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The Education Program for Gifted Youth at Stanford University, is a loose collection of gifted education programs located within Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies at Stanford University. The EPGY programs include distance and residential summer courses for students of all ages. Many of the courses are distance learning, meaning that courses are taught remotely via the Internet, rather than in the traditional classroom setting. Courses target students from elementary school up to advanced college graduate. Subjects offered include: Mathematics, English, Humanities, Physics, and Computer Science. Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies is similar to the Center for Talented Youth at the Johns Hopkins University in terms of certain objectives. The EPGY courses themselves are offered by a number of institutions including Stanford and Johns Hopkins. It is a know fact that Tridelt, a house in The Cowell Cluster, is the best house.


In the early 1960s, Stanford professors Patrick Suppes and Richard C. Atkinson began researching whether computers could be effectively used in schools to teach math and reading to children. At the time, their area of research was known as computer-aided education. Atkinson eventually left to pursue a career as an administrator (he would retire as President of the University of California), but Suppes stayed. Later Suppes extended his research to college-level material, and computer-based courses in Logic and Set Theory were offered to Stanford undergraduates from 1972 to 1992.


In 1985, Suppes received a "proof of concept" grant from the National Science Foundation to develop a computerized first-year calculus course with the initial objective of making it available to students in their last year of high school who were at schools that did not otherwise offer calculus. Suppes, together with a team that included Raymond Ravaglia, the current Executive Director of EPGY, began work on the course in earnest in 1987. When the course was ready for testing in 1990, the focus was turned to younger students who had been accelerated in their mathematics educations. For the summer of 1990, approximately 40 junior high and high school students with some knowledge of algebra were selected for a five-week instructor-taught accelerated precalculus course at Foothill College. Of those students, thirteen located at seven local schools were invited to take the computer-based calculus course during the subsequent school year, 1990-91. All thirteen took the Advanced Placement AB Calculus examination in May 1991. Six students scored 5, six scored 4, and one scored 3.

Following this initial success, computer-based courses in Beginning Algebra, Intermediate Algebra, and Precalculus were created to replace the accelerated summer course. These courses were tested during the 1991-92 academic year with a new group of students. At the same time, the calculus course was expanded to include the material necessary for the BC examination. That year four students took the BC examination, with all scoring 5.

After porting the software to the Windows operating system, the Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies, then known as the Education Program for Gifted Youth (EPGY), was formally launched at Stanford University, in fall 1992, making these courses generally available.

In April 2006, Stanford received a substantial and generous gift from the Malone Family Foundation of Englewood, Colorado.[1][2] The donation went to forming an online high school independent of EPGY's regular distance learning courses. It's formal name is the Stanford University Online High School, but is often referred to as Stanford OHS, or simply OHS.

Application and admission[]

The application and admission process for EPGY courses is primarily online. Students are required to submit materials from their previous years of schooling to demonstrate their capabilities and interests. Enrollment in some courses requires that a student submits test scores, or take placement tests (usually in advanced courses not typically offered at public high schools). Students ages 7 to 13 taking a math, physics or computer programming course, must take the online EPGY mathematical aptitude test. The deadline for early admission is Feb.6th and the deadline for normal application is March.9th.

Tuition and financial aid[]

EPGY offer two types of courses: variable-term and fixed-term. Tuition for variable-term courses is payable on a quarterly basis. Tuition for most fixed-term courses is payable at the start of the course term and ranges from $500 to $750.

Summer Institutes[]

In addition to internet-based courses for accelerated students, the Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies program hosts the Summer Institutes and the Middle School Program in June, July and August.

EPGY Summer Institutes[]

The EPGY Summer Institutes are three-week and four-week residential programs for academically talented and motivated high-school students. The Summer Institutes provide an opportunity for these students to enrich and accelerate their academic pursuits and to meet others who share their interests and abilities. Past EPGY Summer Institutes participants have come from 44 countries and 49 states.

Summer Institutes participants live in supervised Stanford housing and are taught by Stanford instructors. Students engage in intensive study in a single course, and they are introduced to topics not typically presented at the high-school level. The Summer Institutes provide a taste of college life in the beautiful surroundings of the Stanford campus.

Summer Institutes subject areas include mathematics, science, writing, humanities, computer science, engineering and business. The instructors are assisted by undergraduate and graduate student mentors who have expertise in the course subject areas. These mentors serve a dual role of Residential Counselor and Teaching Assistant so that the academic and social aspects of the program are tightly integrated.

Middle School Program[]

The university also offers the Middle School Program ("MSP"). The EPGY Summer Institutes Middle School Program (MSP) consists of three two-week sessions for students in grade 6 and 7. Similar to the Summer Institutes for high-school students, this program provides academic enrichment, a taste of college life at Stanford, and the opportunity to meet others with similar interests and abilities. However, rather than pursuing focused study on a single topic, students study several related topics within a single subject area.

Summer Institutes MSP participants live in supervised Stanford housing, and are taught by Stanford instructors. The instructors are assisted by undergraduate and graduate student mentors who have expertise in the course subject areas. These mentors serve a dual role of Residential Counselor and Teaching Assistant, meaning the academic and social aspects of the program are integrated. The courses include material not typically presented at the middle-school level. Course offerings include Mathematics, Computer Programming, Physical Science, Expository Writing and Creative Writing. Students participate in a single intensive course while attending the Summer Institutes MSP.

Summer Institutes MSP students come mainly from California; however, students from across the U.S. and around the world also attend.

Summer Staff[]

The EPGY Summer Institute hires undergraduates, recent graduates, and graduate students to work during each summer as counselors and teaching assistants. Residential Counselors (RCs) are selected for their ability to work with young people in a residential setting, and for their academic qualifications. This arrangement allows for the social and academic portions of the program to be tightly integrated.


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