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How to balance numbers of schools vs casting a larger net for best outcome (admission/aid)?

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Replies to: How to balance numbers of schools vs casting a larger net for best outcome (admission/aid)?

  • MidwestmomofboysMidwestmomofboys Registered User Posts: 2,786 Senior Member
    edited July 15
    Minnesota Twin Cities and IUUC for Engineering for an OOS student with a 3.5 are super reaches. If you are looking to cull the list, cut those. The Common Data Set does not separate admissions stats for in state and out of state kids and does not separate out stats for the different colleges, so its easy to think, well, we're in the middle 50%, so its a match. A review of the admission result threads for engineering for these two schools shows that OOS kids need very high stats to get in. If a kid got a 35-36 ACT, that could make a difference.

    Iowa, Case are good ones to keep on the list.
  • SybyllaSybylla Registered User Posts: 1,129 Senior Member
    I don't think a kid needs a 35/36 for UMTC, unless you mean to offset that 3.5 GPA?
    But sure, a sub 1400 SAT and 650 math in sat1 would be a stretch for OOS.
    The real issue with those two schools is that they are going to chew up and spit out an unprepared eng student in calc and physics etc. They spit out enough prepared students.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    edited July 15
    @suzyQ7

    UMass is the top choice. If S is rejected there, PSU and OSU are both awesome if S can get in one of those. Rutgers would be next in line. Yes, if that is his only option we would gladly full pay. It is a solid school with a strong academic reputation.

    We have many matches because, well, S is your 'average' student. None of these matches is close to being safeties.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    @suzyQ7 MSU is a great school. Similar to Rutgers, we would full pay if that comes as the choice.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    edited July 15
    @Midwestmomofboys Thank you! IUUC is a very high reach, I agree fully with you. That is why it is in the reach category. I actually was thinking last night perhaps we should just not bother with that one.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    @Midwestmomofboys What you pointed out above - about how CDS does not offer a true picture of how competitive a school could be for an OOS student is a big fear and confusion of mine. That is one of the main reasons I have so many matches on the list because some of these could be reaches that we mistakenly think are matches.
  • planner03planner03 Registered User Posts: 1,154 Senior Member
    Have you considered SUNY Buffalo? Stronger for engineering than Binghamton, which I don't think is a match, and easier to get in to. It is also bigger and more urban if that is important.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    @planner03 Thank you!

    No I haven't. I will take a look.


  • MidwestmomofboysMidwestmomofboys Registered User Posts: 2,786 Senior Member
    @Sybylla Yes, I was thinking a 35-36 to offset the 3.5, not for every OOS student.

    @MomtoAndrew2018 It is a challenge to read the tea leaves to sort out what the standards for an OOS student to a highly competitive College within an OOS public might be. Although anecdotal, you can read through the results threads for these schools for the past couple of years to get a flavor for where the lines seem to be drawn -- that is what we did for my kid's top choice, Wisconsin. Another approach would be to see if, by digging on the school's website, you can find reports which do separate out OOS from instate admissions info since, as public institutions, they have reporting obligations for info which private schools wouldn't to share. I know Wisconsin has a voluminous report which tracks acceptance rate, stats etc. for OOS and instate students, perhaps Minnesota and Illinois might have something similar. Ideal is to have a sure thing safety with rolling admission (usually your instate public, but I know with U Mass Amherst CS that is not a sure thing) - so that a student has an acceptance in hand in the fall. Perhaps Iowa where you can complete the admissions data for the Regents Index online and get an immediate "decision" on admissibility -- its not an actual decision, but since it is all stat driven --uw gpa. class rank, test scores -- it can be calculated precisely and the answer (with projected merit aid) identified. Another possibility -- Indiana University Bloomington has Computer Science -- and is less competitive admissions for OOS students than Purdue Engineering. Bloomington is considered a gorgeous college town and is 45 min south of Indianapolis.

    Hang in there, it's tough, but also enjoyable to watch them grow and explore and gain confidence as they move through the process.
  • BooBooBearBooBooBear Registered User Posts: 97 Junior Member
    In evaluating OOS chances, I just use a rule of thumb that an OOS applicant should consider the 75th percentile as the hurdle, and completely ignore the 25th percentile score and any analysis using the middle 50%. With some exceptions (like UT Austin or UNC-CH at the low end and Alabama, etc., at the high end), OOS students make up around 20-30% of students at the competitive state schools, so shooting for the 75th percentile should make you a good candidate (considering that there will be many in-state students in that top 25%).
  • MidwestmomofboysMidwestmomofboys Registered User Posts: 2,786 Senior Member
    @BooBooBear That is a useful way to think about it and similar to what we did for OOS public applications. For what it's worth, Illinois is about 75% instate, so only 25% roughly for OOS students. MN Twin Cities is about 35% OOS and that presumably includes WI students who have tuition reciprocity with MN, so the percentage of spots for non-MN, non WI students is even lower. Living in Indiana, we understood Bloomington was more like 60/40 but I can't find a percentage on IU's website and third party sites have it 65/35.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    @Midwestmomofboys Thanks so much for the kind words! I will check out Indiana University Bloomington and also Regents Index (never heard of this before).

    @BooBooBear That is a smart strategy! Thank you!
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    I am wondering how you all think of Naviance? In Naviance, I can search for a college and get stats (gpa/test score), application types (ED, EA, or RD) and decisions for every single applicant out his HS for the past 3 years. I find this information and scattergrams very helpful in terms of getting a feel of S's admission chances for each school.
  • LoveTheBardLoveTheBard Registered User Posts: 1,285 Senior Member
    @MomtoAndrew2018 - Naviance is somewhat useful, but unfortunately not as much as it used to be since they changed its format last year. (You used to be able to get data from further back -- 6 years, if memory serves -- as well as specifics about the numbers of people applying early/regular decision and what the results were, including data breakdowns about the average, highest, and lowest GPAs and test scores for applications and acceptances.

    That said, the scattergrams are useful for seeing where your kid falls as compared to his/her peers, and being about to see the general trends and numbers is helpful in developing a strategy in creating a list of schools and/or deciding whether/where to apply early anywhere.
  • MomtoAndrew2018MomtoAndrew2018 Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    @LoveTheBard Thank you!

    Got it. From what I understand, admissions overall are getting more and more competitive with each passing year. So, I would think not including data from as back as 6 years is actually good thing. I.e the estimated admission chances will not be inflated by older data. Other things you mentioned: numbers of people applying early/regular decision and the results each year, ave/highest/lowest stats are all shown on scattergrams.

    I relied heavily on these scattergrams to determine whether a school is a reach/match/safety for S.
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