Hi! Does anyone here have any tips about getting admitted to Texas A&M as a home schooler? We live in Texas and this is our first time to go through this process; my oldest just finished her junior year and is planning to apply to A&M this summer. It is her number 1 school choice.
Howdy! Would love to chat and give you some insight on applying. I’ll message you.
My DS22 is in the same boat. He has good scores, GPA, and ECs but we’re nervous as homeschoolers. He will be applying to engineering.
Texas A&M is very homeschool-friendly and homeschool applicants are reviewed hollistically. This may have changed with covid, test optional, etc., but it’s my understanding that during the holistic review, homeschool students and private school students are “ranked” with public school students based on rigor of classes, GPA and test scores (i.e., slotted in top 10%, top quarter, etc.). They also look at everything else such as application essays, extra curriculars, work, volunteering, etc.
My daughter had no issues with the application process. TAMU did not require any other information for homeschool students that may be required at other universities. As an example, my daughter also applied to University of Texas and I had to submit a chart with information on every single high school class taken (description, resources used, type of class, etc.). I had heard that UT was “homeschool unfriendly”, but I don’t think that is true because my daughter was accepted there. It just took extra effort to provide the information required. SMU also had additional requirements for homeschool students though I can’t remember what they were. My daughter got accepted there as well. I mention all of this so you can rest easy that universities readily accept homeschool students (at least the ones we applied to!).
As for engineering, my son will be applying later this summer as well. We have several homeschool family friends whose students were accepted into engineering. They all had good GPAs, strong SAT/ACT test scores and most, if not all, also had several dual credit classes.
With a strong application, you don’t have to worry about homeschooling being a detriment. Just make sure you submit any additional requirements you may need to submit for your student at different universities.
Thank you! Your post is very helpful and gives me an idea of what we need for engineering. DS is taking DE classes next year too.
We had taken UT off of the list because I was told it was “homeschool unfriendly” as well, but we’ll add it back even though I think he would be happier at TAMU…you never know. I already have all of his course descriptions ready to go as a few other colleges on his list require that. It is a 34 page document! I don’t mind jumping through hoops, just part of my job.
Overall, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how applications have been going so far as a homeschooler. I need to get it into my head that we aren’t unicorns anymore.
Peruna1998 Make sure to signup for the Zachary Tour as well. It is the main engineering and they may find it more interesting than the campus tour (although I would do that too.) They are also doing academic talks. Both can be registered for through the Rudder center. You are also able to sign up for dorm tours. If you have to pick just 1 dorm tour, focus on southside, where the engineering commons is.
Thanks. We did. Any restaurant recommendations?
My daughter is working on the final polish of her essay and engineering Short Answer Question. Is there an expected length for the short answer question listed anywhere? I can’t seem to find it. Thanks!
I am unsure. Typically short answer is 300 words or less. Just be concise and real. Grammar error free.
Thank you @TD1999 and @kwhdman! I think we’ve got things pretty much ready to apply. Daughter is finishing up her essay this week. We talked to an admissions counselor and learned that home schoolers do not receive top 10% ranking; the best they give is top 25%; therefore the holistic review. It’s encouraging that you had so much success with your daughter’s applications at TAMU, UT, and SMU! That’s great! I am curious though, regarding the extra hoops at UT, is that because she is a home schooler? Or are all students required to submit such a chart? I believe I have learned since beginning to study the application process that home schoolers are to be treated the same as public school students.
I had no idea there was some benefit of applying early. I was more counting on applying close to the deadline but i guess I’m wrong. I have SAT score but would like to take again late Aug in hopes it would improve. Haven’t done my Essay yet but was wondering if I one needs more than one essay when applying to various colleges? I have spoken to my teachers for LOR’s. I need my 12th grade courses to complete both Common Application and apply texas.
Yes. Apply early if you are holistic review. One essay is fine if you are applying to multiple schools, just make sure your reflect the university if needed.
You should apply and send sat scores as they come in (up until the deadline if necessary) but get that app in sooner than later. LORs can be uploaded later as well and they hold very little value (FYI)
What major are you going for and what’s 2nd choice. What is your class rank and current sat score?
