Frequently Asked Questions
Information presented here comes from several sources. When there are quotes around the information, it comes from the Minnesota Department of Education website. A link to that website is provided at the bottom of this document.
Are PSEO courses free?
YES. Tuition, fees and books are free. “Students may be charged for equipment that becomes their property when the course or program is completed.”
Can students take courses offered in the PSEO program full or part time?
Either. Students may take college level courses through the PSEO program full or part time.
Who can participate in courses in the PSEO program?
Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) is a program that allows 10th-, 11th- and 12th-grade students to earn college credit while still in high school, through enrollment in and successful completion of college-level courses. With traditional PSEO, these courses are generally offered on the campus of the postsecondary institution; some courses are offered online. Most PSEO courses are only open to high school students during their 11th- and 12th-grade year, with each participating college and university setting their own requirements for enrollment into PSEO courses and programs.
There are limitations regarding who can participate in each of these grades. Please see below for additional information on this.
What are the admission requirements that colleges use to determine who can take courses under the PSEO program?
This varies from one college and university to another. There’s no single website that lists all the admissions requirements, so you need to go to the website of any higher education institution you are considering. University of Minnesota campuses have certain requirements, Minnesota and State Colleges have others, and each private college has its own. We recommend that you check with the higher education institutions you are considering. Please do NOT assume that all colleges and universities have the same class rank, grade point average or test score requirement. They don’t.
Are 10th-grade students allowed to partake in the PSEO program?
Legislation allows public school 10th-grade students to enroll initially in one Career and Technical Education (CTE) course through PSEO. If the student earns a “C” or higher grade in this first course, she/he is eligible to take additional CTE courses while in 10th grade. In order to be eligible, a 10th-grade student must have met the proficiency level of “meets or exceeds” on the 8th-grade MCA reading test. If the student did not take the MCA, another reading assessment accepted by the enrolling postsecondary institution can be substituted. Home school students are currently allowed to take PSEO courses in 11th- and 12th-grade, but are not allowed to take a career-technical course in the 10th-grade.
Are transportation funds available to help students attend courses on college campuses via the PSEO program?
YES, if the student is from a low-income family. To qualify for reimbursement, a student must be a member of a family with an income at or below federal poverty guidelines. The dollar amounts for various family sizes. Details about eligibility are available here.
Must school districts provide information to families and students about PSEO?
YES. “By March 1 of each year, a district must provide up-to-date information on the district's website, and in materials that are distributed to parents and students, about the program—including information about enrollment requirements and the ability to earn postsecondary credit—to all pupils in grades 8, 9, 10, and 11.”
Can students take courses online through PSEO?
YES. “Many two- and four-year colleges and universities in Minnesota offer online courses and some of them offer online degrees and certificates. Through the wide array of online courses offered in Minnesota higher education, it is possible for PSEO students in our state to complete the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum requirements and/or other courses that could result in an award in addition to their high school diploma.”
Must school districts provide online PSEO students with computer and internet access?
YES. School districts must allow a PSEO student reasonable access to the high school building, computers and/or other technology resources during regular school hours to participate in PSEO courses, whether online or on campus.
How will credits under the PSEO program be accepted by colleges and universities?
Transfer and credit acceptance policies vary among public and private colleges and universities in Minnesota and other states. At the request of the Minnesota legislature, the Minnesota Office of Higher Education contacted all Minnesota public and private colleges and universities. Here is a link to the report that MOHE compiled on this issue. We strongly encourage students and/or parents to check with colleges and universities that students are considering to determine their acceptance policies.
More information is available on the Minnesota Department of Education's website.