Students

What’s it all about?

15 to Finish is a campaign to encourage Kentucky college students to graduate on time by completing at least 15 credits a semester, or 30 a year.

Why is this important?

  • You’ll save money, since taking 15 credits is the same cost as taking 12 credits at most of Kentucky’s state universities. You’re getting 3 credits for FREE!
  • You’re more likely to graduate on time and get out into the workforce sooner.
  • You are more likely to get good grades.
  • You will maximize your KEES scholarship. You have access for eight semesters, within five years of enrollment.
  • You will avoid the cost of an extra year, which could cost you between four and eight thousand dollars!

OK, so now what?

Be college ready.

Buckle down in high school and make sure you are college ready before you graduate. It avoids the extra cost and time spent taking developmental education courses.

Earn college credit in high school.

If you’re still in high school, investigate opportunities to earn college credit at your school, whether it’s AP, early/middle college, dual credit or dual enrollment. There are lots of ways you can earn general education credit before you even get to college!

Knock out the core courses early.

Take freshman English and math courses as part of your first year of college. Students who take 15 credits per semester and complete their English and math courses early are more likely to graduate on time.

Finish college faster.

Earning a minimum of 15 credits per semester may not be easy, but it will give you the advantage of graduating on time and getting ahead. Know the courses you need to graduate, and meet with your advisor to map out a plan to earn your degree on time.

Prioritize your time.

If it’s possible, cut back on work hours so you can earn 15 credits per semester to finish faster. The payoff in your salary as a college graduate and the additional career options will be worth it.

If you do need to work longer hours, consider an on-campus job while taking 15 or more credits. You’ll have more flexibility in your schedule and a shorter commute time than if you work off campus.

Make sure the courses you take apply toward your degree program.

That course in "Underwater Basket Weaving" might look intriguing, but remember every extra elective course you take is competing against the time you have to finish your degree’s required coursework. Before registering each semester, talk to your academic advisor and ensure that the courses you take will count toward completing your major.

Remember the alternatives to spring and fall courses.

Take summer classes or virtual term online courses. Even if you can’t take 15 credits a semester during the traditional school year, these courses will help you stay on track!

Ask for help.

On campus, you’re surrounded with people and resources with the purpose of helping you get your degree. Ask for help from professors, teaching assistants, academic advisors and even fellow students when you need it.

Most bachelor’s degrees are 120 credits:


And most associate degrees are 60:

You have to take at least 30 credits a year to graduate on time!

You can do it!

Did you know on average that college students only spend 16% of their week either attending class or studying? You’ve got more time than you think!
If you budget your time wisely, 15 credits a semester will be a snap!


Source: Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses, by Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa. 2010.

Sponsored by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education


15 to Finish Kentucky is based off 15 to Finish, a campaign of the University of Hawai’i's Graduation Initiative.