The Only Admissions Q&A You’ll Ever Need? * Reply

online1I’ve read a lot of advice about college admissions over the past few weeks. While most of it has been good, it’s also left me feeling like we at Peterson’s could do an even better job informing our readers about the intricacies of this complex process. So, I rounded up some application authorities to conduct an in-depth interview. Let’s meet our distinguished panel:



The Hail Mary Reply

Hail Mary PassWe’ve all seen articles like this one from They detail the absolutely Ka-Razy things some students have done to ensure they get into the schools they most want to attend. From baking cookies to filming song and dance numbers to crafting art projects, these stories are entertaining and heart-warming.

But they aren’t always model tales to be emulated. Here’s why.

Warning: This article may seem like a bit of a downer, but it’s here to set expectations, and ultimately tell you what you actually can do.

Monday Link Roundup for Week of 11/25/2013 Reply

P copyHi folks! I’m standing in for my colleague Ryan Hickey in putting up the link roundup this week, and here’s hoping I can leave you with some savory tidbits to tide you over until your Thanksgiving Day feast!

Because news about the higher education world is exactly like juicy, delicious, tender, moist turkey, slathered in warm, brown gravy, with a side of stuffing and sweet potatoes and…I’m going to go make myself a snack, be right back.


“Show, Don’t Tell” – What the Heck Does That Mean When Writing? Reply

MagnifyingGlassOne of the most common suggestions given to students writing an admissions essay is, “Show, don’t tell.” While this sounds good and seems helpful, many applicants struggle to figure out precisely what the advice means. Is it suggesting that you use the most complex words possible when writing? Maybe it’s saying you should use lots of adjectives and adverbs to ensure your descriptions are extraordinarily vivid? Or could it be that you should actually try painting a picture and submitting that with your app rather than writing anything at all? Let’s dig into this deceivingly complex piece of writing instruction and examine what it means in the context of admissions essay construction. More…

Monday Link Roundup for Week of 11/18/13 Reply

P copyHey everyone! Hard to believe that yet another week has past, which means that we’re another week closer to more college application deadlines. At least that also means we’re another week closer to delicious Thanksgiving foods, whether you’re a turkey fiend, stuffing connoisseur, mashed potato expert, or gravy sommelier. More…

Just How Rich are Some Universities? Reply

iStock_000004647415XSmallSoars. Skyrockets.

No, we’re not talking about LeBron James making an absurd dunk in a recent NBA contest or some extreme athlete achieving new milestones in wingsuit flight. Instead, these are the two most common verbs used in recent headlines describing Harvard University’s growing deficit, reported at $34 million for the most recent fiscal year as opposed to a more modest (but still massive by most of our standards) $7.9 million the year before.


Fear the Book of Faces! …Or not. Reply

iStock_000001927691SmallRyan Hickey points to two articles in his Monday Link Round-up about social media and how it’s being used in the college admissions process. We’ve talked about this on Peterson’s before, too, in an article about how to use social media in your application, and in an article about how to use Facebook carefully and intelligently with regard to admissions. It’s not news that admissions officers are looking at social media when they make their decisions.

So why does it keep coming up? What do you need to know to be safe, really? How worried should you be?


Monday Link Roundup for Week of 11/11/13 1

P copyEver get the feeling that days are somehow sneaking past without you noticing? You know, that feeling when you look at the calendar thinking that it’s something like November 4th or so but it’s actually a full week later? That’s exactly how I felt when I started going through the news this morning, so much so that I actually double-checked the date several times. Despite my incredulousness, it is indeed already almost halfway through the month of November and by the time the next one of these link roundups rolls around, we’ll actually be closer to the start of December than the end of October. The phrase tells us that, “Time flies when you’re having fun,” but it would be equally accurate if it said, “Time flies when you’re working extremely hard.” More…

Pay for College, Make Money? Reply

iStock_000004647415XSmallWhile catching up on admissions news over my morning coffee yesterday and putting together our Monday link roundup for this week, I came across an interesting article on CNN Money. The article fascinated me so much that I deliberately left it out of the link roundup, as I wanted to think about it, do a little research, and then talk about it in its own separate post. This is that post, if you haven’t guessed by now. More…

Monday Link Roundup for Week of 11/4/13 Reply

P copySugar high steadily fading into a post-candy-binge hangover? Check.

Festive jack-o’-lantern slowly withering as it rots on your front porch? Check.

Halloween supplies and decorations instantly gone from your local stores, immediately replaced by gaudy Christmas displays? Check.

Advertisements proclaiming the arrival of the holiday shopping season already filling airwaves, newspapers, and websites everywhere? Check.