Home > Beyond K-12 > Early college deadlines start in January

Early college deadlines start in January

December 29, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

If your high-school student is ready for the challenge of college coursework, there’s no shortage of options here in the Atlanta area. Just don’t miss the deadline for the program you want!

There are three primary types of early transition to college:

  1. Dual enrollment
  2. Move On When Ready
  3. Early admission

Dual enrollment (also called joint enrollment) means that a student is enrolled in high school but takes one or more courses at a college. Georgia has established a scholarship program for juniors and seniors called Accel, which is available to students in public and private schools as well as accredited home schools. Accel is funded through the HOPE Scholarship program, so it’s worth noting that the classes your child takes under the Accel Program will be deducted from their total HOPE eligibility. (HOPE sets a cap of credit hours it will pay for per student.) If all goes according to plan, your child will graduate from college early and the Accel spending will be a moot point, but it’s important to know how the system works.

Move On When Ready is a new, state-wide program for high-school juniors and seniors which was launched just this year. In MOWR, a student is still enrolled in high school but takes a full-time class load at the college level and none at the high school. All state colleges are required to participate in MOWR, which is open only to students who are currently enrolled in a public school. Tuition is paid by the state, but parents are responsible for all other expenses (books and fees). Students earn high-school credit for any college coursework they successfully complete, which means they will receive a high-school diploma. MOWR students also remain eligible for extra-curricular activities at their high-school, including sports.

Dr. Katherine Kinnick, director of pre-college programs at Kennesaw State University, asked me to share this advice for students choosing between Accel and MOWR:  “Students using MOWR funding must attend the college full-time and may not take any courses at their high schools. Students using Accel funding may take as little as one college course and the rest of their classes at the high school, so it is a good option for students who would like to balance a mix of AP courses while taking college courses that aren’t available through AP.  This is the route that we recommend for students who are looking at highly selective colleges, because it offers the best of both worlds.”

Early admission is just what the name says: skipping the senior year of high school and starting college instead. Unlike students admitted under dual enrollment or Move On When Ready, early admission students are full-fledged collegians, and they can choose any classes that any other college freshman could take. (In contrast, Accel and MOWR limit class selections to the approved course directory.) However, going the early admission route could mean not earning a high-school diploma, so you’ll want to check with the guidance counselor at your child’s school.

I visited web sites and e-mailed admissions officers at a dozen local colleges and universities to see what they offer and when their application deadlines fall. I didn’t limit myself to schools in DeKalb, because there are some great opportunities beyond the county line.

Here’s what I learned:

Agnes Scott College: Offers dual enrollment for college seniors. Accel scholarship is accepted but won’t fully cover tuition. Apply “as early as possible but no later than one month before the start of the new semester.”

Clark Atlanta University: Offers dual enrollment to juniors and seniors who attend Atlanta Public Schools or City of Decatur Schools. Also accepts applications for early admission. Priority deadline is March 1.

Clayton State University: Offers dual enrollment or early admission through Accel and MOWR, and they told me they have “the largest dual-enrollment program among the comprehensive universities in Georgia.” Dual enrollment coordinator is Bill Hagans. Official application deadline is July 1, but they recommend applying in March to give them more time to help students work out their schedules.

Emory University: Offers dual enrollment (deadline June 15) and early admission (early decision II deadline Jan. 1; regular decision deadline Jan. 15). As a private school, Emory doesn’t participate in MOWR or Accel.

Georgia Gwinnett College: Participates in MOWR and Accel for dual enrollment. The coordinator for both programs is Donald Singer. Deadline is June 17, but they recommend applying by June 1 or earlier.

Georgia Perimeter College: Offers dual enrollment with the Accel or MOWR scholarships at all campuses. The coordinator for Clarkston/Decatur campuses is Susan Lofstrom (678-891-3625).  The coordinator for the Alpharetta/Dunwoody campuses is Janet Orr (770-274-5375). General application deadline is July 1; unclear whether there is a different date for dual enrollment applications.

Georgia State University: Offers dual enrollment through Accel and MOWR. Deadline May 1.

Georgia Tech: High-school juniors and seniors can take classes through dual enrollment using MOWR or Accel (deadline May 1; application will be available March 1). Current juniors can apply for early admission (deadline Jan. 15).

Kennesaw State University: Offers dual enrollment with a twist: It’s an honors program, which means high-school students can enroll in honors sections of classes. Deadline Jan. 14. As a state college, they accept MOWR and Accel.

Oglethorpe University: Offers dual enrollment to high-school juniors and seniors as well as early admission. Their web site says students can apply anytime using the online application. Unclear whether they accept Accel or MOWR for tuition.

Southern Polytechnic State University: Offers dual enrollment through Accel or MOWR. Deadline is June 1. Also offers early admission. Coordinator is Gary Bush.

Spelman College: Offers dual enrollment for high school seniors in Atlanta Public Schools only. Deadline Jan. 15.


Sorry this was such a long post, but I hope it was worthwhile!

Categories: Beyond K-12
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