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#251 Barbara H

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 01:53 PM

Regarding financial aid... The "ability to benefit" stuff can be confusing and is often misinterpreted. Homeschoolers do not need a GED or non homeschool degree to qualify for financial aid. http://www.ifap.ed.g...rs/GEN1209.html



#252 Barbara H

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 02:00 PM

I've been reading the Brainy Bunch book and it's now clear to me that the parents use community college, early enrollment, etc instead of homeschooling high school as a way to avoid submitting their SAT scores, which they say are mediocre, and arranging high school transcripts. I am not stretching; this is what they say directly in the book. The colleges their children attend strike me as mediocre regional schools. Not necessarily "bad," but not breathtakingly amazing. At one point they say in the book that college costs are rising every year, so might as well do it now, and I think they are serious when they say that, even though it's said jokingly.

 

I guess the next question is do colleges need to be "breathtakingly amazing." It seems like these their children have all done well professionally and that they have been capable of pursuing graduate and careers. It is an interesting example to me of the reality that there are many choices that can work out well including colleges that aren't big names.



#253 Lawyer&Mom

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 02:41 PM

Regarding financial aid... The "ability to benefit" stuff can be confusing and is often misinterpreted. Homeschoolers do not need a GED or non homeschool degree to qualify for financial aid. http://www.ifap.ed.g...rs/GEN1209.html

 

"Recognized Equivalent of a High School Diploma: The student has the recognized equivalent of a high school diploma, defined in the regulations at 34 CFR 600.2 as:

  • A General Educational Development Certificate (GED);
  • A State certificate received by a student after the student has passed a State-authorized examination that the State recognizes as the equivalent of a high school diploma;
  • An academic transcript of a student who has successfully completed at least a two-year program that is acceptable for full credit toward a bachelor's degree; or
  • For a person who is seeking enrollment in an educational program that leads to at least an associate degree or its equivalent and who has not completed high school, but who excelled academically in high school, documentation that the student excelled academically in high school and has met the formalized, written policies of that postsecondary institution for admitting such students."

There is an exception for accelerated public school kids!  Thanks for the link Barbara!



#254 stripe

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 03:17 PM

I guess the next question is do colleges need to be "breathtakingly amazing." It seems like these their children have all done well professionally and that they have been capable of pursuing graduate and careers. It is an interesting example to me of the reality that there are many choices that can work out well including colleges that aren't big names.

I don't think all colleges do need to be breathtakingly amazing or Ivy league. But at the same time, it's a troubling reflection on the idea of a college-level course if a 12 year old of average intelligence can breeze through college courses.



#255 Barbara H

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 08:12 PM

I don't think all colleges do need to be breathtakingly amazing or Ivy league. But at the same time, it's a troubling reflection on the idea of a college-level course if a 12 year old of average intelligence can breeze through college courses.

 

For sure. Despite the parents' suggestion the kids are "average" I'm not really buying it. The whole story isn't look they went to college early through some loophole and managed to sneak through because anyone can do that at a crappy college. Rather, It sounds like they've all achieved in college and continued to do so after.  One became a doctor at 22. The other kids are in architecture, engineering, computer science.

 

It seems like early college stories in the media are always spun one of two ways. Either, this is a totally typical average kid but they just really wanted it - look anyone can do it. Or, the story is framed - wow this is the most super genius ever they probably will cure cancer next week. I'm thinking there are many other possibilities. Perhaps they are moderately gifted kids who haven't had their drive and curiosity killed by having every bit of their learning spoon-fed to them for their entire life. They seem to have probably benefited from being in a big family where they learned work ethic and support for siblings. With their smarts were able to do well with the opportunities they had available to them.



#256 stripe

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 08:59 PM

For sure. Despite the parents' suggestion the kids are "average" I'm not really buying it. The whole story isn't look they went to college early through some loophole and managed to sneak through because anyone can do that at a crappy college. Rather, It sounds like they've all achieved in college and continued to do so after. One became a doctor at 22. The other kids are in architecture, engineering, computer science.

