What is the Duke TIP Summer Studies Program?
What do a prominent neurologist, an enterprising data scientist, and a high-ranking biomedical specialist have in common?
Answer: all three got a head start on their ambitions as participants in Duke University’s Talent Identification Program (TIP).
The largest program of its kind, Duke TIP works with gifted individuals to “identify, recognize, challenge, engage, and help students reach their highest potential through above-level testing, academic challenge, educational guidance, customized publications, online resources, and special recognition of their accomplishments.” The signature experience of the program is a series of exciting summer sessions at participating colleges and universities.
To determine eligibility for Duke TIP, applicants must take the SAT or ACT. Although college-bound juniors and seniors normally take these tests as part of their college applications, seventh to tenth graders take them to qualify for the program. In these low-stakes conditions, talented students have the opportunity to determine more exactly the level of their abilities. Those admitted to the program will receive individualized score reports that can provide a foundation for academic planning.
Because of changes to the format of the SAT in the spring, this year’s applicants must take either the December or January SAT. (Scores for the redesigned test will not be accepted because of the potential for inconsistency of scores between the tests and because of the late processing of scores). Students taking the ACT should plan to finish testing by February as well. They need not take the optional ACT Writing section.
Based on their performance, qualified students should apply to the appropriate summer program level. There are two levels: Academy and Center. The following chart summarizes the SAT and ACT score requirements for 7th graders applying to either program:
|In the 7th grade, if you took the…||and you scored…||then you qualify for Academy||then you qualify for Center|
|SAT||any one of the following:||
M ≥ 570
CR ≥ 570
W ≥ 570
|OR a combination of||n/a||M ≥ 520 and CR ≥ 520|
|ACT||any one of the following:||
E ≥ 27
M ≥ 20
R ≥ 25
S ≥ 24
(It is important to keep in mind that the Duke Talent Identification Program bases its talent search on above-level tests. Seventh grade students should definitely not compare their scores with those of high school juniors.)
Seventh-grade students participating in the Academy Summer Program are placed at Appalachian State University, Austin College, or Rollins College. Seventh-grade students participating in the Center Summer Program are placed at Davidson College, Trinity University, or Wake Forest University.
Three-week sessions on these campuses challenge students to “think critically about themselves and their world.” Students attend classes for seven hours a week, taking advanced courses ranging from fine arts, social science, and humanities to mathematics, science, and technology. They live in college dormitories, eat in cafeterias, and participate in social activities hosted by Duke TIP leaders. In this environment, they often form friendships that last throughout high school and beyond.
To apply, a student should rank the course offerings he/she is interested in taking, submit the program application and participation agreement, the SAT or ACT score report, the application fee, and a financial aid application or course prerequisite documentation, if applicable. Submitting an application does not guarantee placement because courses fill quickly, and a student may go on a waitlist if all his/her ranked courses have filled.
The Duke TIP summer program can provide gifted middle and high school students with a memorable introduction to the academic rigor and social interactions of college. This exposure often motivates them to perform well in high school and to take the college search seriously. While not all graduates of the program will go on to become distinguished neurologists, data scientists, and biomedical specialists, most participants look back on it as a formative experience and an opportunity not to be missed.
For more information, visit the Duke TIP website.