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Dual Enrollment Program

American University and DC Public Schools

About Dual Enrollment

In the American University (AU) Dual Enrollment (DE) program, 12th grade District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) students are eligible to take college courses offered by the School of Education at AU. The AU DE program is designed with the intent of exposing high school students to the both the university milieu and college coursework in the field of education to engender post-secondary educational success.

AU’s Dual Enrollment program not only provides its participating students with access to college-level courses and prepares them for the rigor of postsecondary education, but also offers wrap-around supports to help them adapt to the college environment. These supports include an early warning system to monitor students’ behavior (e.g., absences, tardiness) and academic progress. Additional mentoring and counseling are also made available at students’ respective schools and at AU.

The only dual enrollment program in the Washington DC region with an education/teacher preparation focus, the AU DE program faculty coordinator works one-on-one with students on course scheduling and educational planning linked to long-term career and/or education goals. AU DE also introduces students to an array of services on the AU campus, particularly academic advisors, who can provide both an overview of coursework students can anticipate at the postsecondary level and an actual introduction to college campus life. 

The experience overall introduces Dual Enrollment Fellows to college life, while supporting their plans to apply and enroll in an institution of higher education. The DE Fellows at AU are welcome and celebrated throughout AU, and at all levels beginning with the Office of the President and ending with their classmates in their classes. DE is now a core part of AU’s Strategic Plan, and it is the first step of recruitment in School of Education’s AU Teacher Pipeline.

8-10 DCPS high school students will be selected for the program each academic year. Student selection is based on individual university application processes, recognizing that this is a dual-credit program. All grades/credits will be reflected on students’ DCPS and American University (if attending) transcripts. The AU Admissions Office and the Dual Enrollment Committee reviews applications.

Criteria for selection include:

  • A complete American University Dual Enrollment Application
  • Optional test submission (e.g., PSAT)
  • Official High School Transcripts (Minimum GPA of 3.0, un-weighted on a 4-point scale)
  • Education-focused essay/personal statement
  • Letter of recommendation from high school counselor/principal/teacher
  • Letter of permission from participant’s parents/legal guardian

Email any questions about enrollment/participation to dualenrollment@american.edu.

Students are enrolled in the classes as a cohort, and they learn alongside AU students. DE Fellows receive the same work as the AU students enrolled in their classes. The courses are taught in an interactive manner, that involves multiple pedagogies, critical thinking, the Socratic method, and individual contributions to knowledge in the classroom setting. The class formats include readings, small groups, large groups, group presentations, and debates, among many other interactive styles of class participation.

Fall Semester

Education (EDU) 205: Schools and Society
Course Level: Undergraduate
Credits: 3
Course Description: A multidimensional view of schools, teachers, and students. This social and intellectual foundation course serves as a basis for studying contemporary education and the issues of racism, sexism, finance, governance, innovations, and the social context of American education. The course includes lectures, discussion groups, cooperative learning, Internet activities, and independent projects.

Spring Semester

EDU 280: Social Justice in Urban Education
Course Level: Undergraduate
Credits: 3
Course Description: An analysis of race and class on social justice issues in urban education. Emphasis is placed on how urban schools have served as vehicles of both oppression and opportunity for social groups in our society. Students also consider the political ideologies, theories, classroom properties and structures within race and class. The course uses a critical pedagogy framework to analyze the relationship between education and social justice and to critique the theories and practices within urban education.

Dr. Toks Fashola
Faculty Coordinator
(202) 885-3716
fashola@american.edu

Dr. Traci Dennis
Course Instructor
(202) 885-8964
tdennis@american.edu

Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy
Dean, School of Education
cholcomb@american.edu

D’Shaun Vance
District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) Coordinator
(202) 535-1636
D’shaun.vance@k12.dc.gov

For questions about the American University/DCPS Dual Enrollment Program, send an email to fashola@american.edu.

News

Washington, DC, television station WJLA produced a Spotlight on Education segment about the AU/DCPS Dual Enrollment program.

SOE Dean Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy writes a Washington Post opinion article detailing the importance of AU’s Dual Enrollment program.

Read the article on Dual Enrollment in AU’s Online Newspaper, The Eagle.

AU School of Education launches the Dual Enrollment Program for DC students.