Career Services And Other Campus Support
For many students, college success means tutoring. Others might need counseling for dealing with homesickness or other emotional issues. And most college students need at least some guidance as they conduct their first internship and job searches.
Thats why colleges and universities have ample resources to support you throughout your time on campusand often long after you graduate.
Questions to ask
- How will the school help me determine and achieve my career goals?
- What is their postgraduate job placement rate like ?
- What does the career services office offer?;
- What kinds of experiential education opportunities, such as internships, co-ops, and volunteering, exist on and around campus?
- What academic services are available, such as tutoring?
- What health and wellness services are available, such as mental health counseling and fitness facilities?
- Are any of these services available after graduation?
Do You Know How To Improve Your Profile For College Applications
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Most of the information online in the college admissions sphere caters to students who attend a traditional high school. Theres information about which courses to add to your schedule, which teachers to get letters of recommendation from, and how colleges compare you to students who also attend your high school. But what about students who dont attend a high school like their peers? For many homeschooled students, the world of college admissions can be confusing and foreign, and theres a dearth of literature available on the subject. In this blog post, well discuss how colleges evaluate homeschooled students compared to their traditionally educated peers.
Grades and Academics
A homeschool education can be just as rich and structured as any traditional schools. However, a major difference is that while schools standardize the design of their courses to some extent, so that most students in equivalent courses will have similar coursework across schools, homeschoolers are bound by few restrictions.
What Do Colleges Look For In A Student
- What Do Colleges Look for in a Student
What do colleges look for in a student? It’s one of the most commonly asked questions by high school students interested in attending a reputable college. But because students often have little understanding of what colleges look for in applicants, much of the stress as a college-bound high school student surrounds the admissions process.
With greater understanding as to what colleges look for in high school students, you can better prioritize your time, effort, and curriculum into the areas that matter most. In turn, you can maximize your potential in getting accepted to your top-choice colleges.
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Other colleges, such as Bowdoin, are leaning on more innovative options. Fortuitously, it recently launched a new element to its application, offering students the chance to give an impromptu answer to a short question, such as “When is the last time you felt inspired and how did you proceed?” or “If you had no Internet or phone for the afternoon, what would you do?”
When the app flashes the question, students have 30 seconds to think, and two minutes to answer, as the app video records the whole thing. As intimidating as it sounds, students generally take a laid-back approach, videotaping in their kitchen as their mom walks by, outside sporting a Bowdoin sweatshirt, or even kicking back in bed.
“They’re 17-year-olds who are answering a question on the fly,” Soule said. “They can’t prepare for it. They can’t get advice. They can’t polish it.”
Her team loves having such an authentic glimpse into how students think, what motivates them or their sense of humor. “It’s really hard to bomb,” Soule said, and every video tells the team a lot about an applicant.
“Just the mere fact that a student’s willing to do it is impressive,” she said. “That in itself says something important about the student.”
With that kind of extra tool, and as one of those colleges that had already made SAT and ACT test scores optional, Bowdoin is a step ahead of many other schools forced to go cold turkey this year.
Check Out Our Just Admit It Podcast
IvyWise counselors Eric;and Rachel;discuss the importance of identifying interests, forming a plan to make an impact both inside and outside the classroom, and committing to these activities for the long-term;on the Just Admit It! college admissions podcast, giving listeners expert insight from former admissions officers.
By Rachel, IvyWise College Admissions Counselor
But what about the kids who start charities and do cancer research? a mother asked me recently. She, like many others, was concerned about how her daughters list of extracurricular activities would stack up next to a group of lauded, accomplished high school seniors. The truth is that there are going to be those occasional applicants whose reach extends well beyond their high school community Guinness World Record holders, inventors, policy changers but they are certainly not the norm. Perhaps more importantly, in this case, is how these applications are viewed in the admissions process. As exciting as it may be to see one of these students come across your desk, it is by no means the expectation of any reader that all students will have taken their activities to this level.
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How To Recover From Bad Freshman Year Grades
If your child is worried about their freshman year GPA, they should focus on improving it by excelling in their remaining high school coursework. And dont assume your child should take easy classes in order to cushion their GPA.
Many high schools weight grades in AP and other honors classesmeaning that a high grade in one of those classes will especially offset earlier lower grades. Plus, the types of classes your child takes still matterfrequently more than the grade itself.
