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Ohio’s Credit When It’s Due Initiative Awards More Than 1,000 Associate Degrees

September 30, 2015- 3:46 pm


COLUMBUS, OHIO- A joint initiative aimed at increasing post-secondary attainment enabled 7,000 students from 12 states - including Ohio – to secure associate degrees, helping to reduce the sizable ranks of Americans with some college but no degree. Over its 15-month duration, the program – called Credit When It’s Due – benefited more than 1,000 Ohio students.

In October 2012, Lumina Foundation awarded the Ohio Department of Higher Education $500,000 to implement the Credit When It’s Due initiative, which is designed to support partnerships between community colleges and universities that significantly expand approaches to awarding associate degrees based on meeting degree requirements. Students who benefit from the initiative transfer from community colleges to universities before receiving the associate degree. Lumina Foundation, Helios Education Foundation, USA Funds, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation collaborated to bring the total number of states participating in the initiative to 12.

Credit When It’s Due, also known as “reverse transfer,” has become another opportunity for Ohio students to obtain credentials that can lead to employment in their desired field of study. The Ohio Department of Higher Education worked with 13 of the state’s public universities, 23 community colleges, and five university regional campuses to establish guidelines, policies, and procedures to ensure that institutions could collaborate with partners, communicate with students, and report outcomes specific to helping students earn credit for two-year degree programs they started, but never completed.

Ohio has placed great emphasis on college completion. Beginning in early 2012, the Department of Higher Education – then known as the Board of Regents – convened a task force of leaders from public higher education institutions around the state to develop recommended practices that could assist in helping students complete their degree programs. Additionally, the colleges and universities were charged with developing completion plans that outlined programs and practices that could be used to help students reach their completion goals.

“Credential attainment is a top priority for the Department of Higher Education,” said Brett Visger, the department’s associate vice chancellor of institutional collaboration and completion. “A large number of Ohioans are retiring from the workforce, and there aren’t enough young people to replace them should the state support only the traditional routes to a degree. If Ohio wants to at least maintain the number of skilled workers in the workforce over the next 20 years, we must have colleges and universities working together to think about how to help more students earn certificates and degrees." 

For more information about Ohio's Credit When It's Due Initiative is available at: https://www.ohiohighered.org/CWID. 

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