Thomas Jefferson Information

September 13, 2017


• Overview of TJHSST

• The Admissions Process

  • Part I: Steps for Application
  • Part II: Testing Process
  • Part III: Selection Process

• Getting Ready

• Questions

TJHSST Mission Statement

“The mission of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology is to provide students a challenging learning environment focused on math, science, and technology, to inspire joy at the prospect of discovery, and to foster a culture of innovation based on ethical behavior and the shared interests of humanity.”

What Makes TJ Different?

Regional Governor’s School for Science and Technology

Students apply to attend

All courses taught on honors, AP, or post-AP level

Research-based learning beginning in 9thgrade that focuses on connecting ideas and creating flexible class time

9th Grade - IBET

  • Integrated Biology, English & Technology
  • Flexible class time
  • Field trips
  • Research-based learning

Sophomore & Junior Year

  • STEM-Related Electives and Activities
  • JUMP Lab (Jefferson Underclassmen Multidiscipline Project)

Senior Year –Research Laboratories

  • Astronomy & Astrophysics
  • Automation & Robotics
  • Biotechnology & Life Sciences
  • Chemical Analysis & Nanochemistry
  • Communication Systems
  • Computer Systems
  • Energy Systems
  • Engineering Design
  • Microelectronics
  • Mobile and Web Application Development
  • Neuroscience
  • Oceanography & Geographical Systems
  • Prototyping & Engineering Materials
  • Quantum Physics & Optics

TJ = More Than Science and Tech

  • Electives offered in all subject areas
  • Fine Arts and Performing Arts
  • World languages
  • Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Latin, Russian, Spanish

Eighth Period

  • In-school activity period Wednesdays & Fridays
  • Each week divided into four sections
  • Over 180 clubs and activities
  • Create your own!


TJHSST  Athletics

  • Full complement of competitive VHSL teams
  • Varsity, Junior Varsity and Freshmen Teams
  • Fall, Winter and Spring Seasons
  • Tradition of Success
  • Teams play and practice after school


  • School Hours
    • 8:40 am –4:00 pm
  • 8 Periods (instead of 7)
  • Block Scheduling
  • Common Lunch
  • No Bells!

What is TJHSST looking for?

  • Evidence of academic\achievement in school
  • Demonstration of genuine interest/ curiosity/creativityin STEM

Is TJ Looking for You?

Can you answer these questions ….

  • What about STEMare you interested in and why?
  • What have you done to pursue this interest?
  • What did you learn or hope to learn from your STEM experience(s)?
  • Why TJ?
  • Are you involved in after-school clubs with a STEM focus?
  • Are you taking advantage of local resources that relate to STEM?

Eligibility Requirements

  • 8thgrade to apply to 9th
  • Residency in a participating school division
  • Algebra I or higher in 8thGrade
  • 3.0 GPA in core classes at end of 7th Grade

Application Access

TJHSST Freshman Winter Application Process

Steps for Application (Continued)

  • The applicant must access the Log-In Screen prior to the parent and complete the initial log-in process that includes entry of a parent name and email address.
  • Parent receives an auto-generated email containing the linkfor them to log-in and create the parent account.
  • TJ Liaison Counselor from applicant’s school verifies math course. (Allow minimum 24 hours for this to be completed.) Auto-generated email is sent to applicant and parent after verification advising them they may complete the application.
  • Applicant and parent must both electronically sign and parent must complete payment of $90. Reduced fee and fee waivers are available upon request. (Payment of fee does not automatically submit the application).
  • Submit application.
  • Auto-generated email will be sent to applicant and parent advising them application has been submitted.

Application Deadline

Friday, September 29 Application must be submitted before 4:00 p.m.

