Resources: College and Higher Education Courses

PARC corresponds with and mails a directory of these resources to prisoners, their friends and family members. We are often the first point of contact for people to connect with prisoners' rights organizations, community organizations, prison literature and arts projects, family and visiting resources, health care and legal resources, parole and pre-release resources, and the prison abolition movement.

Download a PDF copy of the 2018 Resource Guide.

Resource Category
Adams State University Prison College Program

Adams State University has a long history of offering print-based correspondence courses to incarcerated students in all states. The following undergraduate correspondence courses are offered: Anthropology, Art, Business, Counseling, Criminal Justice, Economics, Education, English, Geology, Health Care Administration, History, History/Government, Philosophy, Human Performance & Physical Education, Mathematics, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, and Women's Studies. In addition, the following graduate degrees are available: Associate of Arts-Business emphasis, Associate of Science-Business emphasis, Bachelor of Arts-Business Administration, Bachelor of Science-Business Administration, Bachelor of Arts-Sociology, Bachelor of Arts-English/Liberal Arts, Bachelor of Arts-Interdisciplinary Studies, Bachelor of Arts-Political Science, and Bachelor of Arts-History. Write for their packet of information.

College and Higher Education Courses
Appalachian Prison Book Project

The Appalachian Prison Book Project sends free books, hosts book clubs inside prisons in our region, and is leading an effort to bring for-credit college courses into prison. They provides books to prisoners in the Appalachian region only; KY, MD, OH, TN, VA, & WV.

Educational Resources, College and Higher Education Courses, Free Books Programs
Ashland University

Ashland University serves over 1,000 incarcerated students annually with college curriculum.  The programs are offered to adult prisoners in the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, and juvenile prisoners in the Ohio Department of Youth Services.  A recent emphasis has been placed on the development and delivery of online courses for the correctional programs which do not require live internet access. Serves those incarcerated in Ohio only.

Educational Resources, College and Higher Education Courses, Ohio
Bard Prison Initiative

The Bard Prison Initiative (BPI) creates the opportunity for incarcerated men and women at Bayview, Eastern, Elmira, Green Haven, and Woodbourne Correctional Facilities to earn a Bard College degree while serving their sentences. BPI enrolls nearly 300 incarcerated men and women across a full spectrum of academic disciplines, and offers over 60 courses each semester.

To apply, one must have a high school diploma or its equivalent. Admission to BPI is highly competitive — typically there are ten applications for each available spot. Many gain admission after more than one application. The admissions process involves both a written exam and a personal interview. Only serves individuals in select New York State prisons.

Educational Resources, College and Higher Education Courses
Blackstone Career Institute

Blackstone’s accredited Paralegal Certificate Program enables students to learn about the law and the paralegal field by studying at their own pace and at their facility. It is reasonably priced, can be completed in less than a year and provides information that can be put into practice while incarcerated and once released. No computers, proctors, or facility instructors are required. Soft-covered books and materials are used for ease of entry into most institutions. Their Paralegal certificate program includes the 900 clock hours of coursework needed to sit for the Accredited Legal Professional (ALP) exam and/or the Professional Paralegal (PP) certification, or the Certified Legal Assistant/Certified Paralegal (CLA/CP) exam.

College and Higher Education Courses
Cornell Prison Education Program

The Cornell Prison Education Program brings together Cornell faculty and graduate students to teach a free college-level liberal arts curriculum to a select group of inmates at at several correctional facilities near Cornell University. Only serves individuals in New York State. 

Educational Resources, College and Higher Education Courses
Education Justice Project

The Education Justice Project (EJP) is a comprehensive college-in-prison program at Danville Correctional Center in central Illinois. Students earn transferable University of Illinois credit. In addition, EJP publishes Mapping Your Future: A Guide to Successful Reentry,a 250-page reentry guide that is updated each year. The guide focuses on Illinois resources, but much of the information it contains is useful to people in other states. Hard copies are available for free from EJP and it is available for download. EJP also publishes Returning Home: A Guide to the Challenges and Opportunities after Deportation, a 50-page guide for people getting deported to Mexico and Central America. It is also available for free and online. EJP offers $1,000 scholarships to individuals with family members in prison and to students who have incarceration backgrounds. The funds can be applied to any accredited post-secondary institution. Applications are due each November 1.

Educational Resources, College and Higher Education Courses
Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison

Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison provides college educations, life skills and re-entry support to incarcerated men and women incarcerated in NY state correctional facilities. Hudson Link also provides wraparound alumni services.

Through Hudson Link, degree-granting college programs are offered to prisoners at Fishkill, Sing Sing, Greene, Shawangunk and Sullivan Correctional Facilities for Men and Taconic Correctional Facility for Women, with the following degrees offered: Associates Degree in Liberal Arts, Associate and Bachelor’s Degrees in Behavioral Science, and Bachelor Degree in Organizational Management. Provides services in New York state only.


Educational Resources, College and Higher Education Courses
Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program

Organization supporting education model that brings together campus-based college students with incarcerated students for a class held inside jail or prison. this is a training center for Inside-Out education programs all across the country. it does not directly teach students. Write to find out if there is an inside-out program in your state.

College and Higher Education Courses
Ohio University Southern - Legal Studies

Ohio University Southern provides the following noncredit Legal Studies Certificate Courses to incarcerated students in all states, in a text-based format: Paralegal Certificate; Advanced Paralegal Certificate (requires the Paralegal Certificate); Alternative Dispute Resolution; Legal Investigation; Legal Secretary; and Victim Advocacy.

College and Higher Education Courses