TEL Learning offers high-quality, self-paced courses that can be used in one of two ways: 1) for college credit for a fee, or 2) as a free resource for your homeschool (no college credit). Both of these options use the exact same course but with different end purposes. Let’s examine the college credit option first.
Affordable and Flexible College Credit for High School Students and Independent Learners
~TEL Learning website
TEL Learning – College Credit Option
TEL Learning is not a college. It is a business. Normally, when a business (non-college) offers classes for college credit, their likelihood of transferability is very low. See credit types ranked by transferability. However, by partnering with colleges to get their courses recorded on regionally accredited college transcripts, TEL has created a business model that has moved their transferability of credit from “unlikely” to “excellent transferability.”
Partner Colleges and Transcripts
TEL course credit will be recorded with a grade on an official college transcript from your choice of their partner colleges. Once you purchase a class through TEL and choose a partner college, you will, in essence, become a student of that college. The credit will appear as original credit. In other words, your teen’s transcript will be identical to that of a student who has taken the courses directly through that college. (There is one exception to this, Greenville University, which is detailed below.)
The partner colleges are all regionally accredited colleges and universities, so expect these courses to transfer well into any college or university that accepts transfer credit. (List updated 6-30-21.)
- Jacksonville University
- Hannibal-LaGrange University
- McMurry University
- Allen University
- Mid-America Christian University (MACU)
- Lane College (LC)
- Oklahoma Christian University (OCU)
- York College (YC)
- SAU Tech (SAU)
- Greenville University (GU) “The transcript from Greenville University will note that the course was taken through TEL Learning. For this reason we would not consider it to be in the “excellent transferability” category because it is not an example of credit laundering. If you transfer to Greenville and finish a degree at Greenville, you won’t have any issues. If you do not intend to finish a degree at Greenville, you should not choose this college to transcribe your courses.” -Jennifer Cook-DeRosa
The partner colleges review the courses to determine if they meet the standards of their institution. Each college evaluates the TEL courses and determines how it will transfer into their college. For example, depending upon the partner college, Quantitative Analysis can transfer in as College Math, Contemporary Math, or Quantitative Reasoning. You will choose the partner college when you purchase the class. Choose your partner college thoughtfully by considering the course titles of your end point college. The course equivalencies for each partner college are shown on the pages linked above.
Cost (and coupons!)
The cost for 3 credit classes is $200 and $67 for 1 credit classes. There are no additional fees – application fees, registration fees, textbooks, online access codes, etc.
Good for: 10% off cart total
Cannot be combined with any other coupon. Good only on TEL Learning Courses on Demand. Not good on Micro-Collegiate Academy or YC Academy. Limit one coupon per person. Expires September 30, 2021
Good for: 15% off one course
Expires June 30, 2021
(as of July 21 this coupon is still working!)
Placement Testing: No standardized testing is required (ACT, PSAT, SAT, etc.)
Age / Grade: Students must be 13 years old and will need a government issued ID. You can begin your studies while obtaining the appropriate identification but you must have the government-issued photo ID prior to scheduling the mid-term exam.
Classes are self-paced (asynchronous) but include 6, 8, 12, and 16 week pacing options to help keep you on track. You have up to one year to finish the course.
Course lessons include a video overview, readings, reflection, check your knowledge quizzes, resource toolbox, and downloadable PDFs of all course material. The courses are available in their free resource library. Before you purchase a course, you can see exactly what it is like. The free courses do not include graded assignments, proctored exams, or interaction with an instructor.
Support: TEL’s support is very responsive to concerns or questions regarding their courses. Students have access to the course instructors who are contracted through TEL and are approved as adjuncts by their institutional partners. At minimum, instructors must have a master’s degree in the subject area or a master’s degree in a related field plus 18 hours of graduate work in the subject area. In addition, student coaches provide support by helping students identify their academic goals as well as provide many beneficial resources that will promote a positive collegiate experience. Students may reach out to their Student Success Coaches at any time to schedule a virtual one-on-one session or participate in our online study groups. More information about our Student Coaching Program can be found here.
Testing Accommodations: Any student seeking to request academic accommodations on the basis of a documented disability should contact the TEL Support Team at firstname.lastname@example.org to coordinate reasonable accommodations.
Note: If you receive a letter grade on a college transcript, you must disclose your transcript on all future college applications or admissions.
Do you want to use TEL as a full curriculum while earning college credit? Check out Micro-Collegiate Academy. They have several enrollment packages to choose from. Keep in mind that this would be a full college workload so make sure your student is ready for this.
Are you looking for a plan that includes an Associate Degree? TEL has partnered with York College to create YC Academy, a pathway for an associate degree using TEL courses. The total cost is $4000. If you consider this, I encourage you to check out your local community college and compare the costs.
TEL Learning – Free Resource Library
In addition to offering the classes to earn college credit, TEL Learning also offers the classes as a free resource. Assignments and exams are not included in the free courses. These free, openly licensed courses can be used as homeschool curriculum or to preview to determine if you want to pursue the college credit option.
“We are committed to providing equitable access to college-level learning to everyone. For each three-hour course we create, we include a version in this free library with the same high-quality, college-level content at no cost. The only difference is the free versions don’t include the mastery assignments or support that our paid courses include.“~TEL Learning website
Course List (June 2021)
Writing and Composition
Introduction to Communication
Introductory Reading and Writing
Language and Composition
Literature and Composition
Research and Composition **COMING SOON**
History and Civilization
US History 1
US History 2
Introduction to Christianity
Stories of the New Testament **COMING SOON**
Survey of the New Testament **COMING SOON**
Music Appreciation **COMING SOON**
Quantitative Analysis 1
Chemistry 1 Lab (1 credit)
Introduction to Biology
Introduction to Biology Lab (1 credit)
Physical Sciences Lab (1 credit)
Principles of Psychology
College Readiness (1 credit)
Introduction to Information Technology
Introduction to Business & Entrepreneurship
If your teen takes a class with TEL, we would love your feedback! What did you like / not like and how was your transfer experience? We keep track of feedback so we can share with other families.