How Do Homeschoolers Get into College? Find Out Here!
As a new homeschooler or a homeschooler moving with what seems like lightning speed through the grades (kids grow up so fast!), you may be worried about preparing your child for college. You may wonder, “How do homeschoolers get into college?” Depending on your state homeschool laws, you may be concerned about not having a state- or school-accredited diploma and official transcripts, or perhaps having your homeschooler take the GED is already in your plans. But what about college entrance tests and college entrance test prep? In many school districts across the county, practice tests and school counseling services are regular parts of college preparation for public school students. What is available for your homeschooler? Find out more here!
|Choosing the Right College Entrance Test||Registering for College Entrance Exams|
|College Entrance Test Prep|
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College Requirements for Homeschoolers
Preparing your homeschooler for college admissions can be daunting. Your state may or may not have regulations regarding homeschool admissions to state college and university systems. If your homeschooler is interested in a private postsecondary institution, you may feel even more like you are stepping out on a limb. Luckily, in some part due to the COVID-19 pandemic, colleges are turning more and more to test-free options for admissions. Some colleges are even removing college entrance tests as admissions requirements for all students and using only other measures (e.g., grades, essays, letters of recommendations, interviews) to measure high school students’ likelihood of success at their colleges.
That said, college entrance tests may still be important for admittance to certain colleges, or they may be a good way to show your homeschooler’s potential when college entrance testing is optional. College entrance tests may open doors for scholarships, or they may be a requirement for your student athlete to be able to play sports in college. The best advice when entering the college admissions phase of your child’s education is to do your research and contact schools regarding their admissions requirements for homeschoolers.
In addition to knowing your state’s stance on homeschool college admissions and researching individual colleges, you may want to browse these resources:
Homeschool-Friendly College and University Listings | Time4Learning
“There are many options for post-secondary education for homeschoolers, including colleges, universities, tech schools, internships, community colleges, trades, and more. Every year, the number of colleges ready and willing to accept homeschool graduates continues to grow. To make your search a bit easier, Time4Learning has collected a group of colleges that are especially homeschool friendly.”
Student Athletes: Homes School Students | NCAA
“All college-bound student-athletes interested in playing NCAA sports at a Division I or II school need to register for a Certification Account with the NCAA Eligibility Center.” Check here for resources related to your homeschooler’s eligibility requirements—including college entrance exam requirements—for playing NCAA sports in college.
Test-Free College Admissions Requirements | Homeschool.com
“College admissions are starting to evaluate portfolios and transcripts as an alternative to SAT/ACT scores, which may be good news for homeschoolers. Learn more here!”
Choosing the Right College Entrance Test
If your homeschooler needs or chooses to take a college entrance test for admission to a college, sports eligibility, or scholarship opportunities, you may have the choice of which test to take: the ACT, SAT Suite of Assessments, or the newer CLT (a popular addition for homeschoolers). What you also must know is that all these tests have official practice tests that can be taken, complete with score reports that can guide test preparation. These college entrance tests can also be taken more than once so that your homeschooler can improve scores and reach goals.
Here are some resources that will help you decide which test your homeschooler should register to take:
ACT Assessment: “The ACT contains multiple-choice tests in four areas: English, mathematics, reading and science. ACT’s writing test is optional and will not affect your composite score.” The ACT can be used to “increase your chances for getting into the college of your choice and the scholarships you need.” The official practice test for the ACT is the PreACT.
Classic Learning Test [CLT] Assessment: “CLT exists to reconnect knowledge and virtue by providing meaningful assessments and connections to seekers of truth, goodness, and beauty. CLT offers the only standardized tests that complement a liberal arts education, are 100% online, and provide a comprehensive measure of achievement and aptitude.” The CLT is being accepted by more and more colleges and universities. The CLT’s official practice tests include the CLT 10 for 9th and 10th graders and the CLT8 for 7th and 8th graders.
SAT Suite of Assessments: “The SAT tests subjects you cover in school: reading, math, and writing and language.” This is where you can find out about registration, test content and structure, practice and preparation, what to do on test day, and how to understand your scores. The SAT’s official practice test is the PSAT/NMSQT Assessment. This practice test also “can qualify you for the National Merit Scholarship Program and other scholarships,” and who couldn’t use extra money to help pay for college? Make sure you check out information on the PSAT/NMSQT for homeschooled students, and read about the importance of taking the PSAT for homeschoolers before you decide to skip this test.
