With over 4,000 colleges and universities across the US, narrowing down the list can be overwhelming. Is it even possible to create a shortlist of 10 or even 20 best-match colleges? Where do you start? These college search tools and methods will help you get started.
Use College Raptor’s College Search Tools
The College Raptor Match Tool makes it easy to find great colleges. Start by entering some basic information about your academic goals and college preferences. The tool uses the information you feed it to show you a list of schools that tick all the boxes. It will also display the estimated cost to attend each of the colleges on the list.
Lastly, it will show you detailed information about each of the colleges you’re interested in. This tool essentially automates the college search process. It gives you all the information you need within minutes, saving you several frustrating days spent in doing a manual search for the same information.
Talk To Your Counselor
After several years of interacting with students applying to colleges, counselors have a wealth of knowledge in this area. Tell them what you’re looking for and explore their recommendations further.
Visit College Fairs
College fairs are a great place to meet up with representatives from various colleges. They’ll be happy to answer whatever questions you have about the college they represent. Couldn’t find some specific information on the college website? Make a note of it and ask the representative at the college fair.
What You Should Do Before Starting Your College Search
Starting a college search without really knowing what you are looking for is an exercise in futility. How can you find the right college if you don’t really know what you’re looking for. That’s why, before you start your college search, it’s important to first spend time thinking about what your goals and individual preferences.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Which career do I want to pursue? What major will help me qualify for a career in that field?
- What sports or extracurricular activities do I want to participate in as a college student?
- Would I prefer to study on a city or rural campus?
- Is a larger or smaller college more suitable for my personality?
- Do I need to study in a college close to home or am I okay with studying in a college far away from home?
Understanding yourself better is the key to being able to find a college that will help you thrive and succeed both personally and professionally.