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Top 10 Dual Enrollment Programs Online

Badge for our ranking of Best Dual Enrollment ProgramsWant to earn credit for high school and college at the same time? Read on to learn more about online dual enrollment programs for high school students.

  1. Northampton Community College
  2. Grand Canyon University
  3. Maranatha Baptist University
  4. Northern Virginia Community College
  5. Liberty University
  6. Landmark College
  7. Taylor University
  8. LeTourneau University
  9. Geneva College
  10. Oregon State University

Online dual enrollment programs for high school students are one of the cheapest ways to begin your college career. Many of these programs allow you to earn the first year or two year’s worth of college credits while still in high school by taking classes online. What’s more, the classes you do take will replace high school classes so you won’t be stuck with extra work. Dual enrollment at a regionally accredited institution also guarantees your credits will transfer to other regionally accredited institutions. This is a leg up on AP courses, which not all colleges accept for credit. Additionally, getting AP credit is contingent on passing an exam at the end of the class, whereas in a dual enrollment program you just have to pass the class to get the credit. Most dual credit programs only admit above-average students and have a very high pass rate. The following online dual-credit high school/college programs are ranked according to their cost and the number of courses they offer. More details on the ranking methodology follow the article.

Image of student for our ranking of Top 10 Dual Enrollment Programs Online

Reviewing the Best Online Dual Enrollment Programs for High School Students


1. Northampton Community College

Rating: 21

Logo for Northampton Community College for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


At just $150 per credit, with over one hundred online courses, the dual credit program at Northampton Community College is a great choice. The dual enrollment program at Northampton is open to students who take honors and AP courses, college prep, or are enrolled in a vocational program. Among the 100+ courses offered are courses like global studies, hotel management, interior design, philosophy, political science, publishing, reading, journalism, mathematics, nutrition, physics, and public health.

  • Tuition: $450/three-credit class
  • Number of Online Courses: 100+

2. Grand Canyon University

Rating: 20

Logo of Grand Canyon University for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


Grand Canyon University holds is the second most affordable dual credit program in our ranking. GCU dual enrollment offers 47 online dual credit courses, which means there should be something for everybody. The program features a 95% successful pass rate for both online and face to face courses. The program is open to high school juniors with a 3.0 GPA and sophomores with a 3.25 GPA. Dual enrollment courses online include Old Testament historical perspectives, New Testament historical perspectives, human anatomy and physiology, sports management, chemistry, communications in the media, public speaking, introduction to economics, English composition, and American government and politics.

  • Tuition: $157/3-credit course
  • Number of Online Courses: 47

3. Maranatha Baptist University

Rating: 19

Logo for Maranatha Baptist University for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


Students in the Maranatha dual credit program can actually earn full associate’s degrees in Christian ministry, business management, criminal justice, digital media, and humanities. Students can start the dual enrollment program the summer after their sophomore year of high school. The flexible options range from taking just one class, to completing your first semester or year of college, to even earning an associate’s degree at steeply discounted tuition rates.

  • Tuition: $525/three-credit course
  • Number of Online Courses: 100+

4. Northern Virginia Community College

Rating: 19

Logo for NVCC for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


The Northern Virginia Community College online dual enrollment program is available to both traditional high school students and homeschooled students. All qualified dual enrollment students are charged the in-state tuition rate regardless of residency. Students will need to take a placement test administered by the college or show satisfactory results from an AP, PSAT, SAT, ACT, or SOL test.

  • Tuition: $540/three-credit course/
  • Number of Online Courses: 100+

5. Liberty University

Rating: 19

Logo for Liberty University for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


Liberty University actually has an entire online academy that fully functions as both the last two years of high-school and first two years of college. Of course the “a la carte” option is also available, allowing students in their junior or senior year to pick courses and earn college credit. The second option is the full-time year-round concurrent enrollment program that puts students on track to earn a full associate’s degree while completing their final two years of high school. Liberty University is also an evangelical Christian university, so students should be aware that dual enrollment courses online will be taught from a Christian perspective.

