The college admissions office is asking for a high school transcript, but you’ve never made one before. How do you provide an official homeschool transcript? Creating a transcript does not have to be a burden, especially if you have a homeschool transcript template to work from. Take a look at what you’ll need to create your own homeschool high school transcript. We also include details about optional items to put on your homeschool high school transcript. Ideally, you would start preparing a transcript before your child starts high school. But even if you waited until college application deadlines, you can still provide a thorough homeschool high school transcript by following these tips.
What is a homeschool transcript?
A homeschool transcript is a record of your child’s high school course work created by the parent or organization. The transcript should include the courses taken, student’s name, your homeschool name, address, and birthdate. Free and paid online resources and templates can help you create your homeschool transcript.
What does a homeschool transcript look like?
A homeschool transcript should show the course work from each year of high school in a series of tables. It should include a header that lists your homeschool’s name, your child’s name and date of birth, and a signature from the head of school—which will often be you or whoever is the primary educator in your home. You may also provide course descriptions in a separate document from the one-page transcript.
Homeschool Transcript Example
Here is an example table for 9th grade using a weighted 4-point grading scale. To calculate grade points, multiply the credit hours earned by the weight of the letter grade.
|9th grade||Credits||Grade||Grade Points|
|Computer Applications||0.5||A||2.0 (0.5 x 4.0)|
|Physical Education 9||0.5||A||2.0|
|Year Total||7.0||3.81 (column total 26.7/total credits 7.0)|
Free Homeschool Transcript Template
If you need a transcript template to get you started in creating your own, download a free template from BJU Press. You will need to fill in your student’s class information and grades, and you will need to calculate GPA separately to enter into the form. You can also find GPA calculators online.
What to Include in Your Homeschool High School Transcript
- All course work. Your homeschool high school transcript should include all course work required to meet state standards for graduation. You can note classes taken online or at another school. You should also include any classes taken in middle school that specifically apply to state standards, for example, an 8th grade Algebra I class. You should also include any course work your child took at home, including independent studies that look different from traditional courses. Including courses taken elsewhere is not strictly necessary, but it does make it easier for a college admissions department to see that your child met state standards.
- Assigned credit hours. Each course on the transcript should have assigned credit hours. In most states, a high schooler receives 1 credit hour for a core class that meets every day for a year. Classes with lighter loads and electives receive a half credit. Your state might have different norms, so be sure to follow those.
- Assigned grade. Each course should have an assigned grade. From that assigned grade, you will calculate a GPA for each year of high school as well as a cumulative GPA.
- Demographic information. Include relevant demographic information on the transcript. The child’s name, date of birth, school name, and graduation date should be at the top of the page.
- Grading scale. Provide a grading scale that shows what percentage scores receive what letter grade and how you are calculating GPA. The table shows an example of a grading scale with weighted GPA scores.
|Percentage Score||Letter Grade||GPA Score|
- Parent or guardian signature. As the leader of your homeschool, you should sign the transcript. Signing in the presence of a notary public is optional.
- Test scores (optional). You may include test scores, although those will be sent separately to the colleges directly from the testing companies. Do not include test scores if you are applying test-optional.
How to Format Your Homeschool Transcript
The transcript is a series of tables for each year or semester of high school. Excel is ideal for this, especially if you are building your own. You will be able to use formulas to calculate GPA within Excel. Add gridlines and fill colors, or use table designs included in Excel. Templates are also available in Word and PDF formats. You will have to do separate GPA calculations if you use either of those options. Your goal with formatting should be to make the transcript look professional. Keep it neat, with tables aligned.
How to Make a Homeschool Transcript
- Start as early as possible. If you didn’t start early and maintain the transcript as you went, start by gathering all of your course records since the beginning of high school. You will need a final letter or percentage grade for the GPA. Some middle school classes might be needed if they are part of the state requirements for high school.
- Include the student’s information at the top, along with the words “Official High School Transcript.”
