Applying to college can be stressful, but it’s less nerve-wracking if you can find a way to keep all the necessary deadlines organized. Here’s a handy guide to help you know what to do and when to do it.
Freshman and Sophomore Years
- Keep your GPA up!
- Make a list of potential colleges.
- Take the ACT/SAT early so that you can retake it if you think you have the potential to improve your score.
- Attend some college tours so you can narrow down your application list.
- Send your ACT/SAT scores at least a month before the admissions deadlines to be sure they are received (or when you take the exam, have the college codes ready so they get sent for free).
- Compile your application materials and get them in before the deadline (or as early as possible so you have the most time to make a decision).
- If needed, request recommendations at least two months before the deadline, and give those writing them at least a month to complete them (i.e. tell them a deadline of one month before the admissions deadline).
- Congratulations! Once you’ve decided, make sure you let your school know you’re enrolling by their acceptance deadline.
- Sign up for orientation and register for classes.
- Be aware of the deadline for financial aid paperwork, if applying for aid or scholarships.
- Keep track of tuition fee deadlines, as well (usually the weeks before the term starts) to avoid your schedule being dropped.
Hopefully this guide has taken some of the guesswork out of the college application process. Stay organized and get a planner (or use the calendar on your phone) to keep it all straight. It’ll be worth it in the end!