FAQ - Accelerated Courses

Q. What are the admission requirements for the programs?
A. There are no special admission requirements to the programs.  A student must be admitted to the college before enrolling in the courses.  If a student signs up for the accelerated cohort program, they will be assured of a seat in the courses for that cohort group if they register during the early registration period and pay before the purge date.  A seat is not guaranteed if you do not meet the early registration and payment guidelines.  A student may change to a different cohort on a space available basis.

Q. When do the courses begin during the semester?

A. The short term, accelerated courses begin at different intervals within the traditional semester. See the schedule or Hybrid Important Dates for more information on the start dates. One key element is if you are registered for a 5-week course, you MUST begin your online work one week prior to the first on-ground meeting. Before the first class meeting, you should have completed a reading assignment, possible quizzes, discussion postings, and other assignments as determined by your instructor. Starting your work on time, which is one week prior to the on-ground meeting, is critical for your success and satisfaction in the course.

Q. How do I register for the courses?
A. A student registers for the accelerated hybrid course the same as one registers for any other Columbia State course.  The courses are open to all students who meet prerequisite and enrollment guidelines.  As a member of the cohort, if you register during priority registration time and follow early payment guidelines, the courses will not be closed to you.

Q. What degree will I obtain?

A. The student will obtain an Associate of Applied Science Degree.

Q. How many courses does the program require?
A. The program requires 15 business or technical courses and 5 general education courses.

Q. How many classes will I take at one time?

A. Students will take one business/technical course at a time. Some courses will meet one night a week for five weeks, others will meet one night per week for 7 weeks, and some meet one night per week for the 15 week traditional semester schedule. Students will complete one, two, or three business/technical courses during one semester. In addition, students may also take courses to complete the general education requirements necessary for the degree.  See the course calendar for your program and campus to see how the courses will be offered.

Q. How many hours a week can I expect to spend on a class?
A. The accelerated business/technical courses are taught in a hybrid format. Each class will meet four hours a week (6-10 p.m.) for five weeks or 3 hours per week (6:00-9:00 p.m.) for 7 weeks. In addition, students can expect to spend a minimum of six hours outside of class each week working online, reading the text and other materials, and completing class projects.

Q. What if I have to miss a class in an accelerated course?
A. Students are required to attend all the scheduled classes. If a student misses more than one class in a five or seven week course, he/she will fail the course.

Q. How long will it take to complete the program?
A. It will take approximately 18 months (5 semesters) to complete the accelerated business courses. The business information technology program will take 7 semesters (approximately 2 years) for the computer systems option and 6 semesters (approximately 21 months) for the office systems option. Students are responsible for enrolling in and completing the general education requirements before they can graduate. The programs run all year, including summers.

Q. How much does it cost?
A. The accelerated program costs are the same as taking any other traditional college course. You are responsible for tuition, fees, and books.  The current tuition and fees may be found on the main Columbia State webpage.

Q. Is financial aid available for these programs?
A. The programs are eligible for financial aid.

Q. Will this degree transfer to a university?
A. The degrees are not designed for general transfer purposes. However, some universities will accept the courses for preparation to enter their bachelor degree programs. It is up to the receiving institution to make the final determination.

Q. Are the Business Management and the Business Information Technology programs available in a format that is not accelerated?
A. Yes. The programs may also be completed by taking the courses in a traditional 15 week format during the day on the Columbia campus.  A few of the courses will also be available at each campus in the traditional 15 week format in the day and evening.

Q. When is the next start date?
A. Business Management
  • Fall semesters: Lawrence County and Lewisburg
  • Spring Semesters: Columbia and Williamson County
  • Clifton has varying start dates.
A. Business Information Technology
  • Fall semesters: Lewisburg, Lawrence County
  • Spring semesters: Columbia and Williamson County
  • Clifton has varying start dates.

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