In the fall of 2012, NIC's Dual Credit program fully adopted the national standards from the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP), www.nacep.org, for the expansion into the high schools to ensure college rigor for courses held in the high school. The State Board of Education guidelines are modeled on NACEP standards. These standards and guidelines provide the framework NIC now uses to monitor curriculum, faculty, students, assessment, and program evaluation components for the Dual Credit Program, particularly those courses offered in the high schools.
NIC chairs developed the Dual Credit: Teaching NIC Courses in the High School Guidelines. These guidelines now allow NIC to hire faculty who do not possess a masters in the discipline, although it is still the preferred credential. Potential dual credit instructors are interviewed based upon division practices and standards. NIC assigns an NIC faculty member to each dual credit instructor as a mentor.
With the expansion of the dual credit program into the high school, there was a need to develop a method to produce accreditation evidence, ensure college rigor, and incorporate the high school teachers into NIC faculty divisions. The program coordinator initiated a Dual Credit Instructor Workshop and worked with education faculty to develop a professional development class (EDUC 296A) for dual credit instructors. These opportunities establish lines of communication, collect data that improves instruction and fosters accreditation, and creates a learning community focused on methods of college instruction, rigor of content, and student-learning.