4 Basics Homeschool Students Need to Succeed in College

While many parents worry that going to college might be more difficult for homeschoolers than students who graduated from traditional high schools, the opposite might actually be true.

A study from the University of St. Thomas found that the high school graduation rate of homeschoolers was significantly higher than the national average and, as a PBS article explained, they may even have more developed social skills because they interact with a wider demographic and participate in a larger range of extracurricular activities. However, transitioning to campus life can be straining to anyone and it’s important to be prepared. If your child is preparing to attend a university in the fall, make sure he or she is equipped with these basics for college life success.

Trusty Technology

It’s pretty much impossible to get through college without the right kind of technology. In addition to the basic necessary tech, such as a laptop and cell phone, there are some other devices that can help your college kid with classes and life on campus. For instance, Business Insider recommends an e-reader or tablet for reading school materials or for Web browsing without having to lug around heavy textbooks or laptops when they’re not needed. A printer may also be useful when a late-night paper is finished and student printing services aren’t available. An external hard drive can also be a life-saver when countless hours of work need to be protected.

Practical Wardrobe

Many kids may want to pack away their entire closet when they head off for school, but most dorm rooms have limited space so you have to bring only the necessities. Help your child plan out a versatile wardrobe for school with high-quality items from trusted brands that work for class, social events and lounge and study time. For example, pack things like sturdy tennis shoes, high-quality jeans, a lightweight jacket and a couple options for dress clothes. If the university is in another city or state, check what kind of weather conditions are common and make sure to pack accordingly.


It’s no secret that college is expensive and managing money wisely is important. Unfortunately, many kids face their first time on their own and don’t know how to responsibly track their spending. Talk to you child before she leaves about what expenses she will need to pay for, what you will help her with and set up a budget for the semester. Setting up a budget with your child can help you stay on top of college costs as well as teach her how to manage her own money. There are some simple budgeting apps and mobile tools you and your kid can use to help as well. Nerd Wallet suggests Mint, which helps track spending and balances, PocketBudget, which uses pie charts to simplify budgets or Check, which tracks bill payments.

Transportation Plan

Another important decision you and your child will have to make is what kind of transportation she will have while away at school. While many kids may want to take their car with them to college, it isn’t always necessary and parking and storage may include high fees. Luckily most universities offer many other transportation options for students. According to Streetsblog USA, most schools will provide free or discounted public transit tickets to get around the city. There are also rideshare options like Uber or Zipcar in many cities in the U.S. To get across campus, consider a bike or skateboard for a quick trek.

The transition from homeschooling to college doesn't have to be difficult. Prepare your child ahead of time, go over the basics and be there to support her if she needs it. You'll glow with pride as you watch her succeed.

4 Basics Homeschool Students Need to Succeed in College