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how do you organize your college list?

kawaiigurlkawaiigurl Registered User Posts: 542 Member
edited August 2008 in College Search & Selection
now that i've done some researches, there seem to be many schools that i'm interested in, and it is so hard to organize them, remember them...and eliminate them!

so, can you CCers suggest or share how you guys organize college info and all that, so that i can keep my list clean, easy to read and organized?

thanks so much!
Post edited by kawaiigurl on

Replies to: how do you organize your college list?

  • kyledavid80kyledavid80 Registered User Posts: 8,093 Senior Member
    You can organize them by reach/match/safety.

    You can list them by preference.

    A good exercise, also, is to make a ranking by selectivity and compare it to your list by preference. If School A ranks higher than School B in preference but lower than School B in selectivity, you know you can eliminate School B. (In other words, getting into School B would logically mean that you will get into School A, but since you'd choose School A over School B, you might as well not apply to School B.) Note: make sure that the gap in selectivity is noticeable.

    I remember doing this and being able to cut a few schools off my list. :)
  • doudou Registered User Posts: 207 Junior Member
    I find it very helpful to make us of Microsofy OneNote for research. You can put in any information in any format into this software, and whenever you want to view your research for different colleges, you can just open that one software instead of thousands of word documents, saved websites... (the list goes on)
  • DougBetsyDougBetsy Registered User Posts: 5,830 Senior Member
    We're using a spreadsheet. I like doing it this way because it's sortable on almost any field.

    Colleges are listed in column A.

    Column headings across the top are:
    state
    enrollment
    % admitted
    total approximate cost
    average non-need based aid
    estimated net cost (formula from 2 prior columns)
    mid point for SAT CR
    midpoint for SAT M
    midpoint for SAT W
    SAT total
    ACT 25% threshold
    Early Action (Yes/No & deadline)
    Category (reach, match, safety)
  • TrinitrondelTrinitrondel Registered User Posts: 125 Junior Member
    I created the same exact spreadsheet as DougBetsy (except I excluded 'state' because I can easily pull that out of my head). Remember to add columns that you think are important. I added columns for student body (gender and ethnicity) to compare diversity (which is really important to me).
  • dchow08dchow08 Registered User Posts: 3,267 Senior Member
    I organized my list by categorizing the colleges into reaches, 5050 chance schools, and back-up schools. Then I tried to eliminate some of the reaches, some of the 5050 chance schools, and a few back-up schools until I got around 3 reaches, 3 50-50's, and 1 or 2 backups. Then I applied to them all.
  • asiantofuasiantofu Registered User Posts: 244 Junior Member
    I'm categorizing by selectivity and preference. I will probably be throwing out some schools by the time supplements come out for the Common App, though.
  • kawaiigurlkawaiigurl Registered User Posts: 542 Member
    what's Microsofy OneNote ?
    and as for spreadsheet, do you do on computer or...?
  • MQDMQD Registered User Posts: 619 Member
    Up to now I have been using the notes field on the My College List page on the College Board Web site ... simplistic but works for me.

    I have in the box the following ... acceptance rate, ED acceptance rate, returns for second year, Q of life # from PR, median SAT score for all three SAT's, DDs schools application # to the school last year, #of HS alum currently at the school, average SAT from accepted students from Ds hs and the average SAT form the kids attending from DDs hs. Last, I add special notes. The schools are not on the list unless they meet our specific curriculum requirements.

    I like being able to dig deeper on the CB site from this position.

    I also have a single spread sheet that lists a zillion rankings/lists ... from USNEWS to Washington mag to matriculations from 2 school DD attended to international rankings, SAT rankings ... all sorts of fun lists for different aspects of college choice ... cut and paste from various web sites. I simply bold the schools that interest us. Messy but works fine for now.
  • kawaiigurlkawaiigurl Registered User Posts: 542 Member
    which is a good website to research uni btw?
    i mean, i know that i can look up college's websties, but where do you get info such as more specific stuff? like recruitment, min. sat score...
    btw, this has been helpful,
    thx for all ur help!
  • DougBetsyDougBetsy Registered User Posts: 5,830 Senior Member
    which is a good website to research uni btw?
    i mean, i know that i can look up college's websties, but where do you get info such as more specific stuff? like recruitment, min. sat score...
    btw, this has been helpful,
    thx for all ur help!

    I find the following sites are very helpful:

    College Board: Find a College - College Search - Majors and Careers

    Petersons Search for Colleges and Universities, Graduate Schools, Online Degree, Private Schools - Peterson's

    Princeton Review College Education | Scholarships | Admissions | The Princeton Review (although this site just had a makeover and it has lots of bugs to work out.)

    On (or about) Aug 23 consider paying $15 for the premium online edition of US News and World Report's 2009 College Rankings US News.com:: America's Best Colleges 2008 The 2008 listing is available now, but with 2009 coming out so soon, no need to spend money now.
  • nocousinnocousin - Posts: 841 Member
    All great ideas, but be careful not to get TOO granular....it can cause information overload and then you are deciding based on very small differences in some obscure category. NOTHING is better than your own GUT feeling, often realized in an Epiphany when you visit a campus, either before or after admissions are released.

    Also, there is a misperception that because you have very high scores you have to go to "prestigious school named: XYZ" For some that may be true, due to personality or other personal need. But often enough the schools that give the most money are the ones in the second tier....outstanding schools with bright students who are very aggressive. I see it all the time. There are kids with very high SAT's and gpas at all sorts of schools around the country. They all dont congregate at Harvard, Princeton and Yale. (though surely those schools have a boatload of brilliant kids).

    Being happy (fit) is really the most important factor of all.
  • kawaiigurlkawaiigurl Registered User Posts: 542 Member
    thankks :)
  • kawaiigurlkawaiigurl Registered User Posts: 542 Member
    btw, is Microsoft OneNote better or Excel?
    where do i download OneNote? how much does it cost?
  • KeilexandraKeilexandra Registered User Posts: 5,492 Senior Member
    If you don't have OneNote, go with Excel.
This discussion has been closed.