Many students dream of studying not only in a different state, but in a different country. If you have dreamed of going to a school like Prince William met Kate, (St. Andrews in Scotland), or an ancient school such as Oxford, consider attending college in the United Kingdom.
There are several advantages to studying in the United Kingdom :
Graduate with a degree in 3 years (England). You can finish your degree in 3 years and move on to graduate school or a career sooner than in an American University. Scottish Universities offer a 4-year degree.
Start in your major. You can start as a freshman studying medicine, engineering or law. Get started right away in the field of your interest.
Skip the general education. There are no general education courses required in the UK education system. Take only the classes you need, for the subject you are studying.
No language proficiency test needed. Most of all, you can experience a new culture and still be speaking English. You don’t have to worry about receiving instruction in a language you are still mastering. Undoubtedly, understanding the accents will take time!
No additional cost. UK accepts the same Stafford loan colleges in the US accept. You could actually pay less to go to school in the UK than staying home and attending a high-cost school in an expensive area of the US. International Student Loan has a list of colleges in the UK eligible for Stafford loans.
Explore United Kingdom schools through the Educate in UK website. Make notes in your GuidedPath Edge account.
There are multiple steps to getting a COMPLETE application into the college of your choice. Use the following checklist to see where you are in the process.
Filling out the college application is only the first part of the process.
State colleges/universities Application
Individual colleges/university applications
Check transcript requirements for each college you are applying to.
Transcript required with application
Transcript required after application
Transcript required after enrollment
You may need to send another transcript in January. This is known as the “Seventh semester transcript.” It shows your grades from your first semester in senior year.
Be sure to request the following test scores to be sent to all your colleges. Be sure to include both past and future test scores:
Submit your AP test scores after you graduate, unless requested otherwise.
Check to be sure your counselor and teachers have completed any recommendations you have requested.
Financial Aid forms
College is expensive. Work together with your parents to get your financial aid forms completed.
FAFSA- ALL colleges use the FAFSA
CollegeBoard Profile- some private colleges and other programs use an extra financial aid form. It is quite involved and takes a lot of time to complete. Watch for deadlines.
Some special programs (such as honors programs) or scholarships require additional applications. Check college website for additional applications and deadlines.
Did you get started late on applying to colleges? Got your December test scores back and you're reconsidering what colleges you are applying to?
Don’t worry! There are many colleges that you can apply to in January and after (even some through August). Here are a few tips for finding colleges/universities with open applications:
Schools with Rolling Admissions: Once your application is completed, you receive an admissions decision after the application is reviewed. The college does not wait for all applications to be submitted before giving you an admissions decision.
Check the Regular Decision deadlines: Many colleges have “regular” decision deadlines between January and March. Although, your options for financial aid or scholarships may be less the later you apply.
Nearby Public Universities: Public universities, especially those near you, may have local attendance areas. Being in the local area may help increase your chances of being admitted. Sometimes the deadlines for these schools are later than other public universities.
Religiously Affiliated Colleges : Some religiously affiliated colleges or universities will have extended application dates.
Each college profile lists the application deadline for the school. Search for colleges in the above categories, then check their application deadlines. If the deadline has not passed add it to your college list.
Get a jump start on your college applications. You can start a Coalition or Common Application now. Start completing information about yourself in each application. When Can I Submit My College Applications during the summer?
Here are the dates and types of applications you can submit during the summer:
Coalition Application : July 1
Common Application : August 1
Other system applications: Varies (check on websites)
“None of us got to where we are alone. Whether the assistance we received was obvious or subtle, acknowledging someone’s help is a big part of the understanding of saying thank you.” Harvey Mackay
As you finish your senior year, take time to acknowledge the people who have made a difference in your life. These are the unsung heroes in your life. If someone has touched your life in a meaningful way, acknowledge it with a card or note. Many teachers, counselors, coaches and others in your life have been leading and guiding, and at times, pushing and prodding you to be the best person you could be. Remember to take time to write a thank you card and let them know what a difference he/she has made in your life. Here are the DO’s and DONT’S to saying “Thank you”.
