With more than 3.1 million homeschooled students (and rising) in the United States, this form of schooling is fast becoming a popular option for parents who want to personalize their children’s education. But, just because you have chosen something that is non-traditional, that doesn’t mean your child can’t get into the college of their choice. Keep in mind, there are a few things colleges will want to see from homeschoolers.
6 Things Colleges Will Want to See from Homeschoolers
College applications for homeschoolers were once so challenging that some weren’t sure where to begin. But things have changed. Thousands of homeschoolers each year get accepted to the colleges of their dreams. It just takes a bit of footwork. Here are six things colleges will want to see on your child’s application.
1. Transcripts and GPA
You want to make sure that that the homeschool education meets the state’s requirements, which include providing valid records. You will probably need a transcript Remember, SCAIHS provides transcripts and diplomas!
Your records should reflect GPAs for high school courses in core subjects (English, Math, Science, History, Foreign Language) for four years. The most demanding schools will want to see a mix of standard and unique courses that challenge students.
2. SAT or ACT Scores
Many parents choose homeschooling to get away from standardized tests. But your homeschooler will probably need to sit for one or both of these if they want to have a strong college admissions package. Many colleges and universities still require or recommend the tests.
3. Personal Essays
Including a personal essay with a college application is one way for your child to set themselves apart from other applicants. They can write about their homeschool journey or something else they are passionate about.
4. Letters of Recommendation
Many colleges ask for several letters of recommendation. Typically, one or two of these should be academic-based. Any others can be character-based. This can be challenging since parents generally shouldn’t write letters of recommendation. However, you can ask for a letter if you took an outside course or have a coach or teacher for an extra-curricular activity. Your SCAIHS counselor would be happy to provide a letter for you!
Remember a good mix of extra-curricular activities is something you’ll want to highlight on college applications. This can include things like sports, music, and other outside clubs or interests.
Service hours show that a homeschooler has a balanced lifestyle and is involved in the community. Students who have demonstrated a commitment to service in high school tend to be more well-adjusted when they reach college.
Get the Homeschooling Support You Need in South Carolina
As you and your child travel your homeschooling journey, you don’t have to handle everything on your own. There is plenty of support available. The South Carolina Association of Independent Home Schools (SCAIHS) has been offering resources and support to homeschooling parents and their children throughout the state since 1990.
Through SCAIHS membership, your family will gain access to curriculum assistance, academic programs, online documentation and reporting, bookstore discounts, and much more. Contact us with any questions or to learn more about how we can provide the assistance you need.