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Perfect Storm Final

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  • 1. Dr. Rebecca Joseph [email_address]
  • 2.
    • Colleges are more expensive than ever…
    • There is still the big bubble of high school students…
    • More affordable public universities are
      • receiving more and more applications
      • raising tuition,
      • using waitlists for the first time, and
      • cutting back on freshman admissions.…
    • The economy is hurting families and colleges…
      • Family savings and incomes are decreasing
      • Colleges are struggling as their endowments and budgets have fallen and reducing services and raising costs.
    • There is still hope….
    A Perfect Storm …
  • 3.  
  • 4.
    • UC raises fees 15%-32% fee increase…
    • UCs institute waitlist for the first time…not UCLA
    • CSUs impact more campuses making it more difficult to get into campuses not in your service area
    2010 NEWS …
  • 5. YET
    • College is still worth the investment and the effort
    • But families may have to make some difficult decisions
    • Key is finding the right match between the strengths of your child and colleges that
      • Provide unique learning communities
      • Challenge but do not overwhelm
      • Want to accept your child
      • Offer enough financial support
  • 6. HOW DO WE BEGIN TO PREPARE?
  • 7.
    • Grades
    • Academic Rigor
    • Standardized Test Scores
    • Strong applications
    • Great essays
    • Counselor Reports
    • Extracurricular Activities
    • Teacher Letters of Recommendation
    • Other Unique Features
    WHAT COLLEGES LOOK FOR IN MATCH STUDENTS
  • 8.
    • Colleges look for students who demonstrate
      • Continuous strong performance
      • Upward progression
      • Particular academic strengths
      • Exceeding basic admissions requirements.
      • For example, in California, going beyond the A-G requirements required by the UC and CSU systems.
      • For top privates, taking advanced classes in and out of high school.
    GRADES
  • 9.
      • UCs award extra points for honors and AP classes.
      • A maximum of four semesters of honors courses taken in grade 10 are assigned honors grade points.
      • None in 9 th grade receive points, yet they count as initiative and rigor.
      • http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/educators/counselors/adminfo/freshman/advising/admission/scholarshipr.html
    UCS REWARD GRADES IN RIGOROUS CLASSES
  • 10.
    • History/Social Science – 2 years required Two years of history/social science, including one year of world history, cultures and geography; and one year of U.S. history or one-half year of U.S. history and one-half year of civics or American government.
    • Four years of college-preparatory English that include frequent and regular writing, and reading of classic and modern literature. No more than one year of ESL-type courses can be used to meet this requirement.
    • Mathematics – 3 years required, 4 years recommended Three years of college-preparatory mathematics that include the topics covered in elementary and advanced algebra and two- and three-dimensional geometry. Approved integrated math courses may be used to fulfill part or all of this requirement, as may math courses taken in the seventh and eighth grades that your high school accepts as equivalent to its own math courses.
    A-G REQUIREMENTS
  • 11.
    • Laboratory Science – 2 years required, 3 years recommended Two years of laboratory science providing fundamental knowledge in at least two of these three foundational subjects: biology, chemistry and physics. Advanced laboratory science classes that have biology, chemistry or physics as prerequisites and offer substantial additional material may be used to fulfill this requirement, as may the final two years of an approved three-year integrated science program that provides rigorous coverage of at least two of the three foundational subjects.
    • Language Other than English – 2 years required, 3 years recommended Two years of the same language other than English. Courses should emphasize speaking and understanding, and include instruction in grammar, vocabulary, reading, composition and culture. Courses in languages other than English taken in the seventh and eighth grades may be used to fulfill part of this requirement if your high school accepts them as equivalent to its own courses. Foreign students who receive 800 on SAT II foreign language or approved AP score can test out of language requirement.
    A-G REQUIREMENTS
  • 12.
    • A single yearlong approved arts course from a single VPA discipline: dance, drama/theater, music or visual art.
    • A rts (non-introductory level courses) , history, social science, English, advanced mathematics, laboratory science and language other than English (a third year in the language used for the "e" requirement or two years of another language).
    A-G REQUIREMENTS
  • 13.
      • Colleges look at
      • How difficult each student’s course load is compared to academic options offered at school
      • Whether students keep up rigorous schedules
      • Academic reputation of school
      • Particular strength and exploration in particular content areas
    ACADEMIC RIGOR
  • 14.
    • Take the most challenging courses possible while keeping grades as high as possible
    • Take honors and AP classes in stronger content areas if planning to apply to top colleges
    • Continue to increase rigor in higher grades
    • Do not drop core content in junior or senior year
    • Use summers for advancement and enrichment, not just for fulfilling high school graduation requirements
    • Understand that colleges will compare student academic choices to those offered at school
    • If foreign language is a struggle, consider sign language. One year at community college equals two years for CSU and UCs
    SO…
  • 15.
