Timeline for College

​Freshman Year

The Alabama State Dept. of Education requires a “4 by 4” curriculum with 4 years of English, Math, History and Science. There are other requirements in P.E., Fine Arts, Technology and electives. In addition, The Capitol School recommends 4 years of foreign languages.

  • Get involved in your school by joining clubs and playing sports. Write down all of your extra-curricular activities outside of school such as Boy Scouts, Leadership camps, etc.

  • Plan ways to contribute 1 hour of service by volunteering each week in the community. Keep a log of all the agencies where you volunteer.

  • Work hard to earn good grades. Your yearly GPA is determined by earning 4 points for each A on your May progress report or 3 points for a B or 2 points for a C or 1 point for a D.

  • Sign up for the ACT test “question of the day” 

​Sophomore Year

Schedule with Capitol School’s counselor to sign up for COMPASS placement tests. You must take the COMPASS test and score 67 or higher in English, 87 or higher in Reading & 46 or higher in Math in order to take UA Early College GATEWAY class.

  • You must be age 15, have a 3.0 GPA, and score high enough on the COMPASS tests to apply for Dual Enrollment/Dual Credit and to take the first UA Early College class, GATEWAY for 2 hours of college credit.  

  • Continue taking high school courses and keep your grades up.

  • Keep up with your extracurricular activities by making a list with dates.

  • Remain involved in your school & community and document all SERVICE hours.

  • Start keeping track of your activities and honors – it can be hard to remember everything you’ve accomplished if you don’t write it down now!

  • Attend a college fair in Tuscaloosa or Birmingham and subscribe to online fairs.

  • Order ACT Online Prep for $39.95 and buy a kitchen timer to spend 20 min. a night practicing your test taking skills.

  • Sign up to take the ACT and/or SAT tests. Use our school code to register: TUSCALOOSA CAPITOL SCHOOL 012681

Junior Year

  • Continue with challenging course work and keep working hard to get good grades.

  • Take one Dual Enrollment class this fall and one during the spring semester. Consider a summer class to be sure you have the minimum of 12 college hours or the “magic” number of 17 hrs. for auto admission by your senior year.

  • Take the PSAT test. Some important scholarships are based on this test. (Be sure to sign up for this test early in the fall). 

  • Stay active and try a new sport to stay involved in your school for extracurricular activities like German Day competition and Spanish Day competition.

  • Find additional ways to find ways to serve in our community & document them.

  • Start researching colleges online and by talking with their representatives and alumni. Set up some college visits within the state during the fall.

  • Contact graduates of your high school who attend the colleges you're considering. Ask for their impressions of the colleges.

  • Attend another college fair to find out more about different college options.

  • Start searching for scholarships.

  • Take the ACT and/or the SAT tests again this year.

  • Review your course schedule and transcript with Dr. Rountree for your senior year to make sure you have or will have taken courses required by colleges.

  • Write, email or call colleges for applications, or check to see if the colleges have online applications OR use the Common Application.

  • Continue visiting all of the colleges you are seriously considering.

  • Decide whether you will take the ACT and/or SAT again and register for the tests. 

Senior Year

  • Enroll in a minimum of two more college classes this year through Dual Enrollment/Dual Credit programs.

  • Begin narrowing your college choices. Try to pick 3 – 5 schools that best meet your educational needs. Start working on applications for these institutions.

  • Make a MASTER LIST of all the admissions, financial aid, and testing deadlines that you will need to meet.

  • Take the ACT and/or SAT again (if necessary) to make a composite of 30 !

  • Before Nov. 1, talk to your teachers and counselor about any necessary letters of recommendation.

  • Attend a college fair with your parents.

  • Schedule campus visits at the colleges in which you are most interested. Try to visit on a weekday when classes are in session. Many colleges host open houses to provide prospective students and parents with information. Finalize and submit applications for admission to your top college choices.

  • As soon as possible in January, your parents should complete an online FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). Be sure to include the codes for the colleges you are considering.

  • Complete all Capitol School requirements:

    • order a senior brick for the Memory Walk

    • order a graduation robe, invitations & namecards

    • schedule an appointment to have your senior portrait taken by LifeTouch Photographers.

  • Evaluate scholarship and financial aid information offered by colleges.

  • By May 1, make your final decision based on criteria you feel are important to you and your educational needs.

  • Return necessary forms to the college you will attend: housing contracts, medical forms, admission deposits, residence hall/roommate selection forms. Notify Dr.Rountree and all schools to which you have applied of your college decision.