The College Application Process

Our Mission

The College Review's mission is to partner with families to help students achieve their college admission goals. We accomplish this by preparing students for their high school admissions exams or their college admissions and beyond.

We do this with our proven curriculum, professional tutors, and reaching above the standard in personalized, committed service. We continue to develop and provide new and improved methods for test preparation with innovations like our proprietary Profiling Map Assessment which is the most detailed and prescriptive diagnostic tool available in the test prep industry today.

There are quite a few steps between the beginning of high school and graduation. We like to educate our students with a clear and transparent timeline so that they can get into their school of choice. Below are the steps that students will need to tackle

1. Choosing A School Of Choice

The first step during any college journey is figuring out what school you'd like to attend.

We like this as a first step because it sets an end goal for a student. Once you know what school you are shooting to enter, you will know what is required to obtain admission.

Spend some time researching different schools. Local schools are a great place to start, but if you know what you'd like to study, you can search for schools that specialize in that area.

Once you narrow it down to a few schools, you should schedule some college visits. Many schools offer virtual tours, but going to see the in-person campus is great if you are able to.

Lastly, you'll want to narrow down this list. Five schools is a good number of choices, and you should order them from most to least desirable.

2. Grades

Most people already know that academic performance correlates to getting into a good school. This is because good grades are the the dominant predicator to college success.

As such, colleges maintain a public minimum GPA for admission. If a specific minimum is not available, students can use the average GPA instead.

Students will want to look at the GPA needed for their school of choice and aim for grades to achieve that goal. This is easier said then done, as difficulty and life events happen to even the highest-achieving students. That said, we offer private tutoring sessions for any student looking to polish up their skills in a particular subject matter.

Not only will a high GPA get students into a better college, but it can also help to pay for the schooling. There are thousands of scholarships available to students, and many of them are obtainable just by meeting a GPA benchmark.

3. SAT/ACT Test Prep

Similar to your overall academic scores, your school of choice will set a standardized test score you will want to shoot for. Schools will have an average test score for previously admitted students you can use as your baseline.

After you know what score you are shooting for on your ACT or SAT, you'll want to get started on test prep. While there is some overlap between classroom information and questions asked on these standardized tests, there is specific information to study for.

Not only do students want to study for the questions on the test, but they will want to know about best test-taking practices. Learn more about these practices and more in either our 2-hour ACT or 2-hour SAT course!

4. College Resume

A well crafted college resume will help to sell you based on your best qualities! Students will want to show schools their GPA, standardized test score, and any extra curricular activities they do.

We want to work with students to create a package that will sell them to their school of choice. Admissions offices have to make cut and dry decisions based on very little information. The best way to help raise your chance of admission is to give them as much favorable information as possible, especially at a popular school.

This college package will include the aforementioned resume, a strong college essay, and an application form that meets the school's deadline.

Universities ask for an essay based on one (or several) prompt they give out each year. While the exact question may very, they usually provide an open-ended opportunity for students to tell the school relevant information that shows off their best qualities.

It can be challenging to provide an inspiring story on the spot without drifting into rambling or oversharing. We offer college essay prep sessions for those who want to strengthen their writing skills.

You'll want to make sure you check schools for application deadlines. Many schools have both an early and a regular deadline. Submitting early can be a good idea, but don't rush and sacrifice quality if you feel you will benefit from some extra time.

5. Scholarships & Financial Aid

We briefly touched on scholarships already, but financial aid is often a huge part of going to college.

While some students may be able to pay for tuition out-of-pocket, many will need to obtain funds elsewhere. Even those who are able to pay will benefit from saving money in this way.

There are thousands of available scholarships each year, many of which only require a quick application. There are, however, many that require an essay or other more specific information.

Casting a wide enough net will ensure that a student will be able to receive some financial help from a scholarship.

On top of that, there is also money available from the FAFSA. The FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, is a government program built to help offset the cost of college. 

6. Transitioning To College

The final step in the college process is transitioning to college. This is a major change in a person's life, as it is a very new environment for students.

Before going to attend college, students will need to go over a final checklist of things to do.

The very first step is to respond to school letters. An acceptance letter is technically only an offer, so you will have to let the school know you want to attend their program.

Then after officially accepting, students will want to schedule orientation. While orientation is often optional, it can be extremely helpful when navigating a new environment.

After orientation, all that is left is to prepare for school! If you are moving to stay on or near campus, you will want to start packing your things to get ready. If you are commuting from home or taking online classes, you will just need supplies for your upcoming classes.

Either way, this is a huge step in life and students should be proud to have been accepted into an institution of learning.

In Conclusion

This is a lot of information to take in at once.

That's why we have broken down the college process into 6 distinguishable steps. When you spread out the workload, no individual step is too challenging or time-consuming.

If you want us to walk you through this entire process, we offer a complete college counseling package. We'll take your student step-by-step until they are fully prepared for every step on the way to college!