A Win-Win: Survey Highlights Dual Credit Value for Illinois Stakeholders

In 2021, EdSystems was part of an Illinois team to conduct a broad survey of key secondary and postsecondary stakeholders about dual credit in the state. The goal was to surface perceptions of and experiences with dual credit among students, educators, families, and administrators at the secondary and postsecondary level. In total, 1,004 responses were collected representing a broad range of stakeholders and perspectives from rural, suburban, and urban parts of Illinois. The survey results are clear: the vast majority of those surveyed see the benefits for all involved in dual credit, from the schools, educators, students, and families.

97%
of secondary respondents believe that high schools benefit from offering dual credit courses
73%
of postsecondary respondents believe that colleges benefit from offering dual credit
97%
of student respondents believe they benefitted from participating in dual credit
83%
of all respondents believe that dual credit courses are high quality and rigorous
83%
of all respondents agree that dual credit courses are college courses

In addition to the valuable quantitative data, the short-answer responses provided meaningful insights into the core areas of interest: quality, rigor, benefits, and equity implications. The findings are highlighted in three new resources produced by the survey team:

Maintaining Dual Credit Rigor & High-Quality Delivery

Essential to maintaining the rigor of postsecondary coursework is developing a qualified teacher workforce alongside effective partnerships and collaboration across institutions.

Advantages of Dual Credit

Respondents highlighted the value for students and families to save money and time on postsecondary education, as well as gaining exposure to the rigor and diversity of course offerings at the college level.

Expanding Equitable Access to Dual Credit

While dual credit is already a key strategy for increasing equitable access to early college credit, respondents provided valuable insights about how to improve communications and supports to students of color and low-income students to build on that success.

Ultimately, EdSystems is heartened by these survey results, and continues to be committed to supporting state policy and local implementation of rigorous and thoughtful dual credit opportunities that will help Illinois students thrive.

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