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Adams State College Prison College Program

Adams State University
Correspondence Education Program
208 Edgemont Blvd., Suite 3000
Alamosa, CO 81101

719-587-7671
800-548-6679
Fax: 719-587-7974
Email: 

Population Served: Incarcerated students throughout Colorado and the United States

Program Description: Take courses and earn a degree through print-based correspondence. At Adams State University, we know how important education is to all individuals, especially for those who happen to be incarcerated. Through correspondence courses, Adams State University provides an opportunity for incarcerated students to work for college credit and towards a degree.

Quality: Adams State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, a commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools at 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, Illinois, 60604. HLC can be contacted at 800-621-7440, inquiry@hlcommission.org.

Affordability: Tuition for correspondence courses is $220 per semester hour with the same low rate of tuition for both Colorado and non-Colorado residents.

Support: Each student is assigned an advisor who is a single point of contact, available year-round by toll-free telephone or US mail.

Transferability: ASU can accept up to 90 transfer credit hours from regionally accredited institutions of Higher Education for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree and up to 45 credit hours for an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science.

Family members wishing to request information on behalf of an incarcerated student should call, email, or instruct the student to submit a letter requesting a packet of information is mailed to them. The address provided must meet facility mailing requirements. The Correspondence Education Program is not responsible for mail items which are held or rejected by the correctional facility.

How Does it Work? 

Q. How does the course completion process work?
A.

  • When you are ready to take a course, you will need to send in a course registration form with payment. Once we process your course registration, we send you a course study guide and syllabus. Books are not included in the price and must be purchased separately.
  • The course study guide and syllabus will let you know your assignments and course guidelines. Make sure to read the syllabus and general instructions prior to starting the course.
  • From there, you will work on your course and course assignments.
  • Some courses require you to take a test. When you are ready to take a test, you will send in an exam request form located in your study guide that will be filled out and signed by you and your proctor.
  • Once you have completed and submitted all your required work, you will receive a final grade for the course.
  • When your final grade has been posted in our system, you will then receive a mailed complimentary official transcript with your final grade.

Q. How long do I have to complete a course?
A. You have one full calendar year to complete a course from the date of course registration.

Q. Can I correspond and get input and feedback from my professor?
A. Yes. All professors require a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) for correspondence. How to correspond with your professor will be noted in your course syllabus and study guide.

ACT/ SAT

Q. Do I need ACT or SAT scores to take a course at Adams State University?
A. We do not require your SAT/ACT scores if you (1) have already completed a minimum of 12 credit hours of transferrable credit and/or (2) are seeking admission to the Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree programs. If you do not have a completed SAT/ACT or suitable transfer courses, you will be required to complete our English and math placement exams before you take any math or English courses as a degree-seeking student.

Courses, Registration, and Admittance

Q. How do I become admitted to Adams State and the Distance Degree Program?
A. In order to proceed with admission to our program, you will need to submit an application for admission and a hand-written explanation of crime/felony. We will also need official transcripts from all previously attended post-secondary institutions. If you do not have any previous college credit or less than 12 transferable college credits, we will need an official high school transcript or official GED score report. Failure to provide official transcripts from all previously attended colleges/universities may delay your admission or result in dismissal or rejection. The transcripts must be official and must be mailed directly from the previously attended institution to:

Adams State University
Office of Extended Studies
208 Edgemont Blvd., Suite 3000
Alamosa, CO 81101

Q. Do I have to be admitted to ASU in order to take correspondence courses?
A. No. You may take courses for any reason such as transfer to other schools, personal enrichment, or to improve your skills in a specific area. All you need to do is select the course you want to take, complete a course registration form, and provide payment in full for the specified tuition. In fact, you can simply register and pay for courses you would like to take now. Courses you take with us will be added to your degree program with ASU when and if you decide to become a degree-seeking student.

Q. Do I have to wait for a new semester or to be fully admitted at ASU in order to begin courses?
A. No. You can start courses whenever you wish. You will have one year to complete a course from the date of course registration.

Q. What are the differences between the Application for Admission to Undergraduate Distance Degree Program and the Correspondence Registration forms?
A. The Admission to Undergraduate Distance Degree Program form is only used when you want to become fully admitted into ASU as a degree-seeking student. The Correspondence Registration form is used for course registration purposes only and does not require full admission to a degree program.

