Guidance Services

The Guidance Office recognizes that each student at NorthStar Academy has been given gifts and abilities to be used to glorify the Lord. It is our goal to provide individualized support and direction to students as they gain a clearer understanding of their personal, academic, and spiritual goals. In partnership with parents, students, and NSA teachers, the Guidance Office will walk with students through their coursework, providing proactive academic counseling to prepare students with the skills needed to successfully navigate their post-secondary studies and/or the workforce.

Watch the videos to answer several Frequently Asked Questions:

Graduation Requirements

The updated graduation requirements for the 2015-2016 school year require that students complete 24 credits for the Standard Diploma, and 26 credits for the Advanced Diploma. These changes will affect existing NSA students entering grade 9 at NorthStar Academy during the 2015-2016 school year, or students transferring in to NorthStar Academy during the 2015-2016 school year and beyond. NorthStar Academy high school students enrolled before the 2015-2016 school year will follow the existing credit requirements of 22 (Standard) and 24 credits (Advanced). Any questions on graduation requirements can be directed to the NSA Guidance Counselor at Guidance(at)

English 4* 4*
Math 3* 4*
Science 3 4
Social Studies 3* 3*
World View 1 1
Physical Education .5 .5
Government .5 .5*
Economics / Personal Finance .5* .5*
Health .5 .5
Foreign Language 2*
College and Life Preparation .5 .5*
Fine Arts .5 .5
Electives** 7 5
Total Credits 24 26

*Specific courses are required. Please click here to download NSA's specific graduation requirements.
**An elective is any course of your choosing outside of the required and/or designated core courses.

NSA offers 12th grade students several options by which they may earn a diploma through NSA, so please click here to download the document which specifies the GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS with regard to credits along with the several DIPLOMA OPTIONS that we offer at NorthStar Academy.


Transfer Credits

NorthStar Academy accepts transfer credits upon receipt of an official transcript from an accredited institution. Transfer credits are awarded on a case-by-case basis. Evaluation of transfer credit may require further research and contact with prior institutions to determine transferability of credits. International records may require translation and/or evaluation prior to being considered. Transcripts submitted from other institutions become a part of the student’s permanent file and are not returned or copied for distribution.

Transfer credits are granted for high school-level (or above) classes only - typically designated with a number of 100 or higher in the course abbreviation code. Transfer credits show as such on the student’s NorthStar Academy transcript. Grades earned through accredited programs appear on a NorthStar Academy transcript and are also calculated in a student’s cumulative GPA.

NorthStar Academy grants credit for college-level courses as follows: 0.5 NSA credit for each successfully completed college-level, semester-long course (3 credit-hour minimum).

Caution: Be sure to research the courses you desire to transfer into NorthStar Academy with the college or university of choice, as they may not satisfy their entrance requirements. NorthStar Academy cannot be held responsible for transfer credits that do not align with NorthStar Academy courses that are known to be acceptable by a vast majority of colleges and universities in the United States. If you have any questions about this please contact NorthStar Academy’s administration.

Credit from an accredited institution

NorthStar Academy accepts credits from other institutions that are accredited by the State Department of Education, Department of Defense, a church diocese, and/or a regional accrediting association (see Appendix D for a list of recognized regional accrediting association members). An official transcript from the accredited school must be provided for credits and grades to transfer to NorthStar Academy.

It is the supervisor’s responsibility to request that a transcript be sent to NorthStar Academy.

Home school, alternative learning, foreign/international/non-accredited school

Students wishing to receive credit for any non accredited high school course(s) will be required to complete two steps: 1) Complete the Course Credit Request Form with the required information for each course previous to the last academic year they wish to transfer in; 2) For the four (4) core courses taken during the last academic year, students will be required to take a Placement Exam to verify placement readiness.

