Acceleration for All? Mapping Racial Equity in Access to AP and Dual Enrollment

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Advanced Placement (AP) and dual enrollment are the largest and fastest-growing programs providing high schoolers with early access to college coursework across the country. But how equitable is access to these early college opportunities, and what factors are related to greater parity in participation?

In a new working paper based on the first-ever school-level census of dual enrollment participation from the U.S. Department of Education’s Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC), coauthors Di Xu, Sabrina Solanki, and I present a descriptive portrait of the variation across school districts and metro areas in AP and dual enrollment participation by race and ethnicity. Although we found sizable gaps in participation between White students and their Black and Hispanic peers in most districts and metro areas in the 2015–16 school year, it is striking how much variation exists within and across states, metro areas, and districts in terms of both participation overall and racial/ethnic gaps.

In the interactive map and graphic that follow, you can examine the findings for a given district, metro area, or state and compare results across and within the areas you are interested in.