Top Tips for New College Students

Well, you did it. You graduated high school, applied to college, and got accepted. Sooner than you know it, you’re going to be in the thick of it. You learned a lot of things from kindergarten through senior year, and not just from teachers and textbooks. You also learned the ins and outs of school life itself.

Well, college is a whole new ball game. Not every tip and trick you used to get the most out of high school is going to work in college. You’re going to have to learn a few new ones. Here’s some good advice that we wish we’d had when we first started college:

Fill Out the FAFSA

What is FAFSA? It stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. In other words, it’s a way for you and your parents to save a whole lot of money on an otherwise highly expensive education. College isn’t cheap; we all know that. But FAFSA allows incoming students to apply for all kinds of financial aid services all at once: grants, loans, work-study opportunities, etc.

Instead of forcing you to go into the world searching for help, filling out the FAFSA enables the help to come right to you. Following a review of your application, you’ll receive detailed information on what financial aid programs you do and do not qualify for, and it puts you on the fast track to getting the help you need.

Buy Used Textbooks

“No problem,” you think the first time a college instructor hands you a list of required textbooks, “how much could this could me. After all, they’re just books.” Believe it or not, college-level textbooks are among the priciest things you’ll pay for in college—in some cases even more expensive than a new laptop! And, best of all, you have to buy several new ones… every… single… semester.

While your financial aid package might help cover textbook costs, it’s a good idea to focus on used copies instead of new. Many college bookstores will even have used editions right next to the news one, though these often sell out fast. In that case, look for older students who took the same classes you’re in now; they might be willing to part with their textbooks for cheap. Looking online can be helpful, too. Best of all, used textbooks are usually a better investment, as many still feature helpful highlighting and study notes from their previous owners.

Make Time for Yourself

The most important thing to do in college is also often the hardest thing, and that’s staying sane. Juggling multiple classes, work-study programs, internships, a paying job, clubs, sports, student organizations, and more can be daunting. In fact, if you don’t guard yourself, it’s a pretty definite recipe for burnout.

College is full of great opportunities which you shouldn’t hesitate to take advantage of. It’s so full of opportunities, though, that you shouldn’t feel obligated to try to do everything. Making room in your week for downtime is vital not only for studying, but also for recharging your batteries. Many new students stack their class schedules without leaving themselves time for breaks. Two or four years doing that, though, is hard to maintain.

How to Find the Right College

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Searching for colleges is one of the scariest things a young adult has to face. The college you choose to attend will likely define the future opportunities available to you, putting an immense amount of pressure on you. Unfortunately, you have to shoulder this pressure at an extremely young age and at a time where you have little expertise. Thankfully there are some things you can do to help in your college search and allow you to find your perfect match. So how can you set yourself up to get into the best psychiatry residencies after an amazing undergraduate education? Here’s how to find the right college. 

Start Early

One of the most important parts of finding the right college is starting the search early. Looking for a college to attend can be a long process, so it’s important that you don’t start too late. Beginning your search late might result in you missing out on a few things like tours or special admissions events, and could only allow the time to research a small number of schools. The earlier you start looking into colleges, the more time you have to branch out and do your due diligence. In addition, many schools have incentives for considering them early, including early acceptances and extra scholarships. The old saying “the early bird gets the worm” applies to many scenarios, but it is especially true when it comes to finding the right college.

Make a List

Another thing that you can do to make finding the right college a little bit easier is to rank your potential schools in a list. Make a list containing all of the schools that you’re interested in, and rank them in terms of interest. What are each school’s pros and cons? What did you like about each campus? These are all important aspects that you need to consider. As time goes on and you gain more information, your list should become shorter and shorter. Eventually your list should be down to just a few schools, making your final decision that much easier. 

Put In Work

If you want to find the right college, then you’re going to need to put in the necessary work. If you slack off during your college search, then you can easily find yourself making a misinformed decision. Searching for the right college can involve lots of time, including conducting research, talking to representatives, going on college tours, applying for scholarships, and filling out applications. All of these events can take a considerable amount of time, especially if you have several schools on your list. Finding the right college is critical to your future, so it’s important that you put the necessary time and effort into the process.

Go With Your Gut

When it comes time to make a final decision on a school, you may struggle to make a choice. Multiple options may look attractive for you for different reasons, so choosing between them can be quite difficult. However, you should go with your gut and choose the option that feels best to you. Was there a school where you just felt at home the moment you walked on campus? Is there a school you have always dreamed of attending? You’re going to have to deal with your decision for four years or more, so making one that makes you happy is crucial. As a result, you should go with your gut and choose the school that makes you feel best and most comfortable.

