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Student and Administrative Resources

For Students

The Program. College in the Schools (CIS) is a concurrent enrollment program administered by the College of Continuing Education on the Twin Cities campus of the University of Minnesota (U of M).  When enrolled in a U of M course through CIS, you are eligible to receive both high school and college credit for your work.

Compare CIS to Advanced Placement, Postsecondary Enrollment Options, and International Baccalaureate. 

Your Course. U of M courses offered through CIS are taught at your high school by exceptional instructors who have been carefully interviewed and selected. Courses are taught during the regular school day, and the content, teaching methods, and evaluations of student performance are the same as those of courses meeting on the U of M campus. A limited number of students may participate in the course for high school credit only.

Your Benefits. As a successful student in a University of Minnesota course, you will:

  • Get a jump-start on college. CIS alumni surveys have consistently shown that 90%-97% of the respondents successfully had their U of M credits recognized by other colleges and universities.   
  • Gain a competitive edge. College admissions officers look for evidence of rigorous course work in high school transcripts.
  • Enjoy more flexibility in college. Completing college requirements in high school will give you greater flexibility as a full-time college student. 
  • Learn college skills before your freshman year. The critical thinking, writing, and reading skills will prepare you for success as an admitted college student.
  • Demonstrate your learning in a variety of ways. In your University of Minnesota course,  your learning will typically be assessed through several means—examinations, papers, lab reports, discussions,  not a single high-stakes test. 
  • Reduce the cost of your college education. CIS fees are greatly reduced and, in most cases, are paid for by high schools.

What CIS Alumni Say About the Program

Are you ready?
We suggest you consider the following:

  • Academic progress: Satisfactory completion of a particular high school course can be a good indicator of success in a subsequent college course in the same field. For example, if your English 10 honors class went well, taking English 11 honors is a good next step in building a foundation for enrolling in the U of M literature and/or composition courses as a senior.
  • Course prerequisites: University of Minnesota courses have prerequisites related to GPA, junior/senior standing, class rank, and/or grades in a specific course. If you have reason to believe you can succeed in a particular course but do not meet the eligibility criteria, discuss this with the CIS teacher or high school counselor.
  • Commitment: Ask yourself if you have the time necessary to devote to the homework and study time required of a college course. Consider, perhaps with a high school advisor, any other advanced courses you may be taking. Think about non-academic demands—jobs, sports, clubs, family, and friends.
  • Advising: One trait of a successful college student is the ability to seek out and use available resources in order to make the best decision. Start now by consulting with your CIS teacher or high school counselor. 


Registration for your U of M course is separate from registration for your high school course. Your teacher will tell you when the registration window is open for the U of M section of your class and provide access to the information you need, when you need it. 

  • Student information: You will provide your own demographic information, and your teacher will provide the information needed to identify the course for which you will request registration.
  • Registration: Submission of an online e-registration request form is considered your intention to take a U of M course. You will receive immediate email verification that your request has been received and is in the queue for processing. Your teacher will verify that your request has been processed when your name appears on the U of M class roster.
  • Cancelling a class/withdrawing: To cancel, drop, or withdraw your registration, submit an e-cancellation form to the U of M immediately. If submitted within the first two weeks of class, the course will be removed from your U of M transcript; after that a “W”, or withdraw, will be recorded.
  • Unusual circumstances: A petition is required in unusual situations, such as registrations submitted after midterm or withdrawal requests made near term’s end, or for medical reasons or school transfer reasons. Petitions are signed by your teacher and reviewed by the College of Continuing Education Scholastic Committee and may or may not be approved. Petitions for withdrawal are not approved when final coursework has already been completed and/or graded.
  • Tuition: The U of M has a greatly reduced fee for its courses offered through CIS. Per Minnesota law, schools and/or school districts pay fees for public school students. Private schools may require that students pay the fees. Schools may request voluntary contributions in support of CIS. If by chance you receive an invoice for a U of M class, do not pay it. Contact CIS immediately.
  • Contact: CIS (cis@umn.edu or 612-301-1853) or CCE Enrollment Services (cceenroll@umn.edu or 612-624-6091) with any questions.


