How to Prepare for College in 11th Grade
Your junior year is the most important time for college prep. It’s the time you’ll choose colleges to apply to, take admissions tests and decide what you want the next four years of your life to look like.
Here is a list of things you should do and consider as you get ready for college:
1. Begin preparing for your college admissions tests. Before taking the SAT and/or the ACT, you should study and do practice tests. You can find free test prep resources from various college prep organizations.
2. Decide what kind of college experience you’d like to have. There are many things to consider, such as the social, financial and academic fit. You also need to think about what kind of college setting you’d like — campuses are located in rural, suburban and urban settings.
3. Research colleges and start shopping around. Gather as much information as you can about the colleges you're interested in and add them to your college list.
4. Apply for scholarships if you haven’t already started. In fact, you should sign up for Cappex because it will match you with relevant scholarships across the country.
5. Try and decide on a major or two. Even if you don’t know what you’d like to study, having an idea helps you choose colleges. If you have an idea of a field you’d like to go into but don’t know which major is right, you can see what colleges rank highly for the area you’d like to study. If you’re truly ambitious, some colleges let you create your own major.
Even if you don’t know what you’d like to study, you always can change your major.
6. Keep your grades strong. Although many students think test scores hold the most weight with college admissions officials, academic performance is the most important factor. Also, Advanced Placement (AP) classes look great on a high school transcript.
7. Start your college visits. Getting a feel for a campus is essential. This will be your home for the next four years and you should like it. In fact, this is the time to ask questions. You also should speak with current students to get a realistic view of what college life on that campus is like.