Registering for College Entrance Exams
The general recommendation is for high school students to take college entrance tests in the spring of 11th grade or in 12th grade. Taking them while in 11th grade allows for more opportunities to retake should higher homeschool ACT scores, SAT scores, or CLT scores be targeted. Before you register your homeschooler, be sure to check whether you are eligible for ACT or SAT fee waivers. Then, when you are ready, here are the links to register for each of the exams:
ACT Test Dates (National)
Find out about test dates here, along with regular and late registration deadlines, and standby/photo upload deadlines.
SAT Dates and Deadlines
This is the page you want to check for SAT test dates, registration deadlines, and deadlines to make changes or register late.
Upcoming Test Dates for CLT
Access CLT test dates and registration deadlines here and find out which test dates are designated for partner schools and which offer remote proctoring.
College Entrance Test Prep
As a homeschooler, you want your child to be prepared for anything life has to offer—and college entrance exams are no different. You can spend lots of money on preparation for these high-stakes tests, but, luckily, there are also lots of free resources that can help your homeschooler get ready. There are plenty of opportunities for your homeschooler to take a college entrance exam practice test online or learn more about test content and question formats. Browse these resources for some ideas:
ACT Free Prep | FreeACTTestPrep
“Here at FreeACTTestPrep, we want to provide you with an advantage on test day. We have all the test format information, guidelines, and tips (general tips and tips for each subject). We’ve summarized all the important information, so you can feel worry-free on test day!”
ACT Test Prep | ACT
This is the official ACT Test Prep page from ACT. Learn about fee-based live online and self-paced courses through Kaplan and for-purchase official ACT prep and subject guides. However, you can also find links for a free Test Prep Guide and other free ACT test prep resources, too.
ACT Test Preparation | Study.com $
“Study.com offers everything you need to pass the ACT Exams. Practice tests, video lessons, diagnostic knowledge assessments, and personalized answers help you be ready on test day.” Try the services risk-free before you buy.
College Admissions and Placement Exams | Test Prep Review
Find free online practice tests for the ACT, PSAT, SAT, and more!
College Entrance Exam Guide & Free Online Test Prep Course
“Do you have a high schooler with college looming in his or her future? Our guide is here to help you as you navigate these college entrance exams and prepare your high school homeschooler!” If you want some structure to test preparation, try this free 15-week prep course!
Free Practice Tests | TestPrepPractice
This is another site where you can find free practice tests for the ACT, PSAT, SAT, and more!
Free SAT & ACT Prep Course | Varsity Tutors
“Test prep is a big decision. That’s why we offer free SAT and ACT live online classes. In these free overview classes, your students will get deep insights and learn key techniques for understanding and mastering each section. Your students will walk away with strategies to improve their scores, as well as a sense of what our more intensive small group SAT and ACT classes have to offer.”
Kaplan College Admissions Test Prep $
Check here if you are interested in fee-based test preparation for the ACT, PSAT, or SAT. Preparation for the ASVAB and AP exams is also available.
Official SAT Practice | College Board & Khan Academy
“For the first time ever, the creators of the SAT have given Khan Academy exclusive access and advice to build a personalized practice program for anyone, anywhere. These tools are free and available now for every student to take ownership of their learning and their future.”
Prep Center for the PSAT/NMSQT | McGraw-Hill Education
“We want to help you succeed on the SAT. Here you’ll find practice tests with explanations for every question. You’ll also find other PSAT preparation resources available from McGraw-Hill. We’ve put all of our proven expertise into making sure you’re ready for this difficult exam. […] Take 5 full-length PSAT practice tests to assess where you are in your preparation and get comfortable with the test format.
Princeton Review Online $
The Princeton Review offers fee-based test prep courses for the SAT and ACT, private tutoring, and more.
SAT Free Prep | FreeSAT1Prep
“Our site is packed with lots of helpful information to help you best maximize your SAT score. We have book and study aid reviews, test prep tips and advice and hundreds of practice SAT questions with (hopefully) easy-to-understand answer explanations. We even included our personal thoughts on the value of a SAT prep course as opposed to self study.”
