2013-2014 College Catalog

Online Catalog

Admissions Policies and Procedures

The college offers all residents of its service area access to high-quality instruction that results in the growth of knowledge, skills, and critical thinking abilities necessary for success as a transfer student, in a career, and as a citizen. The college values the diversity of its student population. It provides a variety of educational opportunities at a reasonable cost. It incorporates multiple teaching and academic delivery strategies and student services. It calls upon students to accept responsibility for their individual growth, and maximize their use of the many resources provided for them. The college maintains an open-door policy of admission. Persons who have the ability to benefit from the college’s credit learning programs will be admitted on a space-available basis without regard to race, ethnic background, gender, age, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, political persuasion, or disability, except as prescribed by law. Additional entry requirements exist for certain programs. Howard Community College reserves the right to refuse or revoke admission to individuals who pose a present or future safety risk to students, faculty and staff as well as campus visitors.

Although admitted to the college, students may not enroll in particular programs or courses unless they have the necessary educational background. When such requirements exist, the college, within its available resources, will create programs and services to assist unqualified students in meeting the requirements. All students will be offered assistance in planning a program of learning in accordance with their academic background and goals. Each student bears the ultimate responsibility for selecting a program of learning and for utilizing programs and services available to assist them in achieving their goals.

Standard admissions procedures include:

  • completing and submitting the Application for Admission and $25 one-time, non-refundable application fee (waived under certain circumstances; see Pay for College section).
  • declaring a program of study.
  • providing proof of identification (i.e., photo I.D.); the college can request more than one form of ID, including government-issued IDs.
  • providing proof of legal residence upon request. The college may ask for proof such as government-issued documents (i.e., driver’s licenses, passports, lease, utilities bill or others). Post office box addresses are not sufficient proof of legal residence. (International citizens must provide proof of their immigration status. Original documents must be presented.) See Student Residency section for more details regarding proof of legal residence. Please note: Students who refuse or fail to provide proof of their residency can be admitted to the college, but will be assessed at the out-of-state tuition rate.

Students are required to submit high school transcripts and/or transcripts from previously attended postsecondary institutions. This information is used to advise students and does not affect standard admissions to the college.

Application fees differ for some programs. They are waived for active duty military personnel and their dependents; veterans; Freshman Focus applicants; Early Entrance applicants; and students eligible for the SAT, ACT, ACT and College Bound application fee waiver programs, which are based on financial need. Applicants to the various selective and competitive admissions clinical nursing and allied health programs pay an additional $25 application fee. See Pay for College section for more information.

Any applicant involved in previous, current or pending disciplinary action at another school or postsecondary institution or criminal action is required to indicate this information on HCC’s application for admission. Students who indicate they are involved in prior, current or pending disciplinary or criminal actions may be placed in a pending admissions status until their individual circumstances have been reviewed, further documentation is provided if requested, and conditions of admission, if any, are determined.

Additional admissions procedures are required for high school, transfer and previously dismissed students as well as for international citizens. Additional application procedures are required for those seeking admission to the Frederick K. Schoenbrodt Honors Program. Additional procedures are also required for students seeking admission to the clinical component of some health career programs. Students planning to enroll in Mid-Maryland Allied Healthcare Education Consortium Programs or in programs offered at Mount Airy College Center for Health Care Education must complete the specific admissions procedures jointly agreed to by consortium institutions (Howard Community College, Carroll Community College and Fred­erick Community ­College). Different application procedures are required for the James W. Rouse, STEM Scholars, Silas Craft Collegians, Freshman Focus and Early Entrance Programs (see Admissions section for more details).

Although admitted to the college, students may not enroll in particular courses unless they have the necessary educational background. The college has a mandatory basic skills assessment policy. Placement tests are required for most students planning to enroll in English or math courses or courses with English or math ­prerequisites. Placement test exemptions are possible (see Placement Testing section for more information).

Placement test results are generally available following the completion of the test. Testing is ongoing. Students should test soon enough to take advantage of early registration options. The Testing/Preparatory Studies Policy provides further details regarding placement assessment requirements, exemptions, and course placements (Placement Testing).

All students will be offered assistance in planning a program of learning in accordance with their academic background, skills, and goals. Students must meet with an advisor to review placement test results. Results are not generally available by phone or e-mail. Students are strongly advised to begin any required developmental course sequences immediately. Non-degree seeking students must meet with an advisor on or before completion of 12 credits to determine if they will be required to take placement exams.

The college recognizes that some students may need more intensive skill development in reading and/or writing than its English credit developmental course sequence can provide. HCC’s REACH Program is designed to serve these students and prepare them to successfully move on to the developmental English credit sequence. For more information, please visit or contact the Office of Admissions and Advising (RCF-242; ; 443-518-1200, select #3). Information is also available on the college’s website at