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Three Ways to Reduce Stress In The College Application Process

Updated: Mar 5

Here are three ways to reduce stress while applying to colleges:

(1) Schedule More Than One Standardized Test Sitting

One of the best ways to combat the stress that a single test will determine your child’s fate is to schedule more than one standardized test administration. I recommend scheduling three administrations of the same test (SAT or ACT). Of course, if your child meets or exceeds expectations, your child might only take the test once. For more information on testing, please see: Testing Advice | Educ8Fit Consulting.

(2) Apply Using Rolling Admissions To At Least One College

Colleges with rolling admissions generally provide decisions a few weeks after a student applies. Your child can apply using rolling admissions in August and get accepted by September of Senior year in high school. This changes the question from “Am I going to get accepted to college?” to “What college will I attend?” Don’t let your child get into the Spring of Senior year and have doubts about getting accepted to a college. When doing this, be sure to apply to colleges that (1) are highly likely to admit your kid and (2) have a track record for making decisions quickly. For a list of ways to apply to college, please see: College Application Assistance | Educ8Fit Consulting.

(3) Focus On Fit Rather Than Prestige and Selectivity

Colleges that are perceived as prestigious change over time. Some that are highly selective now (and admit less than 10 percent of applicants) had admit rates of over 40 percent 30 years ago. Others that used to be very selective now have admission rates over 70 percent. A good question to ask before deciding on a college is whether you would still be happy to have attended the college if it becomes less selective in the near future. The most important part of your children’s education will be what they learn and can potentially use decades after they graduate.

Know that more than one college is a good fit. Likely, no one college will be a perfect fit, just as no one house will likely have everything you want when you buy a house.

Colleges that are a good fit will:

  • offer desired major(s);

  • be a step up academically from high school;

  • value your child enough to make the college affordable for your family;

  • offer your child’s preferred way of instruction (e.g., lecture, seminar, “hands-on” instruction); and

  • provide a social fit.

Focusing on fit can also help increase the odds of being admitted and earning scholarships. Colleges frequently have “why us” essays in which the admission officers want applicants to demonstrate why they are a good fit for the college.

Educ8Fit Consulting

For additional information about what schools might be a good fit for you or your child, please see our website at Please get in touch with us at Educ8Fit Consulting at either or College Admission Counseling | Educ8fit Consulting | United States; contact us for a free consultation.

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Phone: (703) 850-9319

Personal LinkedIn: Jim Houser | LinkedIn

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