Dual Credit

Dual Credit

Dual-Credit: Earn free college credits now, save money and graduate from college faster. Blue pin sticking into a circle that says "You are here"

High School Students Earn Free College Credit with Dual Credit!

Every year, high school students in central Wisconsin just like you earn college credits before they even graduate. Dual Credit gives high school students a head start on college and a chance to explore careers before they commit. Better yet, the credits they earn are entirely free of charge and—in some cases—may even transfer to other Wisconsin technical colleges or four-year colleges. 

Mid-State offers the following Dual Credit opportunities: Dual Credit, Start College Now, and Dual Credit Academies. Take advantage of these opportunities to challenge yourself academically, earn college credits toward a program of study, accelerate your post-secondary degree completion, and save money on tuition and books.

Which Dual Credit programs are right for you? Explore the options below, and follow next steps to getting started. Adult students looking for information about Mid-State college credit for previous education, work, life, and military experiences should visit our Credit for Prior Learning page.

Dual Credit

Did you know that some courses taught at your high school may be taught by a high school instructor specially certified by Mid-State to teach the course? Because these are Mid-State courses, you can earn college credit. 

  • Qualify for college credit at Mid-State by earning a "C" or better in Dual Credit courses.
  • Credits are transferable to other colleges.

Dual Credit isn’t just for high school juniors and seniors anymore—sophomores can take Dual Credit courses too!

How do I get Dual Credit?

During the first week of class, your Dual Credit high school teacher will assist all students who want to receive free college credits with Mid-State to apply and complete a registration form for the Dual Credit option. Only students who submit this registration form and earn a “C” or better in the course will earn the dual credit. After the class, your instructor will enter your grade with Mid-State, and it will appear on your college transcript.

A closer look

Start College Now (Formerly Youth Options)

Start College Now is a Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) program that allows high school juniors and seniors enrolled in a public school district who are in good academic standing to take classes at Mid-State for both high school and college credit.

  • Interested students apply to their school district asking for approval to take one or more college courses each semester of their junior or senior year.
  • By approving the student to take college course(s), the school district will pay for the student's tuition and fee associated with the cost of the course(s). 
How do I get started with Start College Now?
  1. Note important deadlines for submitting your Start College Now application:
    • March 1 deadline for following fall semester start
    • October 1 deadline for following spring semester start
  2. Complete and submit the online Mid-State Start College Now application. (You will need to indicate your course number and term start date on the application.)
  3. Watch for an email confirmation from Mid-State letting you know that your application was successfully submitted. (Mid-State will also send all applications to the school district for approval.)
  4. Watch for an email from Mid-State informing you of your application approval status and next steps.

For detailed information and responsibilities pertaining to the Start College Now program, see the Start College Now instructions on the Wisconsin Technical College System website. Do not complete the application on this page—be sure to use Mid-State’s application linked in step 2 above.

Dual Credit Academies

High school Dual Credit Academies are a series of courses that lead into one or more degree programs at Mid-State. Academies are designed to let students explore a career and sometimes lead to a recognized industry credential or embedded technical diploma. Check back soon for information about the Academies that will be available during the 2018–19 school year.


For more information about any of these great Dual Credit options, please contact Jackie Esselman, manager of K–12 and adult recruitment, at 715.422.5413, or your high school counselor.

A Foundations of Early Childhood Education Dual Credit class at Stevens Point Area Senior High School (SPASH)
A Foundations of Early Childhood Education Dual Credit class at Stevens Point Area Senior High School (SPASH)