Choosing a College
Students will want to start researching colleges in junior year or earlier so that they are ready to begin the application process by the start of senior year. The most important factor to consider when deciding where you want to apply is choosing COLLEGES THAT ARE A GOOD MATCH FOR YOU. There are many different criteria you can consider in choosing a college (size, location, diversity, special programs, student climate). Whether students are looking at four-year, two-year or vocational schools, an early start in selecting schools for application will help students make appropriate choices and submit quality applications on time.
Below are some web sites that can help you start the college search process. Once you have narrowed the field, you will want to visit schools you are most interested in.
College Searches and General College Information
• College Board Online - www.collegeboard.com
• Peterson's Education Center - www.petersons.com
• EducationQuest - www.educationquest.org
• US Department of Education - http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/cool/
Access to web sites for 4-year and 2-year colleges
College Admissions Testing
The PLAN test is a pre-ACT and is administered in the fall to all 10th grade students in Lincoln Public Schools.
The PSAT is a pre-SAT I and is available to interested students in October of each year . Students must register for this test and pay a fee. The PSAT also serves as the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test for juniors.
• SAT I
• SAT II
Course work is your best general preparation. Sample questions, sample tests, and test –taking strategies are available in books, on CD's, online, and through test preparation workshops. All students should familiarize themselves with test format, etc. ahead of time to maximize their scores. The following links are a good place to start:
• ACT Preparation
Free ACT or SAT Test Prep Sites:
COMPASS -- computer-adaptive placement test used at Southeast Community College. It measures skills in reading English, and mathematics. There is no test fee, the test is untimed, and you receive your results immediately after testing. A variety of times are available. It is recommended that students take the COMPASS as soon as they decide to attend SCC. You can schedule your test or obtain more information by calling 437-2715
Test Dates and Registration
ACT Test Dates& Registration Deadlines
ACT Registration information, fees & online registration
(A one-time fee waiver is available for students whose families qualify for free or reduced lunch.)
SAT Test Calendar and Fees
(A fee waiver is available for students whose families qualify for free or reduced lunch.)
SAT Registration Information & Online Registration
College Athletics - Download the LNE NCAA Fact Sheet
Students considering college athletics at the Division I or II level can obtain information on NCAA guidelines at http://www.ncaa.org/.
Division I & II institutions which sponsor specific sports can be found at http://www.ncaa.org/sponsorships/.
The NCAA Initial-Eligibility Clearinghouse handles all inquiries regarding an individual's initial eligibility status. Information and Clearinghouse registration are available at www.ncaaclearinghouse.net.
If you are applying to a number of selective colleges, the Common Application will save you valuable time. The Common Application is the recommended form of many selective for admission to their undergraduate programs. Details, schools participating, and application form available at www.commonapp.org .
A student's essay can be a critical part of applying to a college, to an Honors Program or other special program, or applying for a scholarship, Often, there are many students with top credentials submitting these applications and the student's essay is one of the best ways to help an admissions officer or scholarship committee member learn what is unique about you--your interests, how you think, how you write. Your job is not to try and make a particular impression, but to help the reader get to know you. The links below provide tips on writing your essay.
NACAC's Top Ten Tips for Writing the College Essay
The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), founded in 1937, is an organization of 8,000 professionals from around the world dedicated to serving students as they make choices about pursuing post secondary education. NACAC is committed to maintaining high standards that foster ethical and social responsibility among those involved in the transition process.
The mission of the association is to support and advance the work of college admission counseling professionals as they help students realize their full educational potential, with particular emphasis on the transition from secondary schools to higher education and with attention to access and equity for all students.
Early Decision/Early Action -- Information to consider