SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

The 29 Colleges With the Best Financial Aid

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Sep 15, 2019 7:00:00 PM

Financial Aid

College in the US is expensive—too expensive, in fact, for the average student to be able to afford on their own. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 85% of first-year students at four-year colleges were receiving financial aid in 2016-17. Financial aid is good in all its forms, right? If it helps college students afford their educations, what could be the problem?

Unfortunately, not all financial aid is created equal—and not all schools can afford to give out "good" student aid. Here, I'll briefly talk about the types of financial aid available (the "good" kinds and the "bad" kinds) before introducing the colleges with the best financial aid programs in the country.

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Do You Need SAT Scores to Transfer Colleges?

Posted by Alex Heimbach | Sep 15, 2019 6:30:00 PM

SAT General Info

Determining all the different requirements for transferring colleges can be a huge hassle. One of the most common questions students have is whether they need to submit SAT scores to apply as transfer students.

There's no single answer to this question, but this guide will explain some common policies about SAT scores for transfer applicants. It'll also go over how to determine whether you need to submit SAT scores and how much attention schools pay to these scores when they also have your grades from another college.

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Cheap Out-of-State Colleges: Top 25 Most Affordable

Posted by Samantha Lindsay | Sep 15, 2019 6:00:00 PM

Financial Aid, College Info

If you're hoping to be far from home for college but are worried about the cost of an out-of-state school, you might run into some issues in the application process. How do you find out-of-state schools that still offer relatively cheap tuition?

In this article, I've compiled a list of schools that offer the lowest tuition rates and highest rates of institutional aid to out-of-state students. Keep reading to learn what these schools are!

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Complete Guide: Colleges Not Requiring SAT Scores

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 15, 2019 6:00:00 PM

SAT General Info, College Admissions

Not all admissions processes are created equal. One major point of difference among colleges these days is how admissions officers consider your SAT scores. More and more schools are de-emphasizing SAT scores as part of your application with test-optional and test-flexible policies. One college has even eliminated SAT scores completely!

There are now more than 1,000 accredited, bachelor-degree granting institutions that have changed their approaches to standardized test scores. Keep in mind that the majority of colleges, especially the more prestigious schools, do still require (and strongly consider) SAT scores.

Let’s take a look at the different score policies and the schools that no longer require applicants to submit their SAT scores for admission.

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The Most Selective Colleges, Why, and How to Get In

Posted by Samantha Lindsay | Sep 15, 2019 5:00:00 PM

College Admissions

It's tempting to judge the quality of a school based on its admissions rate. Although this is a reasonable way to assess schools in most cases, there are some special circumstances that might result in extremely low acceptance rates at less academically demanding colleges.

In this article, I'll list the most selective colleges in the United States, tell you why they accept so few applicants, and provide you with some advice on how to apply successfully.

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36 Top Scholarships for High School Sophomores and Freshmen

Posted by Mary Ann Barge | Sep 15, 2019 3:00:00 PM

Financial Aid

It's never too early to start saving up money for your college education. Even if you are only in your first or second year of high school, there are plenty of opportunities to start bringing in money that will pay for your tuition, books, fees, and living expenses a couple of years down the line.

You might be surprised to learn that there are actually hundreds of scholarships available to underclassmen. If you're just starting your hunt, use this list of the 37 best scholarships for high school freshmen and sophomores to get started.

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3 Top Tips for Writing Stellar Brown Supplemental Essays

Posted by Hayley Milliman | Sep 15, 2019 1:00:00 PM

College Essays

Brown admits around 7% of its total applicant pool every year. If you want to be one of those admitted students, you'll need to write amazing Brown essays as part of your application.

In this article, we'll outline the different types of essays you need to write for your Brown University application and teach you how to write a Brown supplement essay that'll help you stand out from the thousands of other applicants.

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All 108 Need-Blind Colleges in the US: A Complete Guide

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

Financial Aid, College Info

When universities go through admissions applications, they take many factors into consideration, like your grades, your extracurriculars, and even your personality!

