AUSTIN, Texas – The University of Texas at Austin is launching the TEXAS MicroMajor™, a new initiative to help high school students become better prepared for success at leading universities.
The MicroMajor program builds on UT Austin’s leadership in working with school districts, educators and students across the state to bridge gaps between traditional high school courses and the expectations of colleges and universities.
TEXAS MicroMajors will consist of courses developed or endorsed by UT Austin faculty members that enable high school students to prepare for specific programs of study and earn college credit. Students will receive advising and ongoing academic support through their high schools and from the university.
This unique opportunity will help students become more competitive for admission and success at UT Austin or other selective colleges and universities, and strengthen skills that will help them excel in college.
UT Austin is partnering with Austin Independent School District (AISD) to pilot the new program in the 2017-18 academic year. The pilot will build on established partnerships through the OnRamps dual enrollment initiative, ChemBridge, Students Partnering for Undergraduate Rhetoric Success (SPURS), and other programs.
During the pilot year, students in select AISD partner high schools will be eligible to participate in and earn a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), Arts and Humanities, or Multidisciplinary Studies MicroMajor. Expanded program rollout across the state of Texas and additional MicroMajors are planned for the fall of 2018.
“We are excited to be partnering with UT Austin to pilot the TEXAS MicroMajor next year,” said Paul Cruz, Austin ISD Superintendent. “Here’s another fine example of how AISD connects with higher education to allow our students more college opportunities, ensuring that all students are college-, career- and life-ready, as well as help students be better prepared for the college experience.”
To earn a TEXAS MicroMajor, students must take at least two courses from an approved list of UT Austin dual-credit, dual-enrollment or online offerings, and may take up to two other approved Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, or college courses for a total of four courses. Approved courses will include many that are available now at no or low cost to students.
“As the state’s flagship university, we are committed to working with Austin ISD and school districts across Texas to increase the number and diversity of well-prepared students,” said Gregory L. Fenves, president of the university. “The TEXAS MicroMajor will provide students the academic preparation needed to succeed at universities like UT Austin.”
High school counselors, teachers or administrators may nominate high-achieving students who are currently enrolled in participating Texas high schools to take part in the TEXAS MicroMajor, or students may nominate themselves. Using a form provided by the university, students may apply as early as the spring semester of their freshman year when they meet with their counselors to choose courses for the following semester.