Topic: Dual Enrollment


Dual Enrollment
A head start toward college and career

Earning college credit in high school can make college more affordable for families and states. Dual enrollment and other accelerated options can also help prepare high school students for the rigor of careers and the campus environment. Readiness, affordability and time to degree are central components of postsecondary completion and state goals to improve educational attainment.

SREB publishes data and state policy on dual enrollment and brings together policymakers from many arenas to address issues such as cost, equity and funding.

Publication June 202034 pages

Dual Enrollment Research
A Comprehensive Review

Part of the ongoing work of SREB’s Dual Enrollment Initiative, this comprehensive review is intended to help policymakers better understand what the research tells us (and what it doesn’t) about dual enrollment. The research analyzes more than 500 journal articles, master’s theses, doctoral dissertations, web documents and books from 1959 to 2019.



Dual Enrollment Research: A Comprehensive Review. Dual definitions lead to confusion. Programs vary widely. Correlation does not prove cause.

Data, Definitions Limit What We Know About Dual Enrollment
SREB publishes comprehensive review of research

States need better data to measure whether dual enrollment programs are realizing their promise, says a review of existing research published by the Southern Regional Education Board this week.

To determine return on investment and improve dual credit programs, states will need to clarify their goals, be sure policies support them, and collect data that connects students’ K-12 and postsecondary experiences.

Publication January 20209 pages

Top Five State Education Issues for 2020

This report provides an overview of the top five education issues on the 2020 legislative agendas in SREB states, including:

•  workforce 
•  postsecondary access and affordability
•  K-12 funding
•  the educator workforce
•  school safety and school climate

Publication September 2019 | 8 pages
report  cover

Workforce-Driven Financial Aid: Policies and Strategies
Essential Elements of State Policy For College Completion

The rapidly evolving workplace has created a shortage of skilled and educated workers in many fields, leaving essential jobs unfilled and millions of adults unqualified for them. This policy brief summarizes statewide strategies to support financial assistance for students in programs designed to address workforce needs. It includes suggestions for states that are evaluating, or considering creating, workforce-driven financial aid policies.


Publication September 2019 | 5 pages

Dual Enrollment Legislation in SREB States, 2019

This report summarizes 2019 legislation related to dual enrollment by state. It also displays dual enrollment bills by these themes: access, faculty, financial aid, funding and cost, programs and agreements, students and student services student services, transferability, and workforce or career and technical education



Dual Enrollment, Dual Credit, Concurrent Enrollment and Joint Enrollment

A number of different terms describe programs that allow high school students to earn college credit. And states and organizations define them in different ways. SREB staff compiled these definitions for its Dual Enrollment Advisory Panel. September 2019

Dual enrollment

Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges: Courses taught to high school students for which the students receive both high school credit and college credit. Includes early college, dual credit and concurrent enrollment.

New England Commission of Higher Education: Programs allowing high school students to enroll in courses for which college credit is offered; also known as concurrent enrollment programs or dual credit programs.

U.S. Department of Education: High school students earning college credits for courses taken through a postsecondary institution; includes dual credit, concurrent enrollment, or joint enrollment. Credit for courses may be earned at both the high school and college level simultaneously or only at the college level.

Federal Acts – Every Student Succeeds Act and Perkins V: A dual- or concurrent -enrollment program is offered by a partnership between at least one institution of higher education and at least one local educational agency through which a secondary school student who has not graduated from high school is able to enroll in one or more postsecondary courses and earn postsecondary credit that: (a) is transferable to the institutions of higher education in partnership and (b) applies toward completion of a degree or recognized educational credential as described in HEA 1965.

Arkansas: A high school student’s enrollment in postsecondary coursework for college credit only.

Kentucky: A student is enrolled in a high school and postsecondary institution simultaneously.

Tennessee: A program that allows a student to enroll in postsecondary courses for high school and postsecondary credit.

Dual credit

Higher Learning Commission: Courses taught to high school students for which students receive both high school credit and college credit.

Kentucky: A student receives credit from both the high school and postsecondary institution in which the student is enrolled upon completion of a single class or designated program of study.

Tennessee: A postsecondary course taught in a high school by certified secondary instructors… and which prepares a secondary student to sit for a dual credit challenge exam; students who pass the challenge exams earn college credit accepted by all Tennessee public and private non-profit postsecondary institutions.

Concurrent enrollment

National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships: The subset of dual enrollment courses taught by college-approved high school teachers.

Arkansas: Enrollment of a high school student in a college course taught on a high school campus (or, in selected cases, on the college campus or by distance/digital technology) for both high school credit and college-level credit.

Kentucky: A dual credit course taught by a college-approved high school or area technology center teacher at the secondary school during the regular school day.

Joint enrollment

Tennessee: An arrangement between a high school and a postsecondary institution wherein a student enrolls in postsecondary classes while attending high school. The student receives credit from only one of the two institutions.


Percent of Undergraduate Credit-/Contact Hours Taken by High School Students, SREB States
Fact Book Table 42 (Higher Education: Enrollment & Instructional Delivery Modes Chapter)


What’s in this file?

Credit-hours, contact hours, High school students, United States, West, Midwest, Northeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18.

Anna Daniels

CTE Dual Enrollment That Works

“Some of our students have never set foot on a college campus,” says Jonathan Phillips, director of the DeKalb County Technology Center in Rainsville, Alabama.

That’s a point of pride at DCTC. Although the center is known for providing quality career and technical education courses and industry credentials, it also offers academic courses that satisfy graduation requirements and dual enrollment courses that put students on the fast track to credential and degree attainment.

Publication July 9, 2016 | 7 pages | (16V18)Gene Bottoms and Kirsten Sundell

Career Pathways
Accelerating Access to the Middle Class

More and more jobs require some education past high school, yet we are not preparing enough students for college, careers or both. Career pathways from middle and high school through college and into the workplace can accelerate access to the middle class.