Degrees in Demand: Demystifying 4 Popular College Programs Reply

If you’re serious about attending college and pursuing a personally and professionally rewarding career, it’s important to think about what type of degree program you should pursue. Luckily, there are several popular college degree programs that will make you an incredibly marketable job candidate when you begin to apply for positions with a specific company.

Below you’ll find a short outline regarding four of the most popular college programs available today.

Business Degrees

One popular college program that might benefit you is a business degree. This program provides you with a wide range of skills that will prove helpful to employers from multiple industries.

For example, business degree programs typically provide students with coursework that increases their understanding of key company optimization strategies like conflict resolution, public speaking, and time management.”

Note that there are multiple fields under the umbrella of business that an individual can specialize in. As noted in ThoughtCo., some of them include:

  • Consultancy
  • Financial Services
  • Accounting
  • Marketing
  • Insurance
  • Operations Management
  • Human Resource Management

Note that there are now many educational institutions that will provide you with the opportunity to earn your business degree online. An online MBA degree program can provide a bit more flexibility than a traditional degree.

Nursing Degree

Another popular college program that you may want to consider as you prepare to further your education is nursing. Nursing degrees are valuable for multiple reasons, one of which is that the job outlook is excellent. As noted in the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the growth rate within the field is faster than average (16%).

Another great benefit of this degree program is that pay is competitive. Specifically, the average annual salary for nurses is $68,450. Higher educational facilities are pleased to provide aspiring students with the degree programs necessary to become a licensed nurse.

Finance Degree

If the fields of business and nursing don’t catch and keep your attention, consider the value of obtaining a finance degree. As noted in Forbes, finance is one of the top three degrees that employers are looking for these days.

Note that there are a wide range of positions that you can obtain with this degree. An example would be a financial analyst. Some of your other options would be an accounting executive, budget analyst, and economist.

Computer Science Degree

As with finance, computer science degrees are in high demand. This makes sense given that more and more businesses make use of technology to complete the daily tasks that keep their companies running. Some of the basic courses you might take while obtaining this degree include computer architecture, logic and computation, data structures, algorithms, programming paradigms, and computer programming.

Pursue Your College Career Immediately!

If you’re serious about making prudent educational decisions that will lead to a rewarding career, now is the time to think about which degree program would be most appropriate and advantageous for you. Review the information found in this quick reference guide to determine which of the most popular college programs would be right up your alley.


About the author: Anica is a professional content and copywriter from San Francisco, California. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Digital Degrees: How to Thrive in an Online College Program Reply

Online education has opened up many opportunities for people who need a flexible and affordable way to study. There are now digital degrees in every conceivable subject. As with any type of education, however, it’s important to do your research and choose the degree program and institution that’s right for you.

Here are some tips to help you get the most out of an online college program.

Pursue Online Studies in an Organized Manner

Although online studies are extremely flexible and convenient, in some ways they requires more discipline than a traditional degree program. You have the freedom to create your own schedule. However, this also means you have to find the right place to study and avoid distractions.

Be careful that you don’t approach your studies in a manner that’s too casual. Create a consistent time and place for studying and stick to it. While you’re attending online classes or completing assignments, stay away from social media, your phone and other distractions.

Consider Healthcare Degrees

The healthcare industry is booming. There is actually a shortage of people to fill many positions in this field. There are ample opportunities for nurse practitioners, physical therapists, pharmacists, laboratory assistants and others in the fast-growing medical field.

One of the most convenient ways to pursue a healthcare degree is online. You can find lots of quality digital degrees that will prepare you for a lucrative healthcare career.

Research Online Degree Programs in Unexpected Subjects

While you can certainly get an online degree in healthcare, business administration, computer science and other popular fields, there are also dozens of other possibilities. You can prepare for a career as a casino worker, forest ranger, sports agent and many other less typical jobs.

There may be online degree programs you’ve never considered. For example, an online bachelor’s degree in safety prepares you for a job that helps keep employees safe at work. The possibilities are endless.

Take Advantage of All Available Resources

When you enroll in an online degree program, you have many helpful resources at your disposal. Many of these can help you succeed in your coursework and avoid feeling isolated. For example, you should not hesitate to contact instructors with questions and comments.

