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Course for Credit


ItemDescription
Policy TitleCourse for Credit
Policy CategoryCourse for Credit (CCRE)
Policy IDCCRE-001
Policy Date2017-09-07
Previous Policy Dates05/05/1988, 08/02/2001, 02/07/2002, 12/05/2002, 07/01/2004,11/04/2004,05/03/2007, 06/05/2008,06/04/2009,10/01/2009, 12/02/2010, 12/06/2012, 12/06/2012, 12/06/2012, 12/05/2013, 05/01/2014, 08/06/2015, 11/05/2015, 02/02/2017, 06/01/2017
Statutory ReferenceGS 115C-81

 

Formerly GCS-M-001

1.  Each local board of education shall ensure that all required and elective courses have sufficient rigor, breadth, and depth to be awarded high school credit, in accordance with the North Carolina Standard Course of Study.

 2.  A high school principal shall award course credit toward high school graduation based upon a student’s demonstration of sufficient mastery of the standards for a course as defined in the NC Standard Course of Study.  Current graduation requirements are found in SBE policy GCS-N-004.

2.1 Credit toward high school graduation may be awarded for:  high school courses included in the NC Standard Course of Study, including those provided by the NC Virtual Public School; Advanced Placement courses; International Baccalaureate courses; Cambridge International Examination courses; locally developed high school courses; and public university, community college, and private college courses.

2.2 Course instructors shall provide instruction on the complete standards for the course as outlined in the NC Standard Course of Study, the Advanced Placement syllabus, the International Baccalaureate syllabus, or the locally-developed course syllabus, as appropriate.

2.3 Credit for the following courses must be earned through the high school except where indicated otherwise: 

English

  • English I: This credit may be earned in middle school;
  • English II: This credit shall be earned through the high school;
  • English III and English IV: These credits may be earned with appropriate college/university course sequences.

Math

  • NC Math 1, NC Math 2, and NC Math 3: These credits may be earned in middle school;
  • The fourth math credit may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence.
  • Students seeking to complete minimum course requirements for UNC institutions must successfully complete four mathematics courses that include a mathematics course with NC Math 3 as a pre-requisite.

Science

  • Earth/environmental science: This credit may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence;
  • Physical science: This credit may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence;
  • Biology: This credit may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence.

Social studies

  • American History:  Founding Principles, Civics and Economics: This credit may be earned in middle school.  This course must follow the NCSCOS in its entirety and may not be satisfied by an Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), or Cambridge International Examination (CIE) course, dual enrollment or any other course that does not fully address the NCSCOS.
  • World History: This credit may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence;
  • American History I and American History II: These credits may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence.

Health and Physical Education

  • The health and physical education credit may be earned with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence;
  • The CPR requirement may be met through instruction in the middle school, or by providing documentation of successful completion of an instructional program and/or test approved by the American Heart Association or the American Red Cross. [see GS §115C-81 (e1)]

 Electives and other credits

    • Elective credits may be earned with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence;
    • World Language credits may be earned in middle school or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence.  Students seeking to complete minimum course requirements for UNC institutions must successfully complete two credits of a single world language.
    • Credit requirements added in the future may be earned in middle school for disciplines where such credit is currently allowed (English, math, science, social studies, and world languages), or with an appropriate college/university course or course sequence, unless explicitly prohibited in this or other State Board of Education policies.

2.4  Students may earn dual credit for any high school course and meet graduation requirements using an appropriate college course or combination of college courses.  Principals shall award dual credit according to the Career and College Promise program guidelines established by the Department of Public Instruction (DPI).  For courses not addressed by DPI guidance, a principal may award dual credit for a college course if an evaluation of the course content against NC Standard Course of Study requirements demonstrates that the college course offers substantial coverage of the high school course standards.

2.5 College and university courses shall earn high school dual credit as specified below:

           

Semester Hours Credit***

High School Credits

1-4*

1

5-8**

2

9 or more**

3

 *For college courses having an associated lab component (such as math or foreign language lab), the combination of the course and the lab count as a single course and earn one credit only.

            ** These occur only in certain Career and Technical Education courses.

            *** High school credit applies to college courses in college curriculum programs.

 

2.6       For 2018-19 academic school year, college and university courses shall earn high school dual credit as specified below:

           

Semester Hours Credit***

High School Credits

1-2

0

3-4*

1

5-8**

2

9 or more**

3

 *For college courses having an associated lab component (such as math or foreign language lab), the combination of the course and the lab count as a single course and earn one credit only.

            ** These occur only in certain Career and Technical Education courses.

            *** High school credit applies to college courses in college curriculum programs.

3.  Students in grades 6-8 who pass English I and/or mathematics, science, social studies, or world language courses that are described in and aligned to the North Carolina Standard Course of Study for grades 9-12 may use the course(s) to meet high school graduation requirements.  Such course(s) shall count toward meeting graduation requirements and the number of credits required to graduate, and shall appear on the high school transcript.  These courses shall not be included in the calculation of students’ high school Grade Point Average (GPA).  Student GPA shall be computed only with courses taken during high school.

