Can my children go to University if we Homeschool?

I hear this question so often from clients, family and friends and I used to really worry about this too. I had a very traditional education and went to uni, as was expected of me, and then did post-graduate studies too. And then I taught at university for 10 years doing clinical supervision. So when we started homeschooling, one of my biggest concerns was that I might be denying my children the same opportunities to go to university when they grew up.

What I very quickly came to understand through watching my children learning and thriving whilst following a Natural Learning approach, is that our children will be able to decide for themselves what path they want to take and how they want to pursue learning when they are adults. And I have developed a deep trust that they are so capable of choosing what they want to do and then making it happen when we support them but get out of the way!

Sometimes university is not the right choice and starting your adult life with a big debt just for the sake of attending university, may not be the right way. Sometimes our children might start a course and then decide that it’s not for them after all.

After following a natural learning approach, I see value in ALL types of learning and ALL the many choices our children make and ALL the different ways that they pursue their passions and interests.

However, if university is what your children decide for themselves, there are so many different options to access courses as a homeschooler and the path from home to uni is so much easier than spending 2 years with all the stress of studying ATAR at school!

There are units that your children can choose via Open University that can give them credits towards getting in to university, there are many foundation courses and pathway-to-university courses offered by these institutions, special admission tests, access using a portfolio of work, as well as children who choose to go from Natural Learning at home to complete year 11 and 12 ATAR at school.

My son has recently arranged a place at university for himself and will be starting his course in a few weeks. He contacted the university and requested special permission to sit the Special Tertiary Admissions Test early, as this is usually only open to mature age students. He found himself a STAT preparation course, spent some time studying it, sat the test, and passed with high enough grades to get admitted. And all this after doing almost no formal, curriculum-based, structured learning in his childhood and with a minimal amount of stress.

So, in response to the question whether university is even possible for those raised with natural learning, I say “Yes”!  Not only is it possible, after a childhood of being supported to learn in their own way and pursue the things that interest them most, they will have learnt how to learn and will have such confidence in their abilities, and such passion for their interests, that they will sail into uni and will always be able to journey towards their dreams.

Aware Parenting with Joss

I am so passionate about sharing this beautiful approach with parents. I believe that Aware Parenting is THE solution for so many of the challenges facing the world. - Joss Goulden, Aware Parenting Instructor
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