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How to Get Through Applications Without Screwing Up Parent-Child Relationship?

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Replies to: How to Get Through Applications Without Screwing Up Parent-Child Relationship?

  • prospect1prospect1 Registered User Posts: 1,427 Senior Member
    "The only way you'll stop essays being written by other people is for colleges to compare an essay in say a freshman seminar and the application one, and if there's a difference in quality do some kind of reprimand, and let that get out."

    I believe colleges have access to the writing component of the ACT/SAT. If they wanted to compare the writing, they could. Of course, some allowance needs to be made between a piece of writing carefully prepared by a student over some period of time, with editing - and one written hastily, in a timed setting. But things like voice and style might be comparable as a check on authenticity.
  • bearcatfanbearcatfan Registered User Posts: 690 Member
    What worked for us this summer is, once a week, we made an appointment to do application stuff. For my daughter, it was mostly to work on essays (the Common App as well as some smaller ones required of different programs). I knew I couldn't bother her until Tuesday; she knew she had to bring it on Tuesday.

    I was pretty much organizing the campus visit train - we spent most of junior year narrowing it down to seven she wanted to see. Our job was a little easier because she wanted to stay in-state and do a direct-admit nursing program, so that made it manageable. While she toured and talked to people, I took a crazy amount of notes. Now all that is summed up in "cheat sheets" for each college - and this week, we are meeting to determine if we are indeed comparing apples to apples or if we want more information from any of them.

    The goal is to have all applications completed by October 1 - at least her part - and have transcripts and ACT scores requested. We shall see.

    [-O<
  • bhs1978bhs1978 Registered User Posts: 288 Junior Member
    Interesting the number of people forcing their kids to write the essays in the summer. For both of my kids (both my honors English kid and my regular English kid) at their school, the first assignment in English was to start working on their essays. They are given the prompts and with all English paper assignments they had to write outlines which were turned in and edited then their essays which were turned in edited and graded. The earliest early action deadline we faced was November one. And as expected my son got all of his materials collected and submitted on October 29.
    Got scholarships to all schools he applied to (we are not an ivy type family)
  • 2mrmagoo2mrmagoo Registered User Posts: 114 Junior Member
    bhs1978 not all schools offer essay support at school or include it as part of the curriculum. For some families, perhaps students in fall sports, those being recruited or others still testing, starting in summer is highly advised.
  • glidoglido Registered User Posts: 5,702 Senior Member
    Break it all down into little pieces. Do them one at a time. Get two essays written over the summer. Don't ruin Thanksgiving or Christmas!
  • persimmonypersimmony Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    I've been having the same problem with my son. Told him he should have a draft of the common app essay by the end of the summer, offered to help brainstorm ideas, etc. It's the end of the summer and nothing happened. He had plenty of time. Pretty frustrated. He's not a bad writer, but I don't want to rush or wait until the last minute.

    Every step of the college process has been like pulling teeth. He hasn't expressed any interest in the college search at all, hasn't done any independent research. We have visited several colleges and he seems kind of interested when he's there, but after we're home, it's like it never happened.

    I'm dreading the next few months.
  • pkchamp89pkchamp89 Registered User Posts: 467 Member
    edited August 25
    This behavior seems fairly normal of a HS student. My S was no different. Great student, hard worker, etc but the college process, although he couldn't wait to go, was just a hassle. He avoided it like the plague. He hates writing so writing the essays were like asking him to go for a root canal over and over again. Common App was just another tedious task. Frankly, couldn't blame him. The reality is that all this stuff needs to get done. What I think makes it harder for these students is that they are also starting their senior year. There is so much emotion attached with it whether they realize it or not. It's an exciting time for them but it can also be stressful. As a parent, my job was to keep him on task. And, it meant that I was constantly nagging. I couldn't stand hearing my own voice after awhile! Lol! I can only imagine how he felt. It was all worth it when he signed onto the portal of his top choice and was accepted. Magically, all those bad memories where forgotten. Hang in there. You will get through this. ;)
  • Momma2018Momma2018 Registered User Posts: 63 Junior Member
    @Suburbmom - Just got around to reading this section and your advice was great. My son also talked about his essay but dragged his feet on actually writing it. I took your suggestion and had him try using a speech recognition program and he was able to get a full first draft done by speaking it. I think he may have to try this for schoolwork too!

    Also, as I was dragging him around to college visits and not seeing him get as excited as I had hoped, I realized that he is afraid he will not get in to these schools and doesn't want to let himself fall in love with a school (or show others that he cares that much) and be disappointed. I am backing off a bit and hoping his GC will help in Fall and let him know if his college list is reasonable.

    This process has gotten so much more competitive than when I went to school. I think if I applied to my alma mater now, I would not get in by today's standards!
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