The Ultimate Guide to Homeschool Transcripts

Summary: The Ultimate Guide to Homeschool Transcripts, what to put on your homeschool official transcript, sample transcript link, how to calculate the GPA, and what your teen should be taking in homeschooling high school. Note - This post may included affiliate links to products that we love and have used or would use in our  own homeschool. Please see my disclosure policy.

Are you looking for some tips for doing your teen's homeschool transcripts?  Or are you, a bit overwhelmed with the prospects of doing them, like I was.  Welcome!

My daughter is a college grad now, having graduated from our homeschool a couple of springs ago.  That seems like yesterday... I learned a lot from doing her transcripts and going through the college admissions process with her.  

Knowing what to put on her homeschool transcripts was key to her getting into college.  

But transcripts are not just for college.  They show all the hard work and learning activities that your child has done, during their high school years at home.

"Preparing the homeschool transcript is anything but typical and normal because your journey was unique." Tina @ Tina's Dynamic Homeschool Plus 

Here are 9 key steps for doing your teen's transcripts, whether you are showcasing them to college admissions or preparing your teen's transcripts to share with a trade school, community college, or a prospective employer.

First, let's start with a definition of transcripts, from our friends at HSLDA:

"Transcripts are a record of the courses your child completed in high school, the credit he earned for each course, and each course's final grade.

Transcripts also include personal information used for identification purposes and, usually, a grade point average (GPA)."  

So, to get started, what exactly needs to go on the transcript?

1.  What should be included in the homeschool transcript?

The Homeschool Transcript 

Your teen's transcript is to include all courses and studies your student has done, in the home and out.  It is the place to compile all courses, including those from a community college. 

For college bound teens - Be sure to choose a name, like Johns Academy, instead of Learning and Growing School, as that actually helps to led a serious tone to your transcript, and that is what the colleges are looking for.

 --------------------What to Include:----------------------------- 
  • School name and address, phone number 
  • Name of student, DOB
  • ALL courses from 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th grade years, with grades and credits earned  (One year study = 1 high school credit.  One semester = 1/2 credit)
  • Add in any community college courses, dual enrollment, any online courses, etc, as the homeschool transcript should include everything taken, so the college can see it all in one place.
  • For those going to a 4 year college - Scores from SAT or ACT.  Chose the highest scores and list them on your transcript.
  • Student's graduation date and GPA - grade point average
  • Parent signature with a date.  

This list was compiled from HSLDA and Let's Homeschool High School, by me, and there is lots more information on High School here.

2. What should the transcript look like?
Sample Transcripts:

-  Homeschool High School How to Prepare THE Transcript. Tina offers sample transcripts to check out here.

  • HSLDA Sample Transcripts
  • - See more at: Binz, of The Homeschool Scholar, has two sample transcripts  that you can view, as a freebie, on her Record Keeping Sample Page 

  • HSLDA Sample Transcripts
  • - See more at:  Lee Binz, from the Homeschool Scholar, has two free samples, too.  They are at her Record Keeping Samples
    -  HSLDA High School-Transcripts also shares sample transcripts here. 

    - My book, described below has a sample transcript, the kind that the colleges are used to seeing. 

    I liked looking at the samples.  That got me started on the right track.  I recommend putting your transcript all on one page, if possible. That is what the colleges are used to seeing.  

    Also, activities, awards, and honor societies don't need to be on the transcript, as there will be space for those important things on the actual college application itself.  That is also helpful to the admissions folks.

    3.  Where can I find free transcript forms?
    Downloadable Forms:

    -   Blank forms are available from HSLDA link here HSLDA High School-Transcripts.  Scroll down to HSLDA Sample Transcriptand click on Blank Forms.

    -    If you want to add a reading list to your transcript, click on  Homeschool High School Recordkeeping: Reading List.  Amy @ Walking by the Way has a nice form for doing just that. 

    -     I have an editable transcript form with instructions for you to just fill in, in my book below. 

