The process of applying to colleges isn’t always easy. Utilize these 9 suggestions to improve your chances of being accepted to college and help you write an impressive application.
- The majority of colleges view the grades and rigor of classes to be top factors in the admissions process.
- Scores on the SAT/ACT are a great way to impress admissions committees even in schools that offer test-optional admissions.
- Students can show their enthusiasm by applying for early and then going to the school.
The college application process is unlike any other. It requires hard work, determination, and often the help of family and school administrators. On top of earning good grades and strong SAT or ACT scores, you must write a compelling essay and secure letters of recommendation.
However, getting into a top school isn’t an obstacle. Here, we share our top 9 tips to boost the odds of being admitted to the college of your dreams.
1. Earn Good Grades in Challenging Courses
A good GPA in conjunction with a rigorous curriculum is easily one of the top college admissions criteria.
According to a report released in 2019 from NACAC, the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) about 3 of the four colleges studied believed that grades in classes were extremely important in deciding admissions.
“A good GPA gets you through the first round,” said Christina Skeldon, college consultant and executive functional consultant for JBG Educational Group. “After that, I like to see something that makes the student stand out. What did they do outside the classroom? Who are they other than a student?”
More than 80% of schools also consider the that the quality of their curriculum is at a minimum to be important that’s why you should enroll in as many challenging classes as you can, particularly in your senior and junior years. AP, honors as well as the IB curriculum are all good choices.
“[Colleges] like to see that students challenged themselves and took higher-level courses in areas that they are strong in,” explained Skeldon.
2. Get a High SAT/ACT Score
As more schools have begun to implement tests-optional policies recentlyespecially in light the COVID-19 epidemic — SAT/ACT scores are still a reliable indicator of college acceptance chances. In the NACAC survey, more than 4 out of 5 colleges thought tests that are standardized to be significant or even significantly important.
Although a school that you’re applying to does not require scores on SAT/ACT It’s typically recommended to present these scores. Many students will take exams like the SAT or ACT in their junior year which gives them the chance to determine whether they’d like to retake in the autumn of their senior year.
The best method to prepare for any exam is to study with official practice questions and test, many of which are available for free. You can also purchase an or ACT as well as an ACT preparation book and take classes for SAT and ACT preparatory classes or engage tutors.
3. Write a Compelling Personal Statement
A personal declaration is a crucial element for college applications, particularly since more colleges are removing their requirements for SAT/ACT. More than half of schools that were surveyed by NACAC believed that essays or writing essay to be at least moderately significant.
The essay is the most effective opportunity to promote your skills. In the words of Skeldon, “A stand-out essay shows the admissions team who the student is outside a GPA or test score.”
Spend time thinking about your perspective , and selecting the appropriate topic for your needs. Your aim should be to tell a compelling captivating story.
4. Demonstrate Interest
In the 2019 NACAC study revealed that 40 percent of colleges considered the students’ interest to be as a crucial factor in the admissions process.
If you really desire to attend a certain school, you can show your an interest in visiting the school, participating in the campus tour, participating in optional interviews and even reaching out to admissions representatives.
“An official tour is so important,” said Skeldon. “Some schools are still doing interviews, and I think it looks great for a student to reach out to the admissions office to ask for one.”
Other methods to show an interest in the field include contact with the professors who teach in your desired field or applying for an early for a decision (if there is a chance) and engaging with the school’s social media channels and taking part in the college’s online seminars for potential students.
5. Secure Strong Letters of Recommendation
Recommendations letters are of great importance as they highlight certain aspects of your character which your test scores and grades aren’t able to. That’s why it is important to seek out those who can speak about your talents, achievements and character with positivity and enthusiasm.
Most colleges require three recommendation letters, mostly from teachers as well as the guidance counselor at high school.
Be courteous when making the request. Be certain to make the request at least a month prior to the deadline for college applications. Your recommender should be given enough time to write a convincing letter on behalf of you.
6. Apply to a Diverse Selection of Colleges
Students must submit applications to wide range of schools which include match, safety as well as reach. Your guidance counselor at your high school will assist you to put together a list of possible schools that have met or exceeded all the conditions to be admitted. They will be your matches and your safest bets that means you have an excellent chance of being accepted.
After this, you’re now able to start contemplating reach schools, or schools that you are less likely to be accepted into. It is important to note that some colleges are considered to be reach schools for everyone students, which includes those from the Ivy League and top-of-the-line private schools such as Stanford.
The process of applying to several schools ensures that, even the event that you fail to get accepted at your ideal school however, you have a an excellent chance of getting acceptance to at the very least one school that is on your list.
7. Opt for an Early Admission Plan
If you’re adamant about attending the school you want to attend research suggests that applying earlier can boost the chances of being admitted. It’s because colleges usually accept a greater percentage of applicants in their early decision rounds and actions rounds.
“Early action is beneficial for so many reasons, and I always push my students to apply this way if the school offers it,” Skeldon said. Skeldon.
Both plans require that you apply early, typically in November. You should get an admission decision sooner than that, but typically in December. While early decisions are an agreement that is binding which means that you commit to attending the institution if accepted, early action doesn’t bind you to any one school.
8. Manage Your Online Reputation
Admissions officers are increasingly scrutinizing candidates’ Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts to get a better understanding of their profile and also to identify issues that could deter applicants from accepting an offer. Be sure that you have your Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, and LinkedIn accounts aren’t cluttered with information you don’t like colleges to view while you’re applying.
“It is important to have an appropriate email address, and social media accounts should be [set to] private,” Skeldon said. It is also advisable to check the name of your account on Google to make sure you don’t have any online accounts that might reflect poorly on you.
9. Get Help When You Need It
College application procedures can be a bit confusing and isn’t something you should take on on your own. When you are preparing and completing your application, make sure you get help from those who are familiar with the process of admission including your guidance counselor as well as teachers.
Parents and friends, as well as parents, and other family members who can answer your questions regarding the admissions process as well as the campus environment.
Don’t forget to have someone review and proofread the entire application. “Always, always, always have someone else look through it,” said Skeldon. “Grammar, spelling, punctuation — all of these little things go a long way.”