Since 1981, through UW in the High School (UWHS), the University of Washington has partnered with high schools across Washington state to offer UW courses for UW credit in the high school classroom. Courses are official UW courses, taught by the high school’s own teachers, who have been approved and trained by UW faculty. Each year, more than 100 schools in Washington participate in UWHS.
UWHS is what’s known as a dual credit or concurrent enrollment program. In a dual credit program, students can earn high school and college credit at the same time. Along with Running Start and Advanced Placement (AP), UWHS is one of several dual credit options available to high school students. In Washington state, programs that allow students to earn dual credit on their high school campus by taking official college courses are called College in the High School programs.
Difference from Running Start
Unlike courses offered through Running Start, which meet on a college campus, UWHS courses are taught at the high school. For students, a major benefit of UWHS is the convenience — you can take college courses at your school, alongside your friends, taught by teachers you know. There’s no need to worry about transportation to a college campus or juggling your high school schedule with your campus one.
Difference from AP
Courses offered through UWHS are actual credit-bearing college courses, meaning you can earn college credit by successfully completing the course. AP courses are college-level courses that prepare students to take the corresponding AP exam, and your exam score may allow you to earn college credit at the college or university you attend. With UWHS, your grade is based on the work you do throughout the course, not just one high-stakes exam at the end. More than 90 percent of students who take a course through UWHS successfully earn UW credit.
UWHS is fully accredited by the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP), a professional organization for high schools and colleges that fosters and supports concurrent enrollment programs. Accreditation ensures that UWHS meets or exceeds rigorous national standards of quality in the areas of curriculum, instructors, students, assessment and program evaluation. UWHS is one of just three NACEP-accredited programs in Washington state.