1. Say “Thank You” the old-fashioned way. Use a card or paper.
2. Write the note yourself. Print or write in cursive.
3. Make it personal. Use Dear …., with a first or last name.
4. Write specifics. Be specific in your expression of gratitude. Tell why this person made a difference in your life.
5. Deliver it the old-fashioned way. Deliver it yourself, put a stamp on it and mail it, or put in a teacher’s or counselor’s box.
1. Don’t wait too long. Set yourself a deadline. Write your notes before graduation.
2. Don’t mix your message. Keep your message positive.
3. Don’t make it illegible. Make sure it is neat and easily read.
4. Don’t leave someone out. Think of all the people you can thank.
5. Don’t pass this off to someone else. Don’t let your parent write these notes. They should come from you.
Your teachers, counselors and others who have helped you through high school, rarely get a thank you from the students they served. Make a difference in their life by remembering and acknowledging their contributions to your life. It will make their day.
It is here! The American colleges National Candidates Reply Date is May 1. As a senior, this is your decision deadline. You must select a college to enroll in for the next year. How do you sift through all the admissions and financial offers to make a final decision? What questions should you be asking?
How do you approach this final, all important decision? Cyndy McDonald, a college counseling expert, shared some tips:
In preparation, review the answers to the following questions
What are your top 3 categories?
In your own words, describe what your highest score category says about you and your needs for going to college?
Parents Need to Contribute
Going to college is a family affair. You are going to college, but your parents are sending you. It must be as good a fit for your parents as it is for you. Counsel with your parents and together make your final college decision.
As a family Review Best Fit Categories
Together go back to the basics. Go back to the roots of your college selection process. What was most important to you of these four categories of fit? Evaluate which college meets your needs best?
Four aspects of “best fit”.
Academic: Does it offer your major? Field of Study? Internships or cooperative education options!? How large will your classes be?
Financial: Is it affordable, both for you and your family? Do you have to take out a lot of student loans to afford the school? Or do they offer you generous scholarships or financial aid? Do a cost comparison to see which colleges offer you the best financial options. Details for doing financial award comparisons are in previous emails.
Social: Harlan Cohen, author of “The Naked Roommate” talks about the importance of identifying PLACES you will feel comfortable on campus, and PEOPLE Who will your people be? And your places? The best way to do this is to spend a night on campus. Learn about campus activities, the student body.
Physical: Based on your college visits, which college offers the physical location that best fits your needs? Will you be exploring nature’s landscape or the urban landscape? Compare the number of undergraduate students at each college.
Ask for Opinions
Before you make a final decision, talk to others. Check out facebook groups. Talk to friends at different campuses. Find out what the pros and cons are for each campus from students there.
Make a list of Pros and Cons . Using the information in your rankings, create a list of pros and cons for each school.
Looking forward with Enthusiasm
Once you make your enrollment decision, look forward with enthusiasm, and don’t second-guess yourself. You can do well at any of the colleges on your list. It is all up to you to make it happen. It is not the name on your diploma that matters as much as how you managed your experience while there!
If you did not do Early Decision, you have probably had several college offers, and more coming this month. You love all your schools, but one in particular stands out to you and is your first choice school. You wonder if you can afford the school. Now is the time to use the “First Choice” Strategy. Using this strategy can help increase the amount of money you receive from your first choice school. This strategy works best if YOU, the student, contacts the school, rather than parents or a counselor.
Goal: To get the best possible offer from your first choice school.
Choose another school with a better money offer. It can be more grants or scholarships. Less parent loans, work-study, etc.
Write a letter. Send it both as an email and a physical letter. Contact your first choice school and let them know, in a polite and respectful way, you have another offer. Your letter could look like this:
“Dear Office of Admissions at xxxx school.
I am so excited to be an admitted student for the fall of 2018. I …. (visited, talked to an admissions representative, etc.) and feel xxxx school offers me everything I need as an incoming freshman student. You are my top choice school
I received an award from your admissions (or financial aid office) in the amount of $.xxxxx. I appreciate this offer. However, I received an offer from XXXX school, in the amount of $xxxx. With college so expensive, it is hard to turn down the generous offer of this other school. Is there anything else you can recommend for me in terms of financial resources to attend your school?
[Enter what would make a difference here- less parent loan, more work-study, more merit awards, etc.]
