FAQs about Admissions

The information on this page is primarily for students who plan to live in Reno, Nev. to attend the Davidson Academy public day school located on the University of Nevada, Reno campus. For those interested in Davidson Academy Online for students living anywhere in the United States, please visit the Online section of our website.

Both the Academy's Reno and Online options have the same Qualification Criteria and How to Apply pages. However, the Davidson Academy's  Reno Application Review Process and Online Admissions Process pages are separate.

Q: How old does a student have to be to apply to the Davidson Academy's Reno school?
The Davidson Academy is a middle and high school level school. It is recommended that applicants at minimum have 6th grade in progress at the time of application. Applicants need to meet the minimum Qualification Criteria. Any student who is under the age of 18, meets the Qualification Criteria, and who can perform at an academic level of advanced middle school or higher in all subjects may apply to the Davidson Academy.
Q: When is the best time for my child to apply to the Davidson Academy? Is there any disadvantage to applying early in the admissions cycle?
In terms of the annual admissions cycle, we feel that the sooner a student applies, the better. The application is available in late summer, and completed applications are reviewed monthly beginning Oct. 1. When evaluating test scores for ACT, SAT, or PSAT 8/9 and when evaluating our curriculum-based assessments, we use the age of the applicant as a baseline, adjusting our expectations to match where each student is in his or her current year of instruction. Therefore, there is no disadvantage in applying early, and in fact, the assessment groups tend to be smaller, and therefore more relaxed, in the fall.

Q: When is the final application deadline for the Reno school's 2020-2021 academic year?
The final application deadline for the 2020-2021 school year for the Reno Campus is January 31, 2020 and March 31, 2020 for the Online Campus.

Q: What tests are accepted for application to the Davidson Academy?
There are many testing options available to applicants. Please refer to the Qualification Criteria page under Admissions. 

Intelligence test information is addressed in the Davidson Gifted Database article: A place to start: Is My Child Gifted

Admission/placement exam information may be accessed at the following websites:

Q: Where can my child take one of the required tests?
Local testing options are generally available. These may be located by contacting the appropriate academic talent search, your school counselor or registering directly with the respective testing agency (see links provided above for the SAT, ACT and PSAT). Intelligence tests are typically administered by licensed psychologists. You may wish to contact your state or local gifted and talented organization for information on appropriate testers in your area, or contact info@davidsongifted.org and the Davidson Institute staff may be able to assist.

Q: How can I help my child prepare for the academic readiness assessment if he or she is invited to participate in it?
In preparing for applying to the Academy, we suggest that students focus on reading, writing, thinking, and mathematics skills rather than standardized test preparation. The standardized test scores (SAT, ACT and PSAT 8/9) are part of our application, but applicants who focus exclusively on those tend to be frustrated with our curriculum-based assessment because it is not multiple choice and it does not assess the same skills as the standardized tests. Our assessment is designed to emulate much of what students do during a typical day at the Academy in order to help us determine whether or not this school will be a good fit for each applicant. We have posted a sample assessment online that families may use to help determine whether or not their children are ready to apply to the Academy; please see Assessment Example (PDF). In addition, some families whose children have applied to the Academy more than once before being accepted have found that some online course work through the Talent Searches or other strong online supplementary schooling options have helped prepare their children for the Academy.

Q: If my child has a qualifying score on all of the test sections but one, could she or he still qualify for admission into the Academy?
Many factors go into considering a student for admission to the Davidson Academy, including test scores, transcripts, recommendation forms, interviews and the academic readiness assessment. Test score guidelines are listed on the Qualification Criteria page and will be evaluated in the context of all other materials submitted.

Q: Can prospective students or visitors observe Academy classes?
In general, we do not allow prospective students or guests to visit classrooms. Our primary focus is student learning, and we have found that minimizing disruptions is best for the students. Prospective students and other guests are welcome to attend a scheduled tour of the Academy, during which time they will have the opportunity to meet and interact with students, teachers and staff. Please see the Academy tour schedule for more information.

Q: Can out-of-state students apply to the Davidson Academy's Reno school if they intend to reside in Nevada in the future?
Yes. Prospective Davidson Academy students may apply with the plan to move to Nevada following admission to the Academy. Living with a parent or guardian in Nevada results in access to the Academy as a free public school. For those who cannot move, there is the Davidson Academy's Online option.

Q: How long do you need to live in Nevada in order to be considered a resident?
Once a student is accepted to the Davidson Academy's Reno school and moves to Nevada with a parent or guardian, she or he meets all residency requirements of the State of Nevada as a student in a public school. A student from outside of Nevada who lives within driving distance of the Academy cannot be considered a resident.

Q: Can my child reapply to the Davidson Academy if their application has been declined in the past?
Yes, candidates may reapply. However, it is important to note that the Davidson Academy will not reconsider an admissions decision during the year in which the applicant was declined admission. Unsuccessful applicants may re-apply for admission for the next academic year following the academic year in which the applicant was declined admission.