ACT - a standardized test developed by the ACT organization that is used for college admissions. The ACT has four main sections: English, reading, math, and science.


    ADVANCED PLACEMENT - a college-level class that is designed for high school students. If you score a 3 or higher on the AP exam, you can earn college credit for the course. 


    AGENDA - an appointment diary that can contain several items that aid in planning, scheduling, and task completion 


    ARMED SERVICES VOCATIONAL APTITUDE BATTERY (ASVAB) - a multiple-choice test that helps you identify your strengths and potential for success in military training


    ASSOCIATE’S DEGREE - a degree granted after a two-year course of study, especially by a community or junior college 


    BACHELOR’S DEGREE - an undergraduate academic degree awarded by colleges and universities upon completion of a course of study usually lasting four years 


    BLOCK SCHEDULE - class schedule in which students attend a fewer number of classes each day but for a longer period, or block, of time 


    CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION (CTE) - a series of courses that helps students develop technical skills, academic knowledge and real-world experiences


    CAREER EXPLORATION - the process of learning about various careers and jobs that "fit" with your unique career preferences, which are based on your personality, interests, values, and skill set 


    CERTIFICATES - documents learners can earn by proving they have key skills learned through a short sequence of courses that do not lead to a degree


    CLASS RANK - a measure of how a student's performance compares to other students in their class. It is commonly expressed as a percentile. 


    CLASS SCHEDULE - a students’ personal schedule of classes that is based on what they selected during registration 


    CLOSE-ENDED QUESTIONS - questions that can only be answered by selecting from a limited number of options, usually yes or no 


    COLLEGE - A postsecondary educational institution that offers undergraduate programs. Undergraduate programs awards include certificates, associates' and bachelor's degrees.


    COLLEGE CREDIT - a way of measuring how much credit a student receives for attending a class, which usually corresponds with the hours per week spent in that class 


    COLLEGE PATHWAYS - the different paths students can take after high school graduation to pursue either a career or post-secondary college degree 


    COLLEGE PREP ASSESSMENT - various tests that measure your knowledge and skill level--usually in math, reading, and writing--and help you judge how ready you are for college 


    COMMUNITY COLLEGE - two-year schools that provide affordable post-secondary education


    COMMUNITY SERVICE - voluntary work intended to help people in a particular area


    CONCEPT MAPPING - a visual organization and representation of knowledge. You create a concept map by writing key words (sometimes enclosed in shapes such as circles, boxes, triangles, etc.) and then drawing arrows between the ideas that are related. 


    COPING - dealing with and attempting to overcome problems and difficulties 


    COURSE CREDIT - in high school, credit given if a student has met academic requirements. Credits are awarded upon completing and passing a course.


    DISTINGUISHED LEVEL OF ACHIEVEMENT - in Texas, the graduation plan that recognizes students who have performed at a level clearly beyond that expected of high school students


    DOCTORAL DEGREE - advanced graduate or professional degree that demonstrates mastery in a particular subject area


    DOUBLE-BLOCKED COURSE - a course that is scheduled to meet every day rather than every other day in a block schedule


    DUAL CREDIT - a type of class that earns you high school and college credit at the same time; also known as dual enrollment


    EARLY COLLEGE HIGH SCHOOL (ECHS) - an open enrollment high school that allows students an opportunity to receive both a high school diploma and either an associates degree or at least 60 credit hours towards a baccalaureate degree


    EARNING POTENTIAL - the largest possible financial earnings a person can make based on their career and educational choices 


    ELECTIVE COURSE - a course chosen by a student from a number of optional subjects or courses, as opposed to a required course that the student must take


    EMPLOYABILITY - The skills, attitudes, and personality traits needed to increase a job seeker's chances of being positively perceived by employers. Includes basic skills, such as reading comprehension and basic math skills; soft skills; technical skills; and workplace competencies needed to relate to and communicate with customers and coworkers.


    ENDORSEMENT - a related series of courses that are grouped together by interest or skill set


    EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITY - something you do outside of class time that is meaningful to you and from which you are learning. Examples include sports, drama, music, and chess.


    FREE APPLICATION FOR FEDERAL STUDENT AID (FAFSA) - This application is the first step in the financial aid process. Most schools use the FAFSA to determine students' financial aid. The FAFSA determines the amount of money a student and/or family is expected to contribute toward the price of attending a postsecondary institution.


    FIRST GENERATION COLLEGE STUDENT - learners who come from a family where neither of their parents or guardians have obtained a bachelor’s degree


    FIXED MINDSET - the belief that people’s basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are fixed traits that cannot be changed


    FOUNDATION HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAM - the bare minimum starting point for high school graduation, which requires the completion of 22 credits


    FOUR-YEAR COLLEGE - an undergraduate degree program that leads to a bachelor’s degree in a specific area of study


    FRESHMAN - a first-year student in high school; also known as a 9th grader 


    FRESHMAN ORIENTATION (FISH Camp) - an event for incoming freshmen to get acquainted with their new campus, meet other students, meet new teachers, and register for fall classes


    GOAL SETTING - the development of an action plan designed to motivate and guide a person toward a goal


    GRADE POINT AVERAGE (GPA) - the average of all the grades you have earned for every course  you completed in high school 


    GRADING PERIOD - lengths of time in which grades are given. Typically, grades are given in either 6-week periods or 9-week periods. 


    GRADUATE DEGREE - a master's or doctoral-level college degree


    GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS - all stipulations that must be met before a student can get a high school diploma, including completion of a minimum of 22 credits


    GROWTH MINDSET -  the belief that the most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work 


    HIGH SCHOOL - a school that typically comprises grades 9 through 12; follows middle school 


    HISPANIC-SERVING INSTITUTIONS (HSI) - colleges that have at least 25% of their undergraduate student population identifying as Hispanic 


    HISTORICALLY BLACK COLLEGE (HBCU) - colleges that were established before 1964 with the purpose of serving the black community 


    HONOR COURSE - generally refers to higher-level classes that proceed at a faster pace and cover more material than regular classes 


    INDUSTRY-BASED CERTIFICATE - an enhancement option to a four-year high school graduation plan. If earned, you can go straight into the workforce or use credits towards a college degree. 


    INTERNSHIP - any official or formal program that provides practical hands-on experience for beginners in a profession 


    JOB SHADOWING - the opportunity to work alongside and gain experience from an adult in a particular job or career to gain insight into that particular work area


    JUNIOR - a third-year student in high school; also known as an 11th grader 


    LEADERSHIP - process of social influence, which maximizes the efforts of others, towards the achievement of a goal


    LEARNING STYLE - the way in which a student best absorbs, processes, comprehends and retains information  


    LONG-TERM GOAL - something you want to accomplish in the future


    MASTER’S DEGREE - a degree that is earned by a student at a college or university usually after one or two years of additional study following a bachelor's degree


    MENTOR - A person with professional or personal experience who counsels and guides a younger or less-experienced person. Can be an informal relationship or part of a formal mentoring program. Mentoring relationships can focus on specific topics or goals, such as personal growth, career development, lifestyle changes, spiritual fulfillment, or other mutually agreed-upon areas.


    MILITARY - armed force of the U.S. meant to defend the nation through the following branches: Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marines, and National Guard


    NETWORKING - interacting with others to exchange information and develop social contacts


    NICHE - a comfortable or suitable position


    OPEN-ENDED QUESTIONS - questions that require thought and more than one-word answers or simply a yes or no response 


    PEER PRESSURE - when peers try to influence how you act, to get you to do something


    PERSONAL GRADUATION PLAN (PGP) - a working document used by counselors to track student completion of graduation requirements


    PERSONALITY ASSESSMENT - a measurement of the personality patterns that people exhibit across various situations


    POSITIVE SELF-TALK -  talking to yourself in such a way that you feel good about yourself and the things that are going on in your life. It's like having an optimistic voice in your head that always looks on the bright side.


    POST-9/11 GI BILL - education benefits awarded after military service that can help cover some or all of the costs for school or training


    POST-SECONDARY EDUCATION - education that follows the successful completion of high school


    PREREQUISITE -  a thing that is required as a prior condition for something else to happen or exist


    PRIVATE COLLEGE - an independent school that sets its own policies and goals and is privately funded


    PROCRASTINATION - the act of delaying or postponing something


    PROGRAMS OF STUDYHigh school and postsecondary educational programs developed around a career pathway that helps learners prepare for a career. Curriculum is sequential and based on regional industry expectations and skill standards. 


