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Date: Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 19:22

During my tour of colleges and universities in Virginia and North Carolina, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro was one of my favorite stops.

UNC Greensboro
UNC Greensboro
Photo by Allen Grove
UNCG has an attractive 210-acre campus that is both pedestrian and bicycle friendly. The university has a highly regarded business school, a healthy 17 to 1 student / faculty ratio, and a low sticker price. Student life is active with over 200 clubs and organizations and an NCAA Division I athletic program that competes in the Southern Conference. To see some of the sights and learn more about this excellent public university, check out this UNC Greensboro Photo Tour.

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University of North Carolina at Greensboro Photo Tour originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Thursday, April 17th, 2014 at 19:22:34.

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Date: Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 12:18
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign made my list of top public universities, and Northwestern is one of the country's top private universities. Some of the other schools on my list of the top 12 Illinois colleges may be less familiar. The colleges on the list were chosen based on a variety of factors including academic strengths, curricular innovations, first-year retention rates, four- and six-year graduation rates, value and student engagement.
Augustana College
Augustana College, Old Main
Photo Credit: Augustana College

If there's an Illinois college or university that isn't on the list that you think should be, share your recommendation below. I'm a strong believer that my own selection criteria may have little to do with the best school for your own values, academic interests, and professional goals.

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Top Illinois Colleges and Universities originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Thursday, April 17th, 2014 at 12:18:03.

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Date: Wednesday, 16 Apr 2014 15:14
The interview is one of the few opportunities in the college admissions process for showing off your passions and personality, and it allows you to demonstrate your interest in a college. It also gives you a chance to learn more about a college. However, that wad of chewing gum or silent shrug of the shoulders can hurt your chances. Make sure the interview works in your favor by avoiding these 10 College Interview Mistakes.

Also be sure to master these 12 Common Interview Questions before you ever set foot in the interview room.

10 College Interview Mistakes originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 at 15:14:41.

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Date: Wednesday, 16 Apr 2014 11:30

North Carolina has some impressive options for higher education, and the admissions standards for places like Duke and UNC Chapel Hill can be daunting. Most top-ranking schools have holistic admissions, so the final admissions decision takes into consideration things like your extracurricular involvement and application essay.

That said, you're going to need high grades and strong test scores to get in. To see if you're on target for admission to some of North Carolina's top colleges, click on a school's name to view a graph with GPA, SAT score and ACT score data for accepted and rejected students: Appalachian State | Davidson | Duke | Elon | Guilford | High Point | Meredith | NC State | Salem | UNC Asheville | UNC Chapel Hill | UNC School of the Arts | UNC Wilmington | Wake Forest | Warren Wilson

GPA, SAT and ACT Data for Top North Carolina Colleges originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 at 11:30:25.

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Date: Wednesday, 16 Apr 2014 08:35

New England is home to some of the most selective and prestigious colleges and universities in the world. My list of the 25 top New England colleges is filled with many familiar names -- Harvard, Yale, Williams, Amherst, and many others. A couple of the schools may be less familiar to readers. The colleges and universities on the list were chosen based on retention rates, four- and six-year graduation rates, student engagement, academic strengths, and financial aid.

Wellesley College
Wellesley College
Photo Credit: Allen Grove

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Top New England Colleges and Universities originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 at 08:35:07.

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Date: Sunday, 13 Apr 2014 11:57

With May fast approaching, you seniors out there probably think that you're about done with the whole college admissions process. Fair enough, but keep in mind that scholarship deadlines continue to pass you by. There are thousands of organizations out there with money to award to deserving students, but you can't win the cash if you don't apply.

These 64 scholarships with May deadlines range in value from $100 to $50,000. Check them out to see if any match your interests and background.

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Act Quickly! 64 Scholarships with May Deadlines originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Sunday, April 13th, 2014 at 11:57:15.

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Date: Saturday, 12 Apr 2014 11:57

There's so much hype surrounding a few of the country's most selective colleges that many applicants feel they need a 35 or 36 composite score on the ACT to get into a good college. The reality is quite different. If you're on track to graduate from high school and you've completed a core curriculum, you'll be able to find a good college that wants you. If you have high grades and strong extracurricular involvement, you'll find you have hundreds of excellent options even if your ACT scores aren't what you had hoped for.

For one, you can explore the roughly 850 colleges that do not require ACT or SAT scores. You can also browse through the college profiles to find interesting colleges where your ACT scores are within the range of many matriculated students. And, of course, strengths in other areas can help make up for less-than-ideal ACT scores. Learn more in this article on low ACT scores.

Low ACT Scores? What Now? originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Saturday, April 12th, 2014 at 11:57:27.

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Date: Thursday, 10 Apr 2014 17:13

Best wishes to the thousands of students taking the ACT on Saturday, April 12th. Scores from the exam will be available online on Monday, April 28th. If you're worried about the ACT, keep in mind that at many colleges a strong academic record, glowing letters of recommendation, a winning essay, and interesting extracurricular activities can help make up for a sub-par score.