When To Start Preparing Your Child For College: The Earlier The Better

Yes, some parents are starting the journey to higher education when their kids are still in elementary school. Are they crazy? No, they understand that a good education starts with a foundation created when they are young.

Though there are great public universities and the more you put into an education the more you get out, it does pay to go to upper echelon schools. Getting into MIT is not easy, for example, so you need to start the process early. Take a look at Going Ivy to get an idea of what is required.

Take advantage of a child’s ability to learn at every stage of the learning process and you will put them on a path to academic success. 

Here are some tips on how to start your child’s higher education while they are young without burning them out.

 

Make learning fun

When learning feels like a chore, then the battle is already lost. Kids should be excited to learn and develop a curiosity about the world around them that lasts a lifetime.

Share your own passions with your kids to let them know that learning doesn’t stop as you get older. If they see you diving into a subject you are really interested in then kids will follow with their own interests. 

Another way is to always look for opportunities to learn about the world around them. When out on a walk, encourage them to find some bugs on the way and then talk about what the bug does and why it’s important for them to exist. Talk about the weather and how it works. Kids love understanding how the world works and this will foster a curiosity in many other areas.

 

Don’t put pressure on grades

Their grades are obviously important but the act of learning has a greater impact on their future. If you put pressure on them to get good grades, it makes learning stressful for them.

They should be rewarded for getting good grades but more importantly rewarded for learning. The grades are just a way of understanding what areas your child needs to work on and not a way to prove their worth.

Lighten up the pressure and let them learn and enjoy the process without the added pressure to perform.

Good grades are important but more when they get to middle school, not so much in elementary.

 

Find your child’s learning style

There are three main types of learning styles: kinesthetic, auditory and visual. Find the one that your child most responds to and focus their learning there.

For instance, kinesthetic learning is where kids learn from being active rather than listening or reading. They learn by doing and while moving around. If your kid has trouble sitting still then he or she is likely a kinesthetic learner. Don’t try to make them learn in another way as it will have the opposite effect. 

Visual learners will need to see something to learn from it and likewise auditory learning requires hearing it. 

 

How to Get into a College?

Do you want to get into the college of your dreams?

If you are, then we have some insights that will help you get enrolled.  These guidelines will help you prepare for the admission process and get in your dream college without an issue. So, mind these tips and make preparations beforehand; it will save your skin.

Set Your Mind

If you want to get into a college, be specific about it. Learn what you want in life, your ambitions, and your reasons. Do you search before making your mind? Research and ask around, talk to others who have some experience. Get in touch with an educational counselor. If someone in your family is an alumni, get some information from them.

Start Early

This may sound like cliché, but there is no elevator of success. So, you need to take the stairs. To get what you want, you need comprehensive planning. It’s not something you can start right in the senior year. You have to compile the plan at the start of your freshman year. This way, you will be able to schedule and complete every single requirement of standardizing admission. 

For instance, you have to choose between act vs sat.  Both of these tests are accepted by colleges. This prompts students to ask which one they should go with. The answer lies within differences between both these tests. So, you should research it before making your mind. 

Focus On Your Course and Grades

Grades do play an important part in the admission process. Good graces will improve your chances of getting into the college of your dreams. The high school transcript is important. So, you will need to take challenging courses throughout your school. Colleges are impressed with students who continue to pursue their field of interest by taking classes while remaining academically rigorous. 

Consider the Admission Requirement‘s

The earlier you take a look at admission requirements, the better. It will help you come up with a plan of action. You better get in touch with students who already got enrolled in the respective college. If you are able, contact the admission office and check their website. It will help you obtain relevant information. You may also need to visit the college; it will get you the information you need. 

Nail the Standardization Test

To get into a college, you have to pass the standardized admission tests. These are known as the SAT and ACT. Both these tests have common criteria to evaluate students. Students who nail these tests have a better chance of getting into the college they way. There is a lot of preparatory material available online and in textbooks. 

Extra Activities

If you want to get into your dream college, so you better pick an extra co-curricular activity. Pick something you are passionate about. Colleges do look for students who are interested in a particular activity and show growth as well as leadership qualities in the specific activity. Colleges also pay importance to the community and even participation.