Arkansas law allows for the enrollment of high school students in college-level courses under certain conditions. Concurrent enrollment allows students to obtain credit toward a high school diploma at the same time they earn college credit.
I. Concurrent Enrollment is the 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 high school credit and college-level credit. (Arkansas Code §6-18-223) Concurrent enrollment allows students to obtain credit toward a high school diploma at the same time they earn college credit.
Dual enrollment is the enrollment of a high school student in postsecondary education for college-level credit exclusively. (Arkansas Code §6-60-202)
II. Concurrent Course Credit – Institutional Requirements
For concurrent course enrollments to be counted for FTE/higher education funding purposes, the following conditions must be met:
1. Program Accreditation/Authorization - If an institution of higher education offers a concurrent credit course(s) on a high school campus taught by a high school teacher, the institution must be accredited by the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP); or the college/university must be approved by the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board (AHECB) to offer courses, including courses offered via distance technology, for concurrent credit.
2. Concurrent Credit Courses - Concurrent credit courses must be freshman-level and/or sophomore-level college/university courses that are approved through the established process of an institution and included in the institutional catalog. The general education courses offered for concurrent credit must be listed in the Arkansas Course Transfer System (ACTS). A list of the career and technical education (CTE) courses offered for concurrent credit must be attached to the signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the high school/school district and the college/university.
The course offered for concurrent credit must meet the same standards as college courses taught on the college/university campus. Students can earn college credit and/or up to one unit of high school credit for successful completion of each general education concurrent course and each blended AP/concurrent course that is a minimum of 3 semester credit hours. Students can earn college credit and/or up to one unit of high school credit for successful completion of each CTE course that is a minimum of 3 semester credit hours.
The college/university administration must exercise direct oversight of all aspects of the concurrent course, including participation in the faculty selection, orientation, and evaluation processes.
The instructor teaching the college course for concurrent credit must:
1) use the approved college/university course syllabus,
2) use the same textbook or a textbook with aligned content and course learning outcomes as approved by the college/university,
3) adopt the same learning outcomes and assignments as those developed for the course offered on the college/university campus with limited exceptions approved by the college/university, and
4) use the same course grading/awarding standards as those on the college/university campus. If departmental exams are used in college/university campus courses, then those course exams must be used at the high school site.
Note: It is understood that one high school may have a concurrent agreement with more than one college/university; however, there should not be unnecessary duplication of college course offerings.
If there is not agreement among multiple institutions offering college courses at one high school/school district, the college/university seeking clarification on the implementation of the concurrent enrollment policy must contact the ADHE Director in writing and follow AHECB Policy 5.17: Off-Campus Instruction Policy-Criteria for Conflict Resolution.