dual-credit participants are more likely to be White, female, high achievers, and not eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. Males of all racial and ethnic groups participate in community college dual credit at lower rates than females; in each racial or ethnic group, the gender gap in participation is similar. Oregon stakeholders can use the study findings to better understand ACC options in the state and gaps in access that currently exist. Nationally, this study provides an example for other states of potentially useful data collection and analyses that could inform improvements to ACC programs.
Publication Type:
What's Happening
Online Availability:
Publication Date:
March 2017
Contact: