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Admissions & Aid


At Make School students explore their world, develop their characters, and master valuable technological skills by building real products for real people. Make School is a small college and a supportive learning community situated in the center of technological innovation in the world: San Francisco. Make Schoolers are original and creative; they have grit and enthusiasm; and they have a passion for collaborating and using technology to solve their community’s and the world’s problems.

How to Apply

A Make School Application includes the following pieces:

  • 1. Digital Application (required)
    • a. Personal Information
    • b. Short Answer Questions
  • 2. Recorded Interview
  • 3. Links to Projects and Products
  • 4. Links to Code You Are Proud Of
  • 5. Two Letters of Recommendation

While some of the pieces of the application are considered optional, we highly encourage students to submit as much information as possible to aid in the decision-making process.

Also, please note that we do not request any standardized test scores (SAT, ACT, etc) or your high school GPA.

We select students based on the evidence they give us in their application, projects, and interviews of the following five characteristics:

  • Resilience & Hard Work
  • Passion for Solving Problems
  • Teamwork & Collaboration
  • Kindness & Emotional Intelligence
  • Previous Knowledge of Software Development

How to gain the knowledge you need? Start coding today

Previously admitted students have…

  • 1. Code they are proud of in public repos in - to get started with git and github follow this tutorial.
  • 2. Made attempts to solve problems around them in their communities or in the world using software. These projects are live or there is documentation (like a blog post) about the project and what happened.
  • 3. Attended multiple hackathons and planned or won one (or a few!)
  • 4. Built a startup
  • 5. Personal websites that feature the projects they’ve made and maintain
  • 6. Software developers or computer science instructors that will write them recommendations
  • 7. Mentors who are software developers who will write them recomendations
  • 8. Secured technical internships or internships in technical companies
  • 9. Taken AP CSP in high school
  • 10. Started or completed a bachelor's degree in Computer Science
  • 11. Written and kept up to date blogs on their technical and non-technical projects and interests.

For more resources and information on how to develop technical skills, check out this guide by Google.

Admissions Calendar

Early Admissions Decisions January
Regular Admissions Decisions April
Enrollment Begins April
Student Orientation Sept 11, 2017

Tuition & Aid

Make School offers a spectrum of options to pay for your education - from paying full tuition upfront to choosing one of our income-based repayment models.

The Income Share Agreement (ISA) is an innovative funding mechanism for higher education that is being pioneered by Make School. It enables you to pay your tuition through a percentage of your income during your internship period and full-time employment for a specific number of months after graduation.

Our tuition model aligns our incentives with the outcomes of our students - we are successful if you are successful. We are committed to preparing students with the skills necessary to succeed as a software developer. Income Share Agreements support investing in education and investing in the future.

We are committed to offering all US citizens access to the full ISA option should they choose to take it. If you are an international student, please see the International Students section for your tuition options.

Income share agreement table (2017)

Move slider to see ISA range

At Make School, students who qualify for and want to enroll in an Income Share Agreement will share a percentage of their pre-tax income for a limited number of months after graduation.

Students who qualify for ISA tuition can choose to take the full ISA-based tuition, or pay one quarter, half, or all of their tuition in quarterly installments. The more tuition you choose to pay up front, the fewer months of repayment will be shared with Make School after graduation. When you enroll you will be asked to choose your payment plan of either full tuition, half tuition, quarter tuition, or zero ISA.

The following infographic compares Make School’s tuition model with that of a traditional four-year university, showcasing the difference in outcomes five years after beginning each program.

Make School vs Traditional University Make School vs Traditional University

Living Costs & Assistance

Cost of Living Cost of Living

Students who demonstrate financial need are eligible for an Income Share Agreement living stipend. If you receive a $1500/mo living stipend for the entire duration of Make School, your ISA payback will increase by a period of 18 months.
To learn more about living stipends for non-tuition expenses and how to qualify, please visit the Tuition & Aid section of the FAQs.

International Students

Students of all nationalities are welcome at Make School. All applicants go through the same admissions process and Make School has no quotas or limits of any kind for admission.

Make School is not a fully accredited college or university and so follows a different process from other colleges to admit and enroll international students.

It is important to note that you will be ineligible to work in the United States during and after your time at Make School. In addition, Make School cannot sponsor the following visas:

  • F-1 Student Visa
  • An existing F-1 visa sponsorship from another school or organization.
  • Optional Practical Training (OPT)
  • J-1 Training Visa

If you already have one of the above visas, please be aware that this visa cannot be sponsored by Make School and will be invalidated when you begin your attendance at Make School. However, International students can successfully attend Make School using a B-1/B-2 visa, known as a “Business Visitor” visa.

Admission into Make School does require a strong proficiency with the English language. If there is any question of your English abilities, we may request that you submit your TOEFL scores with your application.

In most cases, being an international student significantly limits Make School’s ability to extend our popular Income Share Agreement financial aid. In many cases international students will have to pay half or the full tuition to attend Make School.

Income Share Agreement Eligibility by Nationality

  • US Citizen or Green Card holder - Up to Full Tuition ISA
  • O-1 Candidate (Any Nationality) - Up to Full Tuition ISA
  • Canada, Mexico, Singapore, Australia, or Chile with BS in Computer Science from a non-US University - Up to Full Tuition ISA
  • Canada or Mexico without BS in Computer Science - Up to Half Tuition ISA
  • EU, UK, or Japan - Up to Full Tuition Advanced Economy ISA (see table below)
  • All other cases - no eligibility for ISA

To qualify for O-1 ISA financial aid, you must demonstrate evidence for at least one and have a plan to attain another two criteria of the official eight O-1 criteria.

EU & Japan Advanced Economy ISA

If you are a citizen of an EU nation or Japan, we have created an altered ISA formula to account for the lower salaries of tech workers in these nations.

EU & Japan Income Share Agreement Table (2017)

Move slider to see ISA range

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