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Accepted: Getting into Your First-Choice School
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  1. Accepted: Getting into Your First-Choice School Prep smarter, score higher—guaranteed or your money back! 1-800-KAP-TEST | kaptest.com/college

  2. Agenda • Top factors in college admissions • PSAT • SAT and ACT • Other tests and other factors • College application timeline

  3. But First—Let’s Say Hello! • Grade? • PSAT, SAT, ACT? • Dream school? • Biggest concern? Monica

  4. Top Factors in College Admissions

  5. Top Factors in College Admissions 1a) Grades in College Prep Courses • Advanced Placement • International Baccalaureate • Dual-enrollment Courses Source: National Association of College Admissions Counseling, “2010 State of College Admission”

  6. Top Factors in College Admissions 1b) Strength of Curriculum • Rigor • Relevance • Quantity Source: National Association of College Admissions Counseling, “2010 State of College Admission”

  7. Top Factors in College Admissions 2) Admissions Test Scores • SAT • ACT • AP & Subject Tests Source: National Association of College Admissions Counseling, “2010 State of College Admission”

  8. Top Factors in College Admissions 3) High School GPA • Overall • Don’t fall behind • Don’t lose focus Source: National Association of College Admissions Counseling, “2010 State of College Admission”

  9. Let’s Get to Know the PSAT

  10. Why Does the PSAT Matter? 1. Practice Run for the Real Thing 2. Get a Higher Score on the SAT • Students who took the PSAT scored, on average, 120 points higher on SAT • Students who took the PSAT their sophomore and junior year scored, on average 222 points higher on the SAT 3. Scholarship Opportunities • National Merit Scholarship Program, Corporate Scholarships, National Achievement Program Source: College Board, 2010 National State Reports

  11. Admissions Test Scores: SAT & ACT

  12. Common Myths • The SAT is an IQ test. • The ACT is easier. • Only take the ACT if you’re good at science. • Competitive schools only accept the SAT.

  13. The Facts: • The SAT & ACT are the only test REQUIRED by colleges • There are NO TEST SCHOOLS • Same material different format • 98% of schools will take either • Take the test 2-4 times. Schools will ALWAYS take your best score!

  14. AP, IB, and Subject Test • Only if required or you KNOW you will get a good score • Only take AP class if you can get an A or B • Always take the AP test after the AP class • AP test may give you college credit but subject tests do not • Colleges will know how many AP/IB classes offered at your school

  15. Advanced Placement Exams • About the AP Exams: • 34 AP courses and exams • 90% of four year colleges give AP credit • Scores of 3, 4 or 5 will often get you college credit • Check schools’ policies online • Registration: • Register through your school • $87 Registration Fee – • $22 fee reduction for students in financial need AP Expert Tips: • If you can get 50% of the questions right, you’ll receive a score of 3! • Practice free response questions with a timer • Answer every question! • Answer the questions you can get right first

  16. College Application Essay

  17. The College Application Essay Fact: 80% of colleges use the essay to make their final admissions decisions.

  18. The College Application Essay Get started! Here are some ideas to help you start thinking about your essay: My favorite/least favorite activity… When I am older, I want to be known/remembered for… Someone who has inspired me… I am most proud of… Something (in my personal life or current events) that has changed the way I think… I made a difference in another person’s life when… I feel passionately about (this issue, topic, subject, hobby, etc…) I never thought I would be able to…

  19. Additional Factors

  20. Campus Visits A campus visit allows you to get a firsthand feel for the college and counts as demonstrated interest, so get packing! ✓ Visit as many of your target schools as possible. ✓Schedule a visit when classes are in session and the admissions office is open. ✓Speak to students, professors, and coaches to get a clear idea of what campus life is like. ✓ If you’re really interested, consider doing a summer program.

  21. Academic Factors Non-Academic Factors Additional Factors • Class rank • Counselor recommendation • Additional test scores: SAT Subject Tests, AP exams, IB exams • Portfolio • Extracurricular activities • Demonstrated interest • Work experience

  22. Social Media 82% of college admissions officers use social media to recruit students!* Here are some things you can do to take advantage of this growing trend: • Manage your privacy settings • “Like” and “follow” schools that interest you • Participate in conversations that showcase your interests and talents • When engaging with a school, check for typos, don’t use shorthand (“u”, “r”), and don’t use inappropriate language • Don’t post anything you wouldn’t feel comfortable putting on your applications • Be mindful, but be yourself! This is an opportunity to interact with schools apart from your applications *Kaplan’s 2010 College Admissions Officer Survey

  23. Research • Avg. SAT/ACT score for incoming freshman = GOAL SCORE! • Avg. GPA for accepted students? • Are subject test required? • Do they want to see ALL your SAT/ACT scores? • What is the last SAT/ACT test you can take? Go to the school’s website or collegeboard.org to answer these questions about each school you are considering:

  24. College Prep Timeline

  25. College Prep Timeline • Extracurricular activities • Prep for AP/Honors • Prep for the PSAT • 1st PSAT in October • Take AP and SAT Subject Tests after completing courses • Summer prep for PSAT , SAT, ACT

  26. College Prep Timeline • PSAT in October for National Merit • Focus on academics—this is the critical year! • Research admissions requirements for chosen schools • Take SAT and/or ACT at least twice • Take required SAT Subject Tests • If you get your GOAL SCORE, use summer to do application essay • Take SAT and/or ACT for the last time • Take required SAT Subject Tests • Request letters of recommendation • Fill out FAFSA and research scholarships • Visit schools

  27. Prep Smarter, Not Harder.

  28. It’s All About You! Consider Your… • Goals • Timeline • Schedule • Learning preference

  29. Prep smarter, not harder. How do you learn best? Online? One-on-one? In the classroom?

  30. Good News. Every Kaplan Program… • Uses data to customize learning for you • Includes reports for students and parents • Is guaranteed to raise your score!

  31. For more information please call or visit our Web site. 1-800-KAP-TEST | kaptest.com/college Rob Smith, 360-703-8531 Rob.Smith@Kaplan.com