Also keep in mind that about 850 colleges are now test-optional. The test-optional schools include some excellent choices: Bowdoin, Holy Cross, DePaul, Pitzer, Wake Forest, and many others.

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Good Luck on the April 12th ACT! originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Thursday, April 10th, 2014 at 17:13:02.

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Date: Wednesday, 09 Apr 2014 14:15

Stanford University had the most selective admissions process in the school's history.

Stanford University
Stanford University
matsuda.yukihiro / Flick
Of the 42,167 applicants vying for a spot in the class of 2018, just 2,138 were admitted. That's an acceptance rate of 5.07%, lower than the admit rate for any of the Ivy League schools (see Ivy League Admit Rates for the Class of 2018). See The Stanford Daily for more information.

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Stanford University Admits Just 5% of Applicant Pool originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 at 14:15:52.

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Date: Tuesday, 08 Apr 2014 14:05

Most college decision letters have now been sent out, and, unfortunately, many students have found themselves the recipients of bad news -- the dreaded college rejection letter. The likelihood of a rejection letter is particularly high for some of the country's most selective colleges that have acceptance rates well below 20%. But is a rejection letter always the end of the road? Can an applicant ever appeal a college rejection?

In the majority of cases, no. A rejection letter means the game is over for that college for the current admissions cycle (down the road, transferring might be an option). However, some schools do allow appeals if a student has significant new information to present, or if the student knows of an administrative error that may have weakened the application. Read this article on appealing a rejection to learn more about legitimate grounds for an appeal. The article also has a list of circumstances that do not justify an appeal. Also be sure to check out this sample appeal letter.

If Rejected from a College, Can You Appeal? originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 at 14:05:47.

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Date: Monday, 07 Apr 2014 21:38

If you've been placed on a college waitlist, the general advice is pretty simple: if the school remains your top choice, let them know of your continued interest. If you have new data to strengthen your application, send it along. Be careful not to harass or pester the admissions office--too much effort can backfire.

However, perhaps the most important waitlist advice I can give is that you approach your waitlisted status realistically. Waitlists are an insurance police for colleges. If too few students accept their offers of admission, the school turns to the waitlist to fill the gaps. Sometimes there are no gaps and no students get off the waitlist. In nearly all cases, the waitlist is much, much larger than the number of students who are likely to get off the list. The Ivy League schools, for example, typically waitlist hundreds of students. In many cases, just one or two percent of them will actually get in.

So if you've been waitlisted, take the recommended steps to keep yourself in the game, but move forward with other plans. Don't postpone preparing for college waiting for news that, in reality, isn't likely to come.

Waitlist Articles:

Waitlisted? What Now? originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Monday, April 7th, 2014 at 21:38:46.

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Date: Saturday, 05 Apr 2014 07:16

Barnard College has a lot to be proud of. It's one of the top women's colleges in the country, and a highly ranked liberal arts college.

Barnard College
Barnard College
Photo Credit: Allen Grove
Barnard graduates a higher percentage of students in math and science than most liberal arts colleges, and the college was awarded a chapter of the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society for its strengths in the liberal arts and sciences.

Barnard students have the added perk that Columbia University is right across the street, and the two schools share numerous resources. Barnard students have access to libraries that hold 10 million volumes and 140,000 subscriptions. They also compete in the Barnard / Columbia Consortium for athletics which makes Barnard the only women's college in the country to compete in the NCAA Division I.

To learn more about Barnard and see the campus buildings, check out this Barnard College photo tour.

Barnard College Photo Tour originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Saturday, April 5th, 2014 at 07:16:16.

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Date: Friday, 04 Apr 2014 06:38

My top picks for the Midwest encompass a wide range of colleges and universities -- private and public, urban and rural, large and small, secular and religious. The 30 colleges and universities on my list were chosen based on a range of factors including retention rates, graduation rates, student engagement, academic strengths, and financial aid.

Kalamazoo College
Kalamazoo College
AaronEndre / Flickr

It will come as no surprise that schools like Notre Dame, Northwestern, the University of Chicago, Carleton and Grinnell made the list. Other schools may be less familiar. To see who made the cut, check out the 30 top Midwest colleges and universities. If there is a school that you think should have made the list, share your recommendation below.

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30 Top Midwest Colleges and Universities originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Friday, April 4th, 2014 at 06:38:59.

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Date: Thursday, 03 Apr 2014 10:46

With the May 1st deadline for picking a college coming up, now is the time to learn more about the schools that accepted you. An overnight visit is one of the best ways to gather information that you won't find on the college website or from your campus tour guide.

