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Calming Tea

If your kid didn't take ANY community college classes, how did the public U's feel their transcript was "validated" ?

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One thing that really seemed to validate my older son's transcript, was in addition to his extremely high SAT score, his plethora of community college classes.  Every time I spoke with admissions they jumped for joy about that and said that was awesome, etc.

My daughter is really happy with her co-op classes and they're much better than what I had in school back home. SOme of them are more academic than the CC classes, and they certain have better foundational skill-building.  She doesn't want to go to community college or take CC classes online and frankly, everything is going so great, I don't see an actual reason.

BUT her SAT's are 86th percentile.  They're well above average but not so amazing that I think they'll validate her entire education or cause readers to take a second special look just because of them.  

I have looked into NARHS but I'm not sure we saved enough paperwork for what they require to get a middle states accredited diploma.  

So, if you applied as a regular homeschooler, what advice do you have that we could do to sort of "validate" her capabilities and education?  I thought maybe she could just take a few accredited online mostly computer based classes through SVOHS but not sure that's really enough...

 

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SAT/ACT scores.

As long as the cumulative GPA falls within the range indicated by an SAT or ACT score, it's probably not a problem. Here are the SAT - GPA and ACT - GPA conversion charts.

A few colleges want SAT Subject test scores. And if your student does AP or CLEP testing, those would also "confirm" the homeschool transcript. A few colleges want to see a "portfolio" of work as proof of level of work. But most colleges are fine with just an SAT/ACT score from homeschool students.
 

46 minutes ago, Calming Tea said:

One thing that really seemed to validate my older son's transcript, was in addition to his extremely high SAT score, his plethora of community college classes.  Every time I spoke with admissions they jumped for joy about that and said that was awesome, etc.

My daughter is really happy with her co-op classes and ... She doesn't want to go to community college or take CC classes online and frankly, everything is going so great, I don't see an actual reason.

BUT her SAT's are 86th percentile.  They're well above average but not so amazing that I think they'll validate her entire education or cause readers to take a second special look just because of them. 


Gently -- she's NOT her brother. She is not a super-accelerated high-end academic student. Nor is she interested in being that type of student. So there's no reason you should be looking at competitive/selective colleges for your DD. She'll do fine getting in to a WIDE range of colleges -- that are a fit for HER. She's a solid student and an interesting person with the extracurriculars that you have mentioned that she's done in the past.

If you really need financial aid to afford college for her, then be sure to be looking at schools where her test scores put her in the top 25% (or even better, the top 10%) of incoming freshman. Or, check out Scholarships.com and look for scholarships awarded by SAT score. Or, if she's just a little below the SAT score cut-off for aid for a particular school, you could consider having her take an SAT prep class that guarantees a raise in score, and then re-test. Or possibly try the ACT and see if she "clicks" better with it for a higher score.

But, I wouldn't worry about DD being admitted. There are many schools that will be a good fit for her, and that will "like" her transcript and accomplishments.

Edited by Lori D.
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My dc's state U just cared about GPA and ACT/SAT scores.  Those were enough for an invitation into the honors program.  

 

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Honestly the schools we have looked at in Pennsylvania, some do not require SAT/ACT scores (actually that was Catholic University in DC) and some didn't need to even see a course description.  Isn't your dd applying at Penn State?  Did you call them??

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Personally, I have never seen an admissions officer jump for joy. We have never even met with an admissions officer except when ds was trying to DE at 4 yr Us that didnt have DE ( or had DE limited to a specific list of courses we weren't interested in). There we took his transcript and test scores and AP scores (bc he was trying to enroll in post BC math as a 16 yr old) and his transcript from the 1st U to the 2nd U where he DEed.

My printed at home transcript, course descriptions, and test scores have been accepted as valid everywhere they have applied. Most of my kids have not DEed, including my sr. 

(When we visit Us, we do dept visits, not admissions visits. 🙂 )

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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1 hour ago, Nicholas_mom said:

Honestly the schools we have looked at in Pennsylvania, some do not require SAT/ACT scores (actually that was Catholic University in DC) and some didn't need to even see a course description.  Isn't your dd applying at Penn State?  Did you call them??

 

Lori, thanks for the reminder, she is applying to PennState but a much much less difficult to get into major in a way.  The GPA and SAT score threshold is very low but they only accept 80 students per year.  So she will do early decision and say "yes" to summer session.  When I called them, they were very adamant that GPA is all they care about as well as SAT scores, but were a little baffled about whether it mattered if the GPA was a homeschooled GPA.

Lori- yes thank you for the reminder.  Unfortunately the options for above average students in her major, where we are looking, and what we can afford, are very limited.  It seems her choices are either colleges with average SAT scores of about 900 ....or they sort of bump up to about 1300's...it is very interesting ....Then, when you factor in specific major, affordability AND Geography, they shrink exponentially. So i want to be sure that, allowing her to be who she is, nothing holds her back from the colleges that are a slight reach. 

She adamantly also does not want to do subject tests or CLEP. She works very hard at 6 subjects, is working hard at her art, is learning how to drive, studying for the SAT's and taking two extra curricular things....for her that is enough, and she's not one to pick up a study book, ever.  

Thanks for thinking aloud with me as always everyone!

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What does she want to major in? Posters might be able to offer suggestions.

