What about PSEO-to-the-U and private colleges?

At the risk of starting this debate anew, I’m wondering what the cost structure would look like if the PSEO-to-University-of-Minnesota option were charted, along with PSEO-to-private-college path.

I’ve been told PSEO students would naturally gravitate toward those types of institutions. Are those paths possible? Would be worth a call. (Read: I’ve got a call in.)

Update: The spokeswoman for the state Office of Higher Education says the PSEO (college classes in high school) option is accepted at both the U and private colleges. I’d be interested in getting those figures.

  • Jason

    It may be accepted, but not by every private college. Plus, even if it is accepted, some schools will move you into upper level courses, but necessarily give you the credits. Thus, in some situations PSEO may not be able to shorten the time it takes to graduate. Something to examine further and create a better understanding for parents and students so that there are no surprises…

    • Jason

      “but not necessarily”

  • afriedrich

    Good to know, Jason. Thanks — and yes, that’s something I’d like to look into.

  • Danielle

    There is a lot to the PSEO Program that is not usually apparent to anyone not intimately familiar with it. First, private colleges and universities usually do not participate in the program because the tuition they receive from the state does not even come close to the tuition they receive from regular students. Many public schools have the same concerns, but frequently feel that they do not have the option not to participate in order to maintain political goodwill with the Legislature and state constituents.

    Second, students who take a full 2 years of PSEO courses are not necessarily able to graduate early. Each high school and district is permitted to decide which courses they require of students for high school graduation. Some students are not able to make a start on their intended major courses due to the number of high school graduation requirements they still have to complete. While I would never consider a class a waste of time, from a pure numbers perspective, many students enter college with an excess of lower division credits that they needed for high school that do not count toward an intended major. Yes, they can mostly fill their general education requirements in that time, but a thoughtful college degree may still require another 3-4 years depending on additional major or degree requirements.

    Third, those excess credits may have a negative consequence later on in a student’s undergraduate career, depending on their financial aid status. Many federal financial aid options have a cap on the number of credits a student may earn and still receive aid. This typically correlates to a six year graduation plan, but could kick in earlier with the excess number of credits a student may have had to take in PSEO.

    Finally, we have seen a wide range in acceptance of PSEO credits at different post secondary institutions. Generally speaking, Minnesota colleges and the surrounding areas accept almost all PSEO credits as transfer options. The more selective schools and Ivy League institutions almost never accept PSEO credits, though they may allow advanced course placement. The final scenario we see is a college that will only accept credits that were NOT used to complete high school graduation requirements, thereby invalidating the dual-enrollment purpose.

    These are only some larger considerations based on the particular chart about the cost of college attendance. The PSEO Program itself has a number of other technicalities that could use more scrutiny at the legislative level, but they are not necessarily germane to this particular conversation.