In the middle of a busy fall, there’s always a student who wants the big picture about college. Here’s a comprehensive intro that won’t throw your schedule apart.
What is college? Most people think of college as a four-year experience, but that’s not the case at all. Take a look at these college options; some may surprise you.
How do I choose my college path? Many students start their college path by focusing on what they want to do for a living, and your counselor can help you with career exploration. Take a look at this information. Other students will choose their path by completing a college search that includes factors like college major, location, size, and cost. Some of these searches are limited to 2- and 4-year colleges, to keep that in mind. One of those searches is here.
Be ready for college The single best preparation for a successful time in college is to make the most out of your learning experiences in and out of the classroom. Use every assignment to sharpen your study skills, and use your time after school to learn more about yourself and the world around you. Take a peek.
Visit college campuses This is going to be your new home, so you need to make sure it feels right—and no two colleges are the same. Use this as your guide for making a successful visit.
Prepare for and take either the SAT or ACT Not all colleges require you to take a test as part of the admissions process, but many four-year colleges do (and some do for scholarships). It’s wise to know what you’ll be tested on, so take a look at this advice.
Apply to college This is usually easier than you think, since most colleges don’t ask for essays or teacher letters of recommendation. That’s right—most students only need 20 minutes to apply to college. No matter what the application asks for, try this site for help:
Apply for financial aid You’ll most likely need your parents’ help to do this, and you sometimes have to complete more than one form, but it’s worth it.
Apply for scholarships Private scholarships can help pay for college, but keep in mind that lots of students are applying for them. Try this.
Choose your college Once you know where you’ve been accepted, and how much aid each college will offer, it’s time to choose the college that offers the right mix of challenge, opportunity, and support. Take a look here.
Stay in touch with your college Once you tell the college you’re coming, they will be in touch over the summer with lots of information. Keep checking email and snail mail, or you may lose your spot in college. Take a peek.