General education is a required component of any associate (AA/AS) or bachelor’s degree in Utah’s public colleges and universities. Students must take at least 27 college credits in core courses such as English, math, science, and history to complete their general education requirements. General education courses help students become well-rounded, expose them to different subjects, and ensure they have a strong foundation of critical thinking and communication skills.
Many students do not know that Salt Lake Community College, Southern Utah University and Snow College offer certificates of completion for general education (Utah State University will submit a proposal for a general education certificate of completion to the Board of Regents for consideration at their upcoming meeting on April 1, 2016). This certificate is transferable, and by completing the certificate, students will meet all lower-division general education requirements for an associate (AA/AS) or bachelor’s degree at Utah’s public colleges and universities.
General education certificate of completion for concurrent enrollment students
Concurrent enrollment allows for prepared high school juniors and seniors to take college courses while still in high school. Increasingly, students are taking advantage of concurrent enrollment courses: In 2014-15, 28,551 students participated in concurrent enrollment – over ⅓ of all high school juniors and seniors in Utah. This represents a 6% increase in enrollment over the previous year.
Students interested in participating in concurrent enrollment courses have many options, from career and technical education courses (CTE) to college-level math, science, English, history, and many others. It is recommended for students to consider completing some, or all, of their general education requirements through concurrent enrollment in high school, as general education courses are required for college graduation and are transferable between USHE institutions.
Students can complete ALL general education credits – approximately six concurrent enrollment classes each junior and senior year of high school – and earn a certificate of completion in general education that is transferable to all USHE institutions. This means a student completed at least 27 hours of college credit relevant to their future degree while in high school. It is best for concurrent enrollment students to discuss their options with their high school counselor and college advisor.
Concurrent enrollment provides a significant cost savings opportunity for high school students in Utah who attend a USHE institution. It is estimated that Utah high school students would have paid $32.5 million in tuition for the 198,163 credits hours awarded in 2014-15. This amounts to anywhere between a $1,300 to $13,500 saved per student (depending on variables such as credits earned, status after graduation, and college enrollment). These cost savings are even higher for students who complete a general education certificate of completion through concurrent enrollment.
More information about general education certificates of completion: