You can find college advice and information in all corners of the internet and bursting off of the shelves in bookstores. In fact, it can become overwhelming.
Take some time to review the following sources we recommend as being especially helpful to students and families:
SCOIR: Coming soon to VES, this platform “redefines the approach to college search and connects students, parents, counselors, and colleges for an improved admissions process.” The Class of 2021 will receive their SCOIR login information in January, and parents will get their login information soon thereafter.
College Kickstart: We are so excited to begin using College Kickstart with our Class of 2021, as it works with school- and student-specific data to “help create a well-balanced list of colleges, one that's grounded in current admissions data and tailored to each student’s academic profile.”
Fairtest.org: Check here for the most updated information about colleges that have chosen to use test-optional or test-flexible admissions policies in their practice.
BigFuture.com: The College Board’s Big Future site is a thorough and thoughtful source of information for students and parents. It has a personalized search option that lets students match their academic profile, preferences and interests to schools that could be a great fit for them.
Colleges That Change Lives: This website highlights 45 small colleges with a proven track record of providing excellent support to a wide range of students, a.k.a changing lives. There is also a CTCL book, if you prefer learning off-screen.
The Fiske Guide: The Fiske Guide is our go-to source to get a snapshot of the strengths, challenges and general vibe of some of the most well-known colleges and universities in the U.S. The college counselors have multiple copies in each of their offices, FYI.
Admissions Matters: For those who like having an overarching guide for general reference on most college admissions related matters, this is a good one.
College and university-specific websites should always be carefully explored whenever students are seriously considering adding a college to their list-- just google the name of the college, and voila!
College representative campus visits: Check the weekly VES newsletter and The Week Ahead student newsletter to see when college representatives are visiting our campus. It is always best to get your information directly from those who will potentially be reviewing your application!
ACT: Register for ACT tests here, and then stay to explore the free online test prep resources.
The College Board (SAT, PSAT, AP): Register for SAT tests here. Students are registered for PSAT and AP tests directly through VES.
Understanding PSAT Scores: Here is a thorough report and/or a handy video to help you understand the online PSAT score report that each 10th and 11th grader can access online.
Click here for more information on Standardized Testing and our recommendations for test prep.
Advice College Admissions Officers Give Their Own Kids by Jennifer Wallace and Lisa Heffernan, The New York Times
When to Visit: The College Tour Circuit by Willard Dix, Forbes
Why More High-School Seniors Need to Be Like Malia Obama and Take a Gap Year The Washington Post
Independent School Grads Arrive College-Ready A national longitudinal study from NAIS and the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI). Compared to their public and private school counterparts, independent school graduates enter college with more of the skills and experiences they’ll need to succeed.
Transitioning to College
Our College Counseling team recommends this video—part of a series on WebMD, developed in collaboration with the JED Foundation (check them out at www.settogo.org), that focuses on supporting teens in the transition to college. You’ll find lots of helpful information and food for thought!
VES College Counseling Seminars with Parents
The following grade-level programs help parents understand the College Counseling process as it relates to students at that point in their high school journey, and the staff answers parents’ questions.
Considerations for the Student-Athlete Interested in Playing at the Collegiate Level
This seminar invited DI and DII college coaches and college directors of athletics to share their perspectives about being a student-athlete, NCAA eligibility and the college search and application process.