CollegePaying for College

How Dual Enrollment Can Help You Finish in Four

More and more, we’re hearing about college students needing six years to complete their bachelor’s degrees. One way that students can get ahead and “finish in four” is to take dual enrollment courses while still in high school.

UA Early College is a program that allows students to take courses for college credit (and often for high school credit simultaneously) while providing additional support to assist high school students transitioning to college-level academics.


The first class all UA Early College students take is the UAEC 200 College Readiness Course, which helps students get adjusted to Blackboard Learn, learn about note taking and study skills, writing in MLA style, and much more. After completing that five-week online course as soon as the summer after 9th grade, students start taking other UA classes, including English, history, political science, theatre, computer science, anthropology, and communication studies.

High school junior Alyssa says, “From UAEC, I’ve learned many useful study skills, such as how to take better notes and sort through massive amounts of information from textbooks, but I’ve also learned the value of self-discipline when it comes to studying and meeting due dates. UAEC has also given me a lot of valuable information on what I can expect when I enroll in college.”


Financial hardship in college can mean students need to take time off or drop to part-time status. Dual enrollment can lower the total cost of a college education. Courses taken through UA Early College are less expensive than the typical undergraduate tuition rate due toa 50% automatic in-state tuition scholarship for all Alabama students who meet the UA Early College admission requirements.

High school senior Joseph says, “I first heard about UA Early College when I was in 10th grade and knew that it was what I needed to prepare for the future. I enrolled because I knew that it would benefit me not only financially, but also academically. The costs of the basic courses I have taken have been either greatly reduced or made free to me all together, which helps save on money in the long run. Also, I will not have to take the basic core classes in my freshman year of college, which will give me more time to adapt and to focus on my future.”


Earning college credits while still in high school can be a great head start on many courses that will be required in most universities’ core curriculum, like English, math and history. Courses taken through dual enrollment like UA Early College can transfer to other universities and can stack with AP or IB courses to help you make the most of your time in high school.

Learn more about UA Early College and the UAEC 200 College Readiness Course, see a list of typical courses, and find out more about the three-step application process, scholarships and tuition, by visiting or calling 205-348-7083 to speak with a member of the UA Early College staff. 

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