Ex: Your child wants to transfer to NSA as an 11th grader and has completed home school up through 10th grade. For each course taken in 9th grade as well as electives taken in 9th and 10th grade a Credit Request Form must be completed. For the 4 core courses taken in 10th grade, your child must take a placement exam (Math, English, Social Studies, Science) and receive a 70% or better.

For electives (piano, ballet etc.), the Course Credit Request Form must also be completed. You must include total hours of direct contact time; this is not required for all other classes.

It is the supervisor’s responsibility to obtain all required documentation and submit it to NorthStar Academy’s Guidance Counselor for review. Schoolwork completed at the elementary school level through grade 8 (or equivalent) is not eligible for review as transfer credit unless the course is considered of high school level by NorthStar Academy.

Non-accredited coursework that is successfully transferred into NorthStar Academy will be listed as such on the NorthStar Academy transcript. The number of course credits as well as the letter grade awarded will be listed next to the course name. Non-accredited coursework will not factor into the student’s overall GPA. Only courses taken from accredited institutions will be factored into a student’s GPA. Please contact NorthStar Academy’s Guidance Counselor for the Course Credit Request Form and any other questions pertaining to the transfer of non-accredited coursework.

Students may receive credit for a foreign language course not completed through an accredited program by successfully completing a nationally recognized exam (AP, CLEP, Foreign Language Proficiency Exam etc.) Contact NorthStar Academy’s Guidance Counselor for an approved list of foreign language testing centers/providers.

Please contact NorthStar Academy’s Guidance Counselor with other questions pertaining to the transfer of non-accredited coursework. The Course Credit Request Form is available by Clicking Here.

Dual Credit

Any NorthStar Academy student desiring to earn college credit while also earning NSA credit should first seek approval from the Guidance Counselor (Guidance(at) It is possible that college credit can be counted toward a student's graduation requirements at NorthStar; please note that a traditional (3.0) credit hour college course transfers in as (.5) high school credit.

Dual credit opportunities will be evaluated and approved on a case-by-case basis. A one-time $50 dual credit evaluation fee will be charged to each student, regardless of the number of courses or universities submitted for dual credit review. No fee will be charged for students taking courses from NorthStar Academy approved dual credit partners.  Please click here to download the Dual Credit Evaluation Form.

NorthStar Academy currently partners with LeTourneau University, Moody Bible Institute, Bryan College, and Colorado Christian University to allow students the opportunity to earn college credit while also earning credit with NorthStar. Please click on the links below for further information on the approved dual credit partners.

Dual Credit with LeTourneau University
Phone: +1-800-688-5327 x1173

Apply here

Watch this:
LeTourneau University Video

Apply here if you have not taken courses through Moody before.

Once you have applied, email christian.martinsen(at) to register for classes in NorthStar’s student group (in order to get special pricing). All registration for Moody courses are done through Moody at this time.

Dual Enrollment for High School Juniors and Seniors

Apply at
For questions contact us at online(at) or 423-775-7556

To learn more about Bryan College visit

Colorado Christian University Dual Credit Courses for High School Students

Register here for NorthStar/CCU Dual Credit courses.  Please click here for a list of courses.

For more information about CCU’s Dual Credit program visit

To learn more about CCU visit

Forms Request

Download the appropriate form to request a Transcript, Diploma, or Challenge Exam by right-clicking the underlined link and choosing “Save Target As...” or “Save Link As...” to save it to your computer. You will need the free Adobe Reader to view and print them.

School Profile (2015-2016)

NorthStar Academy (NSA) is an online, private, Christian school that currently offers students in grades 4-12 a complete academic and diploma-granting program. NorthStar Academy is founded on the belief that online education should be facilitated by godly teachers whom are dedicated to providing an excellent education through sound curriculum in partnership with students, families and schools worldwide. Academic and spiritual readiness is achieved through faith-based, student-centered courses led by credentialed teachers who challenge students through engaging, standards-based content.


Mission Statement:

Our commitment to Christ leads to our personal investment in you. Our commitment to you inspires and motivates NorthStar Academy’s spiritual emphasis, academic excellence and personal experience.

