SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

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

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Mar 19, 2020 12:30:00 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. This year, Ivy Day is March 26, 2020.

Keep reading to learn more about what to expect on Ivy Day, how to predict future Ivy Day dates, and what to do with your admissions decision(s) once Ivy Day is over.

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How to Get a Good Community Service Letter: 4 Steps to Follow

Have you done some volunteer work or community service and want to get a letter that shows how many hours you've completed and what jobs you did? Or maybe you need a community service letter to apply for a scholarship, job, or to a particular college? Do you know who you should ask to write the letter and what it should include?

Read on to learn what a community service letter is, why it's useful, and how you can get a great one written for you.

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These 2 Recommendation Letters Got Me Into Harvard and the Ivy League

Posted by Allen Cheng | Feb 15, 2020 5:56:00 PM

College Admissions, Letters of Recommendation

When I applied to college, I was accepted into every school I applied to, including Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, MIT, the Ivy League, UC Berkeley, UCLA, and more. While I had a strong overall application, the two teacher letters of recommendation were critical in getting me admitted.

Why? Both teachers said I was one of the top students they had ever taught. Both enthusiastically advocated for my personality, leadership skills, and energy.

How can you earn recommendation letters that will get you into your top choice colleges? I'll show you how in this article.

For the first time, I'm sharing my full, unedited letters of recommendation as examples for you. These are the exact letters submitted when I applied to college. Even better, you'll see exactly what my Harvard admissions officer underlined—what really stood out as important and noteworthy.

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How to Get Into Stanford (by an Accepted Student)

Posted by Dr. Fred Zhang | Feb 9, 2020 8:00:00 AM

College Admissions

Many students want to get into Stanford, one of the most prestigious undergraduate institutions in the United States. While getting into Stanford is very tough, there are definite rules to Stanford admissions. Using these rules to your advantage will greatly increase your chances of getting in.

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The 9 Best Honors Colleges and Programs

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Feb 7, 2020 12:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

For students who are really set on enrolling in a quality honors program, it's important to learn about some of the best honors colleges before making that big decision. That's especially true because your honors program will dictate how difficult your classes are...and the perks you get from doing well in them!

We're here to help you get all the information you need about the top honors programs in the country so you can pick the program that's right for you. In this article, we'll do the following:

  • Explain what an honors college is
  • Provide our research-based ranking of the nine top honors colleges and programs at U.S. colleges and universities
  • Give you five tips for applying to top college honors programs

Ready? Let's dive in!

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Complete List of Extracurricular Activities: 100s of Examples

How do you like to spend your time after school? Did you know that how you choose to spend this time could be one of the most important ways you shape your future?

Extracurricular activities are a critical component of your college application, and you need to impress colleges with your interests. But you might not know what good extracurricular activities look like or what you should be spending your time on.

We've got you covered here in our guide of hundreds of examples of extracurricular activities. Read on to get some inspiration for how to spend your valuable free time during high school!

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Should You Go to a Women's College?

Posted by Laura Staffaroni | Feb 6, 2020 12:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

Many people are familiar with the idea of all-girls' schools for elementary, middle, and high school, but did you know there are also women-only colleges?

In this article, we discuss what women's colleges are and why you'd want to apply to them. We'll also go over the top 17 women's colleges in the US and explain why these schools made the cut.

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How to Get Into Harvard and the Ivy League, by a Harvard Alum

Posted by Allen Cheng | Feb 5, 2020 4:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Getting into elite schools like Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, and others is a goal of many high school students. How exactly to accomplish this is often a mystery to students and parents going through the admissions process. Lots of unhelpful and vague advice abound, especially from people who have never gained admission themselves to these schools.

In high school, I got into every school I applied to, including Harvard, Princeton, MIT, and Stanford, and I attended Harvard for college. I also learned a lot about my classmates and the dynamics of college admissions in ways that were never clear to me in high school. Now, I'm sharing this expertise with you.

I've written the most comprehensive guide to getting into top schools. I'm going to explain in detail what admissions officers at Ivy League schools are really looking for in your application. More importantly, I'm going to share an actionable framework you can use to build the most compelling application that's unique to you.

