College of the Desert Offers Fast Track Classes

College of the Desert (COD) sets students up for success by making quality education accessible and affordable through opportunities like Fast Track classes, $5 Textbook Rentals and more.

Accelerate Achievement at COD

COD is committed to accessible education for all its students, whether they are parents balancing family and career training or transfer-bound students completing their requirements for a four-year college.

This semester, students can choose from courses in Applied Construction, Culinary Arts, EMT, HVAC, Hospitality Management and Welding. Classes are offered in asynchronous and synchronous formats, so students can choose courses that are self-paced or meet according to a schedule.

Students can also participate in HyFlex classes which are built using an adaptable course structure that allows students to fit education into their lifestyle. Students attend in person, through live-stream, or online via Zoom. With HyFlex and Fast Track classes, COD delivers customized education.

Students can also expedite their time to obtain degrees and graduate sooner by registering for 12 credits instead of the typical 10. When Roadrunners move into their fulfilling careers and contribute to their region at the earliest opportunity, the local workforce benefits from more skilled construction workers to maintain local infrastructure, qualified EMTs to provide emergency medical assistance, and hospitality employees to add to the Coachella Valley’s vibrant tourism economy.

Individualized Learning and Support

Students can take advantage of Fast Track and Hyflex classes to meet requirements for Associate Degrees for Transfer (ADT), Associate Degrees and Certificates.

ADT is available across a variety of disciplines and guarantees priority admission to California State University when students meet minimum eligibility requirements. An Associate Degree prepares students for rewarding careers or can be used to transfer to a particular baccalaureate program or major. Finally, COD offers certificates such as a Certificate of Achievement for completing courses in an occupational field, or a Certificate of Completion for noncredit programs.

As students pursue these achievements, they have access to invaluable services to ensure they stay on track and have access to helpful resources. The Career and Workforce Solutions Center empowers students with career development skills and opportunities in their respective fields. The Transfer Center prepares students to advance to a four-year university, helping them explore majors, careers, financial aid, scholarships and tips for college success. The McCarthy Center and newly opened Indio Child Care Center provide affordable childcare options to students with families.

Breaking Down Barriers, $5 at a Time

The $5 Textbook Rental Program, launched in the spring of 2024, is cutting steep costs for students. Textbook affordability is a top concern for college students, according to an Inside Higher Ed Student Voice survey. Just 30 percent of the survey’s 3,004 respondents from two- and four-year colleges said their professors take affordability into account when choosing course materials.

COD’s $5 Textbook Rental Program allows students to rent books at the bookstore at the Palm Desert or Indio Campus. The savings are significant — just one new chemistry textbook is nearly $400.

Titles include course materials from some of the most popular study areas across COD, including accounting, chemistry and psychology. Students can show proof of enrollment to secure the discounted price. Books are available on a first-come, first-serve basis and students must return the book after the rental period or pay the full price.

College of the Desert is dedicated to closing persistent equity gaps and enhancing the Coachella Valley economy through its high-quality, flexible and affordable programs. Find out more at


Image Sources

  • cod_heroes_1-2-20: COD