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High School Dual Enrollment Programs: Are We Fast-Tracking Students Too Fast?

By Cecilia Speroni

Despite the popularity of dual enrollment as a strategy for preparing high school students for college, little rigorous evidence exists on its effectiveness. This NCPR working paper uses a regression discontinuity design to gauge the causal effect of dual enrollment on rates of high school graduation, college enrollment, and college completion among students who are on the margin of eligibility for dual enrollment participation.

While dual enrollment courses in general are found to have no significant effects, participation in a dual enrollment algebra course is found to have significant positive effects on rates of college enrollment and completion.