  • Tuition: $549/3-credit course
  • Number of Online Courses: 100+

6. Taylor University

Rating: 18

Logo for Taylor University for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


Taylor’s online dual enrollment program is incredibly flexible. You enroll any time, start the course within two days of enrollment, and complete it within four months. While there is a great deal of independence available through Taylor’s dual enrollment courses online, students still receive one-on-one attention from university professors. 24-credits may be taken at the discounted rate of $600/course, after that the price increases to $1,200/course.

  • Tuition: $600/three-credit course
  • Number of Online Courses: 100+

7. LeTourneau University

Rating: 17

Logo for LeTourneau University for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


The dual-credit program at LeTourneau is incredibly cheap. Add to that the new offer they have that grants any student who completes a dual-credit course, and then enrolls full-time in LeTourneau’s residential undergraduate program will receive a $16,000 scholarship, and there is just incredible value here. Between the potential to complete one or more years of college at a steeply discounted rate, and an incredible scholarship to a respected polytechnic university is a great opportunity. LeTourneau is an interdenominational Christian university.

  • Tuition: $270/3-credit class
  • Number of Online Courses: 32

8. Geneva College

Rating: 15

Logo for Geneva College for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs


Geneva’s early college program allows students to take up to 24 credits at a steeply discounted rate. Students can take more if they want but must pay the full tuition cost for additional credits. Some of the courses available to students include biblical introduction, principles of communication, fundamentals of economics, European history, U.S. history, philosophy, American Government, and elementary and intermediate Spanish.

  • Tuition: $450/3-credit course
  • Number of Online Courses: 40+

9. Oregon State University

Rating: 12

Logo for OSU for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs

School Profile

Oregon State University is ranked among the top 100 public universities in the United States by U.S. News and World Report. So having the opportunity to begin studying there online while still in high school is incredible. However, it is one of the expensive dual credit programs in our ranking, especially considering federal financial aid isn’t available to persons under the age of 18. However, with over 100 courses to choose from, OSU remains one of the best dual credit choices in the country.

  • Tuition: $891/three-credit course
  • Number of Online Courses: 100+

10. Landmark College

Rating: 3

Logo of Landmark College for our ranking of Top Ten Online Dual Degree Programs

School Profile

At $1000 per course, Landmark comes in at the highest on our list for tuition. But Landmark is unique in that its online dual enrollment courses are designed to serve students with learning differences, such as dyslexia, ADHA, and autism.  Landmark’s model includes “course liaisons” that aid students in developing their executive function skills (initiating tasks, time management, social/emotional regulation, etc.). The program itself is designed to serve as a great preparation for college while providing the opportunity to earn college credit.  Landmark’s dual enrollment courses online are handpicked to serve as introductions to a wide variety of subject areas like business, communication, computer science, education, history, mathematics, and psychology.

  • Tuition: $1000/course
  • Number of Online Courses: 15+

Ranking Methodology

These dual credit programs were awarded points based on the number of courses (one point per ten courses) and the price of the program (one point for every $50 of tuition under $1000/course). Ties were broken by giving a better rank to the cheaper program.


What are some major differences between high school and college?

Choice is one of the biggest differences. College students have much more control over what courses they decide to take. Granted, certain majors have requirements; however, in the end, the student is responsible for ensuring they choose the right classes for their major. This brings us to the next difference.

Responsibility is a huge difference between high school and college. In high school, your school keeps track of your attendance, and if you skip they’ll call your parents. The principals and teachers keep you accountable for your homework. They all do their best to ensure you pass the class. In college, you are treated as an adult. Professors aren’t going to track you down to remind you about missed or late assignments. They’ll just penalize you according to their policies and move on. You are responsible for yourself: attendance, turning in assignments on time, and studying the proper amount for exams.

Textbooks are not provided in college. Most of the time it is down to the student to acquire the textbook first-hand, second-hand, or through renting or borrowing. Professors don’t care where, or how, you got the textbook. If you acquire a different edition than the one they use, they don’t usually care. You (and your parents in your case since you are in high school still) are responsible.