4.  An e-learning course qualifies for course credit if it meets the following requirements:

4.1       Local Education Agencies (LEAs) may partner with eligible providers of e-learning opportunities other than the North Carolina Virtual Public School. Eligible providers shall meet all of the following:

  • Be accredited by a regional accrediting agency such as, but not limited to, AdvancEd or the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).
  • Employ teachers who hold teaching licenses from states that participate in the NASDTEC Educator Identification Clearinghouse.
  • Ensure that courses offered to North Carolina students are aligned to the North Carolina Standard Course of Study.

4.2     Where available, EOG tests, EOC tests, and post-assessments must be used as an indicator of student mastery.  The student’s base school schedules and administers EOC and EOG tests.  These scores shall be included in the determination of the base school’s state and federal accountability reports.

4.3     Enrollment in an e-learning “for credit course” shall count towards satisfying local board requirements related to minimum instructional days, seat time policies, student attendance, athletic and/or extracurricular obligations. Local Education Agencies (LEAs) are instructed to be purposeful in establishing processes and procedures to enroll and manage such e-learning students in an environment where they can be successful.

5.  Credit may not be awarded for school bus driving, office assistance, teacher assistance, or laboratory assistance.

6.  Credit recovery shall be governed by the following definitions and parameters:

Credit Recovery

6.1  The term “credit recovery” will be used to refer to a block of instruction that is less than the entirety of the Standard Course of Study for that course.  Credit recovery delivers a subset of the Standard Course of Study or blueprint of the original course in order to specifically address deficiencies in a student’s mastery of the course and target specific components of a course necessary for completion.

6.2  The length of credit recovery courses shall be dictated by the skills and knowledge the student needs to recover and not be a fixed length of seat time.  When credit recovery is exercised, the original record of the course being completed and failed will remain on the transcript.

6.3  The LEA shall allow a grade pass or a fail for each credit recovery course.  The mark will not affect the student’s GPA.

6.4  A student wishing to modify his or her GPA shall repeat a course for credit and not seek a credit recovery solution.

6.5  A local school board may not limit the number of credit recovery courses taken by a student prior to graduation.

6.6  The End-of-Course (EOC) exam associated with the credit recovery course may be administered no later than 30 days upon the completion of the credit recovery course.

 7.   Repeating a course for credit shall be governed by the following definitions and parameters

Repeating a Course for Credit

7.1  The term “repeating a course for credit” will be used to refer to a high school course repeated via any delivery method when the entire Standard Course of Study for that course is being taught to the student for a second time.

7.2  Students are permitted to repeat a course for credit when they have failed a course.   Local boards of education may develop policies that define specific circumstances when students other than those who fail a course may repeat a course for credit.

7.3  Students repeating a course for credit shall receive a grade and take the associated End-of-Course (EOC) assessment.  Those students who have already scored at Level 3, 4, or 5 on the associated EOC assessment may elect either to retake the EOC or use the previous passing EOC score as at least 20% of their final grade.  If the student retakes the EOC, the higher of the two scores will be used in the calculation of the final grade.

7.4 Beginning in 2015–16, for students who initially fail a high school course and repeat the course for credit, upon completion of the repeated course, the new course grade shall replace the previous grade for the course.

7.5 When a student repeats a course for credit and passes the course, the student only earns credit towards graduation once.

 8.  Credit by Demonstrated Mastery (CDM)

8.1 Credit by Demonstrated Mastery is the process by which LEAs shall, based upon a body-of-evidence, award a student credit in a particular course without requiring the student to complete classroom instruction for a certain amount of seat time. 

8.2 “Mastery” is defined as a student’s command of course material at a level that demonstrates a deep understanding of the content standards and application of knowledge.

8.3 Credit by Demonstrated Mastery shall be available for all NC students in grades 9-12 for high school courses and in grades 6-8 for high school courses offered in middle school.  LEAs may choose to make CDM available for students in grades 6-8 for middle grades content. 

8.4 Students shall demonstrate mastery through a multi-phase assessment, consisting of (1) a standard examination, which shall be the EOC/EOG where applicable, or a final exam developed locally and (2) an artifact which requires the student to apply knowledge and skills relevant to the content standards.  LEAs may require additional requirements, such as performance tasks. This multi-phase assessment process builds a body-of-evidence that allows a committee to determine if the student has a deep understanding of the standards for the course or subject area, as defined by the North Carolina Standard Course of Study, thereby earning credit for the course without experiencing it in the school setting. 

8.5 DPI shall develop implementation guidelines for this policy.  These guidelines shall provide guidance for LEAs regarding scoring of assessments as well as local implementation.  The guidelines shall establish minimum scores for the standard examination and artifact creation. Students must attain minimum scores to earn Credit by Demonstrated Mastery. 

8.6  The following courses are excluded from Credit by Demonstrated Mastery:

      • Career and Technical Education (CTE) work-based learning courses (co-op, internship, apprenticeship);
      • CTE courses that have a clinical setting as a requirement of the course, such as ProStart, Early Childhood Education I/II and Nursing Fundamentals;
      • CTE Advanced Studies courses;
      • CTE courses in pilot and/or field test status;
      • English Language Learner (ELL) courses;
      • Healthful Living required courses;
      • AP, IB, and CIE courses; and
      • Occupational Course of Study (OCS) Occupational Preparation I, II, III, and IV courses.


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