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Plan to Do Your Best on Standardized Tests-- Simulate The Test Experience

Dual Enrollment & Practice Essay Writing Advice

Colleges Known To Have Accepted Homeschooled Students 

Plan to Do Your Best on Standardized Tests-- Simulate The Test Experience!

   By Dan Crabtree, College and Career Counselor, Wheaton Academy, West Chicago, IL  (2007)

“For many years our school has been a standardized test site for our students, some of whom were home schooled before they came to our school.  We also have made ourselves available as a testing site for home educating students in our area who are not enrolled at our school.

Some home educated students have less experience taking standardized tests than those who have been in school.  There is some truth to the adage “practice makes perfect.”  Although it is very rare for a student to get a perfect score, experience helps.  A student who has taken a particular test before, or has closely simulated the experience, will tend to enter the test environment with more confidence and less anxiety.  He or she will spend less time dealing with the mechanics of taking the test, will be better able to pace himself or herself, and can more easily focus on the content of the test.

How To Simulate Taking a Standardized Test

I recommend that all students take a full-length practice test before the actual test day.  For a home schooled student who may not have taken many standardized tests before, such a simulation can be especially valuable.

You can purchase practice tests for the PSAT, SAT and ACT in most bookstores or via the Internet.  In addition, you may be able to obtain a free practice test through a local high school’s guidance office.

I recommend taking the practice test in a local public library or similar environment. A library is a fairly close approximation to the atmosphere of a test center.  While the library should be relatively quiet, there will be minor distractions, just as there may be at the test center on test day.  You may hear people coughing, chairs creaking, and a bit of rustling around. You want conditions to simulate as closely as possible the actual test environment.

Here are the suggested simulation steps:

  1. Get a copy of a complete practice test.
  2. Go to your public library—or any library, to take the test.
  3. If possible, take the practice test on a Saturday morning, because (for the ACT or SAT) that will be the day and time that you will actually take the test.
  4. Take the test exactly as it will be given on the real testing day.

Follow the same amount of time to read the directions.

Fill out the ID information.

Spend the same amount of time on each section as will be given for the test.

When it is time to take a break, take the break.

  1. Then, score your test.  The answers and scoring instructions will be provided in the practice test.

When students complete an entire practice test in this kind of simulation, they are less likely to be tripped up by the directions or by the logistics of taking the test.

After experiencing such a simulation, on the actual test day students tend to be more relaxed, confident, and better able to do their best.”

Dual Enrollment & Practice Essay Writing Advice

Advice from Janine:

  • Grew up homeschooled 
  • Wheaton College graduate
  • Currently a public school music teacher, for 1st – 5th grade

        While In High School – Dual Enrollment
        “If your state’s junior college or community colleges have that, it’s a great advantage.  I entered college with 42 college credits. Among them were many general education courses I had taken at junior college, which also counted for my high school requirements.  When I came to Wheaton I could get right to my major.  My program of music education would have taken five years, but instead, because I was able to come in with those credits, it took four years.”

        Practice Essay Writing      
        “In high school I spent two years practicing essay writing for college essays.  A few years early I downloaded college applications of the schools I thought I wanted to apply to, and then practiced writing the essays.”

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Colleges Known To Have Accepted Homeschooled Students

While there are likely more colleges and universities who have accepted homeschooled applicants, these are schools who have been known to accept homeschooled applicants.


Auburn University

Birmingham-Southern College

Judson College

Oakwood College

Stillman College

Talledega College

University of Mobile

University of Montevallo


Alaska Pacific University

Sheldon Jackson College

University of Alaska Southeast


Arizona State University

Grand Canyon University

Prescott College

University of Arizona


Arkansas Baptist College

Arkansas Tech University

Henderson State University

John Brown University

Lyon College

Ouachita Baptist University

Philander Smith College

University of the Ozarks

Williams Baptist College

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DeVry University (Pomona)

Antioch Southern California (Los Angeles)

Antioch Southern California (Santa Barbara)

Biola University

California Baptist University

California Lutheran University

California Institute of Technology

California Polytechnic State University – San Luis Obispo

California State University – Los Angeles

Claremont McKenna College

Point Loma Nazarene University

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Colorado College

Colorado School of Mines


Florida State University


Berry College


Brigham Young University (Hawaii)


Lewis-Clark State College


Bradley University

DeVry University

Judson College

North Central College

Northern Illinois University

Northwestern University

Trinity International University

University of Chicago

University of Illinois – Chicago

Wheaton College 


Bethel College

Taylor University


Buena Vista University


Coe College


Kansas State University


Asbury College

Berea College


Bowdoin College

College of the Atlantic

Berklee College of Music

Boston College

Boston Conservatory

Brandeis University

Gordon College

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Massachusetts Maritime Academy

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

University of Massachusetts (Amherst)


Calvin College

Central Michigan University

Finlandia University

Hillsdale College

Hope College

Kalamazoo College

Kettering University

Michigan State University

Spring Arbor College

University of Michigan

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Bemidji State University

Bethel University

Carleton College

College of St. Benedict

College of St. Scholastica

Concordia College

Gustavus Adolphus College

Macalester College

St. Olaf College

University of St. Thomas


Millsaps College


Carroll College


Creighton University


Dartmouth College


Drake University

Drew University

Princeton University

Rutgers State University of New Jersey

Seton Hall University


Cornell University

Elmira College

Fashion Institute of Technology

Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Ithaca College

New York University

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rochester Institute of Technology

State University of New York (Geneseo)

State University of New York

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Davidson College

Guilford College


Antioch College

Capital University

Case Western Reserve

Cedarville College

College of Wooster

Denison University

Franciscan University of Steubenville

Hiram College

University of Cincinnati

Ohio State University

Oberlin College

Muskingum College


Eastern Oregon University

George Fox University

Oregon State University

Southern Oregon University

University of Oregon

University of Portland

Willamette University


Bryn Mawr College

Bucknell University

Carnegie-Mellon University

Delaware Valley College

Dickinson College

Drexel University

Franklin and Marshall College

Gettysburg College

Grove City

Haverford College

Lafayette College

Messiah College

Muhlenberg University

Pennsylvania State University

University of Pennsylvania

Ursinus College

Villanova University

West Chester University

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Brown University

Rhode Island School of Design


Clemson Unversity


Maryville College

Vanderbilt University

Christian Brothers University

David Lipscomb University


Austin College

Baylor University

LeTourneau University

Rice University


Brigham Young University


Bennington College

Goddard College

College of William and Mary

George Mason University

Patrick Henry College

University of Virginia


Bethany College


Beloit College

Lawrence University

Marquette University

University of Wisconsin (Madison)


Evergreen State College


Catholic University of America

George Washington University

Georgetown University

Trinity College

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