What to Consider When Choosing a College

Choosing the right college for you is no easy task, and it can end up being a stressful experience for many high schoolers. To help you along, it is a good idea to learn as much as you can about the schools you are considering. Here are some things you may not have thought about yet in the process of choosing a college. 

Available courses. I’m sure you’ve checked that the major you want to pursue is available, but have you looked at individual courses yet? You will want classes that allow you to explore your specific interests within your major. For example, if you are interested in mathematics, you can get into teaching or actuarial sciences (statistics applied in finance and insurance), or computer sciences and engineering (most of a computer’s working is based at its core on mathematics), or even delve into operational research. The best university for you is often the university with not only the right program, but also quality and compelling courses within that program.

Entrance prerequisites. Some universities have different requirements than others for their applications. There are colleges that will filter and accept applicants according to standardized test scores, and those with their own entrance tests to select the students most suited to them. Apply early to a wide selection of universities to keep your options open.

Culture, location, and amenities. Each university has its own, unique culture and maxim depending on its students, its courses, athletic programs, extracurricular activities, and more. Ideally, you would visit each university of choice and check their qualities, their locations, basic facilities and such before applying. As far as location, you’ll want to check out the bus fares in the local areas, availability of other modes of transport, and shops close to campus, among other things. Having hospitals close by or within the university is always great. Additionally, if the college cafeteria is not to your liking or if you have specific cravings or needs, search for restaurants.

Work opportunities. College is expensive, and many students need to take on a part-time job while in school to help pay for it. Verify if your college schedule will allow you to work and then search for potential employers near your campus so you won’t waste too much time traveling.

Festivals and fairs. You’ll definitely want the opportunity to have some fun on and around campus to take a break from all that studying. Do some research on what kinds of activities are available nearby. Many colleges also put on their own festivals and fairs throughout the school year, and these are often good indicators of how student-centered the university is.

Allison Green
Boston Tutoring Services

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