Q. What options can I use to complete an Adams State degree?
A. We offer a wide range of options that include using credits from previous college work, distance learning (correspondence) courses, online courses, CLEP/DANTES, and military or civilian training.

Costs

Q. What are the costs?
A. The current cost of a print-based course is $220 per credit (courses run with the Center for Legal Studies have slightly higher tuition). A one-time matriculation fee of $100, which is assessed after you submit your first-course registration, is waived. Tuition and any fees for the ASU Distance Learning courses are listed in the catalog and on the Extended Studies web site. Most courses have basic tuition charges, but some may have additional material fees. The cost of textbooks is not included in the course tuition. Textbooks can be purchased from the ASU Bookstore or through any vendor of your choice. It is strongly advised you consult with your facility regarding book guidelines before you place your book order.

Q. Do I have to pay for the whole program at one time?
A. No. Each course is paid for separately.

Financial Aid

Q. Is financial aid available?
A. Congress removed federal financial educational aid for incarcerated individuals when the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act passed in 1994. Therefore, no federal aid in the form of Pell Grants or guaranteed loans is available to students in state or federal correctional facilities. If you are a veteran or a child of a veteran, you may be eligible for veteran’s educational benefits. Most incarcerated students utilize private sources of funding to pay for their education. This can include funding from savings, family members, supporters, Tribes, church groups, non-profit organizations, etc.

Upon release from federal or state prison, you may be eligible for federal aid. You must first complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov. In addition, you must be admitted to a degree-seeking program. Again, just remember that you cannot use or access any Pell Grant or federal student loan funds while you are incarcerated.

Course Completion

Q.How does the course completion process work?
A.

  • When you are ready to take a course, you will need to send in a course registration form with payment. Once we process your course registration, we send you a course study guide and
    syllabus. Books are not included in the price and must be purchased separately.
  • The course study guide and syllabus will let you know your assignments and course guidelines. Make sure to read the syllabus and general instructions prior to starting the course.
  • From there, you will work on your course and course assignments.
  • Some courses require you to take a test. When you are ready to take a test, you will send in an exam request form located in your study guide that will be filled out and signed by you and
    your proctor.
  • Once you have completed and submitted all your required work, you will receive a final grade for the course.
  • When your final grade has been posted in our system, you will then receive a mailed complimentary official transcript with your final grade.

Q: How long will I have to complete a course?
A: We encourage students to complete a course within the semester. However, we do understand that due to circumstances beyond their control this may not be possible for incarcerated students. These students will have up to a year from the start date of the course to complete it.

Q: What if I can’t finish my course by the end of the semester?
A: Your instructor will enter an incomplete grade [IN], and you will have up to one year from the start date of the semester to complete the course. When you complete the course, your instructor will input the final grade.

Q: What if I can’t finish my course within a year?
A: You are expected to finish your course within a year. If there are mitigating circumstances beyond your control, [Eg. transferred to a new facility, documented illness, etc.] you may request an extension. You will only be eligible for an extension if you have completed 50% or more of the course. If there are mitigating circumstances, you must contact your professor and advisor as soon as you are able.

Q: How do you request an extension?
A: You must request an extension from your professor in writing before the end of the year. You will only be eligible for an extension if you have completed 50% or more of the course. Only the professor
can grant an extension. The maximum extension time is 6 months.

Communication with my Instructor

Q. Can I correspond and get input and feedback from my professor?
A. Yes. All professors require a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) for correspondence. Postage paid envelopes are included with the course packet. How to correspond with your professor will be
noted in your course syllabus and study guide.

Q: I have access to Corrlinks, can I correspond with my instructor through this service?
A: Instructors are not required to use Corrlinks. Some instructors have access to Corrlinks, some do not. Check with your instructor to verify.

Q: I can’t get a hold of my instructor what should I do?
A: If you have not received written correspondence or feedback on assignments in a month, please contact your advisor in writing. Written correspondence MUST come from the student.

Communication with ASU

Q: Can someone else contact Adams State University on my behalf?

