College Admissions

Rankings Based on Other Rankings

Staying on the topic of rankings, as we did last time, have you ever wished that somebody would throw all the various college rankings into a pot, stir them all up, and come out with a Grand Composite Ranking? Well, if you have, your wish may have come true. Late last month, The Washington Post ...

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Weird College Rankings

If you’re at all involved with the world of college admissions or college in general, you’ve no doubt seen all the different varieties of college rankings. If you’ve spent much time on the College Confidential discussion forum, especially in the late summer, you’ve probably seen the massive discussions — sometimes heated arguments — about the ...

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Should I Take the “Pass” or the Grade?

Question: I took an AP History class and I had an average of a 70. My principal gave me the option to switch my 70 for a “P” on my transcript. Which grade looks better to colleges? She offered me the same option for physiology. Thanks for your help! You PROBABLY want to take the ...

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Is Speaking Multiple Languages an Ivy League Hook?

Question: hi, I would like to know something for Ivy League schools; would I a be considered as a competitive applicant if I could speak (and write…) in 4 languages, would that make me standout? While “The Dean” certainly envies your ability to speak four languages, these days it won’t make you a stand-out in ...

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College “Fit” vs. Rejection

Most of you high school seniors who have chosen Early Action (EA) or Early Decision (ED) have already submitted your applications. Now, you’re managing your academics, extracurriculars, and looking at other colleges, either as additional candidates beyond your EA school(s) or as a contingency in case your mid-December results are not what you desired. Speaking ...

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Pros and Cons of Applying to a Test-Optional School

Today’s article was submitted by David White. Depending on how you feel about standardized tests, the idea of a test-optional college applications could be one of the most hope engendering phrases you’ve ever heard. When it comes to the college application process, standardized tests like the SAT and ACT (undergraduate), and the GMAT and GRE ...

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5 Things to Know About Holistic College Admissions

Today’s article was written by Erica Cirino. When you filled out your college applications this fall, were you required to write personal essays for some or all of the schools you applied to? If yes, then you can tell that college admissions officers are likely evaluating your application holistically rather than basing their decision on ...

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Am I a Freshman or a Transfer?

Question: I’ve withdrawn from college during my freshman first semester. I’m taking a gap year now and thinking of reapplying to other colleges. Can I apply as a freshman? If you have not earned any credits for the classes you took so far this fall, then you can apply as a freshman. If you HAVE ...

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The Importance of College Visits

We’ve discussed college visits quite a bit here over the years. There’s a simple reason for that: it’s a crucial part of the college admissions process. Most people wouldn’t buy a car before taking it for a test drive, even a new one. Most people wouldn’t buy a house without having a home inspection done ...

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Lost in Translation

High school seniors who are headed to college, as well as their parents, should know how to translate the words they hear from college admissions officials. This also applies to what they read on colleges’ Web sites and in their related literature. My College Confidential colleague, Sally Rubenstone, refers to this language as “AdmissionSpeak.” Shades ...

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