Most online courses provide ways for students to connect as well. When you have study partners and ask each other questions, your online course is more like a traditional class. Every digital degree program has its own features and benefits. Make sure you familiarize yourself with these so you get the most out of your studies.

Online education has come a long way over the last decade. You can now study almost anything online that you could study in a traditional classroom. By identifying the degree program that matches your goals, you can earn a degree at your own pace and study wherever and whenever it’s convenient for you.


About the author: Anica is a professional content and copywriter from San Francisco, California. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

For the Educator: How to Improve Your Teaching Career Reply

Teaching is essentially learning in disguise. As we teach–as we learn–often our ambition magnifies. We find ourselves reaching for the stars, just as we encourage our students to do. If you’ve found yourself with a burst of ambitious energy, chances are you’re thinking about ways to advance your teaching career. Like many things in life, improving your teaching career will involve a lot of personal reflexivity, and a bit of hard work. The evolution of your career is a lifelong pursuit. It is important to think in terms of the long game, to carefully envision what you’d like to see for yourself, and to be open as that vision may transform in time.

Charting a Course

In order to effectively advance your teaching career, you need to determine what your ideal job looks like. This will require a bit of soul-searching. What is it about your job that you enjoy? Do you thrive in administrative roles? Would you be happy conducting and publishing original research? Are you happiest at the front of the classroom? Once you can imagine the ultimate job you’d like to have, seek a mentor who already has this type of work. You might connect with someone you already know personally, or you might contact someone via email who you’ve never met (LinkedIn can be a good source for this). You might even just follow someone’s career from afar. The point is to find a model, and to use that model to help determine what your possible next steps could be. Pick your mentor’s brain, learn from their mistakes, and benefit from their successes.

Getting Better at the Job You Have

If you want to move forward to better job opportunities, one of the tricks is to excel where you are right now. Exemplary teaching performance can lead to awards and honors, positive student evaluations for your portfolio, and internal advancement opportunities. Do some deep reflection on the areas where your teaching practice can improve. Evaluate your classroom, your lesson plans, your office: what are the emotional reactions you have to these elements of your work? These reactions will help you figure out how you can improve. If you can identify your shortcomings, you can make a plan to grow.

Improving Your Resume

It’s no secret that adding more lines to your curriculum vitae can have positive effects on your career. If you are interested in pursuing further formal education and/or specific teaching certifications, this can only help. However, you can also think outside the box in terms of brightening your resume. As the world goes more and more digital, for instance, technical skills are in high demand. If you’d like to improve in this arena, you might take online courses to become a certified Google educator, enroll in a Tech JumpStart course for educators, or attend a conference for online curriculum development. There are all sorts of skills that could aid you on your journey, and make your resume pop to potential employers. Think about what tools for educators that are available to you. The trick to keep learning, and to be creative with the process. Building your resume is crucial, but you shouldn’t feel like pursuing a doctorate is the only way to do so.

If you’ve done the personal and difficult work of determining the job you want, finding a mentor, figuring out how you can improve, and building your resume in creative ways, you are off to a great start. Now you’ll have to dig in and do the long and arduous work of improvement and change. Fortunately, you’re a teacher. You are no stranger to hard work.


Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky Snowball. Connect with her on Google+and (@LizzieWeakley).


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

 

The Importance of Joining Student Organizations Reply

After all the stress you had to endure, countless tests you took, innumerable nights you spent burning the midnight oil, you finally made it! You’re a freshman now and only the sky’s the limit, right? OK, before you start planning your road trip to Fort Lauderdale, you’ll first have to settle in, find your way around campus, meet lots of new people, absorb and process tons of new information all of which are crucial for your future success, and study. A lot. Squeezing a student organization into this busy schedule probably seems like something completely impossible and unnecessary, but it would be a good idea to give it a second thought and try to understand how it can be beneficial for you.

Offline social networking

While LinkedIn and Facebook are great for connecting with people with similar interests and professions online, you shouldn’t neglect face-to-face kind of networking, and joining a student organization is a perfect place to start building your professional and personal relationships. Did you know that a recent survey established that as much as 85% of job vacancies are filled through networking? There’s also a reason why almost every high school graduate dreams of entering an Ivy League school, and it’s not only because that’s the way to get the best possible education. Being in the company of powerful, well-connected people can create much more job opportunities and might open more doors for business.

