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What Matters Most in College Admission
Fall College Fairs and Events
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What Matters Most in College Admission 

College Entrance
Every year when school begins and seniors start finalizing their college lists, families often ask what matters most to colleges when reviewing students' applications. Is it grades? SAT scores? Extracurricular leadership? The truth is that all of these factors do have value in the admission process at many colleges, but some pieces of the application are more influential than others.

Recently, NACAC posted a helpful chart on Facebook highlighting the percentage of colleges attributing different levels of importance to factors in the admission decision.

As we might expect, the rigor of a student's transcript and grades are at the top of the list. Standardized test scores are also near the top of the table, but we should keep in mind that there is a growing list of test-optional colleges that do not require SAT/ACT scores. What might come as a surprise is that extracurricular activities are listed at the bottom;
the college interview is also not highly ranked. It is important to remember that most colleges practice a holistic review of applications, taking into consideration all factors.
Questions about the NACAC chart? Wondering how you can make your application stand out? Contact P&A today. We are happy to help!


Looking Ahead: Fall College Fairs and Events

NEACAC (New England Association for College Admission Counseling) hosts college fairs throughout New England. Visit this link for the Fall 2013 schedule. Please note that college fairs begin in early September 

NACAC (National Association for College Admission Counseling) hosts the Performing and Visual Arts (PVA) College Fairs in many US cities during the fall. Students interested in undergraduate programs including music, dance, theater, graphic design, visual arts, and other related disciplines should consider attending a PVA. The Boston fair will be held on September 24.
The Education Cooperative will host a college fair on
October 1
at Waltham High School.
Many colleges located throughout the US will be in attendance.


The National Portfolio Day Association (NPDA) includes representatives from regionally accredited colleges and universities, which are members of the  National Association of Schools of Art and Design. All Portfolio Day events are free, open to the public and do not require pre-registration. Visit this link for the 2013-2014 schedule. The Boston event will be held on November 3.

Students can visit MIT during Splash 2013 and take mini classes on numerous subjects. From November 23-24, thousands of high school students will gather on the MIT campus, where MIT students and community members will teach short classes on just about anything you can think of! During Splash, students can get their feet wet with a short introduction to any number of subjects - things they always wanted to learn, or topics they never knew existed. Registration begins in October and includes an enrollment fee. 

All college fairs are free and open to the public.

Stay up-to-date with college admission news and events by following the P&A blog. Visit our blog

Website Pick of the Month

As students prepare to start a new school year, I recommend purchasing a copy of  Keys for Writers. I have used this excellent grammar guide many times when working with clients on college essays, and it never fails us! This book will be invaluable for writers of all ages for years to come.

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