© 2013   Permission to use freely granted.  Distribution for profit not allowed without prior arrangement.


College 4 . Us

Plan and act today so you have no regrets tomorrow...

Alternatives to High School Classes

Many high school students have much success when taking classes at community colleges (CCs), which are full of people who are working adults and those who didn't quite make it into four-year colleges.  So in most cases, the competition is not very severe.

Most people take classes at CCs for the following reasons:

You have to apply early, and be ready to be refused into the class because CCs have to take care of their regular students first.  With the budget cuts in many states, many people will have problem getting into classes.  Some classes may be offered online with few or no actual classes taking place.  If you have spare time, this would be a way to get those credits.

College classes also have a lot more resources that go with them.  Taking science courses at CCs is therefore highly recommended because you have so much more stuff available in the laboratories.  Access to these labs may make the subjects much more interesting than otherwise.

If you don’t take the class for credit, you can still go in and just listen to the lectures. They generally don’t take roll in college and the classes are usually big enough so no one knows who you are anyway.

In most cases, CCs classes that are transferable count as honors in GPA calculations.  You may have to manually request a transcript to be sent to your high school.

Can you get your CC professors to submit recommendation letters?  Yes, but they probably cannot do so via the online Common Applications system.  Find them the mailing addresses or fax numbers of the admissions office and send the letters in one of those ways (with mailed letters being the preferred method).  Make sure they mention all the information the admissions officers need to figure out where to file the recommendation letters (e.g., your name, your HIGH SCHOOL (not the community college) name, any codes given to you by Common Apps or the admissions office, etc.).  Of course, they should indicate clearly that they are college professors at a CC, not a typical high school teacher, and they should indicate the courses they taught you.  To ensure delivery, give your professors pre-addressed, stamped envelopes along with your request.  You are not supposed to see those letters and therefore you need the teachers to mail them for you.  And since the same recommendation letter can go to multiple schools, you can give a teacher multiple envelopes.  Also request the CCs to send in the transcripts.  They may request small fees to do this for you.

Next: Standardized Tests