About This Chapter
Evaluating Colleges: Chapter Summary
With all of the college choices out there, it can be confusing to make the final decision on where to attend. However, with the right information and careful evaluation, you may find the process a lot easier. Our experienced guidance counselors and academic advisors guide you through the process of evaluating colleges and teach you what questions to ask as you examine different colleges. As you move through this chapter, we'll discuss topics such as:
Deciding where to apply
You know you want to attend college, but how can you decide where to apply? We'll teach you strategies for choosing where to apply and let you know how to choose a safety school. We'll also go over choosing a college location, discussing the benefits of different types of locations.
Evaluating your options
After coming up with a few colleges of interest, you'll need to come up with a system for evaluating your options. Let our trained guidance counselors teach you how to rank colleges based on the aspects that are most important to you, including a college's academics. Learn how to compare and contrast accredited and non-accredited schools, large and small colleges, public and private colleges, and for-profit and not-for-profit colleges. We'll help you decide which student services are most important to you to further help you choose the best college for your needs.
Researching schools without visiting
Although physically visiting a college campus may be the best way to get a feel of whether or not it's the right college for you, it may not be practical to visit every college that you're interested in. Our lessons show you how to use Internet-based resources to research and compare different schools.
Attending college fairs
Attending a college fair can be a convenient way to obtain information about multiple schools at once. Use our lessons to learn the pros and cons of college fairs, and learn how to prepare a set of questions to ask college representatives and get the most out of your visit.
1. How to Decide Where To Apply to College
Applying for college can be overwhelming for many students. In this lesson, we'll look at how to choose which schools to apply to, including limitations based on application fees, and how to choose a safety school.
2. How to Choose a College Location
When choosing a college, as with real estate, location matters. But how does location impact a student's choice? In this lesson, we will examine the benefits of different locations, including home and away colleges and urban and rural colleges.
3. What is Accreditation?
Choosing a college can have a lasting impact on a person's life. In this lesson, we'll examine accredited colleges, including why accreditation is important, the drawbacks of attending an unaccredited college, and the types of accreditation.
4. How to Evaluate Your College Options
Choosing a college can be a hard decision. There are many options when it comes to college, which can make students feel confused. Watch this lesson to find out what college options are commonly considered and how to deal with competing priorities.
5. Evaluating the Academics of a College
The most important part of deciding on a college is understanding the academics at that college. Watch this lesson to find out how to evaluate a college's academics, including academic options and academic quality.
6. Comparing Large and Small Colleges
Choosing a college can feel overwhelming. There are many elements that you can use to evaluate colleges. In this lesson, we'll look at how the size of a college can influence its school culture, and how to know what size school is right for you.
7. Tips for Comparing Public and Private Colleges
Students are often faced with the choice of whether to attend a private or a public university. How can you decide? Watch this lesson to find out more about how to compare private and public colleges and what resources they have.
8. For-Profit and Not-For-Profit Colleges
Students have a lot of options when it comes to colleges. But which ones are the best choices? In this lesson, we'll examine the difference between for-profit and not-for-profit colleges and how to know which is the right choice for you.
9. Decide Which Student Services Are Important for You
Learn about the different types of student services you can find at college. Decide what's important to you to help you narrow down your college choices.
10. How to Research and Compare Schools Without a College Visit
What if you're not able to visit all of the colleges you're considering? Don't worry. There are plenty of ways to get a feel for a campus without a visit. You don't need to do everything on this list, but the more you do, the more you'll learn.
11. Attending a College Fair: Preparation & Questions
Attending a college fair is a great chance to understand the benefits and drawbacks of each school. Following the steps in this lesson, you can be more prepared and successful at college fairs.
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