    • If you run out of classes at your high school, take classes at your local community colleges. High school students get AP credit for these classes. Taking advanced classes impresses colleges, and they are free (except for fees and books). If you have time, also take community college classes in areas that interest you such as Psychology or Art History. Consider taking English 101 to enhance your reading and writing skills.
    • Find other academic programs, such the UC Cosmos program for science, to advance, deepen, or expand your academic interests. For example, here is a list of programs for students interested in math
    • http://www.ams.org/employment/mathcamps.html
    • http://www.petersons.com/summerop/specnote.asp
    • If you need to retake a class because of a low grade, consider Brigham Young online. Please clear low grades early. Don't wait until your senior year.
    • http://ce.byu.edu/is/site/courses/highschool.cfm
    Take Courses Outside of High School
  • 16.
    • Summer Programs for 7th-12th Grade Students – enroll NOW as space is limited
    • Great for enrichment and remediation.
    • Contact your high school for how to award credit.
    • Reasonably priced. Great instructors.
    UCLA EXTENSION SUMMER PROGRAMS FOR 7TH-12TH GRADE STUDENTS
  • 17. A NECESSARY EVIL?
  • 18.
    • They were never intended for current use
    • Colleges use these tests to compare students
    • Understanding test options and readiness will empower students in the admissions process
    STANDARDAIZED TESTS
  • 19.
      • SAT I—Reading, Math, and Writing
      • ACT with writing-Reading, English, Social Science, and Science
      • SAT Subject Tests-One hour multiple choice in several content areas
      • AP tests-Three hour content specific tests
    THE TEST OPTIONS
  • 20.
    • Research shows
      • SAT Subject Tests
      • AP Tests
      • Are BEST predictors
    YET SAT AND ACT Still Prevail BEST PREDICTORS
  • 21.
    • 70% of students do the same
    • For 30% of others, let’s look at differences
    IS THERE A DIFFERENCE?
  • 22. (1) ACT  content / SAT  problem solving (2) Some students may score higher on one test than on the other Act’s less dependence on vocabulary favors students of limited English proficiency, for students with higher GPAs (above 3.4), and for females. SAT good problem solvers do well. (3) Less emphasis on defensive test taking strategies ACT does not penalize for wrong answers so more students can take risks and guess, while SAT does penalize. (4) ACT provides a more detailed score report SAT(highest possible individual test 800) provides scores for three sections and for essay (scale of 6). Total score is three sections totaled (highest possible 2400) ACT provides details subsection scores (highest possible score (36) broken by math content area and for essay (scale of 12). They provide composite score as well. (5) Both offer score choice. ACT--you can send by test date SAT I-you can send by test date SAT II-you can send by test and date Yet UCs and top colleges will not accept SAT score choice. SAT VS ACT
  • 23.
    • Sophomore/Junior Fall-Take the PSAT (SAT readiness) and/or PLAN (ACT readiness). If there is real strength in one versus the other, focus on that test. If not try both…through junior year spring.
    • Then go with ACT or SAT…Don’t overstress your child….
    • If you go ACT route, your child still needs to take SAT IIs for top colleges.
    • Develop a testing schedule that includes
      • SAT Subject Tests at end of sophomore and junior years.
      • SAT/ACT in spring of junior year and fall of senior year.
    • Consider test prep…courses, books, tutoring...Test prep does help. Aptitude and content knowledge are not fixed. The tests are coachable.
    RECOMMENDED STANDARDIZED TEST TIMELINE
  • 24.
    • April 20, 2009
    • NYU announces new test policy
      • ACT or SAT
      • Or
      • Three SAT subject tests
      • Or
      • Three AP tests
      • For SAT II and AP options
        • 1 test humanities or literature
        • 1 test math or science
    SOME GOOD NEWS… COLLEGES ARE BEGINNING TO REBEL
  • 25.
    • Colby requires official results of one of the following:
    • the College Board SAT Reasoning Test
    • the American College Test (ACT) with writing
    • the SAT Subject Tests (in three different subject areas)
    • Colby will use the set of test results that best advantage each applicant.
    COLBY ALSO JOINS…
  • 26.
    • More than 750 colleges do not require tests!!! http://www.fairtest.org/university/optional
    • See the following site for the most up-to-date testing requirements of top colleges: http://www.compassprep.com/admissions_req_subjects.aspx
    STANDARDIZED TESTING NOTES
  • 27.
    • For class of 2012 and after, the UCs are no longer requiring two SAT Subject Tests.
    • Specific majors may require them.
    • Remember, many colleges still do!!!
    • So if possible, continue taking SAT Subject Tests in strong content areas.
    • Make sure to get contact your counselor for free waivers.
    •  
    GREAT NEWS!!
  • 28.
    • There are many forms of applications.
    • Most are now online.
