High School Juniors
College Planning Checklist
Check off each item as you complete each suggestion.
√ This year the PSAT counts; taking it may qualify you to receive a National Merit Scholarship. Make sure you sign up to take it in October.
√ Pick up a copy of the PSAT/NMSQT Student Bulletin at the guidance counseling office and take the enclosed practice test.
√ Meet with your guidance counselor and compare the academic requirement for each target school. If necessary adjust your schedule.
√ Register online for the SAT, which is offered several times during the year. Be sure to complete the test by the end of junior year.
√ Take the PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test). Check “Yes” for student search services to hear from additional colleges and potential scholarships.
√ Start preparing for the SAT. Click on the Test Prep to take a practice test. You will need the user name and password we provided for you to login. Use those results to focus on the areas where you need the most improvement.
√ Go to college fairs in you area.
√ Fall is a good time to start the college search! Begin to narrow down the schools you want to consider. Utilize the US News website to begin your college search.
√ Identify test requirements for target schools, including scores for the SAT, SAT Subject Tests, ACT, and others. PSAT/NMSQT scores can give you an idea of what you would score on the SAT and help you focus your practice for it.
√ Meet with your guidance counselor and compare the academic requirements for some of the schools you are interested in and the classes available during the spring.
√ Organize a file for your college brochures and information. Before you know it, they’ll start pouring in.
√ Talk to the school counselor about local scholarship opportunities.
√ Plan to visit college campuses this spring while classes are in session. Be sure to schedule interviews with admissions officers.
√ Practice for upcoming SAT in the Test Prep section of The College Store website.
√ Most students take the SAT in spring of junior year and/or fall of senior year. Register online for spring or summer SAT tests.
√ Meet with your counselor to discuss AP courses to take senior year. You may want to consider taking a course at a local college, especially if you are interested in a subject for which your school doesn’t offer AP courses.
√ Now is a great time for you to start looking for a summer job, internship or volunteer opportunity that may a positive addition to your applications / resume.
√ Meet with your school counselor to discuss summer learning programs at local colleges that might be of interest to you.
√ AP Exams are in May. Visit the Test Prep section of The College Store website for tips and prep materials.
√ Attend local college fairs.
√ Begin to compile a folder of materials and documents necessary for applications. In addition to copies of your transcripts, a resume and income documents, this might include things such as writing samples, portfolios, audition tapes, and other materials that individual schools may require.
√ Call ahead for tour and open house schedules at colleges you are interested in.
√ If you are planning to take the SAT in the fall, register online now.
√ Narrow your college list to 6-8 schools. The list should include “safe” schools as well as “reach” and “realistic” schools.
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