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How To Begin Looking For Colleges

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Beginning The College Search


Thinking about college should begin way before high school in order to get in the college preparation courses. College visits can begin during family trips during sophomore year . Ideally, you should take the PSAT or PLAN as well during your Sophomore year. Trying to figure out what you require from a college should begin in earnest your Junior year and the research into colleges should go in depth during Junior year. When you walk into your high school in the Fall of your Senior year, it would be great if you have your college list lined up even if you still need time to finalize it.

OwnerMilne Collegiate Consulting

Put Your Hard Work To Use

The research you conduct will be essential when creating your college list, preparing for interviews, visiting campus, and writing essays. As you do your research, purge any schools from your list that do not meet your needs. Ideally, you will end up with a list of 10 to 15 number one schools, each of which you would be happy to attend. There are many resources available to aid you in your research efforts. At IvyWise, we work directly with students to fully understand their goals and interests, and can use this information to create detailed research reports for each school on a students college list. Conducting thorough research will be crucial to your success during the exciting process of finding your home for the next four years. Put these tips to use and find the schools where you will learn, grow, and thrive.

Before You Start Looking For Student Loans

Before you start looking for student loans, do extensive research into the different types of scholarships and grants available. Apply for every scholarship and grant that you are eligible for to win more scholarships. These do not require any repayment, so any funds you get is like free money, which is always good.

After youve exhausted your personal sources and all scholarship and grant sources, it is time to start to explore and understand student loans. Remember, whatever loans you take, you will have to repay with interest. With that in mind, you should apply for the absolute minimum that you will require so you could end up in debt for several years after you have graduated.

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Student Perspective: How To Start Looking For Colleges

Submitted by Aaliyah Quintal on 08/10/20

When I was applying to colleges, I remember spending the summer going into my senior year of high school working on my college applications. I already had my SAT scores , my personal statement written , and a list of colleges I wanted to apply to. Having already gone through the process of applying to colleges, here are two major tips for students looking to start their college application process:

1. Journal: Write down what you are looking for in a college and what you are hoping to gain from that experience

Before you even attempt to start looking for colleges, you must take the time to think about what you are looking for in a college, and what you hope to gain from that experience. Want to attend a large school? With plenty of major or minor options? Is location important to you? Would you like to attend school in a large city? Or perhaps a small town? These questions, and many more, will help narrow down your college search and ensure you are not wasting your time or energy applying for colleges that may not fit your needs. Taking the time to think about your needs in your college journey will help make searching for colleges a lot less stressful and more rewarding.

2. Think about your Possible Major or Career Path

How To Start Your College Search

FREE 8+ Sample College Essay Templates in MS Word

College. The mere word alone is enough to send even the calmest of students into a panic, and for good reason. The idea of having to decide where to live for the next few years of your life, the thought of choosing an academic subject to which those years will be devotedit can all seem too daunting at times.

The good news is that it doesnt have to be so scary.

In this guide, well be helping you find the college that fits you, focusing on viewing the process as a journey of self-discovery. Youre exploring your unique interests, talents, and ambitions, and that cantand shouldnt!be easily reduced to a few numbers.

Before we live in, a few reminders:

Admissions can be unpredictable. If you look at a colleges profile of admitted students, youll see a smattering of scores, GPAs, and other data. This can be off-putting. But remember that there will always be students below this data who were accepted, and there will always be students above this data who were rejected. Which brings me to my next point

You are not defined by numbers. Almost every college practices holistic admissions, meaning your test scores and GPA will never be the only thing considered. While test scores and GPAs are very important, your abilities, extracurricular activities, and essays all carry weight as well, and these things paint a much clearer picture of the type of person you are than a single test score ever could.

So, lets get started!

Academic offerings.

Size and type.

Social scene.

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How Important Is Cost To You

  • Sticker price is a colleges published cost of attendance
  • Net price is how much it actually costs you, as a student, to attend a college after scholarships and grants
  • Compare colleges using net price, not sticker price

Get an idea for how college prices work. Its tempting to compare schools by their published costs of attendance , but keep in mind most students dont pay the sticker price to go to college. One mistake students make is ruling out private colleges because of cost.

College Raptors college search tool estimates a colleges net pricea price closer to what it would actually cost you to attend a collegeso that you can get a better idea of what your options are before you apply.

Become Familiar With Your Igs

IGS is abbreviated for internal guide system. Becoming one with your internal guide system would definitely leads you to the college of your dreams. Your internal guide system is your intuition or guts. That inner voice that speaks to you anytime you are about making major decisions. That is your IGS

See: How to Accept a College Admission offer

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Where To Find And Research Colleges

After going through the college search criteria above, you can start looking for the best schools for you. Yup, it’s finally time to fire up those college search tools! And there are tons of other resources you should use to find out more about the schools on your list.

Try to be open-minded as you research colleges. Be cautious about adding schools just because they are considered prestigious. Conversely, be open to colleges you may not be familiar with. You never know what youll find until you really dive into your college search.

Keep all of your college research together, and add your criteria and key data points for each college to your . You will also start to accumulate notes from campus visits, talks with counselors and admission reps, brainstorming activities, etc.

Finally, remember: finding colleges that meet your search criteria is just the tip of the iceberg. Just because a school has your favorite major doesnt mean its necessarily the right college fit for you. You should get to know your potential collegesand if it’s truly the right choice for you.

Students Should Begin Their College Search

ULTIMATE GUIDE: Preparing for College in High School! | thetwinsofhearts

no later than junior year of high school. They can research via the internet and look up college websites, read helpful student review books like Fiske Guide to Colleges and check out, and whatever resources their high schools provide. Its okay to start with a list with dozens of schools. By the beginning of senior year, the student should have narrowed their list to the schools they will be applying to, which should be from approximately 6-12 schools. Students should keep all of their options open when they begin the college search process. Dont fall in love with just one school! There are 3000 colleges in the country. Its helpful to research schools based on size, majors/minors of interest, admitted student profile. Make sure you have met all of the admissions requirements of the school. Do they require 4 years of English, 3 years of Math, 2 years of History/Social Science, 3 years of Foreign Language and a Visual Arts requirement? If you dont have everything they require, then you dont match their criteria! If its early in the process and you have any credit/class deficits, make them up BEFORE senior year! If you are a 3.0 student applying to a school with an admitted student profile of 3.75 or above, this would be a reach school. Its okay to apply there but you should also add in schools that more closely match your academic record, too.

Head of Upper School, College CounselorRavenscroft School

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Visit A Starter College

Campus visits are an incredibly important part of your college search . However, if youre just starting and arent quite sure what youre looking for in a college, spend an hour or two walking around the closest campuseven if youre certain its not the right college for you. It can get your imagination going and help you gather your thoughts.

College Recruiting Timeline For Freshmen

To set themselves up for a successful recruiting process, freshmen recruits should research different college programs and division levels, gather clips for their recruiting video and create an online recruiting profile to make it easier for college coaches to discover and evaluate their athletic and academic skills.

Watch former D1 University of South Dakota football player Phill Wells break down what freshmen student-athletes should be doing to get a head start in their college recruiting in the video below.

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Cost Financial Aid And Affordability

It can be a big mistake to start your college search by excluding certain schools because they have an expensive price tag . Of course, for most students and their families, college affordability will weigh heavily on their decision-making process.

However, the initial sticker price you see will seldom be the final price you pay. Most colleges and universities realize they need to help students afford their education. And financial aid changes everything. In fact, you might find the pricey school that seemed out of reach is actually your most affordable option once you get their financial aid award letter.

College students get financial support through a wide range of sources, such as academic scholarships, special ability awards , diversity grants , or on-campus employment . Students also get money based on the results of their FAFSA and/or the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE .

Also, pay attention to the freshman-to-sophomore retention rate and the four-year graduation rate in your college cost research, because they often signify a schools true value. For example, a “cheaper” school may be less of a bargain if a low percentage of students actually graduate in four years. And a more expensive school with a higher four-year graduation rate may actually be the better value.

Questions to ask

All Who Wander Are Not Lost


The college search is a process. Allow it to be one. Fail to plan and you plan to fail. Begin by making a plan, and if you need assistance, seek out a qualified expert who is immersed in the process year in and year out. Finally, leave some space to grow. Often, parents buy their children clothes a size bigger because if there is anything for certain, its growth. Keep an open mind because what you think you like may change over the course of your journey. Enjoy!

Head CounselorCedar Grove High School

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How To Start Looking For Colleges

How to Start Looking For Colleges | Todays article will look briefly at a very important topic. How to start looking for college. The article will explore all the possible means by which you can find a college of your dreams that fits into your goals and plans.

So you are done with high school? And you want to get into collage now? Right! Lets begin your college search together.

