About This Chapter
Researching a College: Chapter Summary
If you're ready to start looking for colleges, consider using the lessons in this chapter to inform your research. Our guidance counselors show you how to compare schools and provide you with suggestions for making this process less stressful. We can even help you decide which schools to apply to once you've narrowed the field. This chapter includes lessons on:
Determining School Criteria
Let our guidance counselors help you create a list of personal criteria useful for whittling down your school choices. For example, are you interested in a public or private school? Would you rather stay home or study out-of-state? We can also walk you through academic and financial considerations before showing you how to weigh competing priorities.
College visits are great, but not always feasible. Our guidance counselors provide you with some alternative options for learning about a college, such as virtual tours and conversations with admissions officers, alumni or students. Let us also show you where to find useful information on college websites and provide you with tips for keeping track of notes and ranking schools so that your research process is more efficient overall.
Deciding Where to Apply
Narrowing down school choices is the easy part. Once you've determined which ones are a good fit for you, you'll need criteria for deciding how many colleges will receive your application materials. We can show you how the affordability of application fees factors into this decision and help you create a back-up plan should your top school choice fall through.
1. Choosing a College: What's Important to You?
List criteria for evaluating the academic options at a college, including: number of majors offered, academic support services provided, class size, faculty background, research opportunities, and general course offerings.
2. 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.
3. 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.
4. How to Research Colleges Efficiently and Without Stress
As you start researching colleges, you may find the process a little overwhelming. This video gives you some tips for making the college search more efficient and less stressful.
5. 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.
6. How Many Colleges Should I Apply To? - Tips to Follow
The number of colleges you should apply to isn't set in stone. It depends on your unique situation. This video will help you think through and decide how many colleges you should apply to.
7. Making Your College Decision: An Investment in Your Future
Your college education is more than just four years of your life; it's an investment in your future. Make sure you've got the information you need to make the best decision for you.
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