That's a very optimistic interpretation and I like it!

I kind of have two reactions: one is that I am still cynical about many colleges, and I think they are basically accessible to a high schooler. I know college students who seem barely functional readers and writers, and plenty (including grad students) who seem unaware of basic algebra.

I think the Hardings may well be onto something about skipping the drama of high school, and their highly academic focus in college, rather than social. There have been studies how how little college students learn and the declining number of hours spent on studying. So a studious 12 year old of average ability may be paying more attention than someone who's mostly there for the parties.

It's a curious thing. I am not sure how I feel about any of it. Dale Stephens's Hack your Education book is also an interesting read, for different reasons, namely a cynical look at college, with basically the same tone as the Hardings have to high school, i.e., waste of time. BUT he thinks college's big draw is networking, and he lays out how you can create your own social networks outside the institutional structure; the Hardings seem to see no value to this whatsoever. They are all about getting the piece of paper and the job, not really connecting to classmates or professors, both of which groups seem to be people to avoid, basically, because they don't think like them. Which is a kind of weird assumption given their connection to religious Christian colleges like Huntingdon. But everything is framed by the Hardings as being apart from people and close to the parents, and Stephens is all about making mad connections that will make your career.

That may be harder for a young teen.

#257 Crimson Wife

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 09:07 PM

What is REU? I'm not familiar with that acronym and am not able to figure it out via context clues in the discussion here.

#258 Barbara H

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 09:17 PM

REU is a research experience for undergraduates. http://www.nsf.gov/crssprgm/reu/   Paid summer work, great for developing research experience and preparing for grad school.



#259 urthmama

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 11:59 PM

 But everything is framed by the Hardings as being apart from people and close to the parents, and Stephens is all about making mad connections that will make your career.

That may be harder for a young teen.

 

I have read the Harding book a few times - and one thing that I found refreshing and different is that even though they are conservative Christians, their children actually are allowed many freedoms - and quite a bit of responsibility at a young age.  One of their daughters went to Central America (or maybe Mexico?) for an architecture project - which is where she met her husband...and she also went to the Middle East to build a medical school...  A few of their kids stayed in California when the husband/dad was sent back to Alabama (he is in the military) - their daughter went to Virginia at age 19 as a doctor, and was in medical school out of state prior to that.  They talk a lot about their kids facing criticism from professors (and peers) - and how they teach their kids to handle naysayers.

 

Overall, I found the book highly refreshing - I mean, I come from a land of academic snobbery (many relatives/friends with ivy degrees and advanced ivy degrees) - and while I think the network is important for SOME pursuits - I also know many people who have done nothing with their ivy degrees and connections - and really, have done nothing with their careers.

 

I like the pragmatic approach of the Hardings - these are people of fairly low income (who admittedly have taken out loans for their kids' college educations) - the mom has no college degree at all and the father got his degree later in life (starting at a community college).  

 

So - for them to send their children to college at young age and to give them the tools to actually make a living from their degrees - I just think it's fantastic.  I just don't see how anyone could fault them for what they have done for their kids.  These are children who would most likely not be attending Ivies - instead, they've given them a tremendous advantage...

 

Also - I think the whole idea of networking in college is only beneficial for certain people - I mean, Introverts (in general) are not going to benefit from networking to the same degree as extroverts - and people with hard skill-sets don't need the networking that people with soft skill sets do...  

 

So - I always take the networking thing with a grain of salt.  For many people, one of the hardest hurdles to overcome in the early 20s is the debt factor - how many people do I know who graduated from grad school/professional school with hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt?  (raises hand...)  I don't want that for my kids...

