New IU pilot project to address dual-credit teaching

Indiana University is starting a pilot program that could make it easier for high schools to offer dual credit courses under a new state requirement due to start next year.

University faculty will be the lead instructors for dual credit courses or courses that let high school students earn college credit hours, doing more teaching and developing more course materials, The Herald-Times of Bloomington reported. Currently, university faculty train high school instructors.

IU's program, which will begin with the 2016-2017 school year, is run by the school's Office of Pre-College Programs and the College of Arts and Sciences. It will start with political science, math and public speaking classes.

Indiana's new credentialing standards are slated to take effect in 2017, requiring most of the state's dual credit teachers to earn additional college credit. Under current state policy, teachers must have the same credentials as college instructors or be approved by the college that awards students credit.

The new guidelines mean high school educators will be required to hold a master's degree with at least 18 credit hours in the subject area they teach.

IU says that about 75 percent of Indiana high school teachers who instruct dual credit classes don't meet the new credentials.

The program has gotten the attention of some high schools. Dirk Ackerman, principal of Edgewood High School in Ellettsville, said the school "will embrace the opportunity to work with IU offering even more dual credit courses for our students."

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