Five People Worth Talking To On Your College Visit

Most college visit advice focuses on the immediately practical: Ask the admission office what activities are available to you. Check to see if appointments are needed in advance. Leave plenty of time for parking. Take pictures. Take notes. And above all else, talk to people outside the admission office.

The most obvious candidates are students. No one else can tell you what it’s like to live and study at a particular college, so seize the opportunity. (Don’t know what to ask? Try “What surprised you about this place?” The answer never disappoints.) Beyond students, professors are a close second. But who else?

7 college admissions mistakes that even smart kids keep making

The college application process notoriously strikes fear into the hearts of high school students and their parents each fall, but does it have to? Sara Harberson, college admissions counselor at The Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, says no — and one key to keeping your sanity might be finding a way to wade through the process without falling prey to bad advice. Harberson — who worked in admissions at the University of Pennsylvania and was the youngest college dean of admissions in the country when she took that role at Franklin & Marshall College at the age of 32 —weighed in on 7 of the most prevalent examples of bad college admissions advice, which make the whole experience harder than it should be.

New SAT and ACT Score Ranges for 360 Colleges and Universities

Students taking the new SAT need to be able to determine how their scores fit into the competitive landscape of college admission. A new SAT score is not equivalent to the same score on the old SAT and must be translated via a concordance. Colleges will not report new SAT scores from enrolled students until spring 2018, and guide books will not include the new figures until summer 2018.

In the meantime, Compass has compiled the estimated new SAT score ranges for 360 popular colleges and universities, public and private, chosen to represent a wide array of four-year postsecondary institutions in the U.S. You can use these estimated new SAT ranges, as well as the actual ACT ranges, to better understand the typical test scores of enrolled students.

Developing Your College List

Summer for rising seniors is filled with college “stuff”: college visits, college list-making and college applications.  While it is ideal for students to visit schools in person to get that “gut feeling” about fit, for most families it is challenging or impossible to visit every school students are considering.  Even if students can visit in person, schools often start to blend together, as they profess to offer the same “great” things.  So how do students know what schools to put on their lists?

Media Use in School-Aged Children and Adolescents

The American Academy of Pediatrics released a very informative policy statement. Below is the the Abstract.  The entire statement can be read here.

Research suggests both benefits and risks of media use for the health of children and teenagers. Benefits include exposure to new ideas and knowledge acquisition, increased opportunities for social contact and support, and new opportunities to access health-promotion messages and information. Risks include negative health effects on weight and sleep; exposure to inaccurate, inappropriate, or unsafe content and contacts; and compromised privacy and confidentiality. Parents face challenges in monitoring their children’s and their own media use and in serving as positive role models.

In this new era, evidence regarding healthy media use does not support a one-size-fits-all approach. Parents and pediatricians can work together to develop a Family Media Use Plan ( that considers their children’s developmental stages to individualize an appropriate balance for media time and consistent rules about media use, to mentor their children, to set boundaries for accessing content and displaying personal information, and to implement open family communication about media.

The Four Biggest Mistakes Students Make When Applying to College

Jeffrey Selingo, author of College (Un)Bound and There is Life after College, has noticed how little some students and parents know about the colleges and universities they’re considering. In his article, Jefrey states, “While we’re inundated with more college rankings than ever before, it hasn’t made us better consumers. Colleges and universities have benefited from this confusion in the marketplace: They know more about the prospective student than the prospective student knows about them. It’s in your interest to change that balance and learn as much about the college you’re considering as possible.”

Here are four mistakes that students and parents make during the college search.

Surprise! Social media can help, not hurt, your college prospects

By now, the idea that some college admissions officers might check an applicant’s social media accounts shouldn’t sound too far-fetched. With the explosion of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and all the others, there have been plenty of stories about how a student’s social media could hurt their chances of getting into the school of their choice — enough accounts to worry teenagers that what they post could come back to haunt them at college time.

But what teens — and their parents — might not be aware of is how often college admissions officers say social media positively impacts a prospective student’s application, as opposed to reducing their chances of admission.