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Early College Credit Program

The Early College Credit Program (ECCP) at Wisconsin Lutheran College offers public high school students, who meet certain requirements, the opportunity to take college level courses.

  • The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) provides the funds for the Early College Credit Program (ECCP). Based on individual high school requirements, courses may count toward high school graduation and/or college credit.

    Students must be approved by their school district and by Wisconsin Lutheran College to enroll in courses. To apply for the Early College Credit Program, students must complete the following checklist:

    Application Checklist

    1. Complete the WLC Application for Special Admission
    2. Complete the Early College Credit Program Participation Form and submit it to your high school counselor
    3. Submit your high school transcripts to WLC
    4. Submit your ACT/SAT score (if taken) to WLC

    WLC's Early College Credit Program Contact:

    Rachel Vonderheide
    Senior Admissions Counselor

    Wisconsin DPI Early College Credit Program (ECCP) Website


    What is the Early College Credit Program?

    The program is an opportunity for students in grades 9-12 enrolled in a Wisconsin public or private high school to attend a Wisconsin postsecondary institution for the purpose of taking one or more courses for high school and/or college credit.

    How does a student access the Early College Credit Program?

    Students interested in participating in the program should talk with staff at their high school and the postsecondary institution they plan to attend and decide on an appropriate course or courses. High school counselors are typically a good place to start.

    Once a student has decided on the course or courses for which he or she wants to apply, the student needs to notify the school board of their school district with the titles of the courses in which they intend to enroll, the number of credits of each course, and specify whether they will be taking the course(s) for high school or postsecondary credit. The notification needs to be submitted to the district by March 1 when applying for fall semester classes and October 1 when applying for spring semester classes.

    Can students enroll in an ECCP course for summer 2018, if it starts after July 1?

    No, the ECCP effectively begins in the fall semester of the 2018-19 school year.

    May a school district limit the total number of credits a student takes through the ECCP?

    Yes, if a school district has a board policy in place, the school district may limit a student to 18 college credits over the period a student is eligible for ECCP {§118.55(7t)(a), Wis. Stats.}. The school district is not authorized to set the number of credits lower than 18; however, the district may set the number of credits higher or not set a limit.

    Can the school district limit the number of college credits per semester?

    No. The school district does not have authority to limit the number of credits or courses a student takes through ECCP each semester. 

    Can the college or university limit the number of college credits per semester?

    While the college or university cannot establish a specific limit on the number of credits or courses a student takes each semester, they can apply course enrollment and management criteria and practices that may have the effect of limiting courses and credits. In addition, the post-secondary institution may deny enrollment of ECCP students in courses that do not have space available

    Are home schooled students eligible to participate in the ECCP?

    No. The ECCP is available to any public and private school pupil enrolled in high school.  However, Wisconsin Lutheran College provides a similar program, Young Scholars, that will enable a home schooled student to take courses at WLC at the same reduced rate that the school district pays.

    Can open enrollment students participate in the ECCP?

    Yes. Fulltime open enrollment students can participate in the ECCP. Application deadlines required for the two programs might make it impossible for a full time open enrollment student to participate in ECCP during the first semester at their nonresident school.

    Can a ECCP student take a course that is offered by a postsecondary institution outside of Wisconsin?

    No, the statute specifically states that the program is available for programs located in the state (Wisconsin). Eligible institutions include the the University of Wisconsin System, Wisconsin private nonprofit institutions, and Wisconsin tribally controlled colleges.