The Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science is a program at the University of North Texas for students wanting to get a jump on college, while also completing their high school education. At the end of a student's sophomore year, they may apply for acceptance. If you get in, you leave high school, go to UNT and stay in McConnell Hall for two years. During this time you will complete the majority of your bachelors degree (mostly the required honors courses). At the end of two years, you get a high school diploma, however much credit you've earned, and the option of either staying at UNT or applying to another college. The big advantage here is you can still legally apply to other universities as a freshman and later transfer your credit (as if you took AP tests out the wazzoo) and get freshman scholarships in the process.

The requirements for entrance -
    1. One must have an 1100 SAT (recentered scale) with at least 600 points from the math section

    UPDATED:
    To quote the TAMS website, www.tams.utdallas.edu -

    Sophomore scores must be competitive with those of college-bound seniors planning math and science majors, as indicated by statewide data reported last year:

    College-Bound Seniors - Mean Scores on the 2003 SAT
    From Table 5, 2003 Profile of College -Bound Seniors, Texas Report, The College Board
    Intended College Major
    	
    SAT I Mean Scores
    	
    Percent
      	                Math 	Verbal 	Male 	Female
    Physical Sciences 	549 	538 	52 	48
    Biological Sciences 	550 	509 	33 	67
    Engineering 	        550 	505 	81 	19
    Mathematics 	        596 	524 	52 	48
    


    2. One must have completed Algebra 1, Geometry, and Algebra 2

    3. One must not have started one's junior year in high school (there are RARE exceptions to this rule).

    4. One must have some family that maintains permanent residence in the state of Texas (mom, dad, aunt, uncle, pet chihuahua, whatever)

    5. One must go through a rigorous *snicker* interview process involving a pathetic questionaire and two math placement tests.

    6. It REALLY helps to be female, one has not been turned down in the past three years as so few apply.

    7. One MUST NOT LIKE HIGH SCHOOL. I repeat, for ANYONE considering this, if you enjoy high school, DON'T DO THIS. It is better to have a life and enjoy yourself. Not to say it isn't a fun program, but going to college after 2 years of high school deprives you of many friends and relationships that could otherwise have been beautiful.



The Program Curriculum -

    1. Finish math courses through (at minimum level) Calculus 2. Most students follow the plan of: PreCal and Calculus 1 first year, and Cal 2 and 3 (aka Multivariable Calculus) the second year (MATH 1650, 1710, 1720, and 2730)

    2. Writing About Literature 1 and 2 (ENGL 1320 and 1330) and World Lit Pre and Post Renaisance (ENGL 2210 and 2220)

    3. Honors Biology and labs, 2 semesters (BIOL 1710 and 1720)

    4. Chemistry *honors optional* and labs (CHEM 1410 and 1420, OR 1430 and 1440)

    5. Physics *honors optional* *HONORS (calculus based) NO LONGER OPTIONAL - REQUIRED* sigh (honors is optional again... sadly) and labs (PHYS 1410 and 1430)

    6. World History (1050 and 1060)

    7. Political Science (1040 or 1050)

    8. Electives (if you meet the requirements). For example, I took fencing, Computer Science, and nanotech research. YMMV.


Requirements to take electives

Based on your cumulative GPA.

    3.5+ GPA = 2 electives such that your total semester credit hour count does not exceed 19 except in rare cases.

    3.0 to 3.4999... GPA = 1 elective such that your total semester credit hour count does not exceed 19.

    0 to 2.999... GPA = No electives. This places you on academic probation for one semester. Academic probation can be based on a single semester performance and not necesarily cumulative GPA.


Requirements To STAY in the program once accepted -

    1. One must keep at least a 3.0 GPA. If this is not met, the failing student will be on academic probation for one semester and given the chance to work it back up. If they still do not meet the requirement, they will be expelled.

    2. One must never be caught drinking, smoking, or using drugs. The Academy has a ZERO TOLERANCE policy. Though many students seem to have survived being caught, causing one to wonder just how tolerant it is...

    3. According to the disciplinary point system, one must not amass 100 points in one's academy lifetime. Random violations scale anywhere from 10 to 100 points (curfew violations, fighting, drinking, PDA etc). Should a student amass no more than 30 points in a year, their record will be wiped clean at the end of that year.

    4. One must not be the cause of any reports of felonious activity

    5. Do NOT kick the Dean in the testicles, this is a BAD idea...

    6. Also, do not dip squirrels in liquid Nitrogen.


Things that will oddly NOT get you kicked out -

    1. Filling a bathtub with Ramen

    2. Filling a "communal cup" and placing it on someone's doorknob.

    3. Abuse of a legal substance (DXM)

    4. Violating every policy possible... as long as it's your first week....

    5. Defenestrating matresses and couches and lard and mayonaise and other foods....


Requirements to Graduate with Honors -

    1. Finish after two years with a 3.5+ GPA

    2. Do not get a C in ANY core course (electives may be taken by those with 3.0+ GPA's)

    3. Finish two years with NO MORE than 30 disciplinary points


While it is true that the talent pool of the academy has dwindled in years, this is due only to the fact that fewer people are told about it and therefore a smaller applicant pool is created. Females of any sort are accepted whether they meet the reqs or not, simply because it's a coed dorm and the academy thinks they have to fill it. Sadly, only about a third of the participants in the academy really deserve to be there. If the University was run by intelligent people, they'd lower the limit of accepted students from 200 back to the orginal 85 of the charter class in 1990. Several people believe that all students should take entirely honors courses, if not to stay at least to graduate with honors. Frankly, I think the program may be too far gone to be salvaged.

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