Plan for College

Learn how to prepare for the education and training that will get you your dream job.

Understand How Admissions Works

To get in, learn the general admissions process

From school to school, the admissions process can vary. To increase your chances of getting in to your school of choice, learn its admissions process and set up a game plan to meet key deadlines.

  1. Research requirements for each college you're interested in. Most college and universities require a set of documents along with your application. You can prepare many of these things ahead. To increase your chances of getting into your preferred school, research its requirements. Some colleges put helpful tips on their websites on what makes for a winning candidate. You might also talk to students who have been accepted and find out what they submitted in their application packets.
  2. Make a to-do list for submitting your applications. Submitting an application can be a complicated process requiring help from multiple people. You might have to request transcripts and letters of recommendation, draft essays, create resumes, and more. To keep it simple, compile a to-do list and assign a deadline to each task.
  3. Gather materials and complete the application. Common documents required for most admissions applications include:
    • Application for admission
    • Official test scores
    • Official high school transcripts (may include class ranking and secondary school courses required by institution)
    • Official college transcripts (for transfer students)
    • Application fee
    • Essays (may be a critical application component)
    • Residency requirements (non-US residents may be tested for English proficiency and may need to provide residency credentials)
  4. Decide (or have a back-up plan). If you applied to multiple schools, you might get multiple offers for admission. If you do, give thought to which institution you accept. Make sure it provides a good fit for your interests and a strong program for your career or learning goal. If you don’t get accepted to your preferred school, consider your options. There may be any number of reasons why you weren't accepted. You might have to bring up your grade point average or show more extracurricular interest in your field. You can meet both of these needs by starting at a community college, earning high grades and gaining more related experience.

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