05 February 2010

Top 10 Tips that High School Students Wish they Knew Before College

The essential things that all High School Students need to know before College.

There are plenty of things that high school students need to know, but I have compiled a list of advice that is essential to all high school students to know before college. The sooner students read this list, the better.

1. Know the college rankings. Those can be found here on an old post along with some commentary on 2011 College Rankings. It is important to know the college rankings because it helps in student's applications and everything leading up to those decisions. Obviously, students who want to apply to the top 10 schools will need higher grades and test scores than if they want to apply to the bottom 50. Knowing where the college you want to go to ranks is very beneficial in the long run. A student can check reviews for colleges such as University of San Fransisco Online Degrees.

2. Consider your options for textbooks. While there will always be students who buy their books, a new and popular craze is renting college textbooks. The cost of renting textbooks is much lower than buying, which is great for students who are short on cash. These cheap textbooks are a great alternative for students who already have enough to worry about. Many college students wish they had found out about renting textbooks sooner and saved some serious money.

3. Do not fall for The Biggest College Myth. The myth is that only the best colleges, like Harvard, will help students to succeed in life. This is absolutely untrue. Any college will help students develop the skills needed to succeed in life, whether it is Ivy, community college or even online university. It doesn’t matter if you choose to earn a degree in nursing or a cyber security degree; the point is that it’s more important that everyone goes to college no matter how you earn your degree.

4. So now students are in high school and deciding what classes to take and whether or not to take AP classes. It is important that these students read about the life of The AP Student so that they are fully aware of what they are getting into. AP life is not by any means easy; I call it an endless cycle of sleep deprivation for a reason. While AP classes look great for college, there are major sacrifices to be made for them.

5. Soon test time comes around and students are faced with standardized tests for the first time in their lives. Unfortunately, standardized tests are very important which I discuss in Just How Important are Standardized Tests?  These tests are the only way that colleges can compare all of the applicants on a fair and even playing field, because EVERYONE takes the same test on the same day. So needless to say, they are pretty important. If you are having difficulty deciding between the ACT and SAT then read this article comparing the two tests.

6. The question then arises of whether or not to take SAT prep classes. Some people do not need these classes, but for most high school students, they are absolutely necessary. The article Is Test Prep Worth It dives into the value of test prep. Long story short, SAT test prep classes, no matter where a student takes them, will positively affect a student's scores and college applications.

7. During this entire time, students are faced with the everyday challenges of school. Tests in high school are very common, and finals kill all students. It is important that high school students know how to study well and efficiently, so that they do not kill themselves of exhaustion and still get a C. I discuss many tips and good study habits in Crunch Time Study Tips: How to Study for Finals.
There are also other secrets to getting work done, which you can find here in Getting Work Done In High School.

8. Besides school, students also need extra curriculars for their college applications. Extra curriculars are VERY important to any college application because they put a face on a piece of paper that is otherwise just monotonous numbers. Activities Outside of School is our most popular article because it is brief and really gives a great summary of extra curricular activities. For a more in depth analysis on extra curricular activities, Using Extra Curriculars for College explains how to get the most out of extra curriculars and look the best as possible for college.

9. All of these activities and events leave high school students with the impression that there is Not Enough Time (another article) for everything that they want to accomplish. Students must realize that in order to succeed in school they need to sacrifice some things, such as excessive partying and laziness. School and school related activities take up around 12 hours of every day, not counting homework. Students must learn to prioritize and focus their time on school if they want to succeed.

10. Finally, all students will need some sort of help getting into college. We have a nice list of tips and suggestions on Tips to Help You Get Into College. This article is a nice summary of almost everything that high school students need to focus on in order to gain admission into the colleges of their choice. Make sure to read this article!