Berkeley Dorm Room
Berkeley Dorm Room
Prayitno / Flickr

To explain the benefits of an overnight visit, Smith College graduate Margaret Barthel put together this new article: 8 Reasons to Do a College Overnight Visit. Margaret is well qualified for the topic -- she was a campus tour guide and overnight host for Smith's Admissions Office.

8 Reasons to Do an Overnight College Visit originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 at 10:46:17.

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Date: Wednesday, 02 Apr 2014 19:51

Who has most influenced you? Who is your hero? Who most helped make you who you are today? The questions sound easy enough, and there's a good chance your college interviewer will ask a question like these. As with all common interview questions, however, this one is worth a little thought and planning before you set foot in the interview room. Some influential people are better choices than others, and you want to be prepared with specific details that will allow you to bring your influential person to life for your interviewer. These interview tips on an influential person can help you think through this type of question.

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"Who Has Most Influenced You?" - College Interview Tips originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014 at 19:51:45.

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Date: Tuesday, 01 Apr 2014 14:06

Ivy League acceptance rates for the class of 2018 reveal that not all the numbers are continuing to get lower. Penn, Cornell, Princeton, Brown, and Yale saw their admit rates decrease while Harvard, Dartmouth and Columbia saw admit rates rise slightly (for comparison, see the Ivy League admit rates for the class of 2017). Realize that these aren't the final numbers -- the admissions process will continue to drag on into the summer as colleges manage their waitlists. So the numbers below represent preliminary acceptance rates for the eight Ivy League schools.

Harvard University
Harvard University
David Paul Ohmer / Flickr

 

The discouragingly low acceptance rates are driven by numerous factors. Many highly selective universities are seeing significant increases in the number of international applications, and the painfully low admit rates create a cycle in which applicants send applications to more schools in an effort to increase their chances of getting in somewhere. As in other recent years, the fact that students apply to so many schools makes it difficult for colleges to predict their yield, and as a result we're going to see a lot of students stuck in waitlist limbo.

The chart below shows what the Ivy League application numbers and acceptance rates look like for the class of 2018. To learn more about each school including costs and typical SAT and ACT scores, click on the school's name in the table.

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Ivy League Acceptance Rates for Class of 2018 originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Tuesday, April 1st, 2014 at 14:06:09.

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Date: Monday, 31 Mar 2014 21:21

Many people know Syracuse University because of the school's NCAA Division I sports teams that compete in the Atlantic Coast Conference. But Syracuse has a lot more to offer than competitive intercollegiate athletics. This private university in Central New York has numerous highly ranked academic programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Syracuse University
Syracuse University
Photo Credit: Eliza Kinnealy

To introduce you further to this excellent private university, Jennifer Cooper, a student at Syracuse, has put together this Syracuse University Photo Tour. Enjoy!

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Photo Tour of Syracuse University originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Monday, March 31st, 2014 at 21:21:14.

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Date: Sunday, 30 Mar 2014 21:20

As the admissions decisions roll in, keep in mind that scholarship deadlines keep on passing us by. These 46 scholarships with April deadlines range in value from $50 to $15,000, and the only way to win the money is to apply...

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Act Quickly! 46 Scholarships with April Deadlines originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Sunday, March 30th, 2014 at 21:20:25.

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Date: Sunday, 30 Mar 2014 11:30

Admissions policies at nearly all of the country's most selective colleges are "holistic," but what exactly does this mean for you as an applicant?

In general, a college with holistic admissions is trying to evaluate the whole applicant rather than reduce the applicant to a few pieces of empirical data such as test scores and GPA. Holistic admissions are the reason why a student with a 4.0 GPA might get rejected from Yale, but a student with a 3.6 who has other impressive accomplishments might get accepted. When colleges say they are looking for well-rounded students and students with leadership potential, they are signalling that they have a holistic admissions process.

All Ivy League schools, all the top universities, and all top liberal arts colleges have holistic admissions policies. All 488 of the colleges and universities that accept the Common Application also have holistic admissions policies.

If you are applying to a college with holistic admissions, always keep in mind the need for your application to capture the characteristics that make you the unique person you are. Your application essay, letters of recommendation, supplemental essays, extracurricular activities, and college interview are all important parts of a successful application.

Learn more about holistic admissions.

What is a Holistic Admissions Policy? originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Sunday, March 30th, 2014 at 11:30:21.

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Date: Saturday, 29 Mar 2014 22:22

A big part of a college education is developing critical thinking and problem solving skills. It makes sense, then, that your interviewer will want to find out how you handle difficult or challenging situations. So, before you set foot in the interview room, make sure you are prepared to describe a challenge that you overcame. The challenge can take many forms -- academic, athletic, personal -- but your response to the question needs to show that you are able to deal with a challenge. For more information on how to approach this particular question, check out these college interview tips.

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"Tell Me About a Challenge That You Overcame" - College Interview Tips originally appeared on About.com College Admissions: U.S. on Saturday, March 29th, 2014 at 22:22:22.

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