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Middle College (Dual Credit)

The Columbiana Campuses of Kent State University (KSU at East Liverpool & KSU at Salem) are pleased to offer your high school students an opportunity to begin their college experience as early as their freshman year!

Background/ History

The Middle College (Early Start) Program was designed in collaboration with the City of East Liverpool High School Principal, Linda Henderson. Her vision was to create opportunities for students to earn college level course work as early as their first day in high school. We have expanded this program so that students can complete up to two years of college coursework prior to high school graduation. By getting students an early start and helping them to earn a significant number of college credits, it is our hope that more will go on to complete their baccalaureate degree.

How the Early Start Program Works

The Middle College (Early Start) Program offers college level courses to groups of students at your high school. Taught by professors certified by their discipline’s department, Middle College (Early Start) classes allow students to gain knowledge, experience, and skills usually unavailable to them until after high school graduation. In fact, with the support of the school district and careful advising to the student, it may be possible to earn a technical certificate and/or complete the Ohio Transfer Module* general education requirements upon graduation from high school! Professors are chosen in one of two ways. The first way is that a KSU professor is assigned to teach at your location. In this scenario, a teacher from your high school is also in the classroom and acts as a partner in the education process. The second way is to have one of your current teachers certified to teach college level work. Most school districts use a combination of both. Regardless of who teaches the class, rigorous standards are in place to ensure that students receive the same material as they would get in a college classroom and are evaluated by the same criteria by which all college students are judged. The Middle College (Early Start) Program is designed with flexibility in mind. Although we can provide a sample curriculum and progression, we will work with your district to offer the best mix of courses for your student body.

Student Requirements

Because the Middle College (Early Start) Program is unique to your district, we will work with you to set the requirements for student admission into the program. For example, districts that plan to offer courses that require high levels of critical thinking skills (e.g., English, Philosophy, Chemistry) may want to limit enrollment to honor’s level students. Districts that want to offer more technically-based courses (e.g., Basic Computer Skills, Web Design) may want to offer the program to students who show aptitude, regardless of overall academic record. We have streamlined the application process for students enrolled in this program. Each student enrolled must complete:

  • PSEO Program Application Form
  • Parental Permission Form 
  • Principal or Counselor Recommendation Form (A single letter listing all students will be acceptable) Students will not be required to submit ACT/SAT scores or take the University’s COMPASS test until such time that the students choose to attend a course on one of the KSU campuses.

Costs of the Program

In the State of Ohio, every qualified public high school student has the opportunity to participate in the Post Secondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) Program. Traditionally, each school district is required to forfeit a pro-rated portion of their state allocation based on the number of hours the student spends in a college level course. Depending on your allocation, this amount is approximately $700 per student per three-credit college course. If the student takes two courses over the year, your district’s budget is reduced by $1,400. If 10 students take two courses each over the year, your budget will be reduced by over $14,000! The Columbiana County Campuses of Kent State University are committed to providing you with a way to effectively manage these PSEO Program costs. Not only will we help you to anticipate your PSEO Program expenditures, but we will structure the costs so even more students can take part in the program at no additional expense to your district. Because the Middle College (Early Start) Program is tailor-made for your district, please contact Mr. Donald Bean for more information on cost. (Note: High School students who continue to take college course at KSU East Liverpool and/or KSU Salem campuses will be charged the traditional PSEO Program rate.)

Benefits to Your District

There are many benefits to your school district, including: 

  • Exposing students to college level work as early as their first year of high school
  • Can be used to attract students to your district during open enrollment periods
  • Anticipate and contain your PSEO costs · No costs to the student or their parents
  • Positive publicity to the school district for offering this innovative program
  • Opportunities for your teachers who hold Master’s degrees to be certified to teach college level courses and receive tuition waivers for post-Master’s work

To sign up or for more information about this exciting and innovative opportunity for your students, please contact:

East Liverpool

Donald Bean
PSEO Coordinator