Using Dual Enrollment Policy to Improve College & Career Readiness: A Web Tool for Decision MakersDiane S. Ward and Joel Vargas, May 2012
As demand for a highly educated and skilled workforce grows, many governors have made student college and career readiness a priority in 2012. In their State of the State addresses, governors in Mississippi, Missouri, Virginia, and Wisconsin promoted the expansion of dual enrollment programs as a key strategy for strengthening academic preparedness. Dual enrollment provides high school students with opportunities to take college courses while completing their high school program, giving them an experience of college-level work, a better understanding of what it takes to succeed in that academic environment, and a head start on earning college credits.
This brief looks at some of the dual enrollment approaches that states are advancing this year. Because governors’ addresses are blueprints for action in the new year, the fate of many of these proposals will be revealed in the months to come. Also, some initiatives are relatively developed, while others are new or general, which makes it difficult to assess their potential impact. Nevertheless, one pattern that seems to have emerged this year is a growing interest by states in the creation of pathways that include dual enrollment for high school students enrolled in career and technical programs as a workforce readiness strategy.