How to Help Us Help You

<p>Too many of the requests to parents for advice about finding colleges on this forum are vague, ambiguous or incomplete. You can help people help you with just 4 steps:</p>

<li><p>State your GPA (weighted and unweighted); board scores; and any major factors which might help your chances, such as being an underrepresented minority or Intel Science Award winner. Listing all your extracurriculars just wastes time.</p></li>
<li><p>Talk with your parents about what your financial and any other constraints are. If they are unable to pay for a private college or unwilling for you to go 1000 miles away, saying so will yield you more useful suggestions.</p></li>
<li><p>Provide as much information as you can about what you are looking for in a college: which regions of the country? What size? Urban, suburban or rural? What major? Big time spectator sports? Religiously affiliated? Lots of Greek life?</p></li>
<li><p>Talk to your school guidance counselor, who should know more than strangers do about your chances at schools many kids from your HS have applied to previously and consult Naviance, if you have it. </p></li>

<p>Taking these steps will allow you to receive specific answers you can use, rather than requests for more information or suggestions which are way off base.</p>