North Central State College North Central State College

Adult Learning – Frequently Asked Question

Fees & Payment Options

  • We do everything we can to help you succeed, so we provide support for every step in your journey. Each student has access to advisors and other “go-to” people, including enrollment specialists, financial aid staff, success coaches, academic liaisons, tutors, career coordinators, and many others in offices and departments throughout campus.

  • Yes. For those who need help with basic needs like food, clothing, housing, transportation, and an emotional crisis, we have on-campus resources like a food pantry, childcare services, counseling services, and transportation subsidies. We also provide referrals to off-campus community services that can help you through a job loss or layoff, a reduction in income, a housing crisis, and emergency repairs for your car. Contact the Student Success Center: 419-755-4764.

My Success

  • As an adult learner, you are bringing a range of skills from employment and life experiences that will be to your advantage. Adult learners often have valuable time-management skills, organizational skills, improved communication, and leadership. Adjusting to the college culture and classroom interactions might take a little time, but you are likely bringing a solid foundation of social and learning skills that will help make your transition smooth.

  • Yes. You will meet with a Success Coach after you apply for admission to NC State. We encourage you to develop a relationship with a Success Coach as soon as possible. Your Success Coach is located in the Student Success Center. He or she helps you develop a structure for your first experiences at NC State that will build your momentum of success.

    Also, the Retention Specialist will provide additional personalized support unique to you as an adult learner.

  • Yes. The Child Development Center is located on campus and provides care for children ages six weeks to six years. Contact the Center for more information about rates, hours, and programs: 419-755-5600.

  • Yes. NC State is a military-friendly college. Contact our Veteran & Service Member Affairs Contact Person Shane Smith: 419-755-4730.

Transfer Credits

  • Absolutely! We welcome students who want to transfer college credits. Contact the Student Records Office: 419-755-4857.

  • NC State is a military-friendly college. We will evaluate your military experience for college credit. If you have specific questions, you can contact our Veteran & Service Member Affairs Contact Person Shane Smith: (419) 755-4730.

  • There’s a good chance that your previous work experiences may count as college credit. If so, this will reduce the cost of your college degree, because it will reduce the number of courses you will need to register for and complete. An NC State Enrollment Advisor will coach you through the FastPath Ohio online tool. This Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) helps us determine if your life experiences will count for college credits.

  • Yes. We must receive official transcripts in a sealed envelope from all colleges or universities where you began or completed college-level work. You may have the transcripts sent to you or directly to us. If the transcripts are sent to you, do not open the envelope. Bring the sealed, post-marked envelope to us. We are required to open it ourselves. For more information, contact the Student Records Office at 419-755-4857.

  • To be considered full time for a given semester, students must enroll in and complete 12 or more credit hours of classes. Part-time students enroll in and complete 11 or fewer credit hours.

  • The decision is completely up to you. What will fit your schedule of family and work responsibilities? Here’s a general time-commitment guideline to consider: for every hour of a class, expect to commit 2 hours of work each week outside of class—reading, writing, doing research and other homework and class projects. If you are taking classes and working full time, talk to your advisor about programs that we have to support you.

Financial Aid

  • We sure do! In fact, NC State makes financial aid available to 78 percent of its students. We strive to make a degree as affordable as possible for every adult learner. We offer a variety of financial aid options. Examples include the following:

    • Grants
    • Scholarships
    • Work-Study
    • Student Loans
    • Veterans Affairs benefits (grants and scholarships)
    • Tuition Reimbursement (from employers)
    • Tuition Reimbursement Deferral Program (a collaboration among students, their employers, and NC State Cashier’s Office that enables students to postpone payment of 75 percent of their fees each semester)

  • Yes. Apply for as many grants and scholarships as possible. Grants and scholarships reduce student debt because the money does not have to be paid back, like a loan. NC State’s Foundation provides hundreds of thousands of dollars as scholarships to students on an annual basis. Ask the Financial Aid Office about it: or 419-755-4899.

  • Contact the Financial Aid Office with any questions regarding scholarships, grants, loans, and the federal work-study program: 419-755-4899.

