Disclaimer: While attempts were made to present accurate information, the information appearing here has not been updated in some time and may be out of date. We recommend that you contact the program directly before taking any actions that depend on the reliability of this information.
Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science
|Associated University||University of North Texas (UNT)|
|Typical Starting Grade Level||11th|
|Program Length||2 years|
|Issues High School Diploma||Yes|
|Results in College Degree||No|
|Students Accepted per Year||200|
|Estimated Cost per Year||$5,600|
|Restrictions to Enrollment||Must be a resident of the state of Texas to apply.|
|Admissions Dates|| Deadline for Early Decision - January 6
Other Submission Groups’ Deadlines - April 11, March 31
On campus interview - Various dates January-April
|Email Addressfirstname.lastname@example.org: Melissa Becker, Admissions Secretary|
|Phone Number|| Voice: (800) 241-TAMS
Fax: (940) 369-8796
|Mailing Address|| Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science
University of North Texas
P.O. Box 305309
Denton, TX 76203-5309
Online Application available at http://www.tams.unt.edu/appl/Onlineintro.htm
Printable Application available at http://www.tams.unt.edu/appl/2003Application.pdf
Accepts multiple rounds of applicants, until class is filled. Applicants not accepted in one round may be deferred and re-evaluated in later rounds.
The Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science (TAMS), like its little sibling TALH, is a high school replacement program that results inhigh school diploma after completing two years of college. This program also has the distinction of being the largest early entrance program in the country and the first to embrace the 2-year high school replacement model.
TAMS is designed to provide a good grounding in science and mathematics, and prepare students to continue their undergraduate education in science or engineering at some of the best universities in the country. Like TALH, this program is partially state subsidized and consequently restricted to only residents of the state of Texas.
An informational video prepared by the Academy can be seen at http://media.unt.edu:8080/ramgen/cmp/TAMS/TAMS.rm
All and only TAMSters live in the massive McConnell Hall, which is centrally located on UNT’s campus. The building contains: a study area, a game room, a computer lab, laundry facilities, kitchen, HAM radio room, music practice room with piano, and various other general purpose rooms. Student rooms have a phone lines and two high-speed ethernet connections to the internet. Depending on the part of the building bathing and restroom facilities may be shared amongst 2, 4, or an entire wing worth of people. Males and females are distributed over different parts of the building, and are limited in the degree they can intermingle outside of public areas. However students of the opposite sex may spend time in each other’s rooms for a few hours each day provided the door remains open.
Each wing of each floor has a live-in “Resident Assistant” who is responsible for the needs of students in his or her section. Additionally, more senior “Resident Directors” and other onsite staff see to the needs of the community as a whole. Resident Assistants run weekly “wing meetings” to distribute information and promote activities. Staff run a number of socialization events throughout the year, including such things as sports events, quiz bowls, museum trips and other activities.
The adjacent Bruce Hall cafeteria provides buffet eating on weekdays under the standard meal plan. On weekends, students who have purchased a “7-day” meal plan must walk to the more distance Kerr Hall, but still receive unlimited servings. Other dining halls spread around campus provide a limited number of specialty options.
In order to graduate from the academy, students must pass the following classes and have at least 3.0 GPA overall (B average):
Biology and chemistry are taken in the first year with physics in the second year. Mathematics and English courses are typically taken throughout the two-year academy program, while history and political science requirements can be met anytime after the first semester (provided good academic standing, described below). Regular attendance of classes is mandated as Academy policy, and excessive absence from class may be grounds for dismissal from TAMS, regardless of GPA. Additionally, some professors include attendance as a portion of the grade. All courses, except for some math and some English classes, are taught to a mixture of regular university students and TAMS students. The TAMS only classes are meant to quickly cover material which most college students would have already encountered in high school. All classes, mixed and not, earn college credit.
Students who maintain a 3.0 semester and cumulative GPA with no grade of D or F in the previous semester are considered to be in good academic standing and may (and are generally expected to) take one or more elective courses. Electives may be chosen from any course the university offers for which a student has the prerequisites. Common choices are advanced mathematics and organic chemistry, but humanities and more exotic classes are often taken. Graduates will complete at least 57 credit hours of college work, but because of electives more typical numbers are around 70.
TAMS students pay no tuition for any classes they take whether required or elective. The Academy issues textbooks to students and expects them to be returned at the end of the year, unless the student chooses to purchase the book from the Academy (usually at a discount compared to book store prices). Students are however responsible for any other outside materials (e.g. paper, art supplies, etc) required for their classes. Some need-based scholarships are available for students for whom this would be a hardship.
