Arts and Sciences Admissions

Homeschooled Applicants

Homeschooled Applicants

Oberlin College has a rich diversity of students who bring educational experiences from both conventional and alternative schooling, and we welcome applications from home schooled students. When evaluating applications for admission, the Admissions Committee seeks evidence of academic preparation and proficiency comparable to:

    • 4 years of English
    • 4 years of mathematics
    • 3 years of the same foreign language
    • 3 years of laboratory sciences
    • 3 years of social studies including history


To properly evaluate the academic background of home schooled applicants, Oberlin College has separate application requirements for admission. All of the following are required unless otherwise noted. The College of Arts & Sciences does not require an application fee.

Application Part I

We encourage you to let us know of your interest in applying to Oberlin as early as possible, so that we may follow up with you regarding important dates and requirements. To declare your intention to apply to Oberlin prior to your submission of the Common Application, complete the optional Application Part I

Common Application

To be completed online at the Common App website. The Common Application also includes a personal essay. Check out our best essay tips.

Although Oberlin is a member of the Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success, we will not be accepting the Coalition Application for the 2017-2018 application year. Students applying to Oberlin in fall 2018 will have the option of submitting either the Coalition Application or the Common Application.

Writing Supplement to the Common Application

The required Oberlin writing supplement asks for a response to the prompt: How did your interest in Oberlin develop and what aspects of our college community most excite you? We recommend submitting the Writing Supplement as soon as possible after submission of the Common App. The Writing Supplement has a 250 word limit and should be submitted through the Common App website.

Academic Portfolio

A detailed syllabus is required that lists the subjects studied each year, the dates each subject was studied, a description of each course of study, major texts used or literature read, and evidence of science laboratory experiences. The Academic Portfolio is to be uploaded in PDF format to Oberlin’s Common App Writing Supplement.

Test Scores

Official score reports from one of the following: ACT, SAT, or new SAT. Optional essay sections are not required. If you do not send us ACT scores, you must submit scores from the SAT (old or new) and from two SAT II subject exams.

Recommendations (2)

Two recommendations from non-parent adults who can provide a meaningful evaluation of your academic and personal characteristics. Non-parent adults include private instructors, coaches, religious leaders, mentors, employers, or sponsors of an extracurricular activity. A parent may submit an additional teacher recommendation if s/he was the primary instructor.

Academic Paper

Provide a copy of a recently written academic paper. Papers do not need to be lengthy, but should be a typical example of your written work. Graded copies are preferred. A recent scientific laboratory report is welcome as an example of an academic paper. The Academic Paper is to be uploaded in PDF format to Oberlin’s Common App Writing Supplement.

Optional Items

If you would like to include additional materials to supplement your application, we will accept the following items.

Additional Recommendations

While the two required non-parent recommendations are often sufficient, you are welcome to submit additional letters of recommendation if they will provide further insight into your academic abilities or experiences. Recommendations from parents may be appropriate if the parent is a primary instructor.

Arts Supplements

Supplemental materials are not sent to faculty members for review, but you are welcome to submit them to highlight for the admissions committee a special accomplishment, talent, or interest. Please review the Submission Guidelines. Materials not submitted in accordance with the guidelines will not be reviewed.

Early Decision Agreement

Required for all students applying Early Decision. Must include parent and guidance counselor signatures. Available for online completion through the Common App website.


Interviews are not required for admission. In certain cases, however, an interview may be requested by the Office of Admissions. To schedule an interview, please visit the interview page.

Science Research

If you have been involved in significant scientific research, you are welcome to submit a research abstract or resume to highlight your accomplishments. If you participated in mentored research, you are encouraged to request an additional recommendation letter from a research mentor who has been personally involved in your work.

Unless otherwise noted, all materials may be submitted online through the Common App website, mailed to the Office of Admissions, 101 N. Professor St, Oberlin, OH 44074, or faxed to 440-775-6905.

Financial Aid

We meet 100% of the demonstrated financial need for all admitted students. However, your status as a home schooled student may affect your eligibility for Federal financial aid. Home schooled applicants are eligible to receive Federal Student Aid funds if their secondary school education was in a home school that state law treats as a home or private school. Some states issue a secondary school completion credential to home schoolers. If this is the case in the state where the student was home schooled, they must obtain this credential in order to be eligible for Federal Student Aid funds. For further assistance please contact the Office of Financial Aid at 1-800-693-3173.