High school students who earn credits from a community college prior to graduation, then transfer to a university, often complain that the courses don't apply after transfer, except as electives. Now that dual credit has expanded dramatically, the loss of credits is more noticeable than ever. Policy makers are taking notice.
It's covered in the Austin American-Statesman by Julie Chang.
The numbers are significant:
High school students losing college credit is an extension of a problem that college transfer students have endured for years. A study by Jenna Cullinane, a higher education policy analyst at the University of Texas’ Dana Center, found that, on average, college students who transfer lose about eight hours of credit.
Her calculations show that Texas taxpayers spend about $60 million on lost credits by college students annually. Students spend an additional $58 million to make up for lost credits annually.
In 2011, Texas public institutions were required to adopt a revised core curriculum, plus curricula for eight specific fields of study that must be accepted by other institutions. However, students can take a variety of classes within the core and the classes do not necessarily fulfill specific requirements of certain degree plans, according to the article.
One common cause of lost credit is students’ changing majors, sometimes repeatedly. But that's only one factor.
“If I have another call about a state institution—one of our, quote, finer ones here—that says, ‘Oh, they count towards your total hours, but they don’t count toward your degree plan,’ I’m done with those agencies … as they currently exist, because that is just wrong,” state Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, said during a recent Senate Education Committee hearing, the article reports.
The AAS piece doesn't address the tangential issue of university reluctance to accept dual credit courses because of a perceived lack of rigor in these classes—a concern voiced recently in testimony by Commissioner of Higher Education Raymund Paredes.