You have booked your college tour for your top five favorite colleges. Now what? Should you get accepted in all of the schools, how will you decide which is best for you? Many students believe just going on a college tour and getting a feel of the place will help them make a decision, however that is now always the case. If you don’t prepare, you may find yourself having a hard time narrowing down the options. We’ve prepared a list of eight questions to ask while on a college tour. The answers should help narrow your choices.
1. What are some of the most important things considered during the admission process?
If you are applying to this college and the admission person tells you 50% of your admission score depends on your academic score and another 30% depends on your college essay, then you have a better idea about whether you will be accepted or not. This question gives you a lot of insight about the school’s priorities and give you a realistic perspective on what to expect from the school.
2. Is the college or university accredited?
Believe it or not, not all schools are accredited. Accreditation assures you that teachers where studied by experts and that learning for students has been assessed. Your second question should whether the school was accredited by someone the federal government acknowledges.
3. Are there any major changes underway at the school?
Sometimes schools are going through big changes. If the change is to install a brand new stadium, it’s likely they will openly discuss this during the tour. But if the change is to eliminate freshman parking on campus next year, or to eliminate the nursing program in 4 years this may not be openly discussed. After asking about any major changes, it might also be a good idea to pick up the school newspaper where students oftentimes write about these important issues.
4. How many students graduate?
Some schools have high drop out rates. Before you make a twenty thousand dollars a year payment, you may want to be sure you are doing everything you can to ensure the school works hard to keep you on the right track. Another question you may want to ask if how many of the graduates finish in four years or less. One extra year in school could really exceed the budget you are under.
5. What is the most popular major here?
If you are applying for the nursing program and half of the other students at the school are also studying nursing, you may have a problem getting the classes you need to graduate. Make sure you ask about the popular major and the steps the school is taking to ensure you get into all of your classes.
6. Will your credits transfer?
Many students make personal decisions to leave a school. Some have to leave for an emergency, others leave to put school off for a while. What many of these students don’t know is that the credits for the classes they took won’t transfer to their new school. It can be a frustrating situation. Before that happens, it is good to look into the credit transfer restrictions.
7. Do you have career planning?
After four years of hard work, you are going to want to know the direction you are heading. Now that you have that business degree, what kind of job is best suited for you? If you are a nurse, what hospital or doctor’s office is in great need for your services? Talking to prospective colleges about their career planning department is key to your success.
8. What is the most reported crime at this school?
This might be your parent’s favorite question. But if should be top of mind for you too. There is a huge difference in a school that has a lot of purse snatchings versus one that has a high volume of date rapes. Make sure to follow up with questions about what the school is doing to deter the crime. Getting the answers to these questions can easily help you rule in or rule out a school.