  • Spiritual Emphasis: encouraging students in their walk with God through Christ-centered, biblically-integrated instruction and interaction, modeling spiritual maturity
  • Academic Excellence: preparing students for life-long learning through high-quality, college preparatory, interactive, differentiated instruction, embracing multiple learning styles
  • Personal Experience: investing in students through friendly, supportive, responsive communication, providing sound guidance and building community through extra-curricular opportunities


Online Community Uniqueness

Over seventy countries are represented in NorthStar’s student body. Sixty-six percent of NorthStar students are U.S. citizens; thirty-four percent are students who maintain citizenship abroad.  Essentially the school’s community can exist wherever Internet access is available.  Though NorthStar Academy is widespread geographically, a strong majority of the school’s community is American or native-English speaking, with many families being involved in mission or NGO work around the world. NSA has also increased its footprint in the United States with individual families as well as with small Christian and charter schools. Students may enroll at NorthStar Academy for a variety of reasons.  Some come for one course, and some enroll full-time. NSA has rolling enrollment, so students may enroll and start at designated times each month during the school year. Students have the ability to attend class and socialize with students around the world, join special interest groups, and be elected to student council.

  •  Growth  & Choices:  NSA began offering courses for grades 7-11 in 1998 with 32 students.  NSA has continued to expand, offering nearly 200 core and elective courses, including 19 Advanced Placement© courses, to over 1000 students in grades 4-12. Additional dual credit partners continue to be added for the 15-16 school year, expanding options for our students.  Amidst changes and growth, NSA continues its tradition of high academics while integrating a Christian worldview.
  • Diploma Options:  Students may choose to earn a Standard or Advanced Diploma.  NSA also offers required courses for a student to earn the AP International Diploma.
  • Course Options: NSA offers courses in core subject areas such as language arts, social studies, science, math, and Christian foundations and worldview.  Elective courses are available in areas of liberal arts, foreign languages, physical education and health, computers and electronics, business, and college and career preparation.
  • Advanced Course Options:  NSA offers Advanced Placement© courses for Computer Science, Calculus, Biology, Chemistry, World History, US History, European History, Micro/Macroeconomics, Literature & Composition, and more.
  • Curriculum Quality: Most of NSA’s curriculum is written “in house” by curriculum and subject area experts.  Course objectives and content are based on international and national curriculum standards that reflect the school’s mission, purpose, vision, and expected student outcomes.  Specific materials and resources are utilized from a variety of publishers to meet the curricular needs of each course.  The integration of biblical worldview is intentionally included in lessons, activities, and materials for students.  If in a culturally sensitive country, NSA also offers courses for those regions. In order to maintain high standards, NorthStar Academy operates on a formal curricular review cycle, whereby all subject areas are regularly reviewed, evaluated, and changed or improved as needed.


NSA is accredited by AdvancED through the regional office of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCASI).  NSA has maintained accreditation standards since November 2005; it was the first online Christian school to receive accreditation.

Key Indicators:  The administration and teachers at NSA are committed to continuous school improvement efforts in the following areas:

  1. NSA uses a continuous improvement model with its courses, setting goals for improvement each year so that families can be sure they are getting the most current and relevant course work possible.
  2. NSA will continue to intentionally increase its course offerings and options for families and schools.
  3. Data Collection, Analysis, and Communication – NSA will continue to intentionally work through the process of formally collecting, tracking, analyzing, and communicating data as it strives to make deeper levels of data-driven decisions.
  4. Teacher Collaboration & Professional Development – NSA will continue to intentionally increase its opportunities and tools for the collaboration of teachers and their professional development to benefit student learning.
  5. NSA will continue to investigate additional services that will benefit both current and prospective families and schools.