Test Day

November 18, 2017

  • 17 test sites -(must choose a site in county of residence*)
  • Testing accommodations and alternate date testing available upon written request

12 in Fairfax County 3 in Loudoun County 1 in Prince William County 1 in Arlington County

*Falls Church City applicants may select any site since we do not test within Falls Church City.*

TJHSST Admissions Testing Components

  • Quant-Q Math
    • Multiple choice
  • ACT Aspire Reading
    • Multiple choice
    • Constructed response
  • ACT Aspire Science
    • Multiple choice
    • Constructed response

Three-hour (approximate) testing window with

15-minute break between math and reading tests

Test Specifics

TEST Math Quant-Q Reading - Aspire Science - Aspire
Time 50 Minutes 65 Minutes 60 Minutes

Number of


28 32 40
  • Pattern Recognition
  • Probability Combinatorics
  • Out-of-the-Box Algebra
  • Geometry and Optimization
  • Key Ideas and Details
  • Craft and Structure
  • Integration of Knowledge and Ideas
  • Interpretation of Data
  • Scientific Investigation
  • Evaluation of Models
  • Inferences
  • Experimental Design


Semifinalist Pool Determination Decisions posted –January 19th

  • Overall GPA of at least 3.0 (based upon final marks for 7thgrade and first quarter 8thgrade in core subjects)
  • Mathematical Reasoning –at least 50thnational percentile on Quant-Q
  • Reading –at least 75thnational percentile on Aspire Reading
  • Science –at least 75thnational percentile on Aspire Science

AND one of the following:


  • Mathematical Reasoning –at least 75thnational percentile on Quant-Q,


  • Science –at least 90thnational percentile on Aspire Science


All semifinalists must:

  • Get Teacher Recommendations
  • Must be entered into system by 4:00 pm on February 2
  • Student Information Sheet and Student Essay Testing
  • Completed at test site on Saturday, February 3


Comprehensive holistic evaluation process of semifinalist materials performed by a team of highly qualified, veteran educators.

Semifinalist materials include:

  • Teacher Recommendations
  • Student Information Sheet
  • Problem-Solving Essay
  • GPA –(1) Core courses and (2) math/science GPA
  • Admissions Testing Components National Percentiles
  • Demographic sheet including name of 8thgrade math course being taken


Admissions Notifications

  • Notifications will post no later than April 30 for those offeredadmission, not offered admission and in the wait pool
  • Approximately 480 students will be admitted

Getting Ready –The “I Am Ready” List


  • Students –know the admissions process!
  • Continue to work hard and keep up your grades
  • Practice your math, basic and problem solving
  • Practice your writing skills, especially responding to a problem-solving question in essay format
  • If you are in Algebra 1 in 8thgrade, become a master of each topic you cover as you move through the subject matter
  • Be an enthusiastic learner
  • Read, read, read!!!
  • Quant-Q –no prep available
  • ACT Aspire –exemplars available by ACT through a web search

Have a Plan “B”

Reality for the applicants from 2016 process….

  • 2896applied
  • 1548semifinalists
  • 490offered admission (about one in six)
  • Most offered admission scored 43 or better on math test
  • Most offered admission were taking Geometry in grade 8
  • Students with GPA below 3.0at the end of 7thgrade will, most likely, not meet the semifinalist GPA requirement
  • TJ is only one of MANY OPTIONS to pursue STEM in your school division

TJHSST  Website

Calendar of Events

  • Sep 4 –Application Available (after 4:00 pm)
  • Sep 29 –Application Deadline (by 4:00 pm)
  • Nov 8 –Test Day Logistics Email Sent to Applicants & Parents (after 6:00 pm)
  • Nov 18 –Admissions Test (arrive 7:30 -7:45 am)
    • Nov 16–Accommodations Test Date (arrive 7:30 -7:45 am)
  • Jan 19 –Semifinalist Notification (after 6:00 pm)
  • Jan 30 –SIS and Essay Test Day Logistics Email sent to Applicants & Parents (after 6:00 pm)
  • Feb 2 –Teacher Recommendation Information Entry (by 4:00 pm)
  • Feb 3 –SIS and Essay Test (arrive 7:30 –7:45 am)
  • Apr 30 –Notification Release Deadline (after 6:00 pm)

All correspondence to applicants and parents is sent via the Applicant/Parent portal email system.


(571) 423-3770