Advanced Coursework

At Cotter Schools, we provide curriculum for all students in an effort to best prepare them for success in their post-secondary plans and beyond. For some students, additional rigorous curriculum is desired and appropriate. The programs listed below provide the opportunity for earning college credits while still in high school.

Earning College Credits

Students may take advanced courses through a variety of programs that, upon successful completion, have the potential to earn college credit.

Advanced Placement (AP) Courses

These rigorous courses are held at Cotter Schools, and students prepare for the AP exams in May. Depending on the student’s score and the college or university that the student attends, college placement or credits may be awarded.

  • AP U.S. History
  • AP Calculus AB
  • AP Calculus BC
  • AP Literature and Composition
  • AP Language and Composition
  • AP Physics

Students have the opportunity to take additional AP exams as well.

Program for Advanced College Credit (PACC)

Students who enroll in these courses are concurrently enrolled in St. Mary’s University. The courses are held at Cotter and taught by Cotter instructors, and if students earn a C or better in the class, they receive college credit from St. Mary’s University at a significantly discounted price per credit. Upon completing these requirements, students would have a St. Mary’s University transcript showing these credits.

  • AP Literature and Composition - 3 credits
  • Political Science - 3 credits
  • AP U.S. History - 3 credits per semester (or 6 credits for the year)
  • AP Calculus AB - 4 credits
  • AP Calculus BC - 4 credits
  • Honors Human Biology - 4 credits

Project Lead the Way (PLTW)

These courses are taught by PLTW certified instructors at Cotter. Students who successfully complete the course with an 80% or better, and earn a score of 4 or higher on the PLTW end of course assessment can receive college credits from St. Cloud State University among other universities. (Currently, $100 for 3 credits)

  • Introduction to Engineering and Design

Post Secondary Education Option (PSEO)

This program is available to juniors and seniors who meet the eligibility requirements, which are specific to each college. PSEO courses may only be taken on a part-time basis since students must take all of their required courses at Cotter. Students will not receive credit twice for the same course material repeated at the college level. PSEO applications for the fall semester at Saint Mary’s University or Winona State University need to be completed before the end of January, and MN State SE Technical applications should be completed by May. Students can direct specific questions to their Academic Counselor.

Retroactive credit for world language through freshman college placement testings is also an option for some students.