College Application Breakdown: The Experience in a Nutshell

The college application may be the first impression admissions officer will have. Here’s what you’ll need to make the right impression and bring your application to the top of their list.

Applying for colleges, determine the school that will be the best fit for you. Try to narrow down the choices by making sure you meet their requirements and they meet yours.  However, don’t be afraid to apply to a college that might be a stretch for you. You’ll never know unless you try!

Step 2 – Start the application. Applications ask for extended responses. It’s a good idea to create word documents to write and edit your responses and avoid losing work. Also, it’s important to ask teachers and guidance counselors for reference letters as early as you can.

 Every college application comes with a table of contents – Online applications are usually organized by tabs. Make certain you understand the functionality of the application process. If uncertain, ask your family, guidance counselor or a college admissions office for clarification. It’s better to ask than to guess incorrectly. Remember an incorrect guess might cause you to make a mistake that could count against you.

Follow directions – Note your deadline for required documents, transcripts, test scores, essays, etc. Do things their way, not yours.

Step 3 – Set an appointment with your guidance counselor to secure transcripts, test scores and secondary school reports.  Your counselor will appreciate your courtesy during this busy time for everyone.

Step 4- Once you finish your application, make sure you edit and have a second person read over it. All essay questions should be answered directly and concisely.

Double check for accuracy – turn on your browser’s spell check and read over everything!

Supporting documentation – If the application requests your resume, make sure the document is updated, concise and tailored.

Nothing turns off an interviewer more than a sloppy and incomplete application full or spelling and grammatical errors. Take the time to double check that all questions have been completed and that the answers are concise and to the point.

These are the basic steps you need for a successful college application experience.  Whenever things are too overwhelming, break the process into these simple steps.