The requirements for college admission can be overwhelming. On top of getting good grades and taking standardized exams, you need to prepare the application and/or scholarship essays, volunteer and participate in extracurricular activities and gather recommendation letters. But in the mad dash to submit admission applications before the due dates, a lot of students overlook critical steps that could ultimately determine the fate of their college application.
Submitting all the requirements can be an uphill battle, but it’s one you can easily win. Sure, it may seem complicated, but by following the tips below, you can be ready to have a well-crafted admission application and boost your chances of getting into your dream college.
Tip #1: Seek Out Advice and Assistance
Because submitting college applications can be daunting, you simply can’t afford to take it on by yourself.
While researching college and universities, coming up with a shortlist, preparing for tests, and finalizing your admission application, make it a point to get help and advice from people who are familiar with the application process, like your teachers and school counselors.
You can also consult a friend, parent, an or older sibling who can give you answers to questions related to college admissions.
If you’ve already come up with an admission essay, consider getting assistance or expert advice from a professional admission writing service. You can find plenty of these online but if you want to get the best service at the right price, a review site like IHateWritingEssays can point you to the right direction.
Tip #2: Double-Check All Instructions and Extra Materials
One of the biggest blunders a student can make when submitting college admissions is not following instructions. So before sending out your application, make sure to reread instructions for every college you’re applying for. Make sure that each answer you provided match the prompts and directions.
It’s important, especially when some universities require answers to supplemental essay questions, which is separate from the traditional admission essay you need to submit. Do your research to find out what you’re missing when reviewing your application.
Tip #3: Proofread Your Admission Essay
Do It Yourself
A lot of students love their own work so much and are so excited, they decide to send their application straight away, without looking back on it. It may sound good to you today, but it might not be the case a few days later.
If you still have plenty of time before the deadline, let it rest and then proofread it for content and accurate information. You should also check for any spelling, grammatical, and punctuation mistakes you may have overlooked. The last thing you want to do is to send out an admission application riddled with typos and inconsistencies.
Consider reading it aloud to other people. This way, you can hear the words instead of just seeing them in your head. Read it once to yourself, and then read it to people whom you trust and can give you honest opinions. Make sure to take notes as you go so you can edit or revise before sending your application.
Ask Someone for Help
Admission essays are very personal compositions, which is why some students are reluctant to share them with someone. But a college admission essay requires similar flow of ideas as any other type of essay – and there are times the author isn’t the best judge of that.
As such, you need to find a grammar-savvy adult or someone who has experience with admission essays, like a school counselor or your English teacher. Consider showing them your draft and ask, “Does this sound like me?”
There’s nothing quite like getting another pair of eyes to spot mistakes, so make sure to reserve plenty of time for this one.
Tip #4: Spot Inconsistencies
It’s easy to miss minute details when glossing over your admission application. But while they may seem like insignificant details to you, it doesn’t mean they won’t be important to the person reviewing your college admission. And so, you need to double-check all the details of your application to ensure that everything is accurate.
Specifically, you need to check details like your school awards and honors, volunteer record, extracurricular activities, and self-reported test scores. These are information that the admissions committee may be looking for in a college application.
If you misprint a test score or misspell an award name, the committee might get confused and at worst, suspect you have ulterior motives or were not taking the application seriously.
Tip #5: Keep A Copy of Your Records
Before hitting that Submit button, don’t forget to print an extra copy of your essay and any other pertinent documents. If you can’t print the whole application, print what you can, take a screenshot or take pictures of each page with your smartphone.
Once you’ve submitted your application, print a copy of the confirmation page as well. This way, you can keep track of everything you’ve done in case any issue arises.
Applying to college is an exciting and nerve-wracking experience. So before sending your admission application, make sure to review these important steps. Who knows, they can be the difference between sending a good college admission and a great one.