Payment Options

  • Compared to other colleges in Ohio, NC State has a high-value, low-cost tuition of $196.60 per credit hour. Our classes cost considerably less than the same or similar classes at four-year colleges and universities that award bachelor’s degrees.

  • Yes. Some options include the following:

    • Pay in-full
    • Payment plan
    • Credit/Debit card payments
    • Tuition Reimbursement Program (with your current employer)
    • Tuition Reimbursement Deferral Program (a collaboration among students, their employers, and NC State Cashier’s Office)

  • Questions about your bill, payment plans, and tuition deferral can be answered by the Cashier’s Office: 419-755-4722,

Registering for Classes

  • Yes. NC State has many class options to accommodate the often-hectic lives of adult learners. These options include:

    • Day classes
    • Night classes
    • Multiple locations (Mansfield, Shelby, Bucyrus)
    • Online classes
    • Hybrid classes that combine on-campus and online learning
    • Summer classes: 8-week and 10-week formats

Attending Classes

  • A large number of NC State students are adult learners who pursue many different majors. So you will fit in and find a community of like-minded people here at NC State. Faculty members describe how much they enjoy teaching classes that include adult learners who have real-world experiences, because they add depth to classroom discussions.

  • Communicate your needs. Faculty members understand that, sometimes, responsibilities like work and family obligations—and circumstances like chronic health conditions—may impact your attendance and completion of assignments. We encourage you to be proactive. Be sure to know the policies for attendance and assignments of each course you take. Reach out to your professors directly at the beginning of each semester to begin a conversation and explain your situation. This will help you and them to be prepared for your absence if or when situations arise.


  • NC State embeds tutors in many of its “gateway” classes such as English and math. A tutor can give you personalized support and help. Our goal is to help you complete your college-level English and math classes in your first year. Tutors are always available as long as you are enrolled in classes at NC State. We provide multiple tutoring options, for example:

    • In-person tutoring by appointment
    • Walk-in tutoring
    • Online tutoring
    • Classroom (embedded) tutoring in most subjects and majors (tutors collaborate with faculty and instructors)

    Contact the Tutoring Resource Center: 419-755-4812.

Earning a Degree

  • That depends on a lot of factors, including how many courses you take per semester and whether or not you have any previous credits to transfer or apply toward your degree. Everyone moves at their own pace. Your advisors will help you develop an academic plan that works best for you. Keep in mind that we do offer courses during the summer and others in an accelerated 8-week format, so consider that as an option.

  • Yes. Many adult learners complete courses that lead to professional certificates that many employers reward with an increase in pay and position. You can earn multiple certificates (called “stacked” certificates) as you work toward a two-year associate’s degree. Many of our certificate programs are eligible for financial aid.

  • Yes. Everyone moves at their own pace. Keep this in mind, though. Research shows that adult learners who take at least two courses per semester are more likely to finish their degree. So do what you can to keep your momentum. Keep checking in with your Success Coach and Academic Liaison (Advisor). They can help you adjust your academic plan, if necessary, to keep you on track for graduating.

Transferring to Another School

  • Yes. If you plan to continue your education now or in the future, an Academic Liaison and/or Faculty Advisor in the department of your major will help you plan to transfer to a four-year college or university to pursue a bachelor’s degree and maybe a master’s degree and more. Most of our courses are transferrable to other colleges and universities, which means you’ll spend less time and money as you pursue more education and career advancement. NC State offers transfer programs like the following:

    • 2+2 Program (a two-year associate’s degree at NC State that transfers to a four-year college or university for a bachelor’s degree, leaving only two years of classes to complete and pay for).
    • 3+1 Program (a two-year associate’s degree at NC State, plus one year of bachelor’s-level courses at NC State that will transfer to a four-year college or university, leaving only one year of classes to complete and pay for).

Career Planning

  • Visit the office of Career Development Services and develop a relationship with the staff. Learn how your NC State coursework and certificate programs can translate into a job promotion, job change, better pay, and new career path. Career services will help you explore job searches, career path ideas (using Career Coach assessments), internships (and other for-credit, earn-and-learn opportunities in the community), writing a resume, interviewing skills, job fairs and other events with employers and their recruiters, and much more. Contact the Career Development Services office to schedule an appointment: 419-755-4786.