Recent Blogs

50-50 Highlights: Phi Beta Kappa Colleges for Academic Challenge

graduation cap with Phi Beta Kappa honors tasselOne reason many people give for attending a prestigious or ranked college or university is the need to be among intellectual peers. Parents and students worry that students won’t be challenged enough at less-well known or lower ranked schools. This is often accompanied by the networking argument–it’s the class peers along with faculty that will be crucial in developing future opportunities. Continue reading

5 Ways to Get Smart About the National Letter of Intent

hand signing the national letter of intentWe’ve all seen the pictures in the local paper, high school seniors signing their National Letter of Intent (NLI) to play for a specific university or college. Sometimes there are proud parents in the pictures. Other times, you’ll see team colors or maybe a football. What you won’t see is a coach from the university the student is signing the NLI with.

Why? Because it’s not allowed under the rules. Continue reading

The Two Biggest Things Parents Can do to Help Their Kids with Test Prep

Father helping daughter with test prep decisions at laptopThe following is a guest post by David Recine, a testing expert at Magoosh

Your kids grow up so fast, don’t they? Sometimes it feels like they were just in grade school or junior high. And now, suddenly, they’re on the precipice of adulthood, trying to get into a good school. You want to help out now… but helping someone enter adulthood is a lot harder than helping someone enter kindergarten, or even helping them learn to drive a car.

As parents, it’s good to understand your role in helping your son or daughter get into a good school. What can you do? What should you do? Let’s look at two big things you can do to help. Continue reading

50-50 Highlights: Most Expensive Colleges for Out-of-State Students and the Cheapest

car driving on money representing expensive out of state tuitionOf the 464 colleges and universities on the 50-50 list, 179 of them are public institutions. Furthermore, 50-50 schools are not distributed equally among all of the states. That means that if you want to start your search with the largest number of schools possible, you don’t want to immediately eliminate out-of-state public institutions. Continue reading

517 Colleges with No Application Fees

student looking at colleges with free application feesThe free college application fees list has been updated based on the Integrated Post-secondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and information from the Common Application available in June 2018. The IPEDS data is the fee charged for the 2017-18 academic year while the Common Application Data is for the 2018-19 year. Yes, it’s very possible the data reported by IPEDS will not be valid for the coming year. But it’s what is available.

Everyone knows the cost of higher education is spiraling out of control. Did you know that the cost to apply to college has reached equally outrageous levels? Applying to US News 2018 Top Ten National Universities would set you back $780 in application fees with a low of $65 to a high of $90. Only one school charged less than $75. That doesn’t include the cost of sending in testing scores reports. Continue reading

50-50 Highlights: Most Affordable Public University by State

Money representing Most Affordable Public University by StateOne factor that will determine how much you pay for college is location. I’ve talked before about how students who insist only on schools in the northeast or on the coasts will pay for the privilege. Geography can actually be a hook depending on the location of the college and the student. Here, I’m going to cover how location can affect how much you pay to attend a public university. Continue reading

5 Financial Mistakes that Can Limit Your Chance of Playing Your Sport at the College Level

5 financial recruiting mistakesSo far I’ve covered signs that you don’t understand the college athletic recruiting process and mistakes players and families make about their ability and what it means. Today, I’m going to cover mistakes related to finances when looking for athletic scholarships. If it’s really about using sports to help pay for college, you need to avoid the following college recruiting mistakes. Continue reading

5 Ways Parents Can Help Their Students Get Great Letters of Recommendation for College

Mother helping daughter get great letters of recommendations for collegeThis is one area where parents can sigh with relief because things haven’t changed that much since they were in high school. While colleges are expecting high school students to have taken more classes and with more of them having been AP level and participate in extracurricular activities to demonstrate depth, they aren’t asking for letters of recommendation from Nobel Prize winners, or at the very least, your state’s senator. High school teachers are still the accepted goto for recommendation letters. Continue reading