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The companies/organizations in this category sell courses “for college credit” that have been evaluated by the American Council on Education (ACE). ACE credit is not as transferable as credit earned directly through a college, but can be very transferable when used with the intention of transferring to one of the partner colleges. ACE is a third party credit evaluator that evaluates all types of learning that happens outside of a college. This kind of college credit is guaranteed to transfer into partner colleges (varies by provider) but transfers poorly outside of partnerships.

Using ACE credit requires creating an account with another third party, Credly to “hold” your teen’s credit until they’re ready to use it. HS4CC List of ACE Partners

Sophia’s courses are offered as a subscription-based learning platform. You can work on 2 courses at a time, but there is no limit to the number of courses you can complete in a month.

Sophia Coupons for HS4CC Families

CodeStart & Expiration Date
HS4CC20235/31/2023 – 12/31/2023
HS4CC2024_11/1/2024 – 6/30/2024
HS4CC2024_27/1/2024 – 12/31/2024

Prices as of 3/29/2023: $99/month, $299/4 months, $599/12 months

Sophia subscription works best when you can lighten your homeschooling load and focus on 1-2 Sophia courses exclusively. Since finishing 2 courses in a month is very cost effective, that is the recommended strategy.

What you need to know about Sophia:

(1) No photo ID required.  For teens that have a driver’s license or passport, this might not be a big deal, but if your teen doesn’t have an official identification card of some kind, getting past the ID checkpoint can be a pain. Sophia doesn’t require a photo ID, so no worries.

(2) No webcam proctoring.  If you’ve taken other ACE courses, you know that webcam proctoring is an expected part of the final exam process. There are always concerns regarding privacy as well as providing a space that meets the proctor’s specifications (nothing on the walls, no one else in the room, etc.) so by using their new technology, they’ve eliminated web proctoring entirely.  They are using a product called “keyboard biometrics” that identifies a person by their typing style.  My son used it earlier this year and liked it a lot!

(3) Course platform is excellent. The appearance, style, visual attractiveness, and ease of use, intuitive style, etc. are constantly praised by our audience as being “their favorite” online course.

(4) All lower level. Their college credits will come in at 100 freshman and 200 sophomore level. To date they haven’t developed any upper level courses, but we hope they do!

(5) Responsiveness. Their customer service is excellent! In addition, they are in regular communication with HS4CC offering promotions, deals, and coupons exclusively to our audience, and we love deals!!

(6) Transcripts. You’ll need to set up an account on Credly to “house” any ACE credits (Sophia or others) as an official transcript. Partner colleges may ask for an official Sophia transcript or an ACE transcript – if they ask for an ACE transcript, they are asking for the one from Credly. EVEN IF your college does not need an ACE transcript, it is highly suggested that you go through the trouble of setting that account up. Having the ACE / Credly transcript holds your unused credits for 20 years. If a company goes out of business before you use the credit, this is your safety net.

(7) ADA Compliance. Sophia has a formal published policy.

(8) Homework. Most Sophia courses require homework (called Touchstones). Since Touchstones must be graded by a human, this WILL create a lag time in your schedule. The strategy for working through the lag is to pair 2 courses together: 1 with homework and 1 without. Work exclusively on the course with homework (course 1) until you submit an assignment and are forced to wait for it to be graded. During the grading lag, work on the course without homework (course 2). Once your assignment is graded, hop back over and continue on course 1. Repeat this process during each grading lag period. When you finish one of the courses, double down on the remaining course. That strategy will allow you to complete 2 courses in 1 month.

(9) Lab Science. The lab science portion of a course is optional, so when you register for a course like Anatomy & Physiology, the 3 credit course is lecture only. If you want or need the lab, you’ll have to add the Anatomy & Physiology Lab for 1 credit to your dashboard. Note that they count lab science as 1 course, so if you take Anatomy & Physiology with Lab, you are taking 2 courses. At this time, labs are transitioning to Labster, a simulation platform. They are set up as pass/fail.Students must complete 14 Labster simulations with embedded formative quiz questions and 2 Touchstones (project-based or written assessments) with an overall score of 70% or better to pass a lab.

If most or all of your planned courses require homework, you’ll want to use the HS4CC Inactive Account Strategy: Sophia Like a BOSS!

HS4CC TIP: How to list Sophia courses on a homeschool high school transcript

Sophia Courses 2023

(3 credits each unless otherwise indicated)

Partner Colleges 2023

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