Students who don’t meet the 3.0 GPA requirement, or get D’s or F’s in required classes face academic probation and ultimately the possibility of dismissal from the academy. Students on probation aren’t allowed to participate in a number of extracurricular activities or take elective classes. Free tutoring and full-time academic counselors are available to all TAMS students. Ultimately though, the opinion of the Academy is that students who cannot maintain at least a 3.0 GPA “would be at a greater advantage by returning to the high school environment” (Academics, TAMS Website).
Unlike many of its counterparts, TAMS is a very large program with nearly 400 students in residence at any one time, and because of this a large number of clubs and activities are organized entirely within the TAMS community. As of this writing there are 18 recognized TAMS clubs and 5 service organizations, though those numbers fluctuate from year to year, as new organizations are created and old ones are dissolved. Each recognized club works with a staff member known as a “Program Advisor” in order to organize and orchestrate events. Most student organizations also receive a funding allowance from TAMS and may do additional fundraising. The current list of organizations is as follows:
In addition, TAMSters may participate in university clubs provided the events and activities in those clubs would not cause the student to violate TAMS rules (for instance, alcohol policy or curfew). However, the majority of TAMSters find sufficient opportunities locally that they are not interested to joining UNT organizations. In fact, there are so many organizations that most everyone that is interested in holding a leadership position is able to find one. TAMSters are forbidden from joining fraternities and sororities or attending any of their functions.
In addition to the clubs themselves, there are a number of traditional events run by the Academy. Most notable among these are New Student Orientation (several days of discussions and social events), Frog Night (where seniors take new students out and show them around), Ring Ceremony (where class rings are presented), Prom, ProGrad (a senior celebration before graduation), and Graduation. Resident Assistants and Program Advisors also put on a number of other events over the course of each year, according to student interest. Some of these are limited to a particular wing or group of wings in order to promote solidarity.
Colleges and universities are typically grouped based on the highest degree that they regularly award, which in the case of University of North Texas is the Doctoral degree.
UNT publishes facts and information about their university at: http://www.unt.edu/pais/untproud.htm
Online Videos about UNT available at: http://www.unt.edu/prospect/video/
Form for requesting more information about UNT: https://web2.unt.edu/inquiry/inquiry2.cfm
|Setting||Suburban (Denton, TX)|
|Undergrad Student Body Size||21,059|
|SAT 25/75 Percentile||960-1210|
|Student Faculty Ratio||18 to 1|
|Number of Majors Offered||106|
|Student Body Diversity|| White - 73%
African American - 10%
Hispanic - 9%
Asian American - 4%
International - 3%
Native American - 1%
The above data may be as much as five years old. Number of majors may include 4-year pre-professional programs.
Denton is a city of 75,000 located 40 miles northwest of the major city of Dallas, TX (population 1,080,000) and 35 miles northeast of Fort Worth, TX.
“The University of North Texas is the largest and most comprehensive research and doctoral degree-granting institution in the North Texas area and the flagship of the UNT System. The University is committed to excellence in teaching and the discovery and application of knowledge through research and creative activities. As the educational leader in the North Texas region, the University is dedicated to the development of the area as the number one region in the nation.
The university continues to expand its relationship with the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth; to develop the University of North Texas System Center at Dallas; and to cultivate partnerships with elementary and secondary schools, community colleges, other universities, businesses, government agencies and nonprofit organizations to improve the quality of education and community life.”
- UNT Website
There are 8 testimonials available regarding the Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science. A randomly chosen one of these appears below, or you can see all the testimonials.
I have a very mixed view of my time at the Academy. The academic opportunities were wonderful, and I was thrilled to be able to take advantage of that portion of the program. Also, the social environment was excellent for me. For the first time in my life I was surrounded by people my own age with whom I could actually relate. I was no longer a "nerd", "freak", or "dictionary", I was suddenly treated like a person of worth and intelligence. I have made the majority of my lifelong friendships in the Academy.
HOWEVER, I have always been dismayed by the idiocy of the "administrivia" to be found at TAMS. When I was there, the rules were irrational and often unreasonably punitive, and it seems that they have changed for the worse in the intervening years. Students at TAMS are expected to take on adult responsibilities (college) without being given benefit of adult privileges like freedom of association, freedom of movement, self-determination, privacy, etc.
I was one of the approximately 60% of my class who actually *did* graduate from TAMS. The rest of my class was expelled for various reasons, most of which were utterly illogical and arbitrary. Examples: A student who happened to have a previously undiagnosed allergy to alcohol was expelled after suffering a severe reaction to alcohol, while his fellow students who were also caught drinking (thus breaking the same rules) at the same time and place were merely put on probation. Another student who threatened his roommate's life with a knife was merely moved to another dormitory with much greater freedom than that of McConnell Hall residents, and continued on to graduate from the program. Another student who was investigated by the FBI and Secret Service for copying money and feeding it into [... more]
- Anonymous, Former Student (Class of 1992)