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College Admissions Process

Why The College Admission Process Is Bonkers

Ann Lewis Hamilton | Posted 12.01.2014 | Fifty
Ann Lewis Hamilton

It's a life lesson for my daughter, that's what I try to tell myself. This is how the world works. Just because you have a high grade point average, excellent test scores, a myriad of extracurricular activities, hundreds of hours of community service, and you're a legacy at your top pick college -- all those things might count for doo doo squat.

13 Important Things To Remember Before You Freak Out About The SAT

The Huffington Post | Amanda Scherker | Posted 11.07.2014 | Teen

News flash: the SAT is not fun -- but you already knew that. Taking the test can be really stressful and it can feel like the be-all and end-all o...

'Stuff' That's Difficult to Find -- Let Alone Understand -- But Important to Know for College Applications

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 11.07.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

In September, I offered a HuffPost blog entitled, "Help for the 6 Most Confusing Parts of the New 2014-15 Common App." Since that time, a lot of other questions have come up from students and parents. Here are some of the more frequently asked.

Sound Advice for Parents in the College Search Process

Catherine McDonald Davenport | Posted 11.07.2014 | College
Catherine McDonald Davenport

If you listen closely, you can hear it. Parents pacing around their teenagers, the continuous hum of questions can be heard for miles. It's college application season and deadlines are looming.

600 Words Of Legit Narcissism: The College Essay

Nasir Fleming | Posted 11.05.2014 | Teen
Nasir Fleming

Right now is the time of year when self-reflection and talking about yourself is acceptable. Instead of annoying your peers with your awkward quirks on social media, direct them in an essay for your admissions counselor.

Your Early Decision Applications Have Been Submitted... What Next?

Robert S. Schwartz | Posted 11.03.2014 | College
Robert S. Schwartz

November 1st has come and gone, and with it your Early Decision applications. Before you tackle the rest of your application essays take stock of where you are in the process. Here are five tips to make the next eight weeks easier and stress-free (and have you done by Christmas).

Let's Admit It: Every Parent Needs a College Plan

Jane Swift | Posted 10.28.2014 | Parents
Jane Swift

It is the kind of activity fraught with tense moments, periods of euphoria and more than a few tears shed. No, it's a not a One Direction concert: it's the dreaded college admission process for my daughter.

Dear 9th Graders: College Applications Can Wait. Following These 5 Tips Can't

Scott Anderson | Posted 10.21.2014 | College
Scott Anderson

None of the tips listed here are explicitly designed to make you a better college applicant when you get to that point, but that's exactly what they'll do if you follow them. And by "better," I don't mean competitively packaged. I mean authentic.

The Truth About Outside Reading: Why It's Important and What to Read

Kat Cohen | Posted 12.17.2014 | College
Kat Cohen

Educators have always stressed the importance of reading for pleasure outside of class, but how does this benefit students preparing for the college admissions process?

1st Grade and the 1st Year of College

Eric J. Furda | Posted 11.30.2014 | College
Eric J. Furda

As I returned to my son's school for 1st Grade back-to-school-night (apple juice and pretzels anyone?), the Head of School and Division Head could have also welcomed the Class of 2018 Penn Parents a few weeks earlier.

6 Ingenious Ways to Save Money on College Applications

Gianna Sen-Gupta | Posted 11.18.2014 | College
Gianna Sen-Gupta

Paying for college doesn't just begin in your first semester freshman year. Rather, prospective college students can expect to start funding their higher education in high school--when they send in their college applications.

Don't Bother With Yale: Even the Most Excellent Sheep are Still Part of a Herd

Linda Flanagan | Posted 11.16.2014 | Education
Linda Flanagan

Kids lose their childhoods to appease the college admissions Gods (and their parents), endure record rates of depression and anxiety, and arrive on campus stripped of curiosity or self-knowledge. They excel at following orders, hence they are "excellent sheep."

Help for the 6 Most Confusing Parts of the New 2014-15 CommonApp

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 11.09.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

Everyone -- students, parents, high school counselors, teachers and college admissions officers -- were all in agreement last year that the Common Application offered many challenges. Things seem to be much better this year; but here and there, directions are left out, and there are areas that are not explained as thoroughly as they might be.

The Most Overhyped Component of College Admissions

Ishan Puri | Posted 11.02.2014 | College
Ishan Puri

From our experience helping 5,000 students through workshops and individually through the process, we conclude that the major selection is the most overrated entry on the common application.

Should I Apply To College Early Decision or Early Action?

Jeannie Borin | Posted 11.02.2014 | College
Jeannie Borin

With the Nov. 1, Early Application deadline fast approaching, the following questions and pros and cons should help in making the decision on how to best apply.

Why College Music School Rankings Are All Wrong

J Nelson Aviance | Posted 10.25.2014 | College
J Nelson Aviance

Having gone through several music programs and with friends still attending music programs, I can tell you that these ranking systems absolutely fail to address what is important as a developing musician seeking to make a career as a performer.

ACT? SAT? Subject Tests? No Tests? Holy Moly! Who Is Requiring What These Days?

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 10.11.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

No college requires applicants to take both the SAT and ACT. Whether you need to take Subject Tests is a little more complicated; see below for the answer to that question.

The Truth About Getting Ahead: Starting College Applications in the Summer

Kat Cohen | Posted 09.15.2014 | College
Kat Cohen

With more writing and less time to complete it all before early and regular decision deadlines, is it wise for students to build some essay-writing time into their summer breaks?

So You Want to Be an Engineer? How to Tell if This Is (or Is Not) a Good Idea

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 08.19.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

As a result, more and more students are declaring, "I want to be an engineer!" When I hear those words, I usually say something like, "That's great! Why do you think you want to do that?"

Maximize Your Summer

Ishan Puri | Posted 08.09.2014 | Education
Ishan Puri

Around the nation, the summer sun dawns a new beginning and change of pace. High school students ask the perennial question: "What should I be doing?"...

4 Things Rising Seniors Can Do This Summer to Get an Upper Hand On College Admissions

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 08.02.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

Once you've gotten some energy back, then start your summer activities, whether that's work, volunteering, summer school, something else, or more likely, a combination of several things.

So You Want to Go to Medical School? 5 Think-Ahead Tips for High Schoolers

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 07.19.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

Given that I encourage students to approach college admissions and career choices based on a good fit model, to me the more important question is, "What can you do to find out if medicine is the right career for you?"

The Truth About SAT and ACT Test Prep

Kat Cohen | Posted 07.14.2014 | College
Kat Cohen

In recent years, test prep for the SAT or ACT and its place in the college admissions process has come under scrutiny. It's no secret that standardized test scores aren't the end-all predictor of college success.

Elite Colleges Don't Buy Happiness For Graduates

The Wall Street Journal | Douglas Belkin | Posted 05.08.2014 | World

A word to high-school seniors rejected by their first choice: A degree from that shiny, elite college on the hill may not matter nearly as much as you...

So You Want to Get Into the Film Industry? Great Ways to Get Started

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz | Posted 07.01.2014 | College
Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz

Every year, it never fails that I have one, two or three students dying to major in film and television studies. Right away, I tell them that it is one of the most competitive college majors to get into in the U.S.