College and Career Readiness

In today's global economy, students must be well-prepared for the demands of college and the workplace. We provide and support the development of quality resources, tools and strategies designed to assist students as they transition from middle school to high school and into an increasingly wide array of postsecondary options.

Planning for Students' Successful Transition to Postsecondary and Employment
Legislation requires all students starting in 9th grade to have a Personal Learning Plan. This plan should include academic scheduling, career exploration, career and employment-related skills, community partnerships, college access, all forms of postsecondary training, and experiential learning opportunities. This guide provides resources in all eight required areas, as well as strategies and partnerships that can help implement this directive. Access the Planning for Students’ Successful Transition to Postsecondary Education and Employment (120B.125) Toolkit below.

Ready, Set, Go MN
To support our state’s commitment to prepare all youth for postsecondary opportunities, we have developed the Ready, Set, Go website for educators, families, and students. This site provides resources for college and career readiness and accelerated course options in Minnesota, including:

  • Tools for students to be successful in high school and prepare them for their postsecondary experiences.
  • Information for families on how to access these opportunities.
  • An interactive curriculum resource area for educators to support these goals.

Shaping Your Future: Why Minnesota Families Choose College

This collection of high-quality videos promote career and college readiness is available on the Ready, Set, Go website. Stories come from students and parents; some are available in Hmong, Somali and Spanish. Schools and others may share these videos on their websites. View the Minnesota Department of Education's YouTube page. Request a complimentary DVD.

The Minnesota Career Information System (MCIS) is a comprehensive web-based system that guides students through the career development process in order to create plans for postsecondary education and careers. Each student creates a portfolio to help keep track of the schools, occupations, assessments results, scholarships as well their personal learning plan.

Advanced Placement (AP) is a College Board program that offers Minnesota high school students the opportunity to take rigorous, college-level courses and earn college credit while in high school. The content in AP courses is structured like college courses. Students who complete an AP course and take the end-of-course examination may qualify for college credit from postsecondary institutions, provided their score meets the institution’s credit policy. These courses help prepare students for further education and many colleges look favorably on transcripts that include AP coursework.

College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)
The College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) is a College Board program that allows students to accelerate their education by earning college credit by taking a computer-based test of their knowledge. Learning can be done through general academic instruction, independent study, extracurricular work or volunteerism. The time and money saved can be significant. Check with the postsecondary institution of your choice for their most recent CLEP credit policy. Visit the College Board website for more information.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Training
IB Training is now available for school teams who wish to learn how to plan and implement an IB program. Access the agency calendar to search for IB training dates and locations.