    PSAT/NMSQT - an assessment that measures readiness for college, opens access to scholarships, and is practice for the SAT


    PUBLIC COLLEGE - a college that typically operates under the supervision of state government and is funded, in part, by tax dollars and subsidies from the state


    RELATIONSHIP SKILLS - the abilities to form positive relationships, work in teams, and deal effectively with conflict 


    RELIGIOUS-AFFILIATED COLLEGES - colleges connected to and/or operated by a religious faith 


    RESPONSIBLE DECISION-MAKING - making ethical, constructive choices about personal and social behavior 


    ROUTINE CHANGES - new rules, changed daily patterns, and new ways of doing things.  


    SAT - a standardized test administered by CollegeBoard that is widely used for college admissions. The SAT has three main sections: math, evidence-based reading, and writing. 


    SCHOOL CULTURE - the beliefs, perceptions, relationships, attitudes, and written and unwritten rules that shape and influence every aspect of how a school functions  


    SELF-AWARENESS - recognizing one’s emotions and values as well as one’s strengths and challenges 


    SELF-CONFIDENCE - trusting in yourself and your abilities 


    SELF-MANAGEMENT - managing emotions and behaviors to achieve one’s goals 


    SEMESTER - one of two divisions (fall and spring) of an academic year  


    SENIOR - a fourth-year student in high school; also known as a 12th grader 


    SHORT-TERM GOAL - something you want to do in the near future


    SINGLE-BLOCKED COURSE - a course that is scheduled to meet every other day in a block schedule


    SMART GOAL - a guide to help set goals. SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely.


    SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL LEARNING (SEL) - learned abilities that provide people with important tools to be able to adapt, present positive behavior, and meet the demand and challenges of life. SEL skills have taken many different names such as soft skills, life skills, and 21st-century skills. 


    SOCIAL AWARENESS - showing understanding and empathy for others


    SOCIAL CHANGES - changes in peer-to-peer relationships, teacher/campus staff relationships, and extracurricular involvement  


    SOFT SKILLS - Personality traits, aptitudes, and attitudes that direct how a person interacts and works with others on the job. Including interpersonal communications, cultural awareness, appearance and the ability to dress appropriately, and manners. Does not refer to the technical skills (or hard skills) which are unique to each career pathway; known as employability skills.


    SOPHOMORE - a second-year student in high school; also known as a 10th grader 


    STAAR EOC - an end-of-course exam that tests students for college readiness and mastery of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for the course


    STANDARDIZED TEST - one of a number of tests used in Texas public schools to assess a student's achievements and knowledge learned in the grade level 


    STUDENT HANDBOOK - school policies and procedures, locations and purposes of administrative offices, and other helpful details


    SUPPORT NETWORK - the people in your life who help you achieve your personal goals and who you can rely on in times of need 


    TIME MANAGEMENT -  the process of organizing and planning how to divide your time among specific activities


    TOP 10 PERCENT LAW - law which guarantees Texas students who graduated in the top ten percent of their high school class automatic admission to all state-funded universities


    TRADE SCHOOL - a post-secondary educational institution designed to train students for a specific job in a skilled trade career


    TRANSCRIPT - a complete record of a student’s academic achievements in high school


    TRANSITION -  the process of changing from one state or condition to another. Transitions usually involve both loss and opportunity. 


    TRIMESTER - one of three divisions (fall, winter, and spring) of an academic year


    TSIA - an assessment designed to help a college or university determine if you are ready for college-level coursework in the areas of reading, writing, and mathematics


    UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE - the initial academic degree earned from a college or university; generally a bachelor’s degree


    UNEMPLOYMENT RATE - the percentage of the labor force that is jobless


    UNWEIGHTED GPA - a GPA that is measured on a scale of 0 to 4.0 and does not take the difficulty of the courses into account


    UPPERCLASSMAN - a junior or senior in high school


    WEIGHTED GPA - a GPA that takes the difficulty of classes into account along with the grades that were earned