 

Edited to add:  Oh, and I don't think the courses were easy or not challenging for their kids.  They say that their kids took great advantage of the tutoring services available at the school and that they all worked VERY hard in their classes.  So - I don't think it's a question of it being the easy way out for any of them - maybe they were bright, but I don't think they were super gifted and I also know they didn't all get A's...but they didn't give up, which I think is a lesson that many kids would do well to learn.  

 

Myself, I went to law school because I didn't think I could do med school - when really all I wanted to be was a doctor...but I got easy As in all humanities courses, so I was able to get a merit scholarship to law school at Berkeley.  Personally, I would have rather that I went to a no-name med school and become a doctor than give up on my dream bc it was an easier path...(now I have debt and kids, so don't get me started on that dream deferred...haha)



#260 stripe

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 05:46 AM

I have read the Harding book a few times - and one thing that I found refreshing and different is that even though they are conservative Christians, their children actually are allowed many freedoms - and quite a bit of responsibility at a young age.

Yes, I think you've solved what I found charming about them, thank you! Your post is really helpful. Another example is being happy to have teen drivers.

In some ways we could see them as Tiger Mom (moms? Mom and dad?) types but with a really positive attitude. Having crazy high expectations while valuing family and actually getting along.

#261 snowbeltmom

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 06:37 AM

Regarding the issue of research opportunities, we had planned on research being a significant component of my son's high school academic program. When I investigated the program when he was a freshman in high school, I realized that he would not qualify because he was not going to be 16 at the end of his sophomore year (he had been skipped a grade while in traditional school). Since the program made no exceptions and would not admit a student that didn't make the age cut-off, we re-adjusted his grade level.

He has had and continues to have some amazing research opportunities, and for him, adjusting his grade-level "down on paper" was the right move.

#262 regentrude

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 07:04 AM

  But really, once you have a BA no one ever asks you about your high school diploma.  I've never had to list my GED for anything else.

 

That is not correct. There were several different scenarios discussed on this board where adults needed a high school diploma, sometimes years after graduation. For example, one lady I know needed her high school diploma to apply for a visa to a foreign country (despite having a Masters degree). The child of a poster on this forum needed a copy of her high school diploma for a  study-abroad program. There were others that I don't recall.

I know sometimes there are forms to fill out where you have to at least check a box for the answer to the question "Do you have a high school diploma?".



#263 Crimson Wife

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 08:25 AM

Not all kids aspire to a career in STEM. I looked through that entire list of REU's and there was only one opprtunity that my DD might find at all interesting as it was in behavioral neuroscience and one of the areas was language disorders. However, the website said it was limited to students enrolled in a public college in New York and furthermore they gave preference to underrepresented minorities.

I know it sometimes seems like all HG+ kids are STEM-oriented but there are those out there who are verbally gifted instead.

#264 kiana

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 09:06 AM

Not all kids aspire to a career in STEM. I looked through that entire list of REU's and there was only one opprtunity that my DD might find at all interesting as it was in behavioral neuroscience and one of the areas was language disorders. However, the website said it was limited to students enrolled in a public college in New York and furthermore they gave preference to underrepresented minorities.

I know it sometimes seems like all HG+ kids are STEM-oriented but there are those out there who are verbally gifted instead.

 

Well, yes, the list from the NSF is focused on STEM REU's. 

 

There are other REU's which focus on humanities or social sciences, listed on other sites (although I really doubt you'd find one focused on SLP).



#265 Barbara H

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 09:08 AM

Yes, the Hardings earned points with me because they were equally interested in their boys and girls getting an education and having a career. Before life in the homeschool world I took that as a given, but now it is actually something I take time to appreciate. Lots of what the family believes and does is not the same as what I believe or do, but I did think they seem to genuinely care for their children and be open to them being out in the world and doing well.



#266 Barbara H

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 09:10 AM

Sorry Crimson wife, I just grabbed the first link off Google that explained an REU.  Yes, more are STEM oriented but not all of them.



