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Running Start at SFCC

College Classes

Will assessment testing be required?
All students are required to take the COMPASS Test, which is administered at SFCC.

How big are the classes at SFCC?
Classes can vary in size from 15 to 80 students, with the average class size at about 30 students. This class size makes it possible for instructors to give individual attention to students who request assistance.

What will it be like to take courses at SFCC?
Once students begin attending college, they will be considered "regular" college students. The faculty will expect the same level of classroom participation and quality of work as any adult college student. And, as such, the instructors will deal with the student and not with the parents. College instructors may present a wide variety of subject matter in the classroom, using college-level instructional materials. Classroom participation is an integral part of college and most faculty require students to participate in classroom discussions. The students in the classroom can range in age from 16 to 80, so students need to be prepared for a variety of opinions.

What is different about college classes?
College classes are taught much faster than at high school. For instance, a high school class which is usually taught in one year at the high school is taught in 11 weeks at college. There is very little time for faculty to stop and review lessons for students who do not understand the material or who were absent from class. Refer to our College vs. High School Classes page or download an Adobe PDF detailed comparison between college and high school classes.

Is there a lot of homework?
College may demand an average of two hours of homework for each class hour, so a 5-credit class may have 10 hours of homework each week.

Is there an attendance policy?
The faculty may or may not take attendance. It is the student’s responsibility to be prepared each day for class and to meet all deadlines. Many faculty expect all papers to be turned in on time with no make-up possibilities.

What are the student's responsibilities?
  • The student is encouraged to see the college Running Start Coordinator and/or a college counselor prior to registering.
  • Assistance can be provided concerning courses needed to fulfill A.A. degree requirements, courses needed for the various A.A.S. degree requirements, and courses needed for possible transfer to a four-year institution.
  • Students will be expected to meet class deadlines, be prepared for class, ask questions and conduct themselves as responsible adults in accordance with the colleges’ rules of conduct.
  • If students are having difficulty or want additional information, it is their responsibility to seek out the instructor or appropriate college personnel.
  • Instructors have posted office hours when students can see them for help or discussion. Appointments can be made outside of office hours.

What if my student doesn’t want to finish the quarter?
It is the student’s responsibility to drop or withdraw by contacting the college admissions office prior to the quarterly drop/withdrawal date.

Courses and Activities

Are Technical Programs available for Running Start?
Technical programs usually fulfill only high school elective requirements. High school core requirements must be taken at the high school or after program hours. Since a program requires full-time attendance, it would be extremely difficult to complete a program and core requirements at the same time. Running Start students may access technical programs with qualifications. Many programs have waiting lists and may not be available for up to a year. Many programs are run as a block. Block programs may require attendance from 7:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Block programs can’t be taken on a part-time basis.

What are the math options?
If a Running Start student does not qualify for college-level math, they may take the math they qualify for as long as they pay full tuition. To exercise this option, the student must have high school approval, or they would be required to finish the math requirement at the high school.

Can my child participate in a school play or club?
Running Start students are eligible for support services, activities and programs available to regular college students, with the exception of varsity athletic participation. If the student is under 18 years of age, a special release form must be signed by the parent or guardian in order to participate in certain activities.

Contact Information

  • Contact your Running Start high school counselor at your student's school.
  • You may also contact Barb Hahto at SFCC:
    Phone: (509) 533-3524

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