Thank you so much for replying. I am still not sure about major or even what I want to do. I know its sad! At the current moment not even sure about my chances anywhere. I am at a usual competitive public school in Texas and not in the top 25% of my class . My SAT is 1410 but will take it again. 9 AP’s by the end of 12 th grade, GPA UW 3.2 Weighted 4.2. 50 hrs volunteer. A couple of internships, trying to find a job, none yet. No sports or anything very exciting on my CV. I want to stay in Texas unless I can’t find anything here or find something better close by. I am looking into cyber security, Psychology history etc but really not sure
Your SAT is solid. Take again, but take it without pressure. Your gpa is a good weighted GPA. Sounds like your course rigor is good as well. No worries about not knowing what you want to be when you grow up. To me, based on what you listed, you’ll be in a government role like fbi/cia/police etc. very cool interests.
Check out the psych program and computer science (there’s a non engineering type I believe) or even forensic investigation. And whatever you choose… it’s not a life sentence!!! So don’t belabor it.
Best of luck! Reach out if you have any questions. This site/forum is so positive and helpful.
Aggiemomhelp Thank you so much for your help and encouragement
My D22 finished in the top 20% of her class and is a full IB diploma student as well as taking APs. Her first ACT was only a 25. She is planning on taking it again September 11th. I know you say apply as early as possible, so should she apply in August “test optional”? She will most likely apply to Liberal Arts. Will she have the opportunity to supplement her application with her score if she can get into the 28-29 range?
Great job on the top 20%! I would submit ASAP in August with her ACT of 25. THEN… when scores are released from the 9/11 round, submit them as well. It won’t hurt her at all. AND/OR… also take the residual ACT at TAMU. You’ll get the score in the next day or two and it only counts for TAMU. Shows her strong desire to attend TAMU plus it’s last years ACT (or a prior year).
Those are my thoughts. I don’t think TAMU will look highly on test optional students (this is my opinion only) because they are able to take it now and will make it seem like their scores are worse than they probably are. We saw a lot of test optional students having to wait longer for decision last year.
My thoughts from 17 March for comparison.
Out of State - Midwest
Class rank <6%
GPA Weighted 4.07, Unweighted 3.91 (GPA doesn’t mean anything outside of your school)
SAT 1450 (750 Math, 700 Verbal)(Gave up on ACT at 30)
(AP/Honors Math and Science, Honors Spanish, AP Psychology)
Zero volunteer hours
ECs: Piano, Math Team
Essay (Multiple edits completed 95%)
Coalition App filled in except for essays/major
Now he just needs a major… the major questionnaire said Aerospace ENG… I’m going to let him sit on this for a bit, but am going to to get him to do a draft short essay for Aero or Mechanical… it doesn’t really matter which one for TAMU, but he will have to narrow it down for other schools.
Visited TAMU in June (Engineering and Mayes)
Other schools UIUC, ?, ?, ?
@andi96 I remember the curriculum chart for UT was specifically needed for homeschool students. I don’t believe it is required for public school students; not sure about private schools.
While it was a tedious process putting it together, I personally don’t see it as an unreasonable request since Texas does not have any curriculum standards or requirements for homeschool students. I imagine it must be very difficult for universities to holistically review homeschoolers since homeschool studies can vary drastically from one student to another. For example, we know some homeschool students who don’t do any science labs (or they just view them online) while another student will personally complete many labs throughout the course, write lab reports, etc.
For that reason, I interpret the additional information requests for homeschool students as being needed by the university to see what kind of curriculum was provided to the student (and the rigor thereof).
Tomorrow is the big day!! Get those apps in, especially the top 10% if you want Mays, Bims, engineering, architecture or Viz. you are guaranteed acceptance but not major.
Holistic review students… don’t wait for the perfect score. Send what you have and keep taking the exams to increase your chances. Also… check into the residual act held at Tamu.
Best of luck. Keep us posted and come back for moral support. It’s a long process for most, so please stay positive and be excited.