    • Public colleges have their own applications.
    • Fortunately, most private colleges use the Common Application .
    • Sigh, not USC.
    • Fortunately, all have overlapping features.
    • Develop a plan for organizing application requirements
    • Make sure you fill in every component and leave nothing to the imagination.
    POWERFUL APPLICATIONS
  • 29.
    • Rolling-apply anytime in fall and get response within weeks.
    • Early Decision-select one private college to apply to in November and receive response in mid December…BINDING. Families who will depend on financial aid need to know that ED comes out before financial aid.
    • Early Action-also November-December schedule but not binding.
    • Regular-Typically January 1 or 15 th . April notification. May 1 decisions. You can only accept one school.
    • UC and CSU applications due November 30 (October 30 for some CSU impacted majors)
    TYPES OF APPLICATIONS
  • 30.
    • Application essays are often the top non-academic component colleges use in admissions.
    • Essays must have a sizzle, a message, a unique story.
    • Essays can tip student in.
    • I created a course that helps students write powerful essays that UCLA Summer Extension offers….this summer August 9-12.
    • "Writing my personal statement with Dr. Joseph not only helped me get into college, but also helped me discover my true potential and inner self. She really taught me how to add that special personal touch to my essays."
    OTHER KEY FACTORS: 5. APPLICATION ESSAYS
  • 31.
    • Eligibility in the Statewide Context Students who meet minimum requirements for coursework, grade point average and test scores are admitted by this path.
    • Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC) Students who rank in the top 4 percent at participating California high schools may be admitted through ELC. Must meet GPA and testing requirements.
    • Eligibility by Examination Alone Students may qualify for admission by achieving high scores on the ACT Assessment plus Writing or SAT Reasoning Test, and on two SAT Subject Tests.
    • http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/educators/counselors/adminfo/freshman/advising/admission_reqs.html
    DIFFERENT ROUTES TO UC…
  • 32.
    • They write counselor letters.
    • Many counselors have relationships with colleges.
    • Counselors provide you with a context for understanding how your child fits into the context of the school.
    • They may use different, yet similar categories for ranking likelihood of colleges for students
      • Reach-reach or challenge or unlikely---most difficult
      • Reach, strength-difficult
      • 50-50
      • Likely
      • Safety
    WHY COUNSELORS ARE SO IMPORTANT
  • 33.
    • Counselors letters are required component of most private college and some public college applications.
    • The more your counselor knows your child the better a letter the counselor can write.
    • Yet counselors have large caseloads…so students and families must be proactive but not pushy.
    • Listen to your counselor.
    • Court your counselor.
    • If counselor uses a “brag sheet,” fill it out with as many examples and details as possible—both students and parents.
    COUNSELOR LETTERS
  • 34. DOES THIS SOUND FAMILIAR?
  • 35.
    • Colleges want varied student populations. They want students who enhance their campuses and take advantage of resources.
    • They look for students who participate actively in school and community activities.
    • They want students who show in their activity choices and participation
      • Consistency
      • Development
      • Leadership
      • Initiative.
    EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
  • 36.
    • Freshman-Sophomore Year; Participate in activities in and out of school that interest and motivate student.
    • Junior Year- Continue with current activities. Do not stop. Students can start an activity, but must plan to continue it through senior year.
    • Junior and Senior Year: Take on leadership responsibilities in current activities.
    • Summer-Use each summer well---
      • Get a job
      • Get an internship
      • Volunteer
      • Take enrichment courses
      • Juniors-take college courses
      • Continue with camp, sports, and other activities
    EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITY TIMELINE
  • 37.
    • Most private colleges and many public colleges want one to two letters of recommendations from teachers.
    • They want core academic letters—English, SS, Math, Science, and Foreign Language.
    • They prefer junior and senior year teachers or teachers that students have had more than once
    • They want teachers who know student well.
    TEACHER RECOMMENDATIONS
  • 38.
    • Sophomore Year-Start saving core graded assigned.
    • Junior Year-If core teachers are planning to leave school…get contact info.
    • Senior Year Fall-Ask one to two teachers. Ask EARLY.
    • Senior Year Fall-Give teachers packets with appropriate forms and envelopes and brag sheets. Remind them of all the wonderful things you did in class-written, oral, and more.
    TEACHER RECOMMENDATIONS: JUNIOR-SENIOR YEAR GRADE TIMELINE
  • 39.
    • Sports
      • NCAA regulations
      • NCAA Clearinghouse
      • Varsity, clubs, summer programs
    • Arts
      • Auditions
      • Art Supplements
    • Particular areas of expertise
    OTHER SPECIALTY AREAS
  • 40.
    • I applied to only three colleges, so why should my child apply to so many more?
      • It’s a much more complex situation.
      • Most teenagers in history in US.
      • Most teenagers going to college in history in US.
