Advice for 16 year old homeschooler

Discussion in 'High School Education via Distance Learning' started by B.N., Sep 20, 2005.

  1. B.N.

    B.N. Member


    My cousin just graduated from homeschool high school this summer. She is 16 years old. What kind of recommendations would you give her? What possibilities does she have for completing a Bachelors degree via distance learning? Does she have to be 18 to take CLEP / Dantes or to apply to a distance learning college ( for instance one of the "big 3")?

    Apparently someone told her mom that you have to be at least 18 to start on a distance learning degree, but I've never heard of that. Are there some schools that have an age requirement?

    Thanks for your help,
  2. philosophy

    philosophy New Member


    I'd say that a local community college or Excelsior College would be some possible avenues to consider. There are some colleges that require a student to be of a minimal age such as 18 or 21. This is mostly to do with the fact that schools at a distance would like to encourage students to pursue academic work at a local college in there area. I don't necessarily agree entirely with the requirement but there are always certain rules or guidelines that don't always make sense. I know that there are some student sthat are 16, 17, or 18 that are very mature and are serious about wanting to pursue higher learning. I am basing my observation on Excelsior because in previous commencements it has mentioned about the oldest student graduating and also graduates as young as 17. Let us know how you make out.
  3. ScottC

    ScottC New Member

    I would agree with the local community college. We homechooled two of our children and I think the interaction and testing experience from a normal class situation gained at the community college would be beneficial. I think the distance learning bachelor programs for students that are already working is good but for someone with no work experience, it is better to take a regular college class. I know our local community college allows sixteen year olds to take classes as long as they pass the basic math and english tests. Just my thoughts…
  4. japhy4529

    japhy4529 House Bassist

    From the "Excelsior policies and procedures handbook":

    "Excelsior College does not discriminate on the basis of age, color, religion..."

    I tried to add the direct URL to this PDF document, but it didn't work.

    Not sure about TESC or COSC, but I would imagine they would have the same policy.

    - Tom
  5. philosophy

    philosophy New Member


    If I remember correctly I believe that Thomas Edison State College requires a student to be at least 21, and I'm not sure about Charter Oak, but it seems to me it was either 18 or 21.
  6. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Boilerplate affirmation of what are legal requirements, regardless of institutional policy.

    Discrimination against lower ages is in many cases legal and common.
  7. roy maybery

    roy maybery New Member


    You might try one of the overseas universities; Canada, australia Great Britain or New Zealand, etc.
    However, it strikes me that in the eyes of a potential employer this person may have already missed important social interaction in high school. A degree at distance ed might add to this shortcoming.

    Roy Maybery
  8. Anthony Pina

    Anthony Pina Active Member

    My daughter has been home schooled and also spent five years in a charter school. She is now 16 and a freshman at our local community college, which has an excellent program. We met with the admissions counselor, who had her take the placement exams for Freshman English and math and requested that we have a formed signed at the local school district office to sever the relationship with the district (she never attended schools in that district). It was rather straightforward and we did not expereince any hassles. Of course, for the first time ever, I intentified myself on the phone as "Dr. Piña" and left my business card at the Superintedent's office with the instructions for them to contact me at the unviersity if they had any questions :p

    One my daughter has completed 30 units of college credit, she will always be considered a college transfer student and her lack of a traditional high school transcript will be irrelevant. she is taking English Composition via DL and her other courses traditionally.

    Since your cousin has actually graduated from high school, there should be no problem enrolling in most colleges. A high school diploma or GED is the usual requirement for most institutions.
  9. philosophy

    philosophy New Member


    I definately think that a community college is the best route to take in this situation. It allows the student to have interaction with other students and it's important to have some social interaction. There are issues that the person will experience and allow them to deal with different issues and know how to respond. I really hope everything works out well.
  10. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    This is a little off topic, but I wanted to say that it's a misconception that homeschooling necessarily means a lack of social interaction. In fact, in many cases homeschooled kids get more internaction with people, and with a greater variety of people.

  11. Anthony Pina

    Anthony Pina Active Member

    Home schooler's socialization

    In fact, every research study on the topic that I have seen has shown that those who are home schooled are at least as well socialized as those who are public- and private-schooled. In fact, home schooled children tend to be less peer dependent and comfortable interacting with people both older and younger than themselves.

    I have spoken to several groups of educators about the artificial social system in most public schools. Think about it: since you graduated from high school, how much time do you spend exclusively with those who are within one year of your age? The industry-model public school creates a social system that teaches children that everyone your age is "us" and everyone not your age (teachers, parents, silbings) is "them". I do not consider that to be a realistic (or even helpful) social system.
  12. philosophy

    philosophy New Member


    I'm sorry to the previous posters if I seemed like I had something against homeschooling or if I came across that I think they lack social skills or don't have interaction with others. I revise my previous post to state that I think that community colleges are good because it'll allow the student to interact in groups, to discuss issues with fellow peers, and to form opinions. This can be learned in many places but I really think that going to a community college will be a good match and will help a student to transfer on to a college or university. That is what I meant, not that homeschooled children lack social interaction. I just think when students are able to meet with their peers and to take classes such as philosophy, psychology, sociology, and other courses that it helps them to ask questions, to challenge their minds, and to form their beliefs and to gain more knowledge. Again, my apologies if I seemed to come across that I have anything against homeschooling because I do not.
  13. CoachTurner

    CoachTurner Member

    Not long ago, I'd have said that a 16 year old student needs to stay home or very close.

