A common misconception about community colleges is that they hurt your chances of getting into a competitive four-year school.
#FactCheck: Going to a community college can help you build a strong transfer portfolio for a fraction of the cost. Here is what you need to know:
First Two Years At 40% The Cost
We all know that community college is less expensive than four-year colleges but the savings are substantial. You can get the first two years of nearly any bachelor’s degree at a community college, and on average, community college tuition is 40% of public four-year college tuition. Give yourself a scholarship by going to community college!
You Will Be Super-Prepared
Studies show that community college transfers do just as well as or better than native four-year college and university students. That’s right – your probability of success towards a four-year degree is unchanged by going to a community college, and most of the time, it is even better.
Same Standards of Quality
Think community colleges have lower standards of quality? Think again. Community colleges are accredited by the exact same regional accreditation agencies as four-year colleges and universities. This is how and why your credits transfer to four-year colleges—same quality.
The majority of four-year colleges and universities offer merit-based scholarships to high-achieving community college students, and you don’t have to be fresh out of high school to get one—you just need good grades. Students of all ages and backgrounds have used community college to build or rebuild themselves. Want more? Putting in the extra effort to be a student leader and doing service activities does a lot of good in your community AND it can help you get even more scholarships—putting you on track to a debt-free bachelor's degree.
Attending community college can be a great way to save money before you transfer to a four-year school. In the past, articulation agreements, formal agreements between two-year and four-year schools that guarantee credit transfers, were rare, but that has changed.
Now, every state has some form of articulation agreement or transfer program in place, making attending community college the best option to get the first two years of your bachelor’s degree for a fraction of the price.
Credit transfer is not the only thing to look out for when transferring to a four-year university. Most four-year colleges and universities offer merit-based scholarships to high-achieving community college students, and you don’t have to be fresh out of high school to get one—you just need good grades.
Participating in extracurricular activities can help you get even more scholarships by making your applications more competitive—putting you on track to a more affordable bachelor's degree. Organizations such as Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society (PTK) have agreements with four-year institutions to offer scholarships to their members.
CCsmart is powered by Phi Theta Kappa. Want to learn more about PTK? Click here.
Student Graduation Rates at Public Four-Year Institutions
Community College Transfers0%