When you are armed with sufficient information as well as a solid action plan, there is no reason for you to find college admissions confusing or difficult. The trick is to avoid making common mistakes which can restrict your options or even eliminate your chances of being admitted to your choice of school.
Your Choice of College
Believe it or not, the mistakes commonly associated with college applications can be easily avoided. For starters, choosing a particular college because most of your friends plan to go there is never a good idea unless you are all planning to be lawyers or engineers, which is unlikely. While you want to be with your best friend, you should prioritize your goals when you choose a college.
Personalizing your school search will enable you to zero in on what you really want to achieve. If you want to be a lawyer, choose a school that has a good track record of reputable alumni who are now successful lawyers. List your needs in terms of the location, distance, and the size of a college. If you want to go home every weekend, for instance, you should choose a college that is closer to home.
Submissions and Grammar Mistakes
Late submissions of application materials, incomplete submissions or even failure to submit the required documents can be disastrous for you. These could delay the processing of your college application and, in some cases, may be the cause of your non-acceptance. Letters of recommendation and secondary school report cards are just some of the documents you need to prepare.
Another very common mistake is the grammar and spelling mistakes found in application forms, supplemental essays, and other documents that you need to write. These mistakes are avoidable if you simply proofread and edit whatever you have written before you mail them. Most college admission officials will not like such carelessness.
Don’t Exaggerate Your Achievements
Don’t think that your grade point average, SAT scores or high school activities will be enough for all the colleges you apply to. A majority of admission officers, especially those from small or community colleges, like to see beyond an individual’s academic profile. If you are involved in community activities, for example, make sure that you include those in your application.
On the other hand, exaggerating about your achievements is always a bad idea. You would be surprised at how admission officers investigate the information written on college applications. Needless to say, stretching the truth on a college application will be verified, especially those activities that are leadership or award related. Exaggeration in this case is tantamount to lying.
Internet and Social Media
Remove videos and photos of yourself wearing inappropriate outfits or behaving badly online. Yes, admission officers also check social media sites.
And if your email address is very inappropriate, such as email@example.com make sure you don’t give that out in your contact details. Create an email account that is specifically for your college applications. Keep it clean and simple. The email address you consider “cool” or “hip” or “funny” may not impress admission officers at all.