    This semester I've had the great pleasure of meeting a 16 year old young woman whose parents saw fit to send several states away from home to experience college.

    This young woman is exceptionally bright, a fine musician, and able to fit in with her peers seemlesly (though she is known by the nick-name "JailBait").

    So, I say, if she's bright enough to get in and she has the maturity to do so -- send her to college somewhere and let her "move on" as an adult.
  14. Anthony Pina

    Anthony Pina Active Member

    Interesting. I have known a few 17-year olds who have done the same thing. We happen to live just two miles from our local community college. My 16 year old is also bright, beautiful and a fine musician--of course I AM prejudiced :)
  15. suelaine

    suelaine Member


    I would have said the same exact thing but I ended up sending my youngest two off at age 16 and 17. I sent my 17 year old daughter off to a college 8 hours away last year (she is now 18 and a sophomore at college).

    I homeschooled my son last year. He wanted to go to a boarding school where his father once worked for his senior year. I never thought I'd see the day that I would give in to this idea, but I did! My 16 year old son goes to a high school four hours from our home and I ended up with an empty nest a bit earlier than I had anticipated!

    As for the homeschooling experience, the teachers in my community were especially negative about it. Almost every time I saw one of them they said, "But what about his socialization? I'm so concerned!" I honestly think they must have some misplaced idea that the growing trend of homeschooling will affect their job security! We met with a homeschooling group for activities twice a week. It was well supervised and my son made some very good friends and it was certainly a more positive social experience than what he experienced in the school.
  16. little fauss

    little fauss New Member

    The socialization argument is a shibboleth. And it's perfect nonsense to boot.

    But perfect nonsense repeated often among the same group becomes the prevailing view, and can be very difficult to overcome. The feeling I get when I hear the "socialization" line is that the person saying it is repeating what they've heard without any real thought. They've been conditioned to repeat that word with all the mental process of a dog that salivates when its food dish is banged.

    When I take a different track and ask them what they really learned in primary and secondary school that they wouldn't have been able to pick up otherwise they often say: "Not much". When I ask them if they liked school, they usually say: "Not really." They'll almost always grant you that the public school system is for the most part a shambles and keeps our kids quite dumb vis-a-vis the rest of the civilized world, but they keep circling back to "socialization". I've brought up Dr. Pina's argument on the artificial socialization of the schools a number of times. This usually causes them to pause a moment, but then that food dish gets banged and "socialization" drops out of their mouths again, as if they hadn't heard my argument or were utterly incapable of processing it. It reminds me of the movie "This is Spinal Tap", when the fellow says: "But mine goes to 11".

    At bottom, the great majority of what we retain from primary and secondary school is reading, writing and a bit of familiarity with numbers. These skills can be mastered--once a person is mature enough to handle the information--very quickly. It takes months, not years. And as a small college educator, let me say that my average student--these are college students, mind you--probably doesn't know how to read and write and play with numbers as well as the average home-schooled 10 year old! These are not dumb people--they are ignorant because they are not being taught by those to whom we have entrusted billions (nay, trillions) of dollars and thirteen years of our children's lives. And not only do they take up the better part of our children's days, but they send them home with these silly little worksheets, so that said student must spend each evening filling out this stuff (nay, crap) rather than interacting with their parents and getting real socialization.

    If I were a conspiratorial type, I'd say that the whole system is designed to: a). Keep our kids stupid (they make better consumers that way and are less likely to question their government); and b). Break the bonds that the child has with their parents (which makes the student more dependent on the government).

    Those comments strong enough for you all? :)
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2005
  17. Anthony Pina

    Anthony Pina Active Member

    Just keep being strong on this topic, my friend. Having seen the front lines of (nonexsitent) "education reform" in California, I could say a few things a great deal stronger, but I will fight the tempatation.

    I love the reference to Nigel Tufnel of Spinal Tap...that example is spot on!
  18. Splas

    Splas New Member


    I was homeschooled from 1st - 12th grade and have two college degrees. Homeschooling is probably one of greatest things you can do for an intelligent child, words are simply not good enough to describe the bliss.

    By the way, both of my degrees were earned brick and mortar and the transition was a piece of cake.

    Whatever path your cousin takes, I wish her the best of luck!
  19. tcnixon

    tcnixon Active Member

    I would have said the same thing.

    And yet...

    this fall I have sent my 13-year-old daughter off to a school that is about 3 hours away.

    Life can be a very weird proposition. :eek:

    Tom Nixon
  20. B.N.

    B.N. Member

    Thanks for your tips!

    At the moment she might be interested in IT. I recommended that she take some IT courses at the local community college. Then she could get a little more hands-on experience, at least more than she could at home.

    Unfortunately, she missed the deadline for the fall semester. I told her to take the Analyzing and Interpreting Lit CLEP to get experience with CLEPs and to pick up a few credits before the next semester starts up.


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