    4.  What about GPA - grade point average?
    Calculating the GPA:

    - Here's a resource to help you to calculate your student's GPA> homeschool grade point average (GPA) from LHSHS.

    GPA on the Homeschool Transcript - Weighted or Not -Vicki, from 7 Sisters, shares some helpful advice here, on weighted transcripts.

    - I also have a simple explanation of how to find your teen's grade point average, which will be in my upcoming ebook.

    5.  How about calculating credits?

    For high school courses, whether they are in your homeschool, at co-op, or online:  

    One year of study = 1 high school credit.          
    One semester = 1/2 credit

    Credits for Dual Enrollment/College Level Courses:  
    Generally, a one-semester three-credit college course is equal to a year-long one-credit high school course.

    Let's stop, and take a breath, and hear some good news...

    Homeschool Transcripts are being widely accepted by colleges, and many are even dropping extra requirements for homeschoolers, especially when the transcripts include two things...strong reference letters and clear course descriptions.

    6. What about course descriptions, and reference letters?

    Not all colleges require course descriptions, but if they do, it is not hard to make them.  The most helpful thing is to make note of what resources you will be using for each course, and then save this info until the end of the year.  That way, you have what is essential for writing your descriptions.

    Reference letters are important, too.  If you have a teacher or co-op leader to ask, they are great sources for references.  Many homeschoolers will use their high school activity leaders as sources for their teen's references.  

    We used our irish dance teacher, our Youth and Government leader, and someone from her volunteer work, as references.  Colleges are used to getting references from a variety of sources for their homeschool applicants.

    -  I have more on both of these subjects in my book below.
    What if you just want a little help with "what" to put "where" on your transcripts? 

    7.  Are there frugal resources for transcripts?

    The link above lists my favorite frugal resource for transcripts.....and I highly recommend HSLDA's Fast Transcripts, which is included in this post.

    Now that you know how to make your teen's transcript, are you wondering what subjects should be included on it?

    8.  Are there certain courses that should be 

    covered before graduation?

    Most states give this decision to the homeschooling family.  

    In my state of WA, the parents choose which subjects to focus on, and decide when their student is ready to graduate.  This means that a student going to a vocational institute after graduation, may not need to follow the same recommended courses for teens who will be headed to community college or a 4 year college.

    But, catch this please - There are some states that do have specific requirements for homeschool graduation, so it is advisable to check with your state on that.  

    What more do you need to know if your child is headed to college?

    9.  How about the college bound?  What courses should they be doing in high school?

    Kids who are headed to college need to know what their specific college entrance requirements will be.  This will vary from college to college.  It is helpful to search the websites of the most likely colleges that your teen would be considering.

    Knowing your teen's college entrance requirements is key to your high school planning. 

    Congratulations for having made it through these 9 steps to transcripts.  

    Here are a few more tips from my veteran homeschooling friends:

    Amy @ Walking by the Way has a nice downloadable High School Record Form for doing just that. It can be attached to your transcript. Read more in her post - Homeschool High School Recordkeeping: Reading List.

    Tina @ Tina's Dynamic Homeschool Plus does a great job of explaining what high school courses are needed, depending upon where your child is headed. In Homeschool High School - The Must Cover Subjects, she lays out the recommended courses for three levels, minimum, recommended, and college bound.

    has fantastic printables to make homeschooling high school easier, even easy peasy!  She offers a Free High School Planning Sheet here.

    Now that you know how to do transcripts...  Here's my book/kindle  to help keep track of all those high school details....

    More high school posts are on Pinterest here: Homeschooling High School Pinterest Board

    Thanks for stopping by BJ's Homeschool,


    Betsy is mom to her now college grad, whom she homeschooled from day one.  She blogs at BJ's Homeschool, about the early yearshigh school & college and wrote the book - Homeschooling High School with College in Mind.   She offers free homeschool help through messages at BJ's Consulting

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