5 Types of Elective Credits for the Homeschool Transcript: Tips from a 20 Year Vet

There are 5 types of elective credits you and your homeschool high schoolers can plan for if they want a well-rounded transcript.

Types of Elective Credits

5 Types of Elective Credits for the Homeschool Transcript: Tips from a 20 Year Vet

My kids loved their homeschool high school electives. These were the courses that THEY got to choose. I mean, they HAD to take geometry, chemistry, civics, and the other core classes. However, when it came to filling out their transcript, it was the electives that really made some of my teens’ academic record sparkle and their hearts glad.

As you know, the transcript needs to show around 26 credits for graduation. This varies state to state and umbrella school to umbrella school. Check Homeschool Legal Defense Association for details.

Beyond the core classes, your homeschooling high schooler needs to show electives on his transcript. Here are 5 types of electives for the homeschool transcript:

1. Electives required for graduation

These often include Fine Arts, phys ed, and career pathways (all my kids did Career Exploration Workbook).

High School Career Exploration Bundle - a comprehensive curriculum for teens
Career Exploration is an important elective for the homeschool transcript. Click here to look at our user-friendly curriculum.

2. Building power in the transcript

If your child is interested in a college major that is based on a core subject, extra (elective) credits will add power to the transcript. (Your homeschool high schoolers can also level up their courses to give college-attractive rigor on the transcript.) Often there are textbooks or online courses available for these topics.)

For a budding science major, elective sciences (those beyond the required 4 sciences for graduation) could include: Anatomy and Physiology, Advanced Chemistry, Marine Biology, Astronomy, Environmental Science, Computer Science. (My oldest took Computer Science classes in preparation for his college major- back in his day, they were mail order…).

Human Development from a Christian Perspective by 7 Sisters Homeschool
Click here for more information.

For a budding psychology major, electives might include (if not included in required core classes): Psychology, Human Development, Sociology, Philosophy. (All my kids built some power in their transcripts with philosophy.)

Psychology from a Christian Perspective from 7SistersHomeschool.com
Click image for more information.

For a budding history major, electives might include special studies in missionary work, geography special topics, World Wars (check back later this week for how-to’s), history of … (architecture, fashion, cars, etc). (My second son did several extra history credits in preparation for his college major.)

Philosophy in 4 Questions. Dr. Micah Tillman 7SistersHomeschool.com
Click here for more information.

3. Investigating an interest

If your homeschooling high schooler has a special interest, help them develop a study plan and log 120-180 hours of learning (required number of hours varies by state). This might include special studies in creative writing (above what is needed for Language Arts credit), home economics, home maintenance, speech, quilting, agriculture, forensics. All my teens have taken speech and competed as part of the local homeschool support group’s Rhetoric League using what became 7Sisters’ Speech curriculum.

Speech I Public Speaking and Practical Life Skills 7SistersHomeschool.com
Click image for more information.

My youngest took Home Maintenance from the local community college. All of the kids have done home ec in some form- whether they were interested or not.  

Types of Elective Credits
My son’s band playing at a fundraiser for a homeless shelter.

4. Developing a gift

If God has given your teen a talent, it should be developed. Log 120-180 hours of lessons or educational activities in these areas for a credit. This kind of elective credit might include taking art or voice lessons, playing on a soccer team, learning leadership skills. (My youngest is a musician. He wrote his yearly research papers on this history of church music. He plays in church worship team and a Christian rock band. He takes voice lessons, music theory, and piano lessons. All of these are electives for him.)

Types of Elective Credits
My son at the recording studio.

5. Exploring career options

Career exploration is an elective. Log 135 hours of lessons or educational activities per credit. Every teen should have a career exploration credit or two before graduating. This can include Career Exploration texts and learning activities. Activities may include volunteering at zoos, nursing homes, urban schools, libraries. Apprenticeships are also good career exploration activities; try helping out a veterinarian, classroom teacher, coach, office administrator, etc. (My youngest did some work at a recording studio. Another son helped out at a local video production agency.) Sometimes even a part-time job in high school may count.

Here is Sabrina’s vlog for teens working on Creative Writing.

7Sisters’ curriculum is vetted by homeschool high schoolers. Download texts for your teens for awesome electives on the homeschool transcript. Your teens’ lives and transcripts will be better for it!

5 Types of Elective Credits for the Homeschool Transcript: Tips from a 20 Year Vet

Vicki Tillman

Blogger, curriculum developer at 7SistersHomeschool.com, counselor, life and career coach, SYMBIS guide, speaker, prayer person. 20+year veteran homeschool mom.

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