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Concurrent Academic Partnership for Secondary Students

What is the CAPSS program?

CAPSS (Concurrent Academic Partnership for Secondary Students) is a dual enrollment program that provides an opportunity for qualified high school students to take advantage of academic college courses and earn college credit prior to graduating from high school. Career & Technical Education/Vocational programs follow a different set of admission guidelines.


What is the advantage of taking College courses while in high school?
Students are able to get an early start on their college career and earn college credit at an affordable price. Often it will keep students from extending their time at a more costly four-year institution.


Can any high school student enroll in college courses?
No, there are admission guidelines that have been put into place to help promote student success and provide a positive first-time college experience. Students must be a sophomore, junior, or senior, or a 9th grade student who is classified as “gifted” with a current Individual Education Plan (IEP) that indicates the student is ready for College-level coursework. In addition, minimum G.P.A. and reading levels are required for all academic courses, and English and Math courses require college-level performance on writing and math assessments.


What are the admission guidelines for the CAPSS program?
To be eligible for dual enrolmment in a general education course a student must:

  • Be a high school sophomore, junior, or senior, or a “gifted” 9th grade student.
  • Hold a minimum high school cumulative G.P.A. of 2.75 on a four-point scale.
  • Meet additional assessment requirements for Math & English courses. (21 Math ACT and 20 English ACT)
  • Meet additional assessment requirements for Math & English courses.
  • Complete a CAPSS enrollment form and obtain the high school principal’s signature on the appropriate line granting permission to enroll in college courses.


Where can students take advantage of Cowley College courses?

  • College Campus Classes: Courses taught on a Cowley campus or outreach site by Cowley full-time or part-time instructors
  • Distance Learning Delivery: Courses delivered via Distance Learning methods (Interactive Video [ITV], or eLearning program [Online Hybrid, or Online].
  • Concurrent Enrollment Partnership (CEP) Site: Courses taught in area high schools during the school day utilizing qualified high school instructors. In order for a high school to serve as a CEP site, a Memorandum of Understanding must be established between the College and the School District.


What courses can high school students enroll in?
Although CAPSS students may enroll in any academic course that the College offers towards an Associate’s Degree, the following are some of the most common courses students take advantage of, which transfer without issues within the Regents system.

MTH 4420 College Algebra 3 credits MTH 4425 Trigonometry 3 credits
MTH 4423 Elem. Statistics 3 credits COM 2711 Public Speaking 3 credits
ENG 2211 Composition I 3 credits ENG 2212 Composition II 3 credits
PSY 6711 General Psychology 3 credits SOC 6811 Principles of Sociology  3 credits


Is there a limit to the number of hours a CAPSS student can take?
While a participant in the CAPSS program, a student will be expected to maintain part-time student status, which means they are enrolled in fewer than 12 credit hours per semester. Occasionally, an exception will apply to this rule. Students who wish to enroll in 12 or more hours in a semester are required to obtain prior approval from the Vice President of Academic Affairs at Cowley College.


Can the college credit that’s earned be transferred to another institution?
Yes. Cowley College has transfer agreements with the Regents Universities in Kansas, many area private institutions, as well as other four-year institutions in surrounding states. How Cowley College courses transfer is established by the four-year institutions, which have guidelines outlining how previous college credit earned will be applied to the student’s program of study. To answer specific transfer questions, it is best to check directly with the institution where the student plans to transfer or work with a Cowley academic advisor. If you have questions, feel free to contact Janice Stover at Cowley College, Janice.Stover@cowley.edu or via phone at 620.441.5247.


How do the college credits that have been earned through the CAPSS program get transferred to another institution?
After the course grades have been recorded on the student’s official Cowley transcript, the student must complete a Transcript Request Form through the Cowley Admissions office or online. http://www.cowley.edu/academics/registrar/transcripts.html

A processing fee of $6.00 per transcript applies. Once this step is completed, a student’s official transcript is sent to the designated institution where the transcript is evaluated and appropriate credit is applied to the student’s academic record at that institution.


