Spanish High School Credit Explained

Graduation Credit & Transfer Credit

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is, “Do you offer credit?” Well in this post, we are going to cover several aspects of that question to increase understanding of how Homeschool Spanish Academy can help you achieve your child’s foreign language goals.

In short, we are not accredited by a third party accrediting agency, but to stop reading after this first phrase would be short sided.  Although we hope to be accredited one day, the biggest obstacle that we have experienced is that our instructors operate from overseas.  This inherently makes it difficult for official accrediting agencies because they cannot easily gain access to international databases from other countries and 2) of the language barrier (i.e. translating all records).  It would be naive however, to assume that because our instructors educational certifications are not stamped U.S.A., that they are somehow not qualified to teach their native language, Spanish.

On the contrary, our instructors are perhaps some of the most well-qualified Spanish instructors in the world since they have been teaching Spanish as a second language for most of their adult life – 10 to 15 years on average – and have instructed hundreds if not thousands of students, individually, over the years.

To answer this question more accurately, I think it’s important to first make the distinction between high school credit and college credit.

High School Credit

When parents inquire about high school credit, it’s usually because there’s a possibility that a) their child might return to a public school setting or b) they are concerned about whether colleges will accept their foreign language credit.

Returning to Public School

As I understand it, if a child returns to public school, most high schools require that parents show proof of completed work.  Most high schools suggest having a folder of completed work as proof that certain concepts were covered and that the student truly has mastered the content stated.  Many parents I have spoken with are, in fact, very knowledgable on credit transfer subjects and procedures.

It’s important to note that, most likely, each school is going to be a little bit different and is going to have different document requirements.  At the root of it all, they are going to want you, the homeschooling parent, to show that your child is capable of being placed in a level that is neither too difficult nor too easy.

At Homeschool Spanish Academy, we take great care in providing students and parents with in depth records of their child’s performance and offer reports in the form of report cards.  To our knowledge, all public schools we have been in touch with have verified that these forms of documentation would suffice in a student transfer situation.

Foreign Language Credit & College Admissions

For many colleges and universities (not all), it is a requirement for students to have completed 2 years, or 2 full credits, of a foreign language. Knowing this, how would an admission office consider completed work from Homeschool Spanish Academy?

At this point, it is important to cover the Carnegie Credit.  According to the official definition, it requires students to achieve 120 hours in a year’s worth of course work to earn one Carnegie Credit.  With this in mind, our students earn a half credit with us each semester. But ONLY if the student takes a full semester at 2 classes per week.

How does this work out? Doing the math, taking 2 hours of private instruction per week with at least 2 hours of homework per week (usually more) equals 4 hours of student work per week.  Given that a full semester at Homeschool Spanish Academy runs 15 weeks, that totals 60 student work hours per semester, or half a Carnegie Credit.  To earn full credit, a student must complete both the “A” and “B” portions of any given level.

So how does this work if your child is in middle school? You will find that our middle school and high school topics mirror each other, this is so that if a student, such as your child, should continue to learn with us from middle school to high school, there should be an almost seamless transition.  As a another example, if your student finishes our Middle School levels 1A,1B, 2A &2B, your child would start in 3A for High School.

Although the same topics are covered in both middle school and high school, the documents differ in complexity and intensity. Middle school documents for example, tend to include more pictures and are slightly more simplified. The high school program documents generally have more homework and include less illustrations.  Additionally, we expect High School students to write more short answers and essays (in the higher levels) and progress much faster.

Technically, one could argue that a middle school student could fulfill the obligatory high school foreign language credit. Most colleges and universities that I have consulted on the matter however, say that they prefer to see at least one year of foreign language completed in high school.

When our students go to college, much of the process is the same, where parents have to show the admissions office their learning rubric and offer proof of the student’s achievement.  If there is any question, most schools will often defer to a standardized test that can easily be taken online.  In the worst case scenario, and a student has to take the exam to place out of Spanish 101, our students should be more than adequately prepared to place into higher college Spanish coursework given the rigor and customization of our program.

Again, all of the public and private universities we consulted, said that a program such as Homeschool Spanish Academy, including reading, writing, listening, comprehension, and speaking elements, should be more than adequate for most colleges and universities. Of course each individual admissions office has final say, but Homeschool Spanish Academy is here to offer as much information possible to help parents and students in the college entrance process.

Foreign Language Credit & College Credit

“Does HSA offer college credit?” Most colleges & univerisities, unfortunately, only accept dual credit coursework or AP exam scores for college credit. We can help our students prepare for the AP exam, but we do not offer the actual exam.

Hopefully this post offers some additional insight on foreign language credits, but if there are any additional questions, I would be more than happy to answer them or create an additional post.  Feel free to leave a comment or contact us at the Homeschool Spanish Academy contact us page.

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