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Early Readiness High School Graduation Option

Beginning in the 2012-13 school year, an innovative high school graduation option will be available to Texas students. This option was created by House Bill 3 (81st Legislature). Under the provisions of the statute, research universities may partner directly with Texas school districts to offer an alternative route to a high school diploma to students who demonstrate early readiness for college.

What is an early readiness diploma?

Under this program, students who meet the placement standards of the research universities in English language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, and a language other than English may be eligible to receive high school diplomas, notwithstanding any other state or local requirements. Diplomas awarded under this option will be treated as recommended high school diplomas for other purposes, such as eligibility for enrollment in universities or for financial aid. This option may permit students to enroll in additional courses while in high school or to enroll in college early. This high school diploma option does not guarantee admission to The University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M University, or to any other college or university or academic program; it does signify that students have met a rigorous standard that is aligned with the placement standards of a leading flagship institution.

What are the requirements1?

Students must attend a high school in a Texas school district that has entered into an agreement with a research university and must meet the requirements that demonstrate sufficient mastery in each subject area for which the state has adopted college readiness standards and in a language other than English. Students interested in pursuing this unique opportunity should speak to their high school counselors.

View the detailed requirements

What if I am not enrolled in a partner district?

Under the requirements of the statute, only students from participating school districts are eligible for the early readiness diploma option. Students interested in participating from other school districts should contact their school district or the Early Readiness High School Graduation Option office at The University of Texas at Austin at earlyreadiness@austin.utexas.edu.

Does an early readiness diploma guarantee admission to UT Austin?

No. Students must still apply and meet admission standards in effect at the time of their application.

I’m interested in participating. What should I do next?

Interested students should view the detailed requirements. Students who are in a participating district and meet the requirements for participation can register here.

Interested districts should download, execute, and return the District Agreement.

For any questions, please view the Frequently Asked Questions or contact the Early Readiness High School Graduation Option office at earlyreadiness@austin.utexas.edu


1 TEC 28.0253
(b)(1)(A) the specific competencies that demonstrate a student’s mastery of each subject area for which the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and the commissioner have adopted college readiness standards;
      (B) the specific competencies that demonstrate a student’s mastery of a language other than English; and
      (C) acceptable assessments or other means by which a student may demonstrate the student’s early readiness for college with respect to each subject area and the language described by this subdivision, subject to Subsection (c);
(c) The assessments or other means filed by a research university under Subsection (b)(1)(C) must be equivalent to the assessments or other means the university uses to place students at the university in courses that may be credited toward a degree requirement.