College Lingo for College Parents: Talk the Talk – Part 7

It’s been a while since we posted some of the lingo for you to learn.  Please be sure to check out our earlier lists in Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, and Part 6.  Here are a few more terms that may help you navigate the college experience.

Every profession, activity, or area of interest has its own jargon or set of specialized vocabulary.  College is no different.  As a college parent, you may be surprised at how quickly your college student will pick up the appropriate lingo.

If your college student slips into “college-speak” and you don’t understand what she is talking about – ask!  Please remember that there may be some variation in the use of these terms at various institutions.

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Is Your Student a Full-Time Student ?

It is possible that your college student may be a part-time student – taking only one or two classes per term while working or doing something else.  There are many students who might benefit from entering college slowly – for either academic or financial reasons.  This is a decision that you and your student may need to make together.

However, most “traditional” college students are categorized as full-time students. This generally means that your student is registered for a minimum of 12 credit hours per traditional semester and often means that you are charged a standard tuition fee rather than a per-credit fee.  Often, this standard semester fee allows students to register for a range of credits:  full-time students must be registered for a minimum of 12 credits, but may take up to 18 or 19 credits at no additional charge.  There may be variations at institutions, depending on whether the school calculates units, credit hours, or clock hours.

Full-time status is important for several reasons.  Full time status is required for many forms of federal financial aid, for residency on campus at many institutions, for varsity athletic eligibility, and sometimes for health insurance, car insurance benefits, or tax deductions.

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