SAT Practice and Preparation | College Board
Check here to download eight free official practice tests from College Board. Practice tests for assistive technology are also available here.
SAT Prep Guide | Best Colleges
This resource provides information on the SAT overall, recent changes, SAT sections, scores, tips and tricks, and more.
Test Preparation for the CLT and CLT10 | CLT
This is the official test prep page by CLT offering information, free online practice tests, an order link for a student guide, and additional resources.
Other College Entrance Test Resources
If you are looking for even more resources, we have got you covered. Maybe some of these will help in your college entrance test journey:
ACT Prep Black Book: The Most Effective ACT Strategies Ever Published (2nd Edition) $
By Mike Barrett (Author)
“The fully up-to-date ACT Prep Black Book, Second Edition gives you unique, effective ACT strategies from Mike Barrett, an ACT tutor with clients all over the globe who pay him hundreds of dollars an hour for phone tutoring. In addition to extensive and effective training on every aspect of the ACT, the ACT Prep Black Book gives you detailed, systematic, easy-to-follow walkthroughs for every question in all 3 official practice tests from the current Official ACT Prep Guide.”
Finding Your Way through the Maze of College Prep Tests: A Guide to APs and SAT Subject Tests with Tips for Homeschoolers and Accelerated Learners $
By Sharon Lee (Author)
“Are you a high school student trying to decide on college prep courses? […] Are you homeschooling through high school and need resources for tackling college prep work and the details about how to register for testing? This reference will guide you through the ins and outs of AP exams and SAT Subject Tests. How do I choose which tests to take? When should the tests be taken? What resources can I use to prepare for tests? What is the difference between an AP and SAT Subject Test, and should I take one or both? Are there special rules for homeschoolers or pre-high school students? Are there online AP course providers? You will also find overviews of the SAT, ACT, PSAT and CLEP tests.”
PSAT 8/9 MATH Workbook: for students in grades 8 and 9 (Focusprep) $
By Vivek Raghuram
“Focus, Foundation, Practice. This is what you need to crack the Math section of the new PSAT 8/9. FocusPrep PSAT 8/9 Math Workbook has 24 essential lessons with over 300 Calculator and No-Calculator problems in the three topics tested. See the Table Of Contents below. All lessons are in QuickReview format to help you review vast amounts of material quickly and improve your memory. After completing this workbook, you will have the sharp focus, strong foundation, and adequate practice that is required to ace the new PSAT 8/9 for Grades 8 and 9.”
PSAT 8/9 3 Practice Tests: for students in grades 8 and 9 $
By Vivek Raghuram (Author)
“This book contains three full length practice tests for the PSAT 8/9 for students in grades 8 and 9. Each test has a Reading Test, Writing Test, Math-No Calculator Test and a Math-Calculator test. The tests are followed by detailed answer explanations.”
PSAT 8/9 READING and WRITING Workbook: for students in grades 8 and 9 (Focusprep) $
By Vivek Raghuram
“Focus, Foundation, Practice. This is what you need to crack the Reading and Writing sections of the PSAT 8/9. FocusPrep’s PSAT 8/9 Reading and Writing Workbook has 15 essential lessons with practice questions and answers and a full-length practice test. All lessons are in QuickReviewTM format to help you review the lessons quickly and improve your memory.”
Vocabulary Cartoons, SAT Word Power: Learn Hundreds of SAT Words Fast with Easy Memory Techniques $
By Sam Burchers (Author)
“Students learn hundreds of SAT level words faster and easier with powerful rhyming and visual mnemonics. In independent school tests, students with Vocabulary Cartoons learned 72% more words than students with traditional rote memory study materials and had 90% retention. Contains 290 SAT words with 29 review quizzes consisting of matching and fill-in-the-blank problems.”
SAT Prep Black Book: The Most Effective ACT Strategies Ever Published (2nd Edition) $
By Mike Barrett (Author)
“The fully up-to-date SAT Prep Black Book, Second Edition gives you unique, effective SAT strategies from Mike Barrett, an SAT tutor with clients all over the globe who pay him hundreds of dollars an hour for phone tutoring. In addition to extensive and effective training on every aspect of the SAT, the SAT Black Book gives you detailed, systematic, easy-to-follow walkthroughs for every question in 4 of the College Board’s official SAT Practice Tests.”