College Admissions Overview

First complete college application and include application fee when required. Then submit your official transcript, test scores, essays and any required documents. You then have to wait for the admissions decision, which can feel like forever. If you’re accepted and you accept the colleges offer, make your deposit by May 1. After high school graduation, request your school send the final official transcript. All there’s left to do after that is attend new student orientations and get ready to start that college life!

When you apply there are several things colleges look at. Your GPA is one, which is the grade-point average listed on your high school transcripts. Some colleges also have you write essays when you apply. These essays help colleges evaluate your writing ability and also supplement a borderline GPA or test score. They will also look at special talents, community service, extra- and co-curricular activities to get an idea of the type of person you are outside of your academics. One of the main things colleges will look at is test scores. Most colleges require you to have a certain grade on your SAT and ACT scores. Recommendations are required at some colleges as well which must be written by a teacher, guidance counselor or principal.

There’s a couple terms you should know for college and applying to college. A transcript is the record of your academic work to date, including the courses taken, your class rank, GPA and recorded test scores. An official transcript is a document that must be received directly from your high school. Standardized tests are tests such as the PSAT, SAT, and ACT. A financial aid “package” is a packet that consists of loans, work study, grants, scholarships, and other aid that will be applied to your bill. And finally, common application which is an online application that is shared across approximately 700 colleges and universities.

 

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