Making friends

So, you’ve crossed thousands of miles and left your home, your family, and childhood friends to start a new chapter of your life. This experience is exciting, but let’s be honest and admit that it’s also scary and it can be pretty lonely, especially in the beginning. That’s why joining a student organization that matches your interests will help you build new friendships with like-minded people. Belonging to a community will help you deal with homesickness, and all those gatherings, meetings, and activities that you’ll participate in will make you feel part of something greater. Many student organizations also offer lots of free stuff such as basic printed shirts, caps, badges, bags, and even discounted and free admission to various galleries, theatres, or exhibitions.

Time management

During your first couple of weeks of college, you’ll be so flooded with all kinds of tasks and assignments, that it will be very hard for you to find your own pace, even if you could outorganize and outsystematize even Rory Gilmore herself with your set of organizational skills back in high school. How on earth would adding another commitment could help you with your already overcrowded schedule? Well, psychologically speaking, if you have more projects on the side, you’ll be forced to learn to prioritize and balance your time. Besides, once you graduate, the fact that you have managed to both study and be active in an organization will be a cue to your potential employers that you’re a productive person who is up to any challenge and who doesn’t shrink from rolling up their sleeves and digging in. Contrary to popular belief that student organizations distract students from studying thus leading to their diminished academic performance, research-backed information actually indicates that student organization members score a significantly higher GPA than the general student population.

Make a difference

There’s no better way to fight for something that you’re passionate about and try to do something for the greater good than channeling all your ideas and attitudes through a student organization. Have your say about environmental sustainability, fight racial and gender inequality, or social injustice, and try to make the world a better place by getting involved with a student organization. This experience can teach you how to polish your leadership skills, and become a responsible person willing to make a stand and encourage others to do the same.

Have fun

Last but not least, let’s not forget that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Besides promoting diligence, hard work, and positive values, student organizations are no strangers to hosting fun activities. Charity parties, food tasting clubs, or sports events can be memorable and one of the most cherished moments of your student life. It’s great to share these great times with other young people with whom you have so much in common and who can become your closest, lifelong friends.

Student organizations can enrich your life and provide you with many benefits, so don’t miss out on being part of that amazing experience.


Emma Miller is a marketer and a writer from Sydney. Her focus is digital marketing, social media, start-ups and latest trends. She’s a contributor at Bizzmark blog and a mother of two.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

5 College Essay Writing Instructions Which Will Aid You Avoid Trouble Reply

William Shakespeare, regarded as one of the best literary writers of all time once said that “the pen is mightier than the sword.” By all aspects, this statement still remains true many years after he passed on, but there’s one point that needs to be noted from his line of thinking. The pen alone does not guarantee that the person wielding it is a good writer, the true expertise lies within the writer.

The same concept also applies to essay writers. It takes more than just having a pen to make your essays to come off as exceptional. Essays have many conventions that are endowed with a lot of technicalities that you need to take into account when trying to write a masterpiece of an essay.

In this article below, we’ll look into some of the instructions that you need to bring on board as you write your essays. By following them, you will have indeed taken the shackles off the true power of the pen that makes it mightier than the sword!

1. Avoid Imprecise and Vague Language

One of the instructions that you should hold close to heart is ensuring that your essays are devoid of imprecise and vague language. Such language does sound okay in verbal language but on the hand, it is ridden with imprecision especially when written down. When writing essays such as college application essays, it is best to choose your vocabulary wisely so as not to point your readers in the direction of thinking that your mastery of English is below average.

Some of the words that you should eliminate from your writing include terms such as; “things” and “stuff” among many other examples. Failure to do so could lead to your essays getting low grades or being discarded if they are meant for college applications. Vague language is easily eliminated by identifying what you really meant to communicate by using words like “things” and “stuff”. After placing a finger on what you wanted to say, you should then find precise words that can be used in their place. If it is a word like “things”, you should mention the exact things or stuff that you wanted your writer to be aware of.

2. Avoid Repetition and Wordiness

Wordiness can be graded as the most frequent error and ranks among the top essay pitfalls that students fall into when writing essays. It is not strange to find a scenario in which you could truncate up to a third of a given essay and it will still remain with meaningful content. In fact, it could wind up making the essay come off as more effective and engaging as compared to its prior state.

