5 Steps to Finding the Right College for You
March 23, 2021
There is a lot of pressure placed on students to know which college and degree suit them. And while college is a wonderful experience and can help you develop the skills and knowledge needed for your future career, it can also be daunting. Not only are you deciding on minors and majors that will help you build a future career, but you also have hundreds of colleges to view before deciding on which one is best suited to your degree, your needs, and your wants. You will want to factor in small considerations such as, do you want a small campus experience or live in a busy city and experience a fast-paced environment?
If you are trying to decide how to find the right college for you or you are a parent wanting to help their child make this difficult decision, here are a few tips to finding the right college.
1. Know Your Interests
There is little point in enrolling in a college course if it isn’t something that truly interests or inspires you. You’ll find that you get bored of the subject too quickly or will be depressed when working a job focused on that subject too. Therefore, take the time to decide on what it is you wish to do with your life and let the course be the driving force when choosing a college. For instance, if you wish to study computer science, then you will want to apply for and enroll at a college that has a great computer science course. Here’s a guide on how you can choose the right course for you.
2. Make a List of Viable Colleges
Once you know the subjects you wish to minor or major in, it is time to find relevant universities that offer the degrees you want and enjoy. Don’t be too picky when making the initial list of potential colleges. Go through the list and prospectus’s and if one stands out to you, jot it down. You can go into more detail later so that you can see the pros and cons of each university and whittle down the list then.
3. Calculate Your Chances of Admission
You may be too humble and sell yourself short, not thinking you are ‘good enough’ to apply for certain universities. Therefore, consider taking a college acceptance calculator so that you can estimate your chances of getting into a college. This can be great because not only does it give you a base figure to work from, but it also helps you locate any weaknesses that you should focus on if you wish to get into a specific college or course. Check out College Data to find out your chances of getting into specific colleges.
4. Create a Shortlist of Colleges
Once you know your admission chances, the courses you are interested in and know what type of campus you would prefer, it is time to go through your initial list and look at colleges in more detail. Check to see what each course offers you and the curriculum; see if their campus suits your lifestyle and whether they have any extracurricular activities that you would like to participate in. Remember that college is more than the course you are studying (although this is one of the most important factors). It is also about the social life it can offer you.
5. Visit the Campus
Before you decide on a college, you will need to try and visit the campus so that you can experience the college in person and interact with students who already study there, and also see a few lectures taking place. This can be the most valuable part when it comes to deciding on the right college for you!
Choosing your college can be difficult, which is why you need to take your time and be methodical in your approach. Decide on the course you wish to study, look up the right colleges that suit this, and then see your chances of getting in.