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Can I Apply to Colleges Despite Missing Their Prerequisite Requirements?

CCEdit_TorreyCCEdit_Torrey 31 replies306 threads Editor
Your dream school has prerequisite classes that you didn't take -- can you apply anyway? https://insights.collegeconfidential.com/prerequisites-college-admissions
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Replies to: Can I Apply to Colleges Despite Missing Their Prerequisite Requirements?

  • LindagafLindagaf 9490 replies507 threads Senior Member
    This student is probably talking about very selective colleges, because those tend to be the only ones who require three years of FL. The problem is that there will be so many highly qualified students applying who DO have the required courses, that the OP needs a very compelling reason why he should be accepted over other students. That probably means being hooked.

    Unfortunately, there are a ton of students who didn’t realize until it was too late that they should have taken an extra year of FL, or an arts unit. There are plenty of kids with poor advising, etc...who manage to take those classes because they took initiative and were well ahead of the game. In some way, being ahead of the game is part of what gets kids into really selective schools.
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  • TomSrOfBostonTomSrOfBoston 14874 replies1005 threads Senior Member
    edited October 25
    "Can I apply anyway and say in my essay that I didn't even know what I wanted to do with my life before this year, and ask if they can waive the prerequisites? "

    This statement alone would be an automatic denial at highly selective schools.
    edited October 25
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  • DustyfeathersDustyfeathers 3359 replies77 threads Senior Member
    Many public schools do not offer more than a year of a FL. Many do not offer more than one AP course. A portion of graduates from those schools often *do* go on to elite colleges. For most colleges, even the elite ones, suggest strongly that the student have several years of FL and other courses. However if a student has attended a school where that's not possible, many schools still consider them.

    In these cases, the student would best contact Admissions directly using email with any questions. Also on the "other info" section of the application they can note that they took the maximum number of courses available at their school. And perhaps note the times when they went beyond the limitations of the school to seek out instruction in those limited areas elsewhere, such as possibly community college classes, language exchange at public libraries, and the like.

    If the student, OTOH opted out of classes that they did have access to, that would be weighed differently as it showed a different mindset.
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  • compmomcompmom 10917 replies77 threads Senior Member
    edited October 27
    If you have some kind of extraordinary talent or pursuit outside of school, selective schools may consider you without prerequisites, particularly if there is some reason that outside pursuit interfered with taking the class(es) due to scheduling conflicts. In that case the guidance counselor can write a note or ask the family to write a note to include with the transcript.
    edited October 27
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