Credit vs. Non-Credit

What's the difference?

Community colleges like Wor-Wic offer many different types of education to meet student needs. We offer credit degrees and certificates leading to employment, and many of these transfer to a four-year college or university so you can complete your bachelor’s degree. We also offer short-term, non-credit courses that get you the skills and knowledge you need to get a job. Many of these courses lead to a license or certification.

There’s lots to consider when thinking about what type of education is best for you. The chart below gives you a little more information on the differences between credit and non-credit. If you have questions, our admissions team is ready to help! Send an email to or call 410-334-2895.

Question Credit Non-Credit More Information
Can I complete quickly? No Yes

A degree will generally take you at least two years if you attend full time. Many non-credit courses that lead to a certification can be completed in less than six months, and some non-credit courses might only meet for a couple of sessions.

Can I earn a college degree? Yes No

All of our credit programs offer a degree, and some also offer certificate options that take less time to complete. Non-credit courses do not lead to a degree, but some lead to a license or certification.

Will my courses transfer? Yes No

The vast majority of our credit courses transfer to a four-year college or university, but you need to check with the institution you plan to attend. Non-credit courses do not transfer to other institutions.

Can I receive federal financial aid (Pell grants)? Yes No

Students who enroll in credit programs can apply for federal financial aid. Federal financial aid is not available for students enrolled in non-credit courses.

Can I receive a scholarship or other types of financial assistance? Yes Yes

We offer many scholarships for students enrolled in credit programs, and financial assistance is available for some non-credit courses. Visit Pay for College for more information.

Can I attend for free? Yes Yes

There are several free college programs that cover tuition and fees for recent high school graduates or GED completers to get a credit degree or certificate. Select non-credit courses are eligible for tuition assistance.

Can I use my veterans benefits? Yes Yes

All of our credit programs and many of our non-credit courses are eligible for veterans benefits. Visit our veterans services page for more information

Do you offer a payment plan? Yes Yes

Payment plans are available for students taking credit courses. Some non-credit classes are also eligible for a deferred tuition payment plan. 

Can I take courses online? Yes Yes

Online credit and non-credit courses are available.

Can I register online? Yes Yes

Online registration is available for credit and non-credit courses. New credit students and students who register for some non-credit courses are required to visit the campus to complete certain requirements before they can register online. 

When making a decision about your education, think about what you really want to do, what your future career plans are and what other things you have going on in your life. A good place to start before you make a decision is career services, and as always, we’re here to help you figure out what type of education is best for you.

Contact Us Admissions 410-334-2895