Definitions of Course Levels & Credit

  • Evanston Township High School’s curriculum offers all students rigorous academic coursework that prepares them for college and career. Many courses allow students to earn regular or honors-level credit.

    Honors (H). Honors-level credit can be earned in 160 courses in all curricular areas except physical and wellness education.  This includes pathway to honors courses where all students follow a clearly articulated road map to honors credit. In pathway to honors courses, honors credit is recognized at the end of each semester based on the successful completion of the pathway. Teachers will notify students of the specific pathway to honors for each course at the beginning of the year. Students who earn honors credit receive a 0.5 increase to their grade point value.

    Advanced Placement (AP). ETHS offers 36 AP courses in the areas of career and technical education, computer science, English, fine arts, history/social science, math, science, and world languages. Advanced Placement courses are designed by the College Board to help introduce high school students to college-level academics, workload, and expectations. Most students at ETHS have their first chance to take an AP class in their junior year. After completing an AP class, students are expected to take the AP exam offered by the College Board in that subject. Visit the AP Exam page for complete details.

    Students and parents are urged to read the AP course descriptions to understand the level of work expected. In addition, they are encouraged to seek advice from teachers, counselors, and department chairs about which AP classes would be the best fit with their high school program and their college and career plans. Advanced Placement courses are marked with the symbol Ⓐ in the Course Selection Guide. For more information about AP courses, visit the ETHS Advanced Placement website or contact the ETHS AP Recruitment & Retention Manager at

    Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Engineering. The Arts & Innovation Department at ETHS offers six (6) nationally recognized Project Lead the Way (PLTW) engineering courses. These rigorous courses use a curriculum developed and maintained by a consortium of leading engineering universities and the private sector to introduce high school students to the many facets of engineering. PLTW courses integrate national academic and technical learning standards and Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) principles to solve real-world problems in a collaborative classroom setting. As part of this standardized curriculum, students take an end of course exam to assess their understanding/learning. PLTW affiliated colleges may accept high scores on this exam and award credit for the course taken in high school. Students who successfully complete a PLTW course will receive a 1.0 increase to their grade point value. PLTW courses are marked with the symbol Ⓟ in the Course Selection Guide. For more information about PLTW courses, visit the ETHS Pre-Engineering website or contact the Arts & Innovation Department Chair.

    NCAA Eligibility Courses. The NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) approves certain courses for establishing the initial eligibility of student-athletes. Only courses marked with the symbol Ⓝ are NCAA Division I or II approved core courses.

    Northwestern University College Credit. Students who have exhausted all of the available accelerated courses in an academic area at ETHS may take advanced courses for college credit at Northwestern University through a special scholarship program. Eligible students must have an overall 3.0 GPA. Students must obtain permission from the Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction for Northwestern Scholarship courses. For more information, students and parents should contact the Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction in the winter when selecting courses.

    Dual Credit. Students will be enrolled in both the ETHS class and the equivalent Oakton College course and can receive college credit.  Through articulation agreements with Oakton, students will enroll with the college and after successfully passing the ETHS class, will receive college credit for the course. Dual credit is currently offered in certain courses in the Arts & Innovation, Science, and Mathematics Departments. Contact the Post-Secondary Counselor at 847-424-7163 for more information. View the Oakton Early College website to discover courses that serve as Dual Credit, Advanced Placement (AP) Credit, and Concurrent Enrollment.

    Transfer Credit. Grade-level placement for transfer students is determined by the student’s age and credits earned, as well as courses enrolled as indicated on an official transcript from the student’s former public or nonpublic school. Completed home-school courses for home-school students will be considered in ETHS course planning and post-secondary planning, but cannot be applied as transfer credits on the ETHS transcript, as ETHS graduation requirements, nor toward an ETHS diploma. Students who transfer to ETHS and enroll in the same or a similar course will earn credit and receive a grade based on the transfer grade and the grade earned for the work completed after the date enrolled at ETHS. Students who transfer to ETHS and enroll in a new course not taken at the transferring school will earn a credit and grade provided the student enrolls in the course before the beginning of the 2nd or 4th quarter. Students who enroll after the beginning of the 2nd or 4th quarter will receive a late-entrant grade (LA, LB, etc.). Students may receive credit for a late-entrant grade, upon the approval of the department chair. To qualify for an ETHS diploma, students who transfer to ETHS must attend high school full time for at least the final semester before graduation. Students who are not in full time attendance for the final semester must apply to the transferring school to receive a diploma. Official and unofficial records for students transferring out of ETHS will not be sent until all fees and obligations are cleared.