Your high school years are the best time to start planning for college. You should make financial preparations in advance to be sure you will have the necessary funds for tuition and related expenses. More importantly, you should be aware of college academic requirements to be admitted to the institution of your choice and to succeed in your coursework as you work toward a college degree.
Review Your Grade Transcript
Take a close look at your high school grade records. Find out which courses you didn’t do well in and see if you can retake them. If not, consider taking follow-up coursework or electives to strengthen your knowledge in that academic field. For example, if you didn’t do well in algebra, take a geometry course to improve your math skills. Work with a math tutor to overcome deficiencies and be ready for college math courses, especially if you will be taking an admissions placement test that includes a math section.
Meet With an Academic Adviser
Your high school’s guidance counselor and college adviser at the institution where you plan to attend can meet with you to discuss your college plans and preparatory work. You can see a preliminary curriculum and expected coursework in a major field of study that interests you. Ask about high school requirements, such as a minimum grade point average, or GPA, as well as the courses that are typically required for college admission.
Enroll in Required Prep Courses
Find out which courses you still need to take to improve your chances of being admitted to the college of your choice. While you might have already successfully completed the specific courses that are required in fields like math, English, and science, other classes or electives, such as learning a second language or participating in service learning, may enhance your academic record for college consideration. Many private school curricula offer exciting electives like photography or creative arts that you might be able to take as a transient student for a semester or switch to that school for the last two years of high school. A strong academic record with a high GPA and well-rounded curriculum can strengthen your preparation for college work.
Get Involved in Student Activities
Many colleges like to admit students who demonstrate involvement in extracurricular activities like sports, student clubs, and student volunteerism. Join organizations that you will enjoy and that can provide an admirable achievement profile for college consideration.
College success begins in high school. Start now by working on your grades, taking relevant courses, and getting actively involved with peer groups.