Latest College Admission Trends

While it might not look like it, the college admission landscape is constantly changing.

This month The Chronicle of Higher Education ran a fascinating article about admission trends at colleges across the country. I’m going to share the article with you and also highlight the trends that the Chronicle reporter uncovered:

State universities continue to struggle.

State budget cuts are crippling public universities across the country. To help make up for the shortfall, many state schools are recruiting out-of-state students because they can charge a much higher tuition. In my own state of California, for instance, the cost of a nonresident attending UC Berkeley or UCLA is around $50,000!  With anemic state support, public universities are also raising tuition for their own residents to keep the lights on.

Transfer students are becoming a higher priority with 4-year universities.

This is good news for all the students who start out at a community college. It’s also encouraging for students who hate their four-year schools and would like to start over somewhere else.

Summer melt is a growing problem.

Families are only supposed to put a deposit down on one college. But as students apply to more schools, more are double or triple depositing. This can create havoc at small private schools that are counting on a certain number of freshmen, but see those numbers melt during the summer.

Admission offices are scaling back.

It’s ironic that many schools are receiving  more applications at the same time that they are cutting back on staff. Colleges are cutting back on printed materials they sent prospects, as well as travel time for admission reps. The article didn’t say so, but more schools are reaching out to teenagers virtually through such websites as Zinch and Cappex, as well as College Week Live.

When recruiting internationally, colleges are casting a wider net.

There is such a crush of Chinese students applying to Americans universities and colleges that you could fill entire classes with them. While it’s been easy to recruit Chinese students, colleges are now focused on greater international diversity.

If you’re curious, here is The Chronicle article on college admission trends:

Admission Deans Feel Crunched by the Numbers

Lynn O’Shaughnessy is the author of The College Solution, an Amazon bestseller and a workbook, Shrinking the Cost of College: 152 Ways to Cut the Cost of a Bachelor’s Degree. Follow her on Twitter.

University of Missouri image (my alma mater) by ensign_beedrill. CC 2.0.

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