Your admissions chances are formulated by a few main factors: your essay, your standardized test scores, your application, and your interview. Here are a few tips for navigating you through this difficult process:
Key to the college admissions process are several standardized tests, each of which should be prepared for and met with as much training and education as possible. These standardized tests – the SAT, the ACT, the PSAT and the ASPIRE - all inform decisions such as what college you get into, what programs you are able to enter while in college, and how much scholarship money you receive. It’s important to take these tests incredibly seriously, as they are over in only a few hours yet impact the rest of your life. Preparation for these standardized tests is crucial, and should be begun at least six months in advance. Because your grades on these tests, especially the SAT and ACT, make up nearly 40% of a college’s decision of whether or not to admit you, there is no amount of time that could be considered “too much” to invest.
Registration for all tests must be done in advance. Check the College Board and ACT websites for specific information on those deadlines. Some schools may offer free testing for students, so make sure to consult your college counselor.
You may also register for the PSAT, SAT subjects,
and AP tests through College Board.
SAT Subject Tests=$26.00
You may also register for the ASPIRE
test through the ACT website.
ACT without writing: $38.00
ACT with writing: $54.50
Some colleges offer interviews, either as an option for students who arrive on a college tour or as a requirement, to get into the university. These interviews can have enormous impact on the admissions decision, so preparation for them is vital. The following tips will help you navigate through the intricacies of the interview process:
1.) Be yourself!
2.) Don't memorize a speech or script.
3.) Ask questions.
4.) Talk about yourself.
5.) Talk the college up, too.
6.) Don’t lie just to impress the interviewer.
7.) Dress well. No ripped jeans or sandals.
8.) Arrive on time.
9.) Don’t chew gum.
10.) Remember to smile!
The Common Application is a college application that you can fill out one time and submit to many participating colleges and universities. Here you will submit information about your resume, the classes you’ve taken in high school, your community service hours, your test scores, and even your essays.
DO Start with a college search.
DO Answer all questions with as much information as possible.
DO Double check your application before you submit it..
DO Mention as many activities as you can.
DO Have someone read over your essay.
DO Apply early decision.
DON’T Wait until the last minute.
DON’T Have someone else write your essay.
DON’T Be modest.
DON’T Skip any questions.
A resume is a document that you create to describe your entire academic, work, and extracurricular life. No more than one page, a resume is tasked with showing your entire personality and character. This is a heavy task, and your resume will be instrumental in a college’s decision to accept or reject you. You want your resume to have the following:
No weird fonts or graphics.
Your name and contact information.
Your objective statement.
Your work history
Your extracurricular activities.
Brief statements describing work experience or community service.
Instead of looking for broad scholarships that a lot of students qualify, search for smaller, niche scholarships where you will only be competing against a few other students. Are you left-handed? An Eagle Scout? A black belt in karate? These skills and differences not only make you who you are, but they also make you eligible for amazing scholarships that could really change which schools are affordable for you. Try using the following resources for your scholarship, and tips when applying:
Watch for deadlines
Tailor your resume to each scholarship
Have someone double check your scholarship essays!
Have someone double check your application as well.
The college admissions process is long and scary, but you can have a Victory Step Advisor help you through it!
Call Victory Step at 877-638-0707