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Choosing a College

Lots of hints here about choosing colleges—it's not all about what you're friends are doing. Read these articles:



The First Step in College Selection: Self-Analysis

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Take one look at the size of The College Handbook, a compilation of all colleges in the United States, and you will realize the magnitude of choices you have available to you in selecting the college that you may want to attend. With over 3000 colleges and universities in the United States alone, you will undoubtedly discover many schools that will be of interest to you and where you will want to spend the next four years preparing for your future.

 

Step 2: Deciding on College Characteristics that Fit You

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Hopefully by now you have completed a self-evaluation so that you have a better understanding of yourself and your abilities, talents, and special interests. You can then apply this knowledge in determining criteria that should be used in your college selection.

 

Step 3: Gathering Information on Colleges

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Okay! We’re on our way to selecting appropriate colleges. You’ve completed your self-evaluation and know yourself a little bit better, and you’ve just finished identifying the specific college characteristics that you would like in your ideal college. Now you need to put these results to use and find the colleges that seem to match your needs and interests.

 

Step 4: Narrowing Down Your College List

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Obviously you can not apply to all the colleges you have discovered in your college search because it would cost you and your parents a small fortune just to pay the application fees to apply! Did you know that the average application fee for a selective private college on the East Coast costs $60 or more? Multiply that fee by 15 and you will see how fast you can spend close to $1000 just on processing fees! You haven't even factored in the travel cost of college visits and the possible expense of supplementary material for your applications.

It is important to have a good college list, but one that is manageable and affordable. Your list should include not only colleges where you will be happy but also those that maximize your chances of admission. A college list should have no less than 6 and no more than 10 colleges to enhance your chances of admission in a realistic way.

 

Step 5: Putting Together Your Final College Selection List

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Your college selection list is the list of colleges to which you will make application. You have taken the time to match your interests and needs to find possible colleges, but you must also be realistic about your chances for acceptance. The application process is far too time-consuming and expensive to apply willy-nilly. Your college selection list should be well considered, and it should balance the money you spend applying with the likelihood of your getting into the colleges you're applying to.

 

Choosing Between Online and Traditional College

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Choosing Between Online and Traditional College

If you’re making the important to decision to further your education, you’ve already taken the first step. But deciding how exactly to go back to school can be a little difficult. It can be tough to choose between a four-year program, a certificate, an online program, among just a few options. If you are unsure of what it is that you want to accomplish, you need to figure that out first. Once you realize what it is that you want to gain from going back to school, it’s now time to decide how to do it. Check out the following differences between online and traditional schools, and determine which college opportunity is going to be the best for you.

 

25 Common Mistakes in Choosing a College

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Concerned about making a mistake in finding the right college to attend? Here are 25 mistakes commonly made by students in trying to find the right college.

 

How Does a Student-athlete Choose the Best College?

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Student althletes have specific needs and concerns when they choose the college that's best for them.  Here's how they should go about that choice.

 

Another Look at the Worth of a College Degree

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An April 5, 2014, article from The Economist reviewed some interesting research. The Pew Research Center looked at 25 to 32 year-olds and found those who had graduated from college and were working full time earned about $17,500 more annually than those of the same age who only graduated from high school. But the large costs of a college education can negate those earning gains, even more so when a college graduate’s degree does not allow him to find a higher paying job. It could be true, as President Obama has said, that learning a trade may allow a student to earn more than if she got an art history degree.

It is most likely unfair to focus on an art degree, but it is practical to look at which college degrees pay off. This can all be calculated by taking the cost of a degree (minus scholarships and grant monies) and looking at pay scale estimates for graduates over a 20 year period. This equals the annual return rate of a college degree or whether or not the cost of a college degree is worth it over 20 years of work.

 

College Majors and College Admission

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What should I major in? That seems like a question which should come long after college acceptance, but the truth is choosing a major should begin in middle school.

 

Careers and Choosing a College

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Having a career in mind can only help you choose the right college for the right major and degree.

 

Parents, Reduce College Selection Pressures

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U.S. News and World Report publishes each year their edition that ranks 60 to 70 colleges. We like rankings; they give us an easy way to compare, and we need some standard of measure when there is such choice and we know less then we should. But, remember only a small percentage of colleges are even considered for U.S. News' ranking. Many other criteria should be used in picking a college.

 

Who Makes the Final College Selection, Parent or Student?

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And You Thought the Application Process Was Stressful!

August, October, November, December, January – five months should be enough to have to sustain the worries, deadlines, fears, and complications of putting together everything that is entailed with applying to college. Actually, the fun has just begun.

 

College Majors and College Admission

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What should I major in? That seems like a question which should come long after college acceptance, but the truth is choosing a major should begin in middle school.

Isn't that a bit young? Why so young, you might ask.

There are several reasons for knowing what you are going to major in even before high school that can affaect your college choices and your getting admission into the college of your choice.

 

Questions to Ask on your College Visit

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The purpose of the college visit is to discover more information about the school that you don't already know and to verify what you have read and heard about the school. In order to accomplish this goal, you need to ask lots of questions of lots of different people you meet on campus: students, admission officers, financial aid officers, faculty members, and coaches! You should ask the questions from each category of questions below of several representatives from each group so that you can see if the answers are the same. It is also important to ask open-ended questions, not "yes" and "no" questions, to get fuller responses.

 

How to Make the Most of Your College Visit

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Would you ever buy a house by simply listening to other people's viewpoints about it, viewing it on a website, or seeing a photo of it in the newspaper or brochure? Of course you wouldn't!! Choosing a college is far too expensive a decision to make without personally examining the campus. You should not even apply to a college without first visiting the college and checking out all of its unique characteristics in person. You need to make sure that the college truly is everything you perceive it to be, and the only way you can do that is by getting a firsthand look.

 

Ability to Pay Can Affect College Admission

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Dean Skarlis writes an interesting article in the Washington Post (Nov, 2010). The question he raises is How fair is the college admission process, especially at higher-priced schools?

Skarlis notes from The Chronicle of Higher Education there are 100 colleges that are now priced over $50,000 per year. That adds up to $200,000 over four years.

With American optimism and a belief in the American Dream, parents and students still believe that with enough hard work and with a fair admission process that a great college education can be obtained. That can still be true, but often not without huge debt.

Here are a few tips to consider when looking for a college education that will be affordable and where admission is attainable.

 

Online Education May or May Not be a Good Choice?

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There is much to be said about choosing to take online courses.

 

College Planning for Adult Students

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Whether you are starting a degree, finishing a degree, or continuing your education, you may be considering a return to college. The first thing you should know is you are NOT alone. Many adults are part of today's educational scene, and today's campuses and educational programs are both multi-aged and multi-cultural.

Second, you should know you have many options. We will discuss your options below and give you some tips to get started.

Here are some options for you to consider in choosing a college porgram and tips about getting started on your applications.

 

Freshman Admission Requirements for California Colleges

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Interested in a college in California? The California Application process in the state's higher education system depends on various characteristics, but follows a similar pattern overall. Most students are admitted upon a basis of graduating from high school and presenting their diploma, earning certain grades in specified courses and test scores, and completing specific high school courses.

 


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