      • With more kids applying to more schools, a vicious trickle down cycle is happening…
    • I didn’t visit or contact colleges, so why should my child visit colleges now?
      • With the competitive colleges, visits are a sign of interest.
      • In recent LA times article, director of admissions at Pitzer, calls students who never visit or contact colleges, “stealth” applicants and describes how Pitzer rejected a top applicant who had never contacted campus.
      • If you can’t visit because of cost, there are different ways to connect with colleges
        • Local fairs
        • Campus visits to high schools and LA
        • Emails
        • Virtual tours
    SOME MISCONCEPTIONS/ QUESTIONS
  • 41.
    • Apply to a range of colleges that meet all or most of your child’s needs.
    • Apply for merit scholarship available from colleges to which you apply.
    • Consider public universities in other states. WUE (Western Undergraduate Exchange).
    • Consider financial packages from schools one level below your highest level
    • Research colleges that have income discounts…Harvard, Yale…
    • Contact financial aid offices and negotiate….
    SO WHAT GOOD IS THIS INFORMATION IF WE CAN’T AFFORD THE COST OF PRIVATE COLLEGES?
  • 42.
    • For counselors and mentors: www.fsa4counselors.ed.gov
    • For students: http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/
    • For everyone: 1-800-4-FED-AID
    • Get some more guidance
    • http://www.fafsa4caster.ed.gov/F4CApp/index/index.jsf
    • http://www.fastweb.com is a great site to get started with scholarships.
    FINANCIAL AID….
  • 43.
      • College research takes time.
      • Read key books and websites
        • Fiske Guide-great hardcopy book
        • http://www.collegeconfidential.com/--you can post questions and hear from students and parents
      • Talk to friends who are seniors and recent grads.
      • Download College Match application on I Phone.
      • Become fan of college on Facebook
      • Check how your students compares to peers on Naviance and other school comparative offerings.
      • Let your child make calls to college with questions.
      • You can schedule tours and visits.
    OTHER CORE READINESS TIMELINES-COLLEGE RESEARCH
  • 44. Junior Year-Develop core list of what match colleges must have-- location, size, cost, academics, social opportunties Spring Junior Year-Visit core colleges. Interview when possible. Visit classes, meet students Spring Junior Year-Attend local college fairs. Collect names of college representatives. Begin courting process. COLLEGE RESEARCH: JUNIOR-SENIOR YEAR GRADE TIMELINE
  • 45. Search out NACAC College Fairs. This spring two fairs in our area. Greater Los Angeles Tuesday, April 27 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 28 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Pasadena Convention Center Pasadena, CA Ventura/Tri-County Thursday, April 29 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Seaside Park Ventura, CA Summer Consider early decision or early action. Fall Senior Year- Attend all relevant college visits at your school or in local area Fall Senior Year-Visit more colleges and narrow down list. COLLEGE RESEARCH: JUNIOR-SENIOR YEAR GRADE TIMELINE
  • 46.
    • Summer Post Junior Year-Start a master list of college application deadlines and requirements and passwords. Consider rolling, early action, and early decision routes.
    • Summer Post Junior Year-Start writing core essays and develop a resume.
    • Fall Senior Year-Begin completing formal applications. Devote one hour per day to applications. Remember, write fewest essays possible.
    • Fall Senior Year-Make sure you follow
      • Test score submission requirements
      • School and teacher paperwork and transcripts requirements
      • Complete all technical forms on applications
      • Develop outstanding essays
      • Meet all deadlines.
    APPLICATION: JUNIOR-SENIOR YEAR GRADE TIMELINE
  • 47.
    • Each student is a work in progress.
    • Colleges want to know how student will enhance and enrich campus.
    • Yet they don’t read minds-use application to showcase your student
    • They worry about children of helicopter parents. Students must make majority of contacts with colleges except for planning visits.
    • Finances are a key component so make decisions now about what you can afford.
    • College is an amazing, life-lasting gift to your child.
    • It is never too late...to develop a strong college readiness plan in this perfect storm of college admissions.
    FINAL WORDS
  • 48. 1. UC admissions fact sheets http://www.ucop.edu/news/factsheets/fall2009adm.html 2. New York Times. College admissions articles and new blog http://thechoice.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/07/the-envelope-please-as-one-college-woos-another-reveals-its-verdict/ http://thechoice.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/07/university-of-california-system-reports-rise-in-applications-not-admissions/ 3. College Board-SAT http://www.collegeboard.com 4. ACT http://www.actstudent.org 5. My Website http://www.getmetocollege.org 6. National Association of College Admissions Counselors (NACAC) http://www.nacacnet.org/StudentResources/CollegePrep/Pages/default.aspx SO WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
  • 49. COLLEGE READINESS IS NOT A GAME!
  • 50. TO LEARN MORE