Avoid NO CREDIT College Courses
No-credit courses, also called remedial courses, are classes based on college entrance exam scores that students must take to build skills – most often in reading, English and math – before they are allowed to take regular college classes. These courses are designed to improve skills, fill in gaps, or help students gain proficiency in these subjects. Some students may be required to take remedial courses in a single area or several areas. However, at most colleges, remedial courses do not count toward graduation. So students will be required to take these courses, and pay tuition, prior to taking the courses that lead to their degree.Downloadable flyer about remediation.
How can students avoid no-credit courses?
Rather than seeing this information as a dooming fate, here are some steps that can help improve students’ need for remedial courses.
- Re-take the ACT or SAT to improve scores. Students who want to re-take the ACT/SAT need to plan ahead as much as possible so they have plenty of time to both study and work on their college applications.
- Take challenging classes in high school.
- Ask for help if/when needed. If a student is struggling in a class, talk to a school counselor or teacher. Consider a tutor.
- Make sure students have time for schoolwork. Cut down on extracurricular activities if students are spread too thin.
- Stay focused during senior year. Students will be able to get into the rhythm of college classes more easily if they keep working hard during their last year of high school.
- Take math in senior year. Many students complete their required math courses by junior year of high school and are pleased not to “have to take math” during their final year. However, this means that students may forget much of what they know before they take college placement exams.
- Take placement exams seriously. Colleges offer placement exams through their testing offices to determine how ready the student is for college level work in various areas. Students take these placement exams after they have been accepted, so they are not a factor in admission. These exams can help students avoid no-credit courses.