Academic Standards

College and Career Readiness

  • In today’s knowledge-based, global economy, postsecondary education is increasingly becoming a necessity. All North Carolina students should graduate from high school ready for demands of a chosen career or college pathway to a career. A consistent and shared understanding of what it means to be career and college ready allows all stakeholders to work together towards statewide goals for student success. 
    With this in mind, the NC Ready for Success Steering Committee, comprised of leaders from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, the North Carolina Community College System, the University of North Carolina System, and the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities, began meeting in the summer of 2012 with the goal of strengthening alignment among sectors to facilitate student preparation for postsecondary success. In the fall of 2012, these cross-sector leaders began developing a career and college readiness definition. In the months that followed, a number of K-12 and higher education stakeholders contributed to the development of the definition. The definition was completed in December 2014 and has been endorsed by The State Board of Education (January 8, 2015), the University of North Carolina Board of Governors (February 27, 2015), and the State Board of Community Colleges (April 17, 2015).
    College and Career Readiness Defined
    In North Carolina, students are considered career and college ready when they have the knowledge and academic preparation needed to enroll and succeed, without the need for remediation, in introductory college credit-bearing courses in English language arts and mathematics within an associate or baccalaureate degree program. These same attributes and levels of achievement are needed for entry into and success in postsecondary workforce education, the military, or directly into a job that offers gainful employment and career advancement.