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Continuing Education Programs

Duke TIP Academic Adventures

Duke TIP Academic Adventures

Sample college life and explore fun topics in Duke TIP Academic Adventures. Held on Saturdays from 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM on the USC-Columbia campus, you'll learn from some of the best teachers you've ever had and meet friends from all over the region. Courses are filled on a first come, first served basis and available to Duke TIP students and returning USC CMS-Adventures students who are currently in Grades 5 and 6. 

Join us at USC Columbia for Duke TIP Academic Adventures.  Classes fill quickly so register early once registration opens. 

Check back later this summer when we will announce our fall dates and classes.

Past course topics have included:

  • Algebra Rules
  • Greek Mythology
  • Physics
  • Build and Launch a Rocket
  • Careers in Health Sciences
  • Sports & Entertainment
  • Eye of the Storm: Climate and Weather
  • Bulls & Bears in Stock Market
  • Making a Wind Turbine Station using Legos
  • Programming Games
  • Acting
  • Girls in Engineering
  • Creative Writing
  • Cartoon U


Program Basics

Academic Adventure courses are open to students in grades 5 and 6 who have participated in the Duke TIP 4th - 6th Grade Talent Search or the summer 2016/2017 Carolina Master Scholars Adventure Series.

  • Courses are held at USC-Columbia on Saturdays.
  • Tuition is $130 per course per date.
  • Registration is from 9:30 AM-10:00 AM.
  • Class meets from 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM with a break for lunch.
  • Scholars can enroll in one class per program date and enjoy hands-on learning experiences in academic topics that might not be available in your local schools.
  • Class size is limited to 16 students per course, unless otherwise noted. 


Program Costs and Acceptance

  • Tuition is $130 per program date and includes lunch and all academic activities and material.
  • Limited, partial financial aid is available for qualified applicants.
  • To register, complete the online registration form and pay the required fee online. Be sure to have your Duke TIP ID on hand to register. If you do not know your Duke TIP ID number, please contact Duke TIP.
  • Full course payment is required at the time of registration and is non-refundable. 
  • Courses are filled on a first-come, first served basis.
  • Applicants who cannot be placed in the selected course will be placed on a waiting list and notified of waitlist status if/when a course becomes available.
  • Upon registering, paying, and acceptance in to a class, additional information including acceptance forms will be sent by email within five business days. Please contact our office if you have not received these forms after you have paid and registered for a class.
  • A course reminder email with course location and details will be sent approximately one week before the class start date.
  • All participants must be covered by health insurance.
  • If a student is unable to attend, please notify us at  immediately.


Financial Aid

Limited, partial financial aid is available for qualified applicants in the amount of $65.00 for one class per program date. If you wish to enroll in an additional class on an additional program date, you will be responsible for paying the full tuition. These partial scholarships are on a first-come, first-served basis to families who demonstrate need. Each student may only receive financial aid once during the 2016-2017 academic year.

When applying for financial aid, submit the following:

  • a completed paper Duke TIP Academic Adventures application
  • the balance payment of $65.00
  • a copy of your Family's 2016 Federal Income Tax Return (1040) with applicable schedules

and mail to USC Continuing Education and Conferences, 1600 Hampton Street, Suite 403, Columbia, SC 29208. You may also fax this information to 803-777-2663.

Scholarships will only be given to students who submit all items at the same time. Upon acceptance, additional information including acceptance forms will be sent by email. Your $65.00 balance payment will not be processed unless you are awarded a scholarship. You will be contacted within five business days after receipt of your information.


Cancellation and Refund Policy

Application and course fees for Duke TIP Academic Adventures are nonrefundable. Course fees are refunded only if the course is not offered by the University of South Carolina or if the applicant is not accepted. If full course payment is not received by the due date stated in the Student’s Acceptance Forms or at least two weeks prior to the program date, the student’s space in the class will be released and any payments made prior to this time will be forfeited. Cancellations will result in forfeiture of payment except in cases of illness (with doctor’s note on letterhead) or death of an immediate family member. 

The liability of the University of South Carolina is limited to the registration fee, and the University will not be responsible for any losses incurred by registrants or their families, including but not limited to airline cancellation charges or hotel deposits. Refunds take four to six weeks to process. The University reserves the right to cancel and refund all registration fees for any course due to circumstances beyond our control, including insufficient enrollment.


Special Needs

Individuals with disabilities or other special needs who anticipate needing reasonable accommodations or who have questions about physical access may contact us by email at at call 803-777-9444 in advance of your participation in the program.


Mobile Phones - Parents Please Read! 

We know that parents and students value the ability to be able to call each other at a moment’s notice. Although we do not prohibit mobile phones, all phone features, including talk, text messaging, and cameras, are not to be used during any instructional or laboratory time. Parents are responsible for setting clear guidelines for mobile phone use with their student. USC’s Continuing Education and Conferences is not responsible for phone or text content, usage, loss of phone, or phone bills incurred while attending any activity, including loaning phones to friends.


More about Duke TIP

The Duke University Talent Identification Program (Duke TIP) is a nonprofit organization that serves academically gifted and talented youth. Students in the fourth, fifth, and sixth grades may participate in Duke TIP's 4th–6th Grade Talent Search. Students can become involved in the Talent Search by meeting the requirements based on many standardized tests. These tests and the accepted scores differ from each state. For example, South Carolina may use these standardized tests: Iowa, MAP, ACT Explore, or PASS exams which are given at schools. Other admission factors may include IQ or Gifted Talented testing. 

You may also apply for the 7th Grade Talent Search if you missed the 4th-6th Grade Talent Search. Duke TIP students may take advantage of its above-level testing such as the PSAT, PACT, ACT or SAT.  

Students in the program are eligible to attend and participate in programs through Duke TIP including sponsored programs like Duke TIP Academic Adventures at the University of South Carolina and Carolina Master Scholars Adventure Series summer program at University of South Carolina. There are also independent and distance learning courses available through Duke TIP. Visit the Duke TIP website to learn more about the program and how to apply.