Once you submit a registration request for the U of M section of your high school class, you are a bona fide University of Minnesota student!

Take some time to familiarize yourself with the following documents. They will serve as invaluable guides through your U of M College in the Schools experience.

What You Need to Know as a U of M Student—important information to get you started
Taking a U of M Class—attendance, grading, and other class policies
Transferring Credit and Transcript Information—how to make sure you get the credit you deserve

For Teachers and Administrators

For New Teachers
Critical information about everything you need to do AFTER you are approved to teach but BEFORE you begin teaching a CIS course.

Administrative Handbook
The Administrative Handbook includes answers to common questions about CIS; information about important policies; instructions for implementing key processes; contact information for CIS staff; links to many resources, and more.

Quick Guide to Course Requirements
The Quick Guide to Course Requirements is an easy-to-use chart summarizing--course by course--all relevant University and CIS requirements. Additional basic information for each course is also presented in the chart. See the Administrative Handbook for important, additional information.

Course Management (See Policies and Procedures, page 23, in the Administrative Handbook for detailed information.)

Field Days and Professional Development (See pages 13 and 29-30 of the Administrative Handbook for details.)

Registering/Withdrawing a Student from a Course (See page 35-38 of the Administrative Handbook and watch for a registration e-mail from cceenroll@umn.edu which will contain detailed instructions.)

  • U of M Student ID Numbers
    Use the FAQ about CIS registration to provide your students with their U of M student ID number. The ID numbers will show up after the registration request has been processed and the student is officially registered in the U of M system. 

Advising (See page 23 of the Administrative Handbook for more information.)

Teaching Resources

Center for Teaching and Learning
The Center for Teaching and Learning offers workshops, self-paced tutorials, and a variety of other online materials to help teachers identify and use best practices, improve pedagogy and student assessment, and document and describe their teaching experience and philosophy. Most services and materials are free of charge.

Tutorials include:

  • Active Learning with PowerPoint
  • Designing Smart Lectures
  • Savvy Web Searching
  • Making Active Learning Work
  • Writing Your Teaching Philosophy
  • Cooperative Quizzes

Moodle Resource Sites (Except as noted below, see page 28 of the Administrative Handbook for information about getting access to a site.)

Syllabus Development

University Libraries
Teachers and enrolled students have full access to the University library system. In addition, CIS has a dedicated librarian, Kate Peterson (katep@umn.edu), who will help you develop special library resource pages for your students. Visit the College in the Schools Library Guide for more information and links to examples of course-specific pages.

For Faculty Coordinators

Faculty Coordinator Handbook
The Faculty Coordinator Handbook includes key information for CIS faculty coordinators on such topics as faculty coordinator responsibilities; how faculty coordinators support CIS teachers; and planning for teacher professional development workshops, school visits, and student field days.

Faculty Site Visits (See page 26 of the Faculty Coordinator Handbook for more information.)
The links below may open slowly. If you have trouble accessing the forms, contact Koleen Knudson in the CIS office at kknudson@umn.edu.

Field Days (See page 24 of the Faculty Coordinator Handbook for more information.)

College Access

Parent Guide
The College Readiness Consortium at the University of Minnesota works in partnership with PreK-12 educators and others to increase the number and diversity of Minnesota students who graduate from high school with the knowledge, skills, and habits for success in higher education. See their Parent's Guide to College and Career Readiness.

Videos from the Center for School Change
These videos present students speaking in different languages about why it's important to prepare for and attend college. The emphasis in each video is different, but all of the videos encourage students to take advantage of dual credit opportunities such as AP, IB, College in the Schools, and PSEO.
Jump Start Your Future (Hmong)

Jump Start Your Future (Somali)
Oportunidades de Crédito Doble para Estudiantes de High School Latinos (Spanish)

FAFSA Completion
This U.S. Department of Education web site allows school officials to track FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) submission and completion statistics at individual high schools, to help officials ensure that their students are able to determine their eligibility for federal student aid.

Paying for College
The Minnesota Office of Higher Education has an entire section of its web site devoted to information and resources students and parents can use to learn about applying for financial aid; the cost of college; available grants, scholarships, and loans; education tax benefits; and more.

CIS Information to Share with Others


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