13 Institutions of the Colorado Community College System Participate in American Council on Education Initiative to Help Non-Traditional Learners Affordably Gain College Degrees and Credentials
The Colorado Community College System (CCCS) recently announced that its 13 institutions are now accepting a pool of roughly 60 online courses for credit from students seeking a degree or certificate from six popular national online learning organizations. The online education providers include: Pearson, Straighterline, Sophia, JumpCourse, Saylor and Ed4Online. The acceptance of these credits was facilitated by the American Council on Education (ACE) through their Alternative Credit Project,™ a national groundbreaking initiative to boost the ability of millions of nontraditional learners to gain a college degree. The institutions of the CCCS were the only community colleges selected by ACE to join 4-year colleges and universities in the first phase of this project.
These low- or no-cost, lower-division general education online courses were chosen to participate in the Alternative Credit Project. A statewide group of CCCS faculty evaluators determined that these 60+ courses, out of a set of more than 110 put forth by ACE, will be accepted at the system’s 13 institutions as equivalent to specific CCCS courses as each achieves the same outcomes. CCCS, along with the 39 other colleges, universities and systems taking part in the project, have agreed to grant credit for these courses, which include disciplines such as business, critical thinking and writing, foreign language, humanities, mathematics and natural and physical sciences.
“The Colorado Community College System is committed to offering high-quality and affordable higher educational opportunities to all Coloradans. We believe these alternative credits will offer additional pathways to help students complete their degrees in a timely, affordable manner,” stated CCCS President Dr. Nancy McCallin. “With 74% of all new jobs requiring a college education in the future, this alternative credit project will aid students in their pursuit of higher education.”
“This is an important step for an initiative that already has significantly increased our body of knowledge about the most effective ways to increase the number of Americans able to earn a college degree or credential by using education, training and life experiences gained outside a formal classroom,” said ACE President Molly Corbett Broad.
“Nontraditional students who often are balancing multiple family and career demands now know where they can turn to take courses that will help them reduce the time and expense required to gain a postsecondary degree or credential at a number of outstanding institutions,” said Deborah Seymour, ACE assistant vice president for education attainment and innovation.
Prospective or current students of any of the 13 institutions of CCCS can access their college’s microsite for more information about the courses accepted for this credit-accepting-initiative. For Lamar Community college’s list of accepted courses, visit http://www.lamarcc.edu/alternative-credit-project/.
In addition to their participation in the Alternative Credit Project, CCCS colleges like Lamar Community College also welcome students who seek credit for what they have learned in the work world as well. Students can learn more about “Prior Learning Assessment Credit” by contacting LCC Student Services at 719.336.1590.
The project is made possible by a $1.89 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
About the Colorado Community College System
The Colorado Community College System comprises the state’s largest system of higher education serving more than 151,000 students annually. It oversees career and academic programs in the 13 state community colleges and career and technical programs in more than 160 school districts and six other post-secondary institutions. For more information visit www.cccs.edu or follow CCCS on Twitter @goCCCS.
Founded in 1918, ACE is the major coordinating body for all the nation’s higher education institutions, representing more than 1,600 college and university presidents and related associations. It provides leadership on key higher education issues and influences public policy through advocacy. For more information, please visit www.acenet.edu or follow ACE on Twitter @ACEducation.
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