Course Book and 4-Year Plans

The course book is linked here: 2019-2020 Course Book

2020-2021 Course Book

Our 4-year plan document is linked here: Four Year Plan

Benton Community High School has a variety of course offerings for our students. Students register for classes for the upcoming year during January. Counselors use group meetings and presentations to provide information to students regarding class selection and the registration process. Individuals may also schedule an appointment with either counselor for individual assistance. Parents are also encouraged to call with questions regarding course selection or graduation progress.

Regents Admissions Index (RAI)

Students from Iowa high schools planning to begin their studies in fall 2009 or later must have a Regent Admission Index score of at least 245 and take the minimum number of required courses to qualify for automatic admission to Iowa State University, the University of Northern Iowa, and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at The University of Iowa. Students who achieve a score less than 245 will be considered for admission on an individual basis.

The index combines four factors that strongly predict success at regent universities: ACT or SAT test score, high school rank, high school cumulative grade-point average, and the number of completed high school core courses. 

Please plan your courses carefully so that you are meeting the requirements of the RAI.  You can access an RAI calculator here:

We have provided several documents that may be useful to parents and students. Click on the document below to view.

Course and Registration FAQ

Q- What is an elective?

A- An elective is a course a student elects to take. Elective credit is given to any course that does not first meet another graduation requirement. Elective credit is also given to courses that would meet another graduation requirement if that requirement was not already fulfilled (i.e. a 7 and 8th block of math would be an elective).

Q- How should a student choose an elective?

A- Students should choose an elective based upon 3 criteria: interest, career exploration, and career preparation.

Q- What are cluster credits?

A- Cluster credits are fulfilled by taking classes within 3 different categories; technology, personal/social development, and school-to-work. These course offerings provide students with the opportunity to gain skills in areas that employers look for in qualified candidates. Students may choose classes from any or all of the 3 categories. These credits may be fulfilled during any academic year.

Q- Does my student need to take Computer Tech?

A- Yes, Computer Tech is a graduation requirement. This course offers the student an overview of several technology applications commonly used in post-high school education and work. Some students may satisfy this requirement by taking Keyboard Basics; however, this class is reserved for those students who need to improve their typing skills. Keyboard Basics covers similar content to the 7th and 8th grade Technology exploratory.

Q-Do I have to take PE each year?

A- Yes, a PE class is required for each academic year. Any waivers must be approved by administration.

Q- What are PSEO classes?

A- PSEO classes are college level classes taken by high school students. These classes can occur at the high school site, via the web or ICN, or on a college campus. Students who take PSEO classes receive dual credit (high school credit and college credit). Many times the college credit will transfer to another institution. Students who elect this option may be required to meet certain prerequisites or admission criteria.

Q- Is the PSEO program the same as AP (Advanced Placement)?

A- No, Advanced Placement (AP) is a program that enables students to receive instruction in college-level work during high school. Credit may be granted by earning a qualifiying score on an AP test. AP offers coursework in 22 subject areas. Individual schools provide credit or placement in higher level courses according to their individual standards.

The PSEO program allows students to directly enroll in courses offered at a college setting. These courses are the same courses taken by students enrolled at that particular college. These courses result in an automatic college transcript and college credit at the institution in which the class was taken. It also may provide an opportunity for the student to transfer that credit to another institution.

Q- How do I earn college credit while in high school?

A- College credit is earned in high school in a variety of ways. They most common way is to take a college course under the PSEO act. This act allows juniors and seniors (or freshman and sophomores designated as Talented and Gifted) to take college courses at a local institution. Benton offers several options within their building. Other methods, such as online, ICN, and on campus courses, are also available. Students should visit with the counselor to assess their options.