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The #1 Application Trick

Okay, my title is a bit disingenuous, because the “trick” I have for you doesn’t really deserve the name. But that’s just because it’s doesn’t involve dissembling. Is it really a trick if it doesn’t involve deceiving your audience? My “#1 trick” for college applications is simple and honest: be yourself. This rule applies to […]

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Common College Application Mistakes

Many parents and students ask about the most common mistakes that are made on college applications. It’s a great question, because these mistakes almost always stem from right-headed intentions. Avoiding them is simply a matter of understanding the mindset of admissions officers. The most common mistakes on college applications fall into two categories. They don’t cover […]

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The Brag Sheet

I’ve written here that you don’t need to send a resume with your college applications, that in fact you shouldn’t. I stand by that. It’s just that there’s a bit more to the topic. You don’t need a resume to apply for college, but you should have what’s called a brag sheet. I wrote that […]

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More Application Essay Tips

Here’s another installment in our ongoing series of tips for application essays. Before, I discussed four crucial aspects of the essay-writing process; now we have a couple of things not to do. You need to be on your guard; sometimes bad results stem from good intentions. Here’s a couple of cases in point. Don’t Write […]

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What’s a Good SAT Score?

The straight answer is: it depends. It depends on where you want to go (or who you want to impress). According to the College Board’s table of 2013 SAT percentiles, the median SAT score for college-bound seniors was around 1500 combined. So maybe a ‘good SAT score’ is anything over that mark: you’ll be better […]

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Application Essay Tips

Writing your application essay can seem like an easy task: you’ve written longer papers, there’s no research to do, and the question is straightforward. But you’ve also never written an essay quite like this (unless, of course, you’ve written an application essay before). Use these tips to craft the best statement possible. 1) Brainstorm. Coming […]

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Too Far Away or Too Close to Home?

For many students, the factor of distance becomes crucial in the college admissions process. Sometimes a parent wants to veto any school outside a certain radius of home. Sometimes a student feels such a need to distance themselves from childhood that any school in California starts to look a lot more attractive. It’s important not […]

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5 Things Not to Do When You’re on the Waitlist

1) Don’t give up. While it’s important to be realistic about your low chances, don’t give up if you want to attend a school that has waitlisted you. A decision may feel distant, but it’s worth staying focused and doing what you can. 2) Don’t send too many letters/emails. Sending letters is one way you […]

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3 Things to Do This Summer

When you’re in high school, summer is a time to relax. After being busy with homework, extracurriculars, hanging out with friends, and whatever other commitments you have, it’s important to give yourself a breather. You also need a break from getting up every morning; a developing mind needs sleep, after all. This doesn’t mean that […]

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The New Common Application – Common App

The new common application (“Common App”) will be released on August 1, 2013.  As a student applying to colleges, here’s what you need to know about the common app, so that you’re ready to complete the right information and get into top colleges. Here are the new common app instructions and essay prompts: Some students […]

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