Thinking About College? | Mount St. Joseph University

Campus is closed until 10 a.m. on Wednesday, March 21, due to weather.

Making the Most of Your Time in High School Can Help You Get Into the COLLEGE OF YOUR CHOICE.

Your high school years are a time of growth and discovery – a time to learn more about yourself
and the world around you. From academics to extracurricular activities, you can learn from
everything you do.

Everything starts to count
  • Develop a four-year academic plan for high school. 
  • Ask your guidance counselor for help.
  • Focus on taking challenging courses and getting good grades.
  • Become involved in a wide variety of activities.
  • This will allow you to develop your leadership and social skills.
  • Keep a list of your activities and accomplishments.
  • Plan summer activities that keep your brain active.
Identify your abilities, aptitude and interests
  • Stay involved with activities that help develop leadership skills.
  • Review your four-year academic plan with your guidance counselor and your parents. Make changes to stay on track.
  • Plan classes for your junior year. Talk with your guidance counselor.
  • Consider taking college-prep courses.
  • Update your list of activities and accomplishments.
  • Sign up to take the PSAT early.

Time to get serious about your plans and options.

  • Be aware of your academic progress – GPA, class rank, etc.
  • Register to take the ACT and/or SAT during the spring.
  • Use college specific search engines to explore your college options.
  • Decide what is important to you in a college: academic reputation, size, location, activities, cost, etc.
  • Begin visiting colleges and universities.
  • Start checking into scholarships and financial aid.
  • Carefully select courses for your senior year.
  • Check to see if any prerequisite courses are needed for your major.

Everything comes together. You see the rewards of your hard work.

  • Focus on doing well in school.
  • Know college deadlines, if any.
  • If necessary, take the ACT and/or SAT again.
  • Narrow your list of colleges and visit your top choices.
  • In the fall, complete applications to the colleges of your choice.
  • Apply for financial aid and scholarships.
  • Make your college decision!

For more information on making high school count, visit:
Check your local library or book store for these resources which offer objective data and information:
   College Handbook 2011/College Board
   Peterson’s Four-Year Colleges: 2011/Peterson’s
   Book of Majors 2011/College Board
   Guide to collegeMajors/Princeton Review

PLAN - a practice test for the ACT. Some high schools make the PLAN available to sophomores.

PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) - a practice test for theSAT Reasoning Test. The PSAT/NMSQT is given in October, primarily to juniors. This test is also used to determine National Merit semifinalists.

ACT - a college entrance examination that students generally take during their junior and/or senior year. Students receive scores in English, reading, math, and science, as well as a composite score. There is also an optional writing test.

SAT Reasoning Test - a college entrance examination that students generally take during their junior and/or senior year. The SAT has three sections: critical reading, math and writing.

SAT Subject Tests - one-hour tests that measure a student’s knowledge in specific subject areas. SAT Subject Tests are required by some of the more competitive colleges.

Source: “Preparing for College: A guide For Parents,” Woodburn
Press 2010



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