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5 Reasons High Schoolers Shouldn't Earn Dual Credit

David Cohen
David Cohen

October 29, 2010

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dual credit student

5. You want to take the SAT

If you’re either a glutton for punishment or a genius who can score 1600 on the SAT with your brain tied behind your back, don’t bother earning dual credit in high school. You don’t need it!

Colleges are increasingly waiving the SAT requirement for students who earn dual credit during high school, especially if the student was smart and took dual credit courses that were guaranteed to transfer to their chosen university. For example, hundreds of high school students who earned dual credit through Unbound skipped the SAT requirement and still earned degrees from top-ranked schools like Liberty University Online and Thomas Edison State University.

However, if the idea of spending six months studying for the three-hour-and-forty-five minute test sounds fun, go ahead and skip the dual credit option.

4. You want to repeat the last two years of high school in college

Here’s a solid reason not to earn dual credit—you loved high school so much that you’d gladly “relive” your junior and senior years of high school during your freshman and sophomore years of college.

Turns out a lot of college’s general education requirements are just a repeat of what you already studied in high school. That means students who replace some of their high school requirements with flexible online college courses can actually knock out the general education requirements before enrolling in the college they want to attend.

So if you’d like to pay your college thousands of dollars to redo high school, forget about earning dual credit.

3. You’re afraid dual credit courses won’t transfer

Transfer students lose credit all the time, so your fear of spending high school spinning your wheels is, unfortunately, legit. After all, college transfer policies can sound like another language, and failure to understand course codes or college accreditation are just two of the many ways you can fail to properly to guarantee your dual credit transfers to your chosen college.

However, with some intense research, or with the help of the folks at Unbound, the idea of losing the credit you earn in high school becomes so ridiculous, it’s almost laughable.

We’ve helped thousands of students transfer their college credit to hundreds of institutions. We know the systems, we know the schools, we know the policies, and we know if your dual credit will transfer before you take it. When working with Unbound, transferring dual credit isn’t a guessing game, it’s a guarantee.

But if living in fear sounds better than pursuing an amazing academic opportunity, feel free.

2. You want to spend an extra $30,000 on college tuition

Some people seem to feel better when they spend more money on things they could actually get for less. It’s one of those weird human behavioral traits that fascinates me.

Take scholarships, for instance. As a typical high school student, it’s unlikely you’ll earn more than $5,000 in scholarship money. And don’t get me wrong—$5,000 is nothing to sneeze at. It’s just that folks who start their college degrees through a program like Unbound end up saving $30,000 on average. But for some reason, earning a fraction of that through scholarships just makes you feel like you made the “smarter choice.”

If you’re someone who is eager to spend hours researching, applying for, and praying night and day to maybe win a few scholarships, earning on dual credit is probably not for you.

1. You don’t know how to earn dual credit

I know I included this as the #1 reason, but truthfully, not knowing how to do something won’t work as an excuse anymore. Given the abundance of mediocrity and complacency in this world, a student who is extraordinary enough to earn college credit in high school is quite a valuable commodity.

But as valuable as dual credit is from an academic and collegiate perspective, possessing the passion and energy to accomplish a difficult task is even more valuable.

So, if you think making an excuse is better than making an effort, drop the idea of earning dual credit right now. However, If accomplishing something extraordinary is more your style, kick yourself into gear and earn as much dual credit as you can.

Your future will thank you.


Do you think earning dual credit in high school is a good idea? Why or why not? Share your thoughts in the comments!

David Cohen
David Cohen

David Cohen loves world travel, the book of Genesis, Tekkamaki, and the beach.

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