- Create individual tables for each year of high school as shown in the example or find a suitable template available online.
- Give each course a name that clearly defines the content and its academic discipline. You will have an opportunity to upload course descriptions along with a transcript, but easy-to-interpret names are beneficial. The name of your main textbook for each course is a good starting place. Include any non-traditional studies your child has completed, since this is one of the benefits of homeschooling that will stand out on a college application.
- Determine how many credits each course is worth based on your state’s standards.
- Decide on a grading scale and whether to weight your GPA calculation with plusses and minuses. Add a table to the page defining your grading scale, as shown above.
- Calculate the GPA for each year of high school as well as the cumulative GPA for all four years (or year-to-date for the final year). Cumulative GPA is not an average of the yearly GPA scores, since each year might have a different number of credit hours. Add up the total Grade Points for all four years, then divide by the total number of credits for all four years.
- Decide whether you want to include standardized test scores on your transcript.
- Finalize the format of the entire page, so all of the information fits. You can use landscape or portrait formats as long as it is one page.
- Create a PDF of your official transcript, and add a digital signature.
- Update the transcript after your student completes his final coursework.
What to Do if Your High Schooler Completed College Courses
If your high schooler completed college courses, you should have the college he attended or completed coursework at send official transcripts to any other colleges he is applying to. You also have the option of putting those classes on your transcript and noting where they were taken. This is helpful if the courses are required to meet state standards.
What to Do if You only Homeschooled Part of High School
If your student took some classes at a traditional high school, whether as a full-time or part-time, you will want to include those classes on your transcript. Note where the classes were taken. If you homeschool first, and then your high schooler attends a traditional school, that school will need a transfer transcript from you and then they will add the courses from the transfer transcript to their final transcript for college applications. The guidelines above will help you create the transcript for transferring into a high school as well.
Why You Need a Homeschool Transcript
A complete homeschool transcript will help college admissions departments verify that your student is academically prepared for college. Even if a student plans to begin a vocation directly out of high school, some employers will want to see evidence of a high school education. Your transcript will meet both of these needs.
Can you create an official homeschool high school transcript?
Yes, you can create an official homeschool high school transcript on your own or using a homeschool transcript template. Including your signature as head of school makes your transcript an official transcript. If you are concerned about the transcript not looking official, you could consider signing in the presence of a notary public, who will verify your identity and witness your signature. Some parents purchase a seal embosser for their homeschool to give the transcript an official look. You could also use the embosser for diplomas if you decide to buy one, but it is optional.
How to Send Your Homeschool Transcript to a College
Your student might apply to colleges using The Common App or apply to each individual college. In either case, she will have the opportunity to upload a high school transcript. This will be the official copy, and a PDF format is recommended.
What’s the best way to track grades in your homeschool?
The simplest way to track grades in your homeschool is to use a learning management system or Excel spreadsheet. If you’re not confident in Excel, then the BJU Press Homeschool Hub will be ideal for helping you track grades in your homeschool. The Homeschool Hub was designed for homeschool families using BJU Press courses, and you can even use it to create custom courses for elective courses or other homeschool materials. You can use it to keep records and create transcripts, but it has many additional features that to help you in organizing your homeschool.
How the Academy of Home Education Can Help with Your Homeschool Transcript
The Academy of Home Education will support you with record keeping and will provide you with a completed high school transcript when your student graduates through the AHE. They can also give you an accredited homeschool program. There are numerous benefits for high schoolers participating in the AHE, including a formal graduation ceremony in Greenville, SC.
• • • • •Valerie is a wife and a mother to a very busy preschooler. In her free time she enjoys reading all kinds of books. She earned a B.S. in Biology from Bob Jones University, minoring in Mathematics, and a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics from Ohio State University. Valerie has 15 years of experience working in research laboratories and has coauthored 8 original research articles. She has also taught several classes and laboratories at the high school and college levels. She currently works as a Data Analyst and a freelance writer.
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