A college campus tour guide is a valuable resource for home school families as children grow into adulthood and consider attending a college or university. That’s why I am glad to share my tips on how home schoolers can have a successful college tour.

Preparing students for their next steps after high school is something that weighs heavily on my heart as a home school mom and a home school group leader. I know there are many options, so I want my children and the students in my home school group to feel equipped to make decisions for their future.

When I decided to home school I was nervous about creating a transcript and issuing a diploma to students. I went through emotions many of you have also felt, including doubt about having what it takes to home school through high school. But, now is the time for me to face this challenge.

My two youngest children—a 12-year-old middle schooler and a 16-year-old high school student—both want to attend college. As a home school mom and home school group leader, I want to help students who have a desire to attend college achieve this goal.

Using a college campus tour guide, I had a wonderful experience during a recent visit to a college near my home.

This university invited home school families to attend a baseball game and campus tour, which was led by a senior student at the university. As we toured with another family in our group, we enjoyed asking our tour guide questions and understanding her involvement in student life.

Prior to the tour, we walked around campus to take in college life. Because we arrived early for the tour, we were able to appreciate how pleasant it was seeing students engaged in conversation as they strolled the campus or relaxed at the campus restaurants.

I have compiled a list of campus tour tips that may be helpful for you to share with families in your group who are considering campus tours. I would love for you to share your tips as well in the Comments Section below!

College Campus Tour Guide

Before You Go

  • Consider religious affiliation and if the college is aligned with your beliefs.
  • Find out what colleges and universities offer degrees in your student’s area of interest.
  • Ask what is offered during a campus tour.
  • Schedule tours for selected campuses.
  • Schedule a visit at a nearby college campus if you are considering a university that is not local. You might be surprised to learn about a school you had not considered.
  • Pack a notebook and several pens.
  • Have a storage plan for stashing business cards or brochures.
  • Pack a camera to help you remember your visit.

During the College Tour

  • Arrive early.
  • Ask questions of students you meet on campus.
  • Write down the names of people you meet and keep their business cards for follow-up questions.
  • Note things you like and do not like about the university.
  • Tour common campus facilities—the dining hall, bookstore, career center, library, athletic facilities, fine arts facilities and classrooms.
  • Take note of campus bulletin boards to get an idea of college life issues and what is important to students.
  • Ask questions of professors, coaches or other personnel, especially related to the student’s subject area of interest.
  • Tour the community around the campus as you leave.

Questions to ask Current College Students

  • Why did you choose this college or university?
  • What was the transition like from high school to college?
  • What do you enjoy most about this college?
  • What would you change about this college if you could?
  • Do you, or have you lived on campus?
  • What do you do in your free time?

Interested in discovering more college campus tour tips? Read this article, 30 Signs That Point To College, from the May 2016 edition of Review magazine written by THSC Director of Publications Donna Schillinger.

I would love to hear more about how your home school group helps prepare students for life after home school. You are also welcome to send me an email at leaders@thsc.org to let me know how colleges can better support your home school group.

Not a THSC member? Join THSC today to help THSC continue offering valuable support for home school group leaders as we continue Keeping Texas Families Free!