Prescott College: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth

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Prescott College

Distance Learning Program

Prescott, Arizona


Prescott College offers flexible programs for full-time lives. The program is designed to allow students to continue working full-time in their home communities, while juggling families and careers, to complete course work and meet regularly with local mentors. Four enrollment periods each year provide students with the opportunity to launch academic programs at a time that is convenient for them. Approximately 300 students are enrolled in the Adult Degree Program (ADP), which requires a residency of six days per program. Degree-seeking students must attend a three-day New Student Orientation and a sub-sequent three-day Liberal Arts Seminar in Prescott, Arizona. Prescott College also offers a resident undergraduate program and a limited residency Master of Arts program.


Students meet core faculty members during their New Student Orientation in Prescott and subsequently maintain contact through e-mail, telephone, fax, and mail. E-mail addresses are provided to students upon request to aid in communication. Throughout each course, students typically spend 12 to 18 hours meeting with mentors.


Prescott College's Adult Degree Program provides a community-based, self-designed, independent study model for completion of the Bachelor of Arts degree and postbaccalaureate teacher certification. Because students design individualized programs, almost any degree is possible. Competencies (majors) may be broad and interdisciplinary in content or more narrowly focused to reflect particular student career goals. Popular study programs include counseling psychology/human services, education (early childhood, elementary, special, or secondary), environmental studies, management, postbaccalaureate teacher certification, and sustainable community development.

Many graduates of the counseling psychology/human services program advance their careers in various community mental health or social welfare organizations. Degree plans can be designed to encompass human services, counseling, psychology, ecopsychology, holistic health, and more. The education program is one of Prescott's most popular programs. Students are able to design an under-graduate education degree, with the option to include endorsements within each degree program.

In environmental studies, many students design programs to conserve natural resources, heal existing environmental maladies, and preserve endangered habitats. Degree plans can encom-pass agroecology, environmental stewardship, environmental philosophy, environmental education, environmental planning, and management.

The management curriculum often focuses on studying complex human factors involved in organizational decision making. Degree plans are built to specialize in unique areas, in order to fulfill each individual's career goals. Students may work toward postbacca-laureate teacher certification independently of any other program, or they may obtain teacher certification concurrently with an undergraduate or graduate degree. Students prepare for state certification in accordance with each state's certification requirements. Through a plan in the sustainable community development program study area, students are able to enact personal visions of ecologically and socially healthy communities.

Prescott College was founded in 1966 based upon the idea that learning occurs through experience as well as traditional means. It is the mission of Prescott College to educate students of diverse ages and backgrounds to understand, thrive in, and enhance the world community and environment. Prescott College seeks to develop the whole person through a unified educational experience in which the acquisition of knowledge and skills is combined with the individual's search for identity and meaning. The College, which is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, grants bachelor's and master's degrees in several fields. Prescott is located in central Arizona, surrounded by national forests and high plains, at an elevation of higher than 5,200 feet. With four mild seasons and beautiful surroundings, Prescott offers a variety of outside activities, including rock climbing, hiking, mountain biking, and nearby canoeing, rafting, and snow skiing. The city has a population of more than 35,000, including the 125-member Yavapai Apache Indian Tribe, and the county has a population of more than 150,000. Prescott is an interesting combination of old and new. There are more than 500 buildings in Prescott that are recorded on the National Register of Historic Places. Prescott is about 2 hours north of Phoenix.

Students are expected to direct their own learning using mentors as resources and guides. To facilitate community-based education, students find mentors in their home communities who agree to work with them for up to three courses. Mentors must complete a credential file, be approved and meet ADP criteria, including a minimum of a master's degree and teaching experience, preferably at the college level. Finding mentors provides students with a valuable network of professionals in their field of study. Often, these connections lead to internships, recommendations, and jobs. Mentors are paid a stipend for working with ADP students.

Enrolled students, who have worked in their field for at least five years, may develop and submit a life/work experience portfolio for evaluation of credits based on demonstration of prior college-level learning.


Prescott College created the CIBTE (Center for Indian Bilingual Teacher Education) in 1988 as an alternative teacher education program to meet the specific need for certification programs for Native American teachers on Arizona reservations.

Students are encouraged to include internships and practicums as part of their demonstration of competence. Many Prescott College ADP students are involved in community-based programs, such as Teach for America.


The Student Services Office serves all students during their time with Prescott College. Career development information is updated regularly. Guided by the Prescott College philosophy and the Association of Colleges and Research Libraries (ACRL), Prescott College provides a high level of library service, with more than 28,000 volumes, 125 microforms, 1,200 audiocassettes and videocassettes, and 408 periodical titles, all of which relate specifically to the College's program offerings. The library is computer networked with all of the regional libraries in the area, including two other college libraries and the public libraries. If students are not able to locate necessary information from any of these sources, the College librarian borrows books through the interlibrary loan system. Because the College places great emphasis on student services, the faculty and staff work diligently to assist each student in finding all information necessary for his or her pursuit of knowledge.

Additional student services include resume preparation assistance, college counseling and crisis consultation, events planned by the on-campus student activities coordinator, and access to the computer labs and tutoring facilities. E-mail addresses are provided for students upon request.


Courses completed above remedial level at other regionally accredited colleges, with a grade of C or better, are transferable. Relevant courses are applied to the competence and breadth areas during initial advising. In some cases, courses from unaccredited colleges may be documented through a conversion portfolio for which Prescott College credit may be awarded. This option is available after admission into the undergraduate program. College Level Examination Program (CLEP) scores may be submitted for evaluation.


Core faculty members at Prescott College are actively involved in each student's degree plan to provide expertise and guidance. Mentors play a large partin each student's education because the program is built on individual mentored study. Mentors must have a minimum of a master's degree in their area of expertise and teaching experience, preferably at the college level.


The focus of the admissions process is to help ensure that students who are admitted enter a program suited to their individual goals. Prospective students applying to the ADP must submit a completed application form, an educational goals essay, an auto-biographical essay, two recent letters of recommendation, official transcripts from previously attended institutions, and a $25 nonrefundable application fee. Prescott College Admissions Counselors are available to assist students during the admissions process. More information is available from the Admissions Office at the address and telephone numbers or on the Web site listed below.


In 2004–05, full-time tuition per six-month enrollment period (18 to 24 quarter credits) is $4230. Part-time tuition (including less than 18 or more than 24 quarter credits) is $235 per credit hour. Tuition is subject to increase in July each year.


Prescott College's Financial Aid Office makes every attempt to ensure that all qualified students can attend and assists them in finding financial aid, given individual eligibility. Available financial aid includes Federal Pell Grants, Prescott College grants, Federal Perkins Loans, Arizona State Student Incentive Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, work-study programs, Federal Stafford Student Loans, the Arizona Private Postsecondary Education Student Financial Assistance Program, campus employment, and scholarships.

More than 65 percent of Prescott College students receive financial aid. Prescott College uses the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine financial need. Aid is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis until all available funds are used. FAFSA forms take four to six weeks to process. Students are encouraged to file the FAFSA early and online (


Admissions Office, ADP
Prescott College
220 Grove Avenue
Prescott, Arizona 86301
Telephone: 877-350-2100 (toll-free) 888-797-4680 (toll-free, Tucson)
Fax: 928-776-5242
E-mail: [email protected]
Web site:


Students are encouraged to submit completed applications by the priority due date for the term in which they plan to enroll. After the priority due date has passed, applications are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis. There is a $25 nonrefundable application fee. Additional clarification is available from the Admissions Office at the telephone numbers listed below.

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Prescott College: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth

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