How Ncsa Helps Coaches With College Athletic Recruiting

When recruiting for college sports, college coaches prefer to evaluate prospects in person at games and events such as camps, combines and tournaments. But they can only travel to so many places because of their location, schedule and budget. Thats where NCSA comes in. College coaches use NCSA to search the largest database of athletes and evaluate recruiting videos, measurables, references, experience, awards, transcripts and more. Here are some NCSA-related numbers as of 2019:

  • 90% of U.S. college athletic programs have had at least one NCSA athlete on their roster
  • 12,992,587 athlete follows by college coaches
  • 745,925 athlete searches by college coaches

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Head Out For College Campus Tours

Sometimes, the best way to assess a school is with a campus tour. Most colleges and universities offer these options on a set schedule, giving prospective students a chance to see what it may be like if they decide to attend classes there.

Typically, theyll get to view the campus, dorm rooms, common spaces like student centers and cafeterias, and much, much more.

Plus, your child can ask the tour guide questions that are relevant to them. This can be incredibly important when your student is searching for colleges and needs to narrow down their list.

Its also common to be able to speak with someone in admissions or financial aid, giving your student valuable information about the schools processes, costs, and requirements.

High School Juniors: Start Thinking Beyond Standardized Tests And Explore College Options

When Should I Start Looking at Colleges? – College Admissions 101

Now that all is said and done for the high school seniors who will be attending college in Fall 2012, the focus will turn to high school juniors and the impact that many societal factors will have on their college admissions process. My advice remains the same: avoid focusing on standardized tests during the upcoming weeks. It is so easy to fall victim to the hype surrounding the controversial exams, but in the process students lose the opportunity to attend college fairs and information sessions right here in Los Angeles. A few words of advice: 1) Remember, not only does the college choose you, you also choose the college do your research and meet representatives any chance you get! 2) The more times you express interest in a college, the better the chances you will be admitted . Every time you attend a college fair or information session, make sure you complete the form to let them know you attended. Colleges put this information in your file and track your interest. 3) As a follow-up to #2 go online and request information from colleges express interest early and often. 4) Do your research: know when colleges will be in town and dont miss them! Its so easy to do when all you can think about are those standardized testsalmost seems contradictory, doesnt it?

PresidentInside Track To College, Inc.

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Resources And Support Systems

To foster long-term success, you should consider your needs and wants as a whole person, not just as a student.

Make sure the school can accommodate any medical conditions you may have.

Before choosing a college, make sure the school can accommodate your spiritual life and any medical conditions or special learning requirements you may have. Many students experience homesickness and other emotional challenges when starting college, so it’s a good idea to check the availability of counseling services and health and wellness programs ahead of time.

While writing and tutoring are ubiquitous among higher education institutions, be sure you can conveniently access these resources should you end up needing them.

Finally, your college of choice should offer an array of career services to help you obtain internships, network with potential employers, and create engaging resumes and cover letters.

Consider The Social Factors

College is an academic but also a social experience. Next, create a list of questions about dining and housing, clubs and activities, social life and the surrounding community.

  • Is a meal plan required? Where do students eat on and off campus?
  • Which clubs would you join on campus and what type of events do they host?
  • How do students give back to the colleges local community?
  • Is there Greek life on campus? What percentage of students participate in fraternities and sororities?
  • How is housing assigned? How many roommates might I have my first year?

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Let Colleges Come To You

A representative from So and So University will be at Your High School on such and such a day. Sound familiar? Go to these information sessions, even if youve never heard of the college or university. Its a great way to learn about all of your options and establish personal connections with the people who decide whether to admit or deny applicants.

What Makes A College Right For You Anyway

Write A College Application Essay. College Essay Tips From ...

First things first: there is almost certainly more than one right college for you. Some might be reach schools, some might be safeties. In any case, when youre searching for colleges, try to remember what college should be. It’s a place where:

  • You’re comfortable being yourselfbut also challenged to be better.
  • You find people to talk with late into the nightwhether its because you totally agree with each other or youre debating something you care about.
  • You have opportunities to study things that fascinate you, play the sports you want to play, work at internships that help clarify your career plans, and join the clubs you want to joinand you are expected to take advantage of those opportunities, because they wont just fall in your lap.
  • You learn how to learn, communicate well, and solve problemsskills all employers want to see, no matter what industry.
  • And you can get this kind of education without breaking the bank and taking on crazy amounts of student debt.

Speaking of college costs, heres the dirty little secret: because there are so many schools out there and a variety of financial aid to be had, you can almost always find a college that meets your needs and your budget.

Even if you’ve dreamed of going to a certain college your whole life, not checking out your other options is a mistake. Finding your perfect college match takes time and effort, but it’s worth it in the end

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