Admissions officers often read applications regionally, meaning the person reading your childs application will know something about your school. If its common knowledge that Environmental Science is an easy A, while AP Chemistry is a challenging option, your child will be rewarded for an A-minus in Chemistry more than an A-plus in the former.
Your child might also consider enrolling in online coursework or classes at your local community college. In addition to potentially boosting your childs GPA , this can demonstrate your childs commitment to their education and help them excel in their remaining high school classes.
How Your Child Can Strengthen The Rest Of Their Application
If your child didnt join many extracurriculars freshman year because they were also balancing employment, familial responsibilities, or medical issues, they can mention this in their application. And the extracurriculars they reference in their application do not only have to be typical after-school activities. For example, a part-time job or religious involvements should be included. ;
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Myth 3: An A In An Easy Class Is Better Than A B In A Hard Class
Many students believe it’s better to stick to the classes you know you’ll get As in, but this piece of advice is misguided when it comes to college applications.
In general, colleges prefer students who challenge themselves by taking an array of difficult classes, such as AP and honors classes. And you don’t have to get perfect grades in them. If you get a B in a tough AP class, for example, this will emphasize to the admissions committee that you are willing to take on new challenges and test your limits, traits that are necessary for succeeding in and after college.
On the other hand, getting As in all easy classes, though not totally unimpressive, is not nearly as interesting to colleges, as it suggests you’re unwilling to push yourself and further hone your higher-level critical thinking skills.
All of this being said, try to avoid getting very low grades in any classes you take . C and D grades obviously won’t look great to an admissions committee, even if you got these grades while challenging yourself in AP classes.
If you can’t get at least a B or B+ in a difficult class, it’ll probably be better for you to drop it and switch to either the regular version of that class or an entirely different class altogether.
Standardized Tests And College Admissions
Well talk more about how to prepare and when to take standardized tests in a later section. First, lets look at how colleges view you and your test scores as part of the admissions process.
Most four-year colleges will tell you that standardized testing is the third most important factor in their decision. It can sometimes be a distant third in importance behind the high school transcript and extracurricular activities. For a growing number of schools, standardized testing has become an optional part of the admissions process .
For a great many schools, though, standardized testing is still a factor in the admission process. These tests are intended to reflect what youve learned in the classroom. They are sometimes referred to as a common yardstick. It allows colleges to evaluate prospective students from different backgrounds, high schools, and even countries on a level playing field. While you may agree or disagree, like or dislike them, they are a necessary evil for most high school students.
If standardized testing is an area where you shine, use it to your advantage. If you believe your standardized test scores are not an accurate reflection of your ability and your high school grades, seeking out schools with a test-optional policy may be advantageous for you.
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Stand Out To Schools With Volunteer And Work Experience
Part-time or summer jobs, internships, and volunteer work allow selection committees to see how you operate beyond the walls of the classroom. Colleges look for capable and organized leaders, and these activities are a great way to prove your abilities.
Volunteering at hospitals, rescue shelters, and local food banks are great options to consider but if you really want to earn brownie points, think about starting your own volunteer project, such as offering free tutoring services or organizing a community clean-up.
For students with work experience, list the companies or businesses where youve worked and detail your responsibilities and achievements in your application. Be sure to mention the roles that helped you develop the necessary leadership skills colleges look for.
The Grades You Have Received
First, and not surprisingly, colleges will look at the grades you received in the coursework you have taken. Are you an A- student or a C+ student? Is your Grade Point Average a 72 or a 92? While the answer to this will indicate a good bit about you, it tells only part of the story. In order to properly understand your GPA, colleges must understand the framework in which it was earned. To do this, they must look at:
Student Review And Testimonial Sites
Review websites, just like Yelp, exist for higher education too, and they can be a great way to get to know your potential colleges a little better.;That being said, they can also be a hotbed for stressed-out and misinformed students , so take what you read with a grain of salt. Use multiple review sites and look for patterns to get a sense of what life is;really;like at a collegebeyond what they tell you in a picture-perfect brochure or on an official campus visit.
College Confidential is a popular option, but youll also find student reviews on sites like Niche, Unigo, and;Cappex.