But many college applicants don't realize that some universities also consider you—and your family's—ability to pay tuition as well. The hard truth is that some universities use an applicant's ability to pay tuition without financial aid as a factor in the admissions process. This became the subject of a 2015 article from Time Magazine, which explains that many universities consider how students can contribute to their institution financially when they make admissions decisions.

This sounds like scary news. But don't worry! Many schools are addressing the issue by transitioning to need-blind admissions policies, which remove economic status as an admissions criteria.

In this guide, we'll give you a complete list of need-blind colleges in the United States and answer all of your burning questions, including:

  • What is need-blind admission?
  • How do need-blind policies affect tuition costs?
  • What should you look for in a need-blind school?

So let's get started!

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Ivy Day 2020: What Is It, When Is It, and What to Do Next

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

If you’ve applied or are currently applying to Ivy League schools, you’ve likely heard the phrase "Ivy Day." Ivy Day, or Ivy Admissions Day, is when all the Ivy League schools announce their admissions decisions for regular decision first-year applicants.

Keep reading to learn more about what to expect on Ivy Day, when Ivy Day 2020 will be, and what to do with your admissions decision(s) once Ivy Day is over.

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How to Get Into Yale: 4 Expert Admissions Tips

Posted by Hayley Milliman | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Yale is one of the most competitive schools on the planet to get into. If you're wondering how to make your application stand out from the crowd, you're in the right place.

In this article, we'll go over everything you need to know about how to get into Yale, including how hard it really is to get into Yale, what Yale is looking for in its students, what test scores and grades you need, and how to ace your Yale application essays.

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How to Get Into MIT: 5 Expert Admissions Tips

Posted by Hayley Milliman | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is one of the best schools in the world. If you want to be one of the few students accepted into MIT every year, you’ll need to make sure your application is up to snuff.

In this article, we’ll break down exactly how to get into MIT, from the test scores you need to the tips and tricks that’ll help your application stand out.

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The 7 UChicago Essay Prompts: How to Write Stellar Responses

Posted by Christine Sarikas | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Essays

The University of Chicago is famous for its unique essay topics. They're some of the most creative and off-the-wall essay prompts you'll see when applying to colleges, and it can sometimes be confusing to know how to tackle them.

What should you write about in your UChicago essays? How can you show that you're intelligent, creative, and worthy of a place at their school? Read on to learn all about the UChicago essays, what the admissions team expects to see in your responses, what topics you should write about, and which topics you should avoid. In this guide we also suggest sample essay ideas for each of the 2019/2020 UChicago supplement essay prompts and analyze past University of Chicago essay samples so you can see what a great UChicago essay looks like.

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How to Write a Diversity Essay: 4 Key Tips

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Essays

If you’re applying to college, you've probably heard the phrase "diversity essay" once or twice. This type of essay is a little different from your typical "Why this college?" essay. Instead of focusing on why you've chosen a certain school, you'll write about your background, values, community, and experiences—basically, what makes you special.

In this guide, I explain what a diversity college essay is, what schools are looking for in this essay, and what you can do to ensure your diversity essay stands out.

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Complete List: Which Colleges Require ACT Writing? 100+ Schools

Posted by Mary Ann Barge | Sep 15, 2019 12:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, ACT Writing

You’ve just signed up for the ACT. But did you know that there is an optional Writing test for the ACT? More importantly, do you know if your dream schools require or recommend this ACT section?

Check out our regularly updated list of schools to find out if the Writing ACT is worth your time and money. We'll then give you our top tips for acing the ACT Writing section.

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What's a Good PSAT Score for 2019?

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Sep 13, 2019 2:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

Taking the 2019 PSAT? Then you’ll want to have a decent grasp of what a good PSAT score for 2019 is. There are three main ways you can define good 2019 PSAT scores: (1) using percentiles, (2) using National Merit score cutoffs, and (3) based on the SAT scores you’ll need for colleges.

In this guide, we start by going over how PSAT scoring works and the most important information you'll see on your PSAT score report, from scores and subscores to percentiles. Then, we dive into our three definitions of what good 2019 PSAT scores are.

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