I look forward to hearing from you. I want to be a xxxxx (enter school’s mascot) next year.
your name and contact information
3. Follow up. Follow up your letter with a call to the college admissions or financial aid office within a week of sending your letter. The college will be glad to hear from you. Let them know time is pressing, and ask when you might hear from them.
This strategy, done politely and respectfully, lets the college know you are serious about attending, and gives them an opportunity to consider any additional resources.
Use this strategy only on the school you really want to go to. If you are successful in receiving more funds, you should attend that college.
Getting a rejection letter from a college can be quite a devastating blow. Learning your first choice college does not want you can be heart-wrenching. Why doesn’t the college want you as much as you want to be a student there? You wonder, “What more could I have done?” The answer is “nothing”. College Admissions is competitive. Rejections and Acceptances go hand in hand.
Try to ease the blow psychologically by turning the tables and writing a “Reject the Rejection” note for yourself. Tape to your bedroom wall - this is for your eyes only- not to be really sent! r Refer back to it as needed. See sample below and write your own sample “Reject the Rejection” note.
I was torn apart when I received my rejection letter from xxxx college. Then I realized this was a blessing in disguise. I am now able to pursue other universities, such as xxxxxx.
I know xxx college receives applications from more qualified candidates than they can admit. This year I did not make it into the “admitted” category. The college did not recognize the contributions I could make to the campus through my interests in
I am excited I will be able to make contributions to a college such as xxxxx. I plan to take advantage of the following programs on the campus I attend:
I am sorry that it won’t be at xxx campus, but I know I can still be successful as a student at any of the colleges I have been accepted to.
January equals the mid-point of your senior year. Depending on how you feel about it, that can be exciting or depressing!
NOW is the time to review your MID YEAR SENIOR CHECKLIST. Don’t postpone- there are a lot of time sensitive deadlines in the next few weeks.
1. Meet with High school counselor
⬜ Request copy of seventh semester transcript for your records
⬜ Request counselor send transcripts to colleges as needed
⬜ Ask about scholarship opportunities
⬜ Set appointment for parents/counselor to meet to discuss financial aid
⬜ Check on graduation requirements/deadlines
2. Check on College Applications
⬜ Check email- follow up on any requests for information
⬜ Set up college email account if requested by college
⬜ Complete any January-February college applications you are still working on
⬜ Confirm your test scores have been sent to all your colleges
⬜ Confirm all your recommendations have been sent and received by the colleges
⬜ Send update email to any colleges about additional honors/awards received since submitting your application.
3. Finalize Financial Aid
⬜ Talk with parents about their college budget for you
⬜ Attend financial aid workshops with parents
⬜ Check financial aid deadlines for colleges
⬜ Check on deadlines for Start on scholarship applications
December not only means Christmas trees, Hanukkah celebrations and standing under the mistletoe, it also means hearing back from the colleges you applied to in round 1 of Early applications. This month be sure to:
Watch for admissions emails or letters from colleges.
Make plans for next steps.
Which type of early application did you complete? Pick from the following list the types of early college applications you used.
Round 2 of Early Applications
Depending on the answer you received in Round 1 of applications, you may need to do a Round 2 of applications. You can look for colleges which offer:
Early Decision II dates: typically offered in early-mid January.
Early Action II dates: offered December- February
Rolling: available on an ongoing basis
You are on the home stretch! Only a few more weeks and your college applications will be close to done. Here are 4 ways you can keep sane during these last few weeks!
Set up Application Plans . Know what is needed to make a complete application at each college you are applying to. Need recommendations? Transcripts? Essays? Make a list to keep track of.
Check Application Deadlines . How many Early Action, Early Decision or Priority applications are you doing?
Organize your calendar . Create a calendar with due dates for applications and other tasks you need to complete for your applications.
Track Progress. Feel a sense of pride and relief as you check off each task, knowing you are one step closer to getting to college.
Keep in touch with an advisor or teacher. Enlist the help of others. Your school or advisor may have deadlines or processes for you to follow. Check in with them often.
The buzz around school right now is all about recommendations. How do you get the best recommendations for your college applications? Here are 3 steps to outstanding recommendations:
1. Get Ready . Before you start asking teachers, counselor or others for a letter of recommendation, do your homework. It will pay off for you in the end with outstanding recommendations.
