The Academic Documents you Need for College

academic documents

The new school year is just around the corner. As countless students begin to sharpen their pencils in anticipation of new academic pursuits, it is important to understand what type of academic documents are needed to further your education. Whether you are considering an associates degree (two year degree), are ready to transfer to a four year university, or would like to begin your bachelor’s degree, there are many requirements from these different types of schools before you can begin classes in the fall. Here is a rundown of the type of academic documents necessary for a two year school, a four year university, and the progression from a community college to a university for completion of a four year degree. 

What Academic Documents Do You Need to Enroll in a Two Year College?

If you are looking to attend a two-year college, you will need to submit an application. The application process can be complicated, and you may wonder what documents you need to enroll. The answer may vary from institution to institution, but you’ll still need some basic documents. The following are some examples of what you need to submit with your application. 

You will need to have a current health insurance plan. This plan should cover repatriation and medical examinations. Once you’ve submitted all the necessary documents, you’ll be able to enroll in classes. It’s also important to remember that you’ll need to complete a minimum number of courses each semester to avoid delinquency in your diploma. If you don’t meet these minimum requirements, you’ll be put on probation.

In addition to a high school diploma, you’ll need to have a few other documents. For instance, you’ll need to complete 15 college-preparatory courses with a grade of C or better. English courses should emphasize writing expository prose. In addition, you’ll need to take first-year algebra, as well as two more years of college-preparatory mathematics. Advanced mathematics courses are also highly recommended, especially for seniors.

To register for classes at a two-year college, you’ll need to submit your official high school transcript, an exemption, or a copy of your high school diploma. Many two year colleges require both a transcript and a high school diploma. If you don’t have an official transcript, you’ll need to submit a Conditional Registration Contract (CRC) instead. In addition to a transcript, many states require some form of placement test in order to determine what classes you should be taking. In Texas, for example, you’ll need to provide TSI scores or proof of exemption.

If you’re applying to a two-year college for the first time, you’ll need a high school transcript. This will detail your high school course history. It’s important to know that you need your high school transcript for enrollment in the first-year college, even if you’re not a high school graduate. If you don’t have a current copy of your high school transcript, companies like ValidGrad can help you obtain one quickly so that you can complete the admissions process before school begins.

What Do You Need to Enroll in a Four Year College?

Before you enroll in a four-year college, make sure you have all of your academic documents ready. High school transcripts are required for every college. You can request these from your high school’s counseling office. 

Much like two year colleges, four year universities require a record of your grades throughout high school in the form of a transcript. The initial transcript only includes grades from the junior year because most college applications occur during the first semester of senior year. To ensure that you have strong grades throughout high school, many colleges also request a mid-year and final-year grade report. However, they reserve the right to reject applications that do not include all of these documents. If you’re not sure whether your documents are in order, check with your guidance counselor or recommenders. You can also check with the college’s online portal for more information.

Letters of recommendation are another important piece of your application. While grades don’t say much about a person’s character, they can tell the college more about the person behind the grades. Therefore, many colleges will also request letters of recommendation from teachers who know you well. Obviously, you’ll need to have these letters sent to the college well before the deadline for application. 

Aside from transcripts, most colleges require a college essay. Often referred to as a personal statement, it should be around 650 words in length. It serves as a writing sample as well as a representation of your character and values in most cases. These essays should reflect the personal qualities that you possess. 

Test scores are another important document. A standardized test score is required by many schools, but some have removed this requirement altogether. ACT and SAT scores are the two most common tests used to evaluate students’ high school performance. They both measure high school learning, but have important differences. Almost every college accepts the results of either test, so you may as well take both. You should know what test scores are required and what college will consider them.

All applicants to degree programs must be assessed academically before they can register. This assessment may include a review of high school transcripts as well as placement testing. Those who fail placement tests may have to take skill-building courses or take an English language proficiency test. Once your credentials have been evaluated by the admissions office, you can choose your courses. You can also meet with an academic advisor who will help you select the best classes for your degree program.

What Academic Documents Do You Need to Transfer to a Four Year College?

Among the most important documents you will need to transfer to a four-year college are recommendation letters. At least two of these letters must come from current college professors. High school teachers will be of limited help to admissions officers, so you should aim to get one or two from a professor you have met during your time at community college. Non-academic letters can also be written by an employer or internship supervisor. 

Your two-year college will take your courses and grades from this school and will evaluate them as credit. Then, you’ll need 120 credits to graduate. Transferring with enough credits will allow you to start as a junior, but if you transfer with fewer credits, you will need to repeat some courses to earn the required number. In the end, your bachelor’s degree will be issued by the four-year college you choose to attend.

While transfer applicants generally know which colleges they prefer, they should not get too caught up in the process. Instead, they should concentrate on their career goals. When choosing a college, remember to consult the Common Data Set, a collaborative project of higher education institutions, for information on admissions criteria and transfer applicants’ past years. A college website or admission counselor can help you find your dream school and prepare you to transfer.

Before applying for transfer, make sure you complete at least 26 semester credits in your previous college. A transfer student is often not admitted in the spring semester. It is also important to remember that the college admissions office will consider if you have completed at least a year of college coursework. 

Transfer admissions policies vary by school, but you should have a clear goal in mind before applying to a four-year college. Make sure you are academically prepared for a transfer, and your recommendation letters should support that. 

Applying to any level of higher education can be an intimidating task. When going through the process of getting your academic documents in order, consider ValidGrad to help you with any piece of information you may be missing.

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