Sue Scheff: College Application Tips for Parents and Teens

collegeappCollege applications are a lengthy process that requires time and dedication. If your teen is in their junior year, the time is now to start learning about the college admissions process. Learning about scholarships and financing college is also a priority, especially in today’s economy. If you have a High School Senior, please take the time to also review last minute tips for college applications.

Here are some great college application tips to help you and your teen get started today:

•Start early – Being prepared can help you perfect your College Admissions Application.

•Apply to more than one school. You should apply to 3 to 5 colleges just in case you don’t get accepted to your first couple of choices. Many students have their wish list of colleges, however you need to be prepared with a backup plan such as a community college or one that is easier for you to be accepted in to if your desired schools don’t work out.

•Career and College Counseling – Some teens and parents prefer to meet with a college career counselor to go over any college admissions questions you may have. In many High Schools, your guidance counselor can be of great assistance to you and your child.

•Common Application – Become familiar with the Common Application. This can help you easily apply to more than one school at a time.

•Proofread the Application – Make sure you fill out the Application for Admission completely. Whether you are filling it out online or sending it in, always double check it. It is also beneficial to have a second pair of eyes (whether a parent or friend) read it also for typos or errors.

FAFSA – This is for financial aid. If you will require this, get it in on time.  Take the time to review grants and scholarships. They can help can reduce your tuition costs.

•Deadlines for Admission – Be aware of the deadline for each individual application. There are different deadlines for admission applications, financial aid and transcripts.  Take the time to learn about Early Decision and Early Action.  This may benefit you if you are confident on the school you would like to attend.
•Apply Online – Many colleges give the option of applying for admission online. This is a great way to speed up the college application process. Again, be sure to double check your information before you hit the “send” button.

Admission Application Fees – Remember to include any application fees, if required. Most schools have application fees, some are waived. Check the school you are applying to for their cost and be sure you include it with your application. Online application fees are usually accepted with a credit card.

College Admissions Essay – Write about something you are enthusiastic and passionate about. Proofread many times and revise. Use your own words, rather than picking words out of the thesaurus.

•Letters of Recommendation – Have your best teachers write you letters of recommendation.

Follow Up – Always make copies of your application and follow up with the school to be sure they have received all the necessary documents.

SAT – You can take the SAT as many times as you like. A higher score will increase your chances of getting accepted. To increase your SAT Scores be sure read about SAT test tips.

Stay in contact – If the college admissions department contacts you for more information, respond as soon as possible.

College Evaluation – Thoroughly evaluate the college you would like to apply to. Prepare a list of questions, visit the campus, research articles on the school and talk to other students that have attended or graduated from there.

For more information on college applications and what college may be right for your child, resources and more visit College Board, College View, and Campus Grotto.
 

Also on Examiner.com.

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