What does a student need to provide to the College in order to be enrolled for classes?
The College must receive the following for each student:

  1. A completed CAPSS enrollment form with Principal’s signature
  2. An official copy of their current High School transcript reflecting GPA or confirmation of GPA from High School counselor on the CAPSS form.
  3. A copy of qualifying ACT test scores or completion of a Cowley assessment
  4. Full payment of tuition and fees


Where can students take the necessary assessment tests?
Students may take the ACT on one of the National test dates scheduled on Saturdays periodically throughout the year. If students have not taken the ACT, they may take one of the assessment tests provided by Cowley College. Many area high schools offer on-site assessment opportunities provided by Cowley College. Check with your high school counselor to see if your school participates in this testing option. Students may also schedule an appointment to test at the Cowley Arkansas City campus by contacting the Admissions Center at (620) 441-6335; the Mulvane Center at (316) 777-3050 [430 E. Main, Mulvane]; or at the Cowley Wichita Downtown Center at (316) 683-6013 [532 South Market Street].


When do students enroll for classes?
Personnel from the College visit many of the area high schools to enroll students at the beginning of each semester. Students can also enroll at the main campus or at one of the Cowley College enrollment centers. Students should check with their high school counselor to see if enrollment will take place at their high school.


How do students obtain the necessary textbooks?
Students are expected to purchase their own copy of the course textbook, unless otherwise provided by their school district. Many of the outlying high schools choose to have personnel from Cowley visit their site at the start of the Fall and Spring semesters to sell textbooks and enroll students. Students may pre-order or purchase their textbooks online from www.cowleycollegebooks.com

Students may also purchase their textbooks directly at the Sid Regnier bookstore located at 207 West Fifth Avenue on the main campus in Arkansas City or the Wichita Eastside Location. The bookstore phone number is (620) 441-5277.


What does it cost to take courses?
The student will be responsible for paying the College the current rate of tuition and fees per credit hour as outlined by College Policy. The current rates are published in the current course schedule, on the Cowley College website at www.cowley.edu/tuition, or can be obtained from your high school counselor. Cowley County residents obtain a tuition break of $10.00 per credit hour. These fees are subject to change with approval and adoption from the Cowley College Board of Trustees. Online courses have an additional distance learning course fee per credit hour.

Can students obtain Federal financial aid and scholarships for tuition and fees for the college classes while they are concurrently enrolled in high school?
No. Federal laws only allow financial aid to be provided to high school graduates.


What payment options are available if a student can’t afford to pay tuition, fees, and book costs at the time of enrollment?
Cowley College provides the opportunity for students to take advantage of a budget tuition management plan called e-cashier through nelnet, which charges a minimal non-refundable service fee per semester. This interest-free payment plan allows students or parents to authorize automatic bank withdrawals from a banking account, or charge monthly payments to a credit card. Students can register for the e-Cashier program online at http://www.cowley.edu/admissions/ecashierpayment.html Informational forms may also be available from your high school counselor.


How do students find out their current grades in their College courses?
Each Cowley student is created an identification number and provided access to log into Campus Connect, the student information system. Through Campus Connect, students can view academic information such as their grades, schedules, unofficial transcripts and other pertinent information. Information on accessing Campus Connect is provided to students at the time of enrollment or through their instructor.


Will parents have access to the student’s College academic progress?
If the student provides their parents with their access information, a parent can access the student information via Campus Connect, or the student can sign a release to grant permission for College personnel to discuss their progress with a parent. As part of the CAPSS enrollment form, however, students do sign a permission form that allows the College to communicate student performance information to personnel at their high schools.


Additional Information:
While a participant in the CAPSS program, concurrent students are officially registered as students of Cowley College and classified as non-degree seeking students. The academic credit granted for college course work successfully completed by the student shall qualify for College credit. Credit will be recorded on the student’s official academic record of the College. At the discretion of the high school, course work may simultaneously qualify for high school credit.

The Cowley student handbook and catalog will serve as the official rules of record, which govern student activity in admission, enrollment, course work, and behavior. All college policies and procedures can be accessed via the Cowley Web Site at the following link: http://www.cowley.edu/policy/policy.html. Additional information regarding Cowley College is available to students and the public at www.cowley.edu. It is recommended that students become familiar with the information on the Cowley web site, in particular with information listed under the “Academics” menu.


Who is the Cowley College contact person for the CAPSS Program?
In most schools, the high school counselor serves as the contact person to answer student’s questions. For further assistance, contact Janice Stover, Director of Academic Enrichment at the main Cowley College campus at (620) 441-5247 or email Janice.Stover@cowley.edu.

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