#267 Laura Corin

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 09:11 AM

Not all kids aspire to a career in STEM. I looked through that entire list of REU's and there was only one opprtunity that my DD might find at all interesting as it was in behavioral neuroscience and one of the areas was language disorders. However, the website said it was limited to students enrolled in a public college in New York and furthermore they gave preference to underrepresented minorities.

I know it sometimes seems like all HG+ kids are STEM-oriented but there are those out there who are verbally gifted instead.

 

Yup.  Calvin was perfectly good at science and maths, but had zero interest.

 

L



#268 dmmetler

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 10:07 AM

REU programs require grant funding, so most will be in the sciences because that's where the money is. There also tend not to be REU programs in areas where there already are similar opportunities-for example, there are a lot of one semester or summer internships in herpetological research on ongoing projects, which basically pay subsistence wages, but not many REU projects. If you already have grant funding to hire three assistants for the summer built into the grant, you don't need to go through the NSF or other funder's hoops to make it an REU (and for ongoing projects that may last years, many wouldn't qualify as an REU officially. It's easier in physical sciences).

I think the age line may be less likely to hit accelerated kids outside of STEM. I know in music it's basically non-existent if you go conservatory vs university.

#269 raptor_dad

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 12:15 PM

REU programs require grant funding, so most will be in the sciences because that's where the money is. There also tend not to be REU programs in areas where there already are similar opportunities-for example, there are a lot of one semester or summer internships in herpetological research on ongoing projects, which basically pay subsistence wages, but not many REU projects. If you already have grant funding to hire three assistants for the summer built into the grant, you don't need to go through the NSF or other funder's hoops to make it an REU (and for ongoing projects that may last years, many wouldn't qualify as an REU officially. It's easier in physical sciences).
 

 

I think this missed the point of REUs. The NSFs goal is to widen the funnel of people entering PhD programs. REUs are meant to be an Affirmative Action program for bright kids at LACs and branch campuses of state schools that don't have many research opportunities. If you have local opportunities you don't need REUs. In college, DW found local oppty's on campus and worked with her PI doing summer research at Woods Hole. At the same university I had friends who did summer REUs in other areas where there weren't mentors on campus. If you are at a STEM school you shouldn't need REUs but if you are at a non-research university you shouldn't be excluded from a STEM PhD.

 

PS Here is an article on a pseudo-local program http://www.siam.org/...news.php?id=238 Gallian is legendary for developing talent. This isn't the best article I've read but it was a quick google link...



#270 SeaConquest

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 01:21 PM

Regarding the issue of research opportunities, we had planned on research being a significant component of my son's high school academic program. When I investigated the program when he was a freshman in high school, I realized that he would not qualify because he was not going to be 16 at the end of his sophomore year (he had been skipped a grade while in traditional school). Since the program made no exceptions and would not admit a student that didn't make the age cut-off, we re-adjusted his grade level.

He has had and continues to have some amazing research opportunities, and for him, adjusting his grade-level "down on paper" was the right move.


Was he able to participate in a REU/university program while in high school or something else?

#271 8FillTheHeart

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 01:31 PM

I think this missed the point of REUs. The NSFs goal is to widen the funnel of people entering PhD programs. REUs are meant to be an Affirmative Action program for bright kids at LACs and branch campuses of state schools that don't have many research opportunities. If you have local opportunities you don't need REUs. In college, DW found local oppty's on campus and worked with her PI doing summer research at Woods Hole. At the same university I had friends who did summer REUs in other areas where there weren't mentors on campus. If you are at a STEM school you shouldn't need REUs but if you are at a non-research university you shouldn't be excluded from a STEM PhD.

 

PS Here is an article on a pseudo-local program http://www.siam.org/...news.php?id=238 Gallian is legendary for developing talent. This isn't the best article I've read but it was a quick google link...

 

I wonder why ds is being encouraged to apply for an REU then??   He is part of a special honor's research program at his university, so he certainly is not going to lack research opportunities.   His ability to participate in research is guaranteed.