A: Yes. Once an Authorization to Release Student Education Record Information Form (FERPA) is received from the student.

Q: What is an Authorization to Release Student Education Record Information Form (FERPA)?
A: An Authorization to Release Student Education Record Information Form (FERPA) authorizes Adams State University to discuss your educational record with the person identified on the form. The
authorization form does not permit third parties to make changes for a student. Per Federal law, we CANNOT discuss your educational record with anyone unless we have a signed form on file. You should
try to limit this authorization to two individuals.

Q: Can I revoke an Authorization to Release Student Education Record Information Form (FERPA)?
A: Yes. You can revoke an Authorization to Release Student Education Record Information Form (FERPA) at any time. This request must come in writing from the student and be sent to the Correspondence Education Program.

Course Rotation and Availability

Q. Which courses are available each semester?
A. Courses are offered on a rotation, with specific courses offered each term. Courses that are in the greatest demand are offered every term.

Q: How does the course rotation affect my degree plan?
A: The course rotation will make course availability predictable. You will work with your advisor to determine which courses to take each semester.

Q.What if a required course is not available?
A. Your advisor will work with you to find a suitable substitute print-based course if one of your required courses in your degree program is unavailable in a print-based format when you need to take it.

Q: Will semester based scheduling affect my degree?
A: No, your degree will not be affected in any way. Any and all credits towards your degree will be applied in the same way.

Semester-based Scheduling

Q: What changes are being made?
A: All correspondence courses will now be semester based. This will include defined registration periods, and specific drop/withdraw deadlines. Courses will be offered on a rotation, ie. not every course will be offered every semester.
Q: What are the benefits of the transition to the semester based scheduling?
A: The transition will better serve the students. The semester based system will ensure the students are receiving feedback from both instructors and staff. The semester based system will enable a predictable rotation of courses. We are committed to serving the students and providing excellent Customer Service.

Q: How will the semester based system work?
A: We will operate on a semester-based system which includes two separate term start dates. Semester one will open at the start of the term and close 16 weeks later. Semester two will open 8 weeks after Semester one and close 8 weeks later. For both terms, incarcerated students may take up to one year to complete the course if needed.

Study Guides and Course Materials

Q: When will I receive my study guide/materials?
A: Once the registration is processed, which is 3-5 business days, we will send out the study guide directly to the student. All study guides are sent out via, Regular U.S. Mail. Depending on your facility, delays may occur by up to 4-6 weeks.
Q: What if I have not received my study guide within 4-6 weeks?
A: Please check with your facilities education department and mailroom to see if they have received it. If they have not, please contact the Adams State University Correspondence Education Program.

Q: If I am unable to begin my course at the beginning of the semester because I did not receive my books in a timely manner, will I be held to completing the course by the end of the semester?
A: If you do not receive your books within a month from the date that you ordered them, please contact your advisor. Your advisor will work with the bookstore and your facility to determine the cause of the delay. As an incarcerated student, you have up to one year to complete the course.

Crime Statement

Q.Why do I have to write a crime statement?
A.We are required by law to obtain this information only if you wish to become admitted as a degree-seeking student to ASU. You will include a brief statement regarding your felony conviction as requested on your application form. You should know, your statement in no way will hurt or impact your academic offerings and academic career through the Distance DegreeCorrespondence Education Program. We do not need this information if you do not wish to be admitted as a degree-seeking student.

Computer

Q. Can I earn an ASU degree without coming to campus and without the use of a computer and the internet?
A.Yes. Numerous degrees are available via print-based correspondence: Associate of Arts, Associate of Science, Associate of Arts- Business emphasis, Associate of Science- Business emphasis, Bachelor of Arts- Business Administration, Bachelor of Science- Business Administration (emphasis areas: General Business, Legal Studies, Small Business Management or Management), Bachelor of Arts- Sociology (emphasis areas:
Social Welfare or Criminology), Bachelor of Arts- English/Liberal Arts, Bachelor of Arts- Interdisciplinary Studies, Bachelor of Arts- Government, and Bachelor of Arts- History. ASU has a long history of offering print-based correspondence courses to incarcerated individuals throughout the United States. Therefore, we completely understand the restrictions and challenges you currently face.

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