Need help in choosing colleges? It so, you’ll be interested in this college blog post by David Montesano. David is an admission strategist with College Match, an educational consulting firm that aims to help families find great colleges at discount prices.
Here are 5 things that David suggests that you keep in mind when when are looking for college matches:
1. When considering how to choose a college beware of college rankings.
US News and World Report ranks colleges on reputation, retention, test scores, and class rank and places less emphasis on outcomes like graduate school placement and earnings. Class size, student’s ratings of their professors, and graduate school admission success are better measures of undergraduate quality. A good source of information is College Confidential.
2. Don’t worry about your student’s major.
Unlike other parts of the world, students in the U.S. increasingly attend graduate programs to get the specialization they will need for their careers.
3. Become a realist about competitive college admission.
If a family is considering undergraduate admission to schools with admission rates of 10% or less, it is important to note that your student often have a chance of admission that is closer to 3 or 4 percent. 40% of the spaces are taken up by recruited athletes, under-represented minorities and legacies—the sons and daughters of alumni.
4. Don’t overlook “small name” colleges.
Instead of focusing on Ivy League, MIT and Stanford, look for colleges that feed into these for graduate study. The Wall St. Journal published a study of the top 50 “feeder” colleges.
5. Look for the right college match.
Base your decisions about where to go on your values instead of location, prestige or cost. Read the about the college’s mission and founding to be sure that the college’s values are the same as yours. Colleges, like people, have values; it’s like joining a family. You will inherit the network by attending.