Grading Scale & School Calendar

NorthStar Academy has the following grading system within a 36-week school calendar which consists of two 18-week semesters.  NSA students may start any month of the year with official start dates being available each month.  Students are provided up to 52 weeks to complete yearlong courses, and 26 weeks to complete semester courses.  NSA uses a 4.0 scale, with Honors/Pre-AP courses weighted with (.5) additional quality point, and AP courses weighted (1.0) additional quality point.

A+: 97-100           B+: 87-89             C+: 77-79             D+: 67-69

A: 93-96               B: 83-86               C: 73-76               D: 63-66

A-: 90-92              B-: 80-82              C-: 70-72              D-: 60-62

                                                                                       F: 59 or below

Student Performance:

  • ACT/SAT/Advanced Placement Scores: NSA students have shown a significantly high success rate on these tests.  However, this is difficult to measure due to the a-la-carte nature of online schools and the corporate maturity of the College Board processes with online schools.  Of the scores that were reported to NorthStar in 2014, the average ACT composite score was 28 and the average composite SAT score was 1750.  NorthStar's average ACT composite score for 2015 was a 27 and the average composite SAT score was an 1830.
  • Post Secondary Choices of Students: Of the 2014 graduating class at NSA, 79% of students went on to 4-year universities while 12% went on to 2-year colleges/specialty schools, and 6 % choose “other” options (e.g., military, workforce, etc.).  Of the 2015 graduating class, 81% went on to 4-year universities while 13% went on to 2-year colleges/specialty schools, and 6% chose "other" options (e.g., military, workforce, etc.). 
  • College/University Admissions:  Higher education institutions that have accepted NSA graduates, include, but are not limited to, the following:
  1. Anderson College
  2. Auburn University
  3. Baylor University
  4. Bethel College (MN)
  5. Biola University
  6. California Baptist University
  7. Calvin College
  8. Carthage College
  9. Catawba College
  10. Cedarville University
  11. Chapman University
  12. Charis Bible College of the UK
  13. Charleston Southern University
  14. Chinese University of Hong Kong
  15. Colorado School of Mines
  16. Colorado State University
  17. Cornerstone University
  18. Crown College
  19. Dallas Baptist University
  20. Dartmouth College
  21. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
  22. Erskine College
  23. George Fox University
  24. Gordon College
  25. Goucher College
  26. Kawartha Lakes Bible College (Canada)
  27. Kennesaw State University
  28. LeTourneau University
  29. Liberty University
  30. McDaniel College
  31. Meredith College
  32. Mississippi University for Women
  33. Midwestern Bible College
  34. Milsaps College
  35. Montana State University
  36. Moody Bible College
  37. Moorhead State University
  38. Mount Holyoke
  39. Mount Vernon Nazarene University
  40. North Carolina State University
  41. North Carolina University
  42. North Greenville University
  43. Northwest Christian College
  44. Northwestern College
  45. Oklahoma Baptist College
  46. Oliviet Nazarene University
  47. Oral Roberts University
  48. Ouachita Baptist University
  49. Patrick Henry College
  50. Pennsylvania State University
  51. Pensacola Christian College
  52. Queens University of Charlotte
  53. Regent University
  54. Roberts Wesleyan College
  55. Seattle Pacific University
  56. Simpson University
  57. Sophia University of Japan
  58. St. Andrews Presbyterian College
  59. Taylor University
  60. Union University
  61. University of Albany
  62. University of Arkansas
  63. University of Connecticut
  64. University of Delaware
  65. University of Florida
  66. University of Hawaii
  67. University of London
  68. University of Maryland
  69. University of Mississippi
  70. University of Nebraska
  71. University of North Carolina
  72. University of Oklahoma
  73. University of Rhode Island
  74. University of South Africa
  75. University of Tennessee
  76. University of Toledo
  77. University of Wisconsin
  78. US Air Force Academy
  79. US Military Academy at West Point
  80. US Naval Academy
  81. Western Carolina University
  82. Wheaton College
  83. Wilson College