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Seven Sisters Colleges: Should You Go to One?

Posted by Laura Staffaroni | Feb 2, 2020 12:00:00 AM

College Admissions, College Info

If you're looking at applying to elite liberal arts colleges, you've probably come across the Seven Sisters schools. But what schools are Seven Sisters colleges, and what makes them so special?

In this article, we explain what the Seven Sisters schools are, which of them still exist, and which of them are still all-women's colleges. I'll also use my expertise as an alum of a Seven Sisters school to break down what the benefits are of applying to a Seven Sisters school and five tips for getting admitted.

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How to Get a 4.0 GPA and Better Grades, By a Harvard Alum

Posted by Allen Cheng | Feb 1, 2020 9:00:00 AM

College Admissions, Coursework/GPA

On the 4.0 scale, an unweighted 4.0 GPA means perfection. You need straight As in every class—not even one A- is allowed. In college applications, this carries a lot of weight. You're essentially telling the college, "High school classes are a cinch. I've taken a tough course load, and I'm more than prepared for what college has to throw at me."

In high school, I got a 4.0 GPA with a course load featuring 10 AP courses. I got straight As and 12 A+'s. This strong course load, along with a strong application, got me into Harvard and every college I applied to.

While it's flattering to say, "Well, Allen's just a smart guy," in reality I relied a lot more on high-level strategy and effective academic habits. These were the same strategies I applied to my undergraduate work at Harvard and that led me to graduate summa cum laude with a 3.95 GPA. This is the guide I wish I had my freshman year of high school.

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What Are Good Questions to Ask in a College Interview?

Posted by Justin Berkman | Jan 30, 2020 8:00:00 PM

College Admissions

College interviews are becoming increasingly common, especially among selective colleges. Many students go to interviews ready to answer questions but forget that it's important to ask interesting questions as well.

In this article, I'll establish the basics of how to prepare for college interviews and explain what questions you should and shouldn't ask during an interview, so you feel totally ready on the day of.

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The 14 College Interview Questions You Must Prepare For

Posted by Justin Berkman | Jan 27, 2020 8:00:00 PM

College Admissions

The college interview process can be nerve-racking. This interview gives the college you're applying to another opportunity to evaluate you and help determine whether or not to offer you admission. However, your college interviews won't be nearly as scary if you know what to expect.

In this article, I give you the 14 college interview questions you absolutely must prepare for. I explain why you're being asked these questions and how to provide great answers. Furthermore, I offer advice on how to prepare for your interviews so that when the time comes, you'll be ready to ace them.

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Do You Need ACT Scores to Transfer Colleges? A Guide

Posted by Alex Heimbach | Jan 25, 2020 12:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, College Admissions

One of the most complicated parts of transferring colleges is determining what the requirements are, especially when it comes to standardized tests. Unfortunately, there's no simple answer to the question of whether you need to take the ACT as a transfer student, but this guide will walk you through how different school policies vary and explain how much SAT and ACT scores count when applying as a transfer.

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How to Write a Great Community Service Essay

Posted by Christine Sarikas | Jan 20, 2020 12:30:00 PM

College Admissions, Extracurriculars

Are you applying to a college or a scholarship that requires a community service essay? Do you know how to write an essay that will impress readers and clearly show the impact your work had on yourself and others?

Read on to learn step-by-step instructions for writing a great community service essay that will help you stand out and be memorable.

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What Are NCAA Divisions? Division 1 vs 2 vs 3

Posted by Justin Berkman | Jan 20, 2020 11:27:00 AM

College Admissions

You've likely heard of the different divisions for college sports, but how are they organized, and why is there more than one division? And if you want to be a student athlete, which division is best for you?

In this article, I'll break down the differences between NCAA divisions to give you a better idea of what separates Division I, II, and III schools. For those of you who wish to participate in intercollegiate athletics, you can get an idea of which division would best suit your interests and abilities. For those of you who don't want to compete but care about sports, you can use this guide to determine if the division of a college's sports teams will be a determining factor for you when selecting a college.

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