Admissions

A Brief College News Roundup

There's a lot of news out there about college. Of course yesterday, May 1, was the enrollment deadline for many U.S. colleges. That is newsworthy.

Accordingly, I looked into my news file and decided to pull out several items worth noting. Check these out, if you're looking to add to your college knowledge ...


Here's a cool student opinion piece:

End the tyranny of the College Board

Every year students all across the nation can sign up for for multiple SAT, ACT, and AP Tests, throwing hundreds of dollars down the drain. They put countless hours, blood, sweat and tears into the College Board and other organizations and why? To help themselves, or the college board?

What is baffling to me is that organizations like the College Board, who own the SAT testing service and the Advanced Placement programs, The Educational Testing Service (ETS), which administers the SAT and AP tests, and ACT Incorporated, who own the ACT test call themselves non-profits, which means they do not have to pay taxes.

The big three testing organizations (the College Board, Act Inc., and the ETS) are all tax-exempt because of their so called educational purpose, but they are run in almost the exact same way as other taxed companies. They charge for their services (an exorbitant amount), pay their executives lots of money, invest, and lobby legislators. According to the Washington Post in 2013, the director of the ETS earned a total of $1,349,524 from the company.  Also in 2013 the chief executive of the ACT earned a total of $911,073 from the company, and the head of the College Board earned a total of $734,192. This seems more like a monopoly on testing rather than an educational non-profit, because these three companies essentially control all of standardized testing and seem to not have a very high regard for students. ...

After The Big Day:

For High School Seniors, College Decision Day Means Stress is Finally Over

Last month, Julia Greene, a 17-year-old high school senior from Highlands Ranch, Colorado, was sitting on the edge of her seat, waiting for college acceptance or rejection letters. 

But today, it's College Decision Day, and she's back in the driver's seat, after having her choice of five schools. 

At the eleventh hour, after laboring over where she will spend the next four years, Julia has picked San Diego State University over the University of Arizona. 

"It was really hard to make an official decision," said Julia, who wants to study nursing. 

 

"I just decided based off my major and the location, ultimately, because there's tons to do on and around campus and it's a better option for my major," she wrote NBC News close to midnight Sunday night.

Julia has applied for scholarships, but still has not heard what the college can offer her. And to her parents, that's important. 

"They are worried about scholarships and me leaving home in general," she told NBC News. 

In the weeks between spring break and May 1, anxiety among high school seniors is at an all-time high, and college counselors do a lot of hand-holding. ...

This may seem counterintuitive:

College-Bound Students Shouldn’t Always Test Out of Classes

For many high school students, using Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate credits to skip 100-level college courses and move straight to the heart of major-specific studies is a no-brainer. After all, why take a class in college that you have already passed in high school, spending time and other valuable resources for no reason? 

However, college is about more than simply checking off a list of prerequisites. Some students may lose out on meaningful learning opportunities by rushing through their college experience in the name of efficiency. 

In addition to acquiring a degree, college students can expect to grow via interaction with their peers. They can also expect courses that are taught at potentially higher levels than their corresponding AP or IB classes, as well as networking opportunities with instructors. 

As such, it is important to weigh what you might lose against the potential benefits of spending less money and graduating sooner. Here are three scenarios when you may be better off not testing out of an AP or IB course. 

1. Your potential undergraduate program uses cohorts: The role of peers in your academic trajectory is one key consideration.  

Certain majors, such as business and nursing, attempt to augment students' experiences through cohort programs. For instance, the Haas School of Business at University of California—Berkeley divides undergraduate business students into groups of roughly 60 individuals. ...

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I told you this would be brief, but now you can get on with your day better informed. Use this news in a conversation today!

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Be sure to check out all my admissions-related articles at College Confidential.