Also, an 86th percentile score is not "low." Only 14% of students score higher. I'm not sure why they wouldn't validate her transcript. If her scores were below the 50th  percentile,  that might be concerning.

FWIW, I wouldn't look at avg test scores. I would have her investigate depts and see if she likes them.

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Carnegie Mellon admissions told us face to face "there is no such thing as too much documentation for a homeschooler." I then handed him one by one, ds's transcript, school profile, and course descriptions.  He got more and more excited by the detail and volume of the paperwork.  And I think the good formatting helped make it seem quite official. Things that look official are generally not questioned. I think the 86th percentile already confirms the mommy grades on the transcript -- even all As. 

DS also added a music portfolio with music resume, letter of rec from VIP, and recording of a performance. No way to contest that because clearly *he* was playing. 

 

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Graphic Design, but not at at an art school.  For one thing we do not want her to go to an art school but a regular U for lots of reasons (want her to have more well rounded education, more well rounded student body, regular college experience, they're usually very expensive, her portfolio is not good enough for the best ones and the mediocre ones aren't worth the expense, and above all we want her to have the ability to change her major if she decides that doing art all of the time, as a matter of necessity is not her thing.) 

We have geographically limited the search significantly because of safety issues (aka where she can take a train safely in said city and where she couldn't) and also she wants to be within driving distance of our family back east - she is excited about the adventure but doesn't want to be on an island, not her thing at all 🙂.  

Edited by Calming Tea

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What about an Art Portfolio? We were told to only include the music portfolio if we thought that he would be in the top 10% of musicians for the school. So we looked at what were the audition pieces for the music schools at each university to make the judgement. So add the art portfolio only if she is quite good. But if you are looking for a way to validate grades without doing any more testing, that is one option.

And I still think that *formatting* of the paperwork adds validation. 🙂 

Edited by lewelma
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3 minutes ago, lewelma said:

What about an Art Portfolio? We were told to only include the music portfolio if we thought that he would be in the top 10% of musicians for the school. So we looked at what were the audition pieces for the music schools at each university to make the judgement. So add the art portfolio only if she is quite good. But if you are looking for a way to validate grades without doing any more testing, that is one option.

And I still think that *formatting* of the paperwork adds validation. 🙂 

 

definitely working on the art portfolio 🙂

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One thing to keep in mind is that public school kids' SAT scores don't always match their GPA's either. In fact one of my son's friends is going through that right now.  She's an amazing student getting all's A's in classes like Calculus, Chinese 4, AP Literature etc and a string of extracurriculars a mile long.  And her SAT's were under 1200 (she's also very chatty, in case you wondered how I know that, lol!).  I understand what you mean, that we feel we need to "prove" our kid's grades since we homeschool.  But just wanted to reassure you that the scores and GPA's don't always match what you would expect.

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5 hours ago, Lori D. said:

SAT/ACT scores.

As long as the cumulative GPA falls within the range indicated by an SAT or ACT score, it's probably not a problem. Here are the SAT - GPA and ACT - GPA conversion charts.

 

The ACT-GPA conversion chart has a 4.0 only for 35 and 36. That seems really off. An A student could have a much lower test score and still be a good student.

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Well NARHS accepted all of our documentation for past grades, so we are good to go on an accredited transcript

🙂

(Patting my back for saving such good records of everything.) 🙂

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2 minutes ago, Meriwether said:

The ACT-GPA conversion chart has a 4.0 only for 35 and 36. That seems really off. An A student could have a much lower test score and still be a good student.

I bet it's an unweighted GPA.

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38 minutes ago, chiguirre said:

I bet it's an unweighted GPA.

I did not grow up with weighted grades. I probably had the highest ACT in my graduating class (out of all 28 of us LOL). Four of us had all A's; no one got a 35 or 36. No grades were weighted. I know people who had a 4.0 on a 4.0 scale who scored more like 25 on the ACT both back then and more recently. It seems odd to me that they would not expect some who got a 30+ (or even lower) to have a 4.0.

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4 minutes ago, Meriwether said:

I did not grow up with weighted grades. I probably had the highest ACT in my graduating class (out of all 28 of us LOL). Four of us had all A's; no one got a 35 or 36. No grades were weighted. I know people who had a 4.0 on a 4.0 scale who scored more like 25 on the ACT both back then and more recently. It seems odd to me that they would not expect some who got a 30+ (or even lower) to have a 4.0.

What is more bizarre is that a 19 is a 3.05. Meaningless info.

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11 hours ago, Lori D. said:

SAT/ACT scores.

As long as the cumulative GPA falls within the range indicated by an SAT or ACT score, it's probably not a problem. Here are the SAT - GPA and ACT - GPA conversion charts.

what a great link - thank you!

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27 minutes ago, mirabillis said:

what a great link - thank you!


Well, you're welcome, 🙂  BUT... now I regret linking -- I did so without looking carefully at the data of the charts, and I agree that esp. that ACT/GPA chart is completely meaningless; and not really sure the SAT/GPA means very much more... So, take those charts with a heavy helping of salt, lol.

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I'm not sure the ACT-GPA link is the same one I've seen before. I know when I looked at one of those last year, my DD's ACT didn't match the GPA because her GPA was lower than the ACT score equivalent. 

My niece had all As & a just-under-the-average ACT for our state. I don't know the grades for another niece but she was an IB student and her top ACT score was a 26 over multiple attempts. So GPA doesn't always match GPA for public schoolers. :)

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