What Do Colleges Look For In Admissions Why Are The Sat/act Important
Applying to college soon? Curious about what colleges are looking for in applicants, especially when it comes to SAT or ACT scores? Not sure how you stack up against other applicants at your dream school?;
If you feel like you have more questions than answers about what colleges look for in admissions, you’re note alone. The college admissions process can be very confusing, and it’s easy to feel lost and frustrated. In this article, we’ll tell you what colleges look for in admissions and how to make your application the best it can be. We’ll cover:;
- What colleges look for in applicants;
- Why SAT and ACT test scores are important;
- How understanding college admissions criteria can help your own college admissions process
Let’s dive in!;
Things Colleges Will Look For In Your Social Media Accounts
High schools students are often surprised to hear that colleges look at more than just what they include in their applications. A students activity on social media can, in fact, impact college admissions decisions.
Use these tips to set your college admissions social media strategy and put your public self in the best light possible.
1) Change your profile picture.
The first thing many colleges notice about the social media accounts of applicants is the profile picture. Profile pictures allow schools to put a face to the name on a students application. It is important to understand that your profile picture is a unique opportunity to have a good first impression with a school. Consider changing your profile picture to be slightly more professional a good rule of thumb to follow is if your picture is one that you wouldnt want your grandmother to see it, dont post it as the face of your profile on the internet.
2) Follow the social media accounts of the schools you are interested in.
Colleges want to admit students who are excited about attending their particular school. As such, it is a good idea to follow the social media accounts of the schools you are applying to and engage in what they post. This can be done by liking the schools status posts or sharing them with your own followers. If the colleges you apply to do decide to look at your social media accounts, they will appreciate seeing how interested you are in their activities.
5) Choose your interests wisely.
Sincere Specific And Well
The personal statement is an important part of your college application as it’s one of the only areas where you can really showcase your personality.
According to the 2019 NACAC survey, 56% of schools consider application essays moderately or considerably important. While some colleges don’t require essays, those that do usually place at least moderate importance on them.
So how can you ensure your essay will impress the admissions committee? Generally, colleges are looking for three main qualities in a personal essay:
- Honesty: What you write about should have actually happened to you and should be how you actually feel. Exaggerating details and outright lying are big no-noes here!
- Specificity: Using concrete details to effectively convey your thoughts, view, and experiences will make your essay a lot more memorable, personable, andmost importantlyunique.
- Eloquence: Don’t expect to get accepted anywhere if your essay is poorly written and full of grammar and spelling errors. A great personal statement has a sensible organization, tells a compelling story, and is completely free of technical errors.
Below are some steps you can take to guarantee that your essay will have all three qualities.
Step 1: Brainstorm Significant Moments From Your Life
What you write about for your college essay will vary depending on the prompt you’re given from your school or the prompt you choose .
In general, you’ll want to pick a topic that meets the following criteria:
How Do Colleges Look At Gradesanswered
I will have taken 16 AP classes by the time I graduate. The thing is, I took a few on-level courses over the summer to help with some prerequisites. This brings my weighted gpa down to a 4.3 -4.4 even though I have all As in all my classes and took a lot of AP classes. If you look at my complete course list you will see that I will have taken a few more coursesthan my peers. Will colleges understand this and look at my entire course list and my grades in those classes or will they just look at my gpa and see that it isn’t as competitive.
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What Is A Good Unweighted Gpa
A high school transcript that contains an even mix of As and A-s will produce a GPA of 3.85, exactly halfway between the 3.7/A- and the 4.0/A. More As than A-s will come out to a GPA of 3.9 and above, which is generally considered a very high GPA. These are the kinds of numbers that Ivy League schools are looking for. More A-s than As will result in a GPA near or below 3.8, which is still a real accomplishment that colleges will appreciate.
A transcript with a mix of A-s and B+s will produce a grade point average in the range of 3.5, which is an important cutoff for many colleges. In general, admissions officers want to see more As than Bs, so having an unweighted GPA of above 3.5 can make a big difference. A GPA below 3.5 indicates to colleges that you have more Bs than As, and anything below 3.2 suggests that you may have some Cs in the mix, too, which will be a red flag for very selective schools.
That said, even if your high school uses an unweighted GPA, colleges absolutely pay attention to how many honors and AP classes you are taking. Thus, even if your GPA is a lower than a peer who is taking all regular classes, you will still be the more competitive applicant if youre taking more honors classes. The key is balance: take challenging courses, but dont tank your grades. No number of difficult classes can make up for a poor unweighted GPA.