A student of any age has many opportunities for getting into college without standard K-12 schooling. The books, materials and services listed in this section can help students compile their nonstandard studies, life and work experiences into a transcript to be used for college applications. Many colleges want self-starting, independent learners, and if students can prove through essays, work history and recommendations that they are capable and willing to do college-level work, they are very likely to be admitted somewhere. This is especially true if they have transcripts showing the successful completion of some community-college, adult-education or other academic courses.
There are also colleges that advocate a do-it-yourself approach to education, seeking to enroll students who want to develop their own curricula.
Creating Transcripts for College Admissions or Work
- The Homeschoolers Guide to Portfolios and Transcripts by Loretta Heuer The most complete guide for organizing work, studies, and passions into a variety of formats. Different colleges require different application approaches, and Heuer outlines all the options.
- Forging Paths: Beyond Traditional Schooling (GHF Press, 2012) by Wes Beach Stories of nine young people who took varying, nontraditional educational paths during their high-school and college years and succeeded in their chosen endeavors and vocations.
- Opportunities After “High School”: Thoughts, Documents, Resources, 4th Ed. Describes how Wes Beach creates transcripts for nontraditional college applicants, as well as how he helps people figure out what they should do if college isn’t right for them.
Free College Courses Online
Massive open online courses (MOOCs) have become very popular, but none offer college credit at this point. This lists some major universities that offer MOOCS, as well as organizations that aggregate or conduct MOOCs.
- Carnegie Mellon University
- Harvard University
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
- Standford University
- University of California–Berkeley
- University of California–Los Angeles
- Yale University
- Coursera partners with major universities and organizations to create their online classes.
- iTunesU has apps and other resources for college and K–12 learning using an iPad.
- iVersity. A Facebook-style interface adds a social dimension to their online classes.
- MOOC List. A complete list of MOOCs offered by the best universities and other entities.
- Udemy. This site allows anyone to create their own online course, in addition to offering an array of college-level courses offered by professors.
Testing To Receive College Credit For Courses
- College Level Examination Program (CLEP) P.O. Box 6600 Princeton, NJ 08541-6600
- CLEP Official Study Guide 2013 (Official Study Guide for the CLEP Examinations) (College Board, 2013)
- American College Testing – Proficiency Examination Program (ACT – PEP examinations)
- New York State residents should contact Regents College Examinations in Albany, NY
Unschool Adventures – Educational & adventure programs for teens & young adults who don’t go to school
Project World School – Inspiring temporary learning communities around the world for teens & young adults.