Skip to body

Running Start

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  Can a student attend some classes at my high school while participating in Running Start?

Yes. Students may choose to either enroll full time or part time.

Q:  Will all classes and grades from CWU end up on my high school transcript?

Yes. A copy of the student's quarterly grades will be sent to the high school to be recorded on the student's high school transcript.

Q:  Are there limits to the Running Start courses I can access?

Yes. There is a limit to the number of courses/credits in which a student can enroll.

  • If the student attends CWU On-Campus full-time, they are limited to 15 credits.
  • If part-time CWU On-Campus, then the number of courses/credits is determined on a case-by-case basis depending on the number of courses being taken at the high school in combination with the university courses.
  • In-the-High-School student course limits are determined by agreement between CWU and the local high school’s administration regarding appropriate allocation of Running Start state funding.

Q: I want to take more than my “eligible” amount of Running Start courses, can I?

Yes. Students who take more than the “eligible” amount of credits will pay at the per credit rate for every credit over the allowed amount.

Q:  Who determines which CWU courses will fulfill my high school graduation requirements?

Each school district determines equivalencies for their students. High schools are the final authority in granting their diploma, so it is vital to maintain contact with the high school counselor when choosing Running Start courses.

Q:  When applying to colleges after participating in Running Start, should I apply as a transfer student?

No. Students should still apply as a regular incoming freshman to be eligible for freshman financial aid and scholarships.

Q:  What expenses are associated with participation in Running Start On-Campus?

Typically**, the cost of books, supplies, consumable fees (lab, technology, etc.) and transportation to/from campus are the student’s responsibility.  The Running Start state funding addresses most of the student’s tuition expenses.

Q:  Can Running Start students participate in university campus activities, such as student government, organizations, and clubs?

Yes. With the exception of NCAA sports, Running Start On-Campus students may participate in activities on the university campus.  However there may be additional fees or costs not covered by Running Start for some on campus activities.

Q: Are Running Start courses and credits transferrable to any other colleges besides CWU?

Yes and Maybe.  CWU Running Start courses are awarded CWU transcripted credits and generally are transferable to other Washington state public colleges and universities as well as those in the regional accreditation network of Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).  

However, all colleges and universities retain authority to determine how they will accept the credits toward general education requirements, electives or even program specific requirements. Very often admission and advising personnel can respond to how their institution would address use of CWU credits acquired under the Running Start program.

Q: Are Running Start courses available in an “online” format?

Yes, but.  Currently they are available for some courses for Running Start On-Campus participants.  There are no options currently available for the Running Start In-the-High-School option.  CWU is exploring further Running Start participation with several of Washington’s “online” high schools. Stay tuned.

Q: Are Running Start courses available for “home schooled” students?

Yes. Home schooled students are required to submit SAT, ACT or ACT Residual test scores for admission consideration. Contact our office our further information.

Q: Any other key items to consider when taking Running Start courses?

In-the-High-School - Yes.  It is critical to carefully consider the student’s academic preparation for the courses they might take.  A “failing” grade will become part of the student’s permanent record.

On-Campus – Yes. The transition to Running Start On-Campus courses may require a greater degree of maturity (independence and socialization) than some high school students are prepared for, due to taking classes with older students, as well as commuting to/from and functioning in a university environment.


*Student participation in the CWU Running Start program “in the high school” option is contingent upon formal agreements between the school district and CWU being in place for enrollment and registration. 

**The Running Start program has special provisions for reducing certain fees, if a student is eligible under the state’s “free or reduced lunch” criteria.