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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. Links to Projects, Products, and Code Samples (if available)
  • 3. Interview with an Admissions Officer (required)

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 recommendations
  • 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

September 2018 Start:
Early admissions decisions Nov 20, 2017
Application deadline to receive Preview Weekend travel reimbursement March 14, 2018
Regular application deadline April 18, 2018
Product College Preview Weekend April 27-28, 2018
First day of class Sept 4, 2018

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 financing options. The Income Share Agreement (ISA) is an innovative financing mechanism for higher education that Make School first offered in 2014. It enables you to finance your tuition by committing to pay a percentage of your income for a specific number of months after graduation.

With ISA financing, you only pay when you have a job making more than $60,000/year.

Our financing 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 full ISA financing should they choose to take it. If you are an international student, please see the International Students section for your tuition and financing options.

Income share agreement table (2018)

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 financing can choose to finance their full tuition with an ISA, or pay one quarter, half, or all of their tuition in quarterly installments and cover the remainder with ISA financing. 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 preferred tuition payment and ISA financing plan.

There is a 3 month grace period, so you will not have to pay back earnings during your summer internship after your first year at Make School.

Living Costs & Assistance

Cost of Living Cost of Living

Students who demonstrate financial need are eligible for an Income Share Agreement living stipend which can provide up to $2000/month depending on your financial need. If you receive a $2000/mo living stipend for the entire duration of Make School, your ISA payback will increase by a period of 24 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

Make School offers a no-tuition-up-front payment option called an Income Share Agreement (ISA). This option is available to students of certain nationalities and educational backgrounds based on their ability to work in the United States after completing Make School’s Product College. The eligibility categories are:

  • US Citizen, Green Card holder, or authorized to work in US - Up to Full Tuition ISA, no upfront tuition
  • O-1 Candidate (Any Nationality) - Up to Full Tuition ISA, no upfront tuition *
  • Citizens of Canada, Mexico, Singapore, Australia, or Chile with BS in Computer Science, Information Science, Information Technology, or related field - Up to Full Tuition ISA, no upfront tuition
  • Citizens of Canada, Mexico with 2+ years combined computer science education and work experience - Up to Full Tuition ISA, no upfront tuition
  • Citizens of EU, UK, Japan with BS in Computer Science, Information Science, Information Technology, or related field from a non-US University with a graduation date before June 1, 2017 OR with more than one year of work experience in the tech field: Up to Half ISA, half upfront tuition
  • Citizens of Canada, EU, UK, Australia or Japan without a BS in Computer Science - Advanced Economy ISA (see table below)
  • Most other cases - no eligibility for ISA, must pay up front tuition. If you believe you will be eligible to work in the United States after attending Make School and are not in one of the above categories, contact us at

* 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.

Canada, EU & Japan Advanced Economy ISA

If you are a citizen of Canada, an EU nation, Japan, or other country of similar GDP per capita, 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 (2018)

Move slider to see ISA range

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