Creating a college list can be intimidating.
And it’s no wonder since there is a lot riding on drawing up a solid list of promising colleges and universities.
Getting it wrong can lead to students being miserable at their schools. It also is a reason why so many unhappy undergrads end up transferring to different institutions.
In extreme cases, creating a poor list can also lead to the same fate as an unlucky teenager in San Diego during the most recent admission season.
The teenager applied to some University of California campuses as his “safeties.” Right there that was a mistake. The UC campuses, including Berkeley, UCLA, and lesser known ones like those in Davis, Irvine and Santa Cruz should never be considered safety schools!
This teenager also applied to his “dream schools” that included a lot of prestigious brand-name institutions back East. He didn’t get into a single one.
He is now working with a college consultant to find schools – at this late date – where he could start in the fall. Believe it or not, there are many schools that are still accepting applications because these institutions did not meet their freshmen admission goals. You can find some of them at the college openings list on the website of the National Association for College Admission Counseling, but there are others that are still accepting applications, but they don’t want to be on a public list.
Michelle Kretzschmar at DIY College Rankings (an excellent website packed with lots of helpful advice and resources) has created an ebook that can help entitled, Creating College Lists: Your Guide to Using College Websites to Pay Less for a Better Education.
Michelle released the ebook on Amazon today and it will be free to download through May 25. I’d urge you to check it out and also spend some time on her website.
Here is a description of the book that Michelle provided me:
This book does something that no other college search book does, it shows you how to use college websites to create a better college list. After reading the book you’ll know:
- How to start a list of colleges to research when you don’t have any idea of where to go
- How to expand your list of colleges to research when you do have some idea of where to go
- How to quickly find out what is distinctive about a college
- What are the critical elements of a college website that you MUST pay attention to and why
- Where to find a college’s Net Price Calculator and what to look out for
- What kind of tools are available for you to follow colleges
This book is for anyone who wants to start researching colleges but just doesn’t know how to start.