Expect more homework in college. Unlike high school, most of the work takes place outside the class time. Most professors equate homework during college to the equivalent of a full-time job. Expect to spend 40-hrs per week on homework. On the other hand, you have less actual class time (in your case lecture time since you are looking at online programs). For instance, if you take fifteen credits per semester, with three classes MWF and two classes on T/Th, you will be in class about three hours per day. That doesn’t mean you can slack though, because 40hrs/week on homework means you’re still spending 55-hrs per week on school.

Teachers in high school make sure to provide and review all material in class that will be on quizzes and tests. In college things not covered directly in class may be on the test as it will have been learned in the reading (not all reading is covered) or through other means outside class.

Professors are often less concerned than high school teachers about paying attention to the individual needs of students. If you need special consideration for anything you will have to ask and advocate for yourself. If you are lost, you need to ask the professor for clarification. It’s even common for professors to barely mention a paper in the actual class. She may expect you to simply see the assignment in the syllabus and do it yourself by the specified deadline.

Tips for Online Learning Success in a High School/College Dual Enrollment Program

Online classes are quite different from in-person classes. They require even more self-sufficiency, attention to detail, and discipline than traditional classes. Here are some tips to help you get started off on the right foot with your online classes.

  • Make sure you meet the technical requirements of the online learning platform. Different platforms have different requirements, and it is essential ahead of time to make sure you have access to everything you will need to take the course. This includes verifying your computer’s compatibility with the platform and any software programs the class requires. You must also make sure you have access to any specialized software required for the class, or confirm that it is provided for you if you do not have access.
  • Take the initiative to contact your professor early and often. Use this communication as an opportunity to clarify and confirm the professor’s expectations of the students. I remember getting papers returned to me on occasion and the only comment was “Rewrite”. When you get feedback like this, it’s really time to schedule a meeting with the professor. Remember that you are paying for this education and so are entitled to the professor’s time and attention. However, you must ask for it.
  • Sit down in the beginning of the semester with all your courses’ syllabuses and create a cohesive plan for the term. Notice what assignments are due when. Often multiple assignments from different classes will be due at the same time. So make sure you know when you plan to work on each assignment so you don’t end up having to write two long papers the night before they are due.
  • Create a schedule for when you will listen to the lectures. It’s best to create a cohesive schedule so you listen to the lectures consistently throughout the term. Some courses give you access to all the lectures at once, while others release lectures according to a schedule. Confirm which format your course uses and adjust accordingly.
  • Find a place where you are comfortable working. This could be your bedroom, a home office, the living room, a coffee shop, or a local library. Make sure you will always have multiple ways to access the internet in case the internet at your preferred workspace isn’t working on a crucial paper submission day (this happens more than you would think).

The Benefits of High School/College Online Dual Enrollment

What exactly are the benefits of dual enrollment? Well, there are quite a few, so let’s take a look. Dual credit high school/college programs are:

  • Often significantly cheaper than tuition for regular students.
  • The most efficient way to start your college career. Many high school courses of the junior and senior year cover similar material to the courses you will take in the first two years of college. Dual credit programs eliminate the redundancy. It’s even possible to arrange it so you can graduate college at the age of 20. Even if you don’t graduate at 20, you’re still more likely to graduate on time than the average college student.
  • Students have more to choose from than they do in high school. This allows you to focus more narrowly on areas of interest to you, and subjects that will be useful for earning your degree.
  • You get acclimated to college while still living at home.

How do I pay for my online dual enrollment for high school student’s program?

This is the toughest part of dual credit programs. Students under 18 who haven’t technically graduated high school aren’t eligible for financial aid. This means that as cheap as dual-credit programs are, they must be paid out of pocket or through private scholarships. However, some states, school districts, and public schools also have financial aid options available to students who excel enough to qualify for the dual credit program. Talk to both your school counselor and your college’s admissions officers to make sure you take advantage of all your options.

Tuition numbers and the number of courses in each program were taken from each program’s individual website linked in the body of the article above.

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