#272 snowbeltmom

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 01:35 PM

Was he able to participate in a REU/university program while in high school or something else?


This research program is affiliated with the major hospital is our area (45 minutes away from our house).

#273 raptor_dad

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 01:53 PM

I wonder why ds is being encouraged to apply for an REU then??   He is part of a special honor's research program at his university, so he certainly is not going to lack research opportunities.   His ability to participate in research is guaranteed.

 

Looking the current NSF site, I don't see the priorities I listed <shrug>. Maybe it has changed in the last few years. Historically, REUs were design to enhance access to research opportunities. Maybe that focus has been lessened... Maybe those priorities aren't explicit but still exist as priorities at some programs... I'm not really sure. If DS's faculty advisers suggest it I would go for it...

 

 



#274 Lawyer&Mom

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 03:10 PM

That is not correct. There were several different scenarios discussed on this board where adults needed a high school diploma, sometimes years after graduation. For example, one lady I know needed her high school diploma to apply for a visa to a foreign country (despite having a Masters degree). The child of a poster on this forum needed a copy of her high school diploma for a study-abroad program. There were others that I don't recall.
I know sometimes there are forms to fill out where you have to at least check a box for the answer to the question "Do you have a high school diploma?".


Let me rephrase then. If it becomes clear half way through high school that college is where your kid needs to be, don't feel that you have to have a high school diploma to start college. I went to Berkeley at 17 without one. I absolutely recommend taking the GED so that if anyone does ask about a high school diploma you are covered. But the GED doesn't need to be taken before you start college. I took mine, for study abroad purposes, when I was a sophomore and finally old enough to take the GED in my state without an age waiver.

#275 Barbara H

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 05:35 PM

I wonder why ds is being encouraged to apply for an REU then??   He is part of a special honor's research program at his university, so he certainly is not going to lack research opportunities.   His ability to participate in research is guaranteed.

 

It shouldn't be one or the other. It is great he's got opportunities on campus but he should apply for REUs if he's interested. They are helpful for a variety of purposes (nationally competitive scholarships, graduate school, etc.). It will give him exposure to other professors and students from other schools which exposes him to new ideas and potentially to a new source of recommendations. Students at REUs often get to present at research conferences at a group and may get a publication from their summer work. They are competitive - some more than others - and that can bring some prestige as well.



#276 8FillTheHeart

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 06:53 PM

It shouldn't be one or the other. It is great he's got opportunities on campus but he should apply for REUs if he's interested. They are helpful for a variety of purposes (nationally competitive scholarships, graduate school, etc.). It will give him exposure to other professors and students from other schools which exposes him to new ideas and potentially to a new source of recommendations. Students at REUs often get to present at research conferences at a group and may get a publication from their summer work. They are competitive - some more than others - and that can bring some prestige as well.


Yes, that was our understanding. I was wondering if our info was wrong based raptor_dad's post.

#277 kiana

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Posted 10 September 2014 - 07:24 PM

Yes, that was our understanding. I was wondering if our info was wrong based raptor_dad's post.

 

I disagree slightly with raptor_dad. I think they are much more essential if you do not have local opportunities, but they are still a bonus even if you do have local opportunities.

 

Your son should also listen to his professors as they are more likely to be up-to-date on your son's specific situation. This is one place where general advice can still be wrong for a specific student. 



#278 EndOfOrdinary

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Posted Yesterday, 11:33 PM

Saturday we spend the day walking touring a perspective college for Ds.  He is beyond excited, and it was his idea after he saw a poster when we were in Big City earlier this month.  I am curious - since I have no idea what I am doing - what should I ask them.  Any thoughts?

 

ETA: This is the local-ish school which Ds would attend if he did graduate early.  I do not know if that makes any difference.  There is a large likelihood this will be one of Ds' top three choices.  Though, at this point in time that seems premature.  If it is one thing I have learned it is not to put too much past my son and his determination.




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