Focus on familiarity . Make of list of teachers who know you well to ask to write recommendations. Teachers you had in math, science or other core academic subjects more than once make ideal people to ask for letters of recommendations.
Check in with your school. Many schools have deadlines and requirements for submitting letters of recommendations. Put dates in your calendar and stick to them.
Go for the maximum. The Common App and other systems list how many letters of recommendation are required. They also give you a number of how many recommendations are allowed. Plan to request the maximum number.
Create a Recommendation Calendar . Check the dates your college applications are due and work backwards. Add all dates to your calendar.
Ask a teacher at least 4-6 weeks (follow your school’s timeline) before your applications are due for a recommendation.
Plan for the recommendations to be done 2-4 weeks before your application is due.
If you are doing early applications, you need to be doing recommendations in September or October.
Update your resume . Give teachers/counselors your resume or brag sheet. This gives them information to use when writing about yourself.
Role of Recommendations. Download this document to give to teachers/counselors. It explains what colleges are looking for in recommendations and what to write in a letter of recommendation.
2. Take Action. Use this checklist to organize your recommendation requests to your teachers. Put the following items together in a large 10X13 envelope and hand to each teacher/counselor you are requesting a letter from:
Cover letter. A personal letter explaining the purpose of the recommendation (for scholarships, admissions or special programs). Include dates you need recommendations completed by. Be sure to sign the letter.
Resume . List of all your activities through high school.
Role of Recommendations . Provide the copies of The Role of Recommendations to teachers/counselors.
3. Follow up. Follow this recommendation checklist after you have requested letters of recommendation:
Check progress. The Common Application , Universal College App and others allow you to track the progress of your application, including recommendations. Use this to view when recommendations are uploaded.
Gently remind . Teachers often appreciate a gentle reminder about upcoming due dates. You want to be sure your recommendations are submitted on time.
Write a thank you. Make a teachers/counselors day with a personalized, handwritten note thanking them for their assistance.
You will receive strong and substantial recommendations if, when requesting a letter of recommendation you follow these steps!
The purpose of submitting an application to a college early is to indicate your top preference for that college or a small group of colleges. Colleges appreciate knowing you are likely to enroll if admitted. You benefit because you hear early from your “dream” school if you are admitted or not.
What is the difference between the three early application types ?, When should you use them?
Most early admission application due dates are in November, with a notification date in December.
Think of the early action as chips in your college admissions game. You can spend your chips in different ways.
A plan offered by colleges allowing students to apply early and receive an admissions decision earlier than the regular decision dates. You can spend multiple chips to apply Early Action. Students can often submit early action applications to more than one school. You can apply regular admissions to any other colleges. Students have until May 1 to confirm enrollment and are not required to commit if accepted.
Restrictive Early Action
You only have one chip (early application). You have to decide which one college is at the top of your “dream” list and place your chip there. You are restricted from applying EA or ED to any other college. You can apply regular admissions to any other colleges.
Another one chip choice, students are restricted to choosing one college to apply to Early Decision. If a student is admitted Early Decision, you are committed to attend the college. No other applications can be submitted after you are accepted early decision. All other submitted college applications must be withdrawn. The up side to Early Decision is you hear early. The downside can sometimes be in terms of financial aid options offered.
Why Apply Early?
There is a lot of debate the advantages or disadvantages of applying early. The following table shows the difference in admissions rates between Early Decision and Regular Decision at some of the top universities in the country. This data quells any question about how beneficial applying Early Decision can be.
Early Decision Acceptance Rate
Regular Admissions Rate
University of Pennsylvania
You can now submit financial aid forms starting Oct. 1, using last year’s taxes. This gives colleges an opportunity to consider your financial aid or merit awards along with your admissions decision. This makes it more beneficial to apply early. Often students who apply early are offered more merit or need based money.
Which college essay type are you?
I know what I want to study AND I have had a significant life experience.
I don’t know what I want to study AND I have had a significant life experience.
I know what I want to study AND I have not had a significant life experience.
I don’t know what I want to study AND I have not had a significant life experience.
Pick your college essay type and see the College Essay’s Guys recommendations for how to approach your college essay type using Screen Writer's Tips.
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