Making Sense of Dual Credit in History: A Roundtable Discussion

AHA Session 256
Sunday, January 6, 2019: 9:00 AM-10:30 AM
Williford C (Hilton Chicago, Third Floor)
Amy Godfrey Powers, Waubonsee Community College
Donald Davis, George Washington High School, Chicago Public Schools
Joseph Halli, Early College Initiative, Chicago Public Schools
Tracy Lai, Seattle Central College
Holly Thrash, Early College Program, City Colleges of Chicago

Session Abstract

This roundtable brings together high school and community college faculty, administrative coordinators, and students to discuss the increasing prevalence of dual credit programs. Our goal is to open up a meaningful dialogue on the current state of dual credit in History and explore ways in which partnerships among high schools, community colleges, and four-year institutions can be strengthened. Despite the fact that it is becoming more commonplace, dual credit continues to elicit questions about its nature, purpose, and implications for higher education. Not only do practices vary from state to state, but the vocabulary can also be confusing as institutions use terms such as “dual credit,” “dual enrollment,” and “concurrent enrollment” interchangeably. Recently, as evidenced in the November 2017 issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education, a debate has emerged about the effectiveness of dual credit in general. At the center of this debate are concerns over the rigor of such courses, their transferability to four-year institutions, and the ability of the dual credit system to expand students’ access to higher education. At the same time, supporters emphasize how dual credit prepares students for college, reduces time to degree completion, and offers an affordable pathway to higher education for students who might not otherwise have the opportunity to earn an advanced degree. The panelists will address these issues as they share their own experiences, answer questions, and offer insights on the value of dual credit for institutions and students alike.

The faculty and administrative coordinators on the panel will discuss how dual credit creates partnerships between their institutions and supports college-readiness initiatives. In the case of Illinois, a partnership between Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and City Colleges of Chicago (CCC) allows qualified students to take General Education courses free of charge as a way to prepare them for the college experience while streamlining their path to completion. Complementing these panelists, two students--one of whom is a current CPS student enrolled in a dual-credit History class and another who is a graduate entering college with dual credit hours in History--will speak about their experiences in the CPS/CCC program. Because they are often left out of the conversation, we are including students who can provide valuable first-hand insights into the benefits and challenges of dual credit. The remaining panelist will offer a different model. Washington state’ s “Running Start” program, established in 1993, allows high school students to take courses at a variety of institutions including Washington’s community and technical colleges and Washington State University. She will discuss the impact of this program on students who take the U.S. History survey and share how the program has influenced pedagogy.

See more of: AHA Sessions