About Early College

Get a head start with early college

How dual credit courses help you get ahead.

  • Taking early college courses in high school helps you finish your bachelor’s degree earlier.
  • You can complete general education requirements while in high school.
  • You can take general education courses at the same time as your regular high school classes.

Save time. 70% of students entering MSU earned college credit prior to freshman year.

Early College courses are an affordable option for starting your bachelor’s degree. You can shorten the time it takes to earn your bachelor's degree. 

Save money. Earn part of your degree through dual credit.

Courses are $70 per credit hour which is 60% less than the regular tuition rate. You can take the same course you would take on campus, but at 30% of the cost. Plus, you will not have to a parking pass or pay student fees.


Some basics about bachelor’s degrees.

A bachelor’s degree is a four-year undergraduate degree. A bachelor’s degree prepares you for a wide range of career opportunities. There are many different types of bachelor’s degrees, organized according to majors. A major describes what the majority of your classes study. Majors usually relate to the career field a student wants to enter.

After you graduate with a bachelor’s degree, you might consider attending graduate school. There, you will earn master’s or doctoral degrees. These degrees build off of the undergraduate bachelor’s degree. So, it is an important first step!

A bachelor’s degree has two parts: general education requirements and courses in the major. It takes 120 credit hours to earn a bachelor’s degree. General education courses make up about half of a bachelor’s degree. At Missouri State, that’s 44-49 credit hours. Most classes are three to five credit hours.

Ready to get started?

Find out if you’re eligible to save time and money earning college credit through Missouri State’s Early College Program.

Earn $1000 when you attend MSU

Missouri State Advantage Scholarship

When you complete 9 hours of MSU dual credit or early college credit, earning a cumulative MSU GPA of 3.25, you qualify for a $1,000 scholarship, called the Missouri State Advantage Scholarship, to apply toward your MSU degree when you register as a first-time student.