What to Consider When Choosing a College
Choosing a college is an extremely personal decision. A good starting point is to identify colleges that offer programs and majors related to your career interests.
Compile a List of Possible Colleges and Universities
Start by listing colleges that offer the majors that interest you and that meet other factors you find important.
Research Colleges and Universities on Your List
Gather information about each college by talking to your school counselor, attending college fairs and visiting college websites. Many colleges offer virtual campus tours, which give you a look at schools from your computer.
Schedule Campus Visits
Visiting several colleges is important because it will help you determine which college fits you best, both socially and academically. If possible, try to visit when classes are in session. Prepare specific questions to ask at each college. Make a list of college characteristics that are important to you and check off items offered by each college. The tips in the box below provide a starting point to help you make the most of your campus visits. Don’t forget to contact an admissions representative to schedule your visits!
Apply to Colleges and Universities that Make the Cut
The research you have done and the college visits you have made will help you determine which colleges you are interested in attending. Make sure you know the application requirements and deadlines for each college before you apply. Some colleges may require essays, personal interviews or letters of recommendation. Knowing what is expected ensures you have plenty of time to prepare. Make sure you apply to at least one college where you are confident you will be accepted, but don’t sell yourself short either!
For more ways to prepare, attend and succeed in your education after high school, check out Iowa College Aid's "Your Course to College!"