Finding the right college or university can be daunting. You need a school that will provide you with a quality education and help you get a good job, but you also need a school that fits your individual tastes. As such, it is important to consider all the angles. Start by asking these basic questions.

Academics

What schools offer programs in my major? What schools will help me get the job I want? Do I need to attend a school with a big name? Given my grades and test scores, what schools can I get into?

Finances

How important is cost? How much can I afford to spend on my education? How much debt am I willing to incur? Am I willing to go to a less prestigious school to save money?

Location

Do I want to be close to home or far away? Would I be more comfortable on a campus in the suburbs or in a large city? Is weather a factor? Do I need to be where it’s warm or would I prefer a cooler climate? Do I want to be near the beach or mountains or other geographical features?

Campus Life

Do I want a more reserved school or a “party” school? Would I prefer a school with a larger student body or a smaller student body? Am I looking for a student body with a particular blend of gender, race, or religion? What schools have extracurricular activities that I like?

Each of these questions should play a part in the decision-making process. Once you’ve answered these questions, identify those schools that best fit your individual needs and interests. Then collect specific information about each of those schools, either by browsing on their website or by requesting brochures or pamphlets through the mail.

Once you’ve narrowed it down to a handful of schools, visit each one in person. Schedule a tour of campus, peek into a dorm, and perhaps even sit in on a class. Most students make their final decision based on their campus visits. Once you’ve chosen the perfect school, begin the admissions process.

Follow these steps and you shouldn’t have any difficulties choosing the right school for you. For more information on the education perspectives of potential employers, see “What’s in a Name? Do Potential Employers Really Care Where You Went to School?”.

Or if you are considering online education, you may want to read “Online or Traditional: Which Is Right For Your” and 7 Benefits of Online Education.”


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kari Whitaker is a technical as well as creative writer. In addition to articles on education and careers, she also enjoys writing short stories, essays, and poetry.

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11 comments on “How to Choose the Right School For You

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