Wordiness can be in a wide array of forms but the most common include incidences of too much word repetition, filler, and fluff content, and redundancy among many other examples. If you write an essay that has any of the above features, more likely than not, you won`t make to winning admission if it was meant for college application. If it was in an exam set up, it would subject your essay to ominous grades, a situation that can be easily avoided by keeping off such writing habits.

3. Eliminate Clichés From Your Essays

Clichés are popularly known to be phrases that are heavily overused thus making them pose as uninspiring and unoriginal. By lacing your essays with such types of phrases, you are highly likely to make your audience tire from reading your work due to lack of creativity.

With an essay, your main objective should be to make an effort to get your readers excited about your work starting from the topic of your essay and right to its conclusion. If it’s a college application essay, you will be better placed in landing yourself an admission and in the case of an assignment or exams, impressing your reader will surely earn you good points. Try your level best to prevent your essay’s message from being hidden in the shadows by un-creative and gloomy essay clichés.

4. Avoid Excessive Digression

Digressions are meant to serve as temporary departures that veer off the main topic in your writing. They can be used effectively to break the monotony in your essay and are highly appreciated by readers only if they are used in the correct manner. However, it is worth noting that the colorful anecdotes that you use with the aim of engaging the reader to enhance their reading experience could turn against you and do the exact opposite of the above.

Such scenarios are brought about by writers deviating from the main point without any legitimate purpose whatsoever behind their doing so. To most readers, such a move will be registered as unnecessary additions to your essay, thus reducing the digressions into mere extraneous words.

5. Avoid Overusing Flowery Language In Your Essays

When writing an essay, be it a college admission essay or a given essay in an exam, it would be wise to exercise caution as you apply flowery language. Flowery language is mostly comprised of adjectives, metaphors, and adverbs among others. Good adjectives, strong verbs, and adverbs are the best ingredients for making your essay seem to have some breath of life in it.

However, when almost every inch of your essay is covered with these adverbs and adjectives, it simply sends one message to your readers. This message is that the writing is from an immature author and one who is doing too much to impress. Your essay should not have up to four adjectives and adverbs in a single sentence. It will be too confusing to comprehend what your main message was all about because your readers` attention will be shunted towards your language and not what you’re trying to communicate. Just use enough of these “spices” and ensure that they are well distributed throughout the essay in an orderly fashion.

Conclusion

Writing an essay and getting all the technical regulations spot-on is almost next to impossible to achieve. However, there are some main aspects that are considered when evaluating both an essay’s quality and its writer. The instructions that have been talked about in the article above are some of the areas that most writers neglect and this has led to their detriment.

We hope that they’ve laid a great foundation for you as you write your essays and in your descriptive essay topics. If you correctly follow these tips, you can rest assured that these instructions will keep you away from trouble. Have you liked the article above? Which of the five instructions has inspired you to try a new perspective when writing your essays?


Lori Wade is a freelance content writer who is interested in a wide range of spheres from education and online marketing to entrepreneurship. She is also an aspiring tutor striving to bring education to another level like we all do. Lori is used to handling many writing orders at the same time and as she likes sharing her ideas and experience, she decided to write a great article for you to show how multiple tasks should be dealt with. If you are interested in writing, you can find her on Twitter or Google+ or find her in other social media. Read and take over Lori’s useful insights!


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

 

College Pay Backs: How to Earn a Return on Your Educational Investment Reply

Of course a college education is expensive, but the jobs that provide a good salary and stable employment usually require a college degree. Like any investment, college education is an investment that can never be guaranteed to pay off. Nevertheless, there are ways you can maximize your return on investment when you pursue a college education.

Go Online to Cut Costs

Adult learners have tended to gravitate to a physical campus. That is no longer the best, or the only choice. Online schools and online education programs can be cheaper because of the lower overhead. Even if you hate the idea of an online-only degree program, the potential cost savings can’t be ignored. Add the likely cost savings to the convenience of studying online, and these programs make perfect sense for most students.

Tap into Long-Term Trends

What buzzwords are making the rounds these days? It doesn’t really matter. If you want to earn a degree that pays back your investment, focus on something that ties in with megatrends like sustainability and the aging of the American population. Whatever major appeals to you, try to focus on coursework that is practical.

Focus on Something Practical

Major in something interesting, if you can, but always consider the likely market for the skills you can learn. Degrees where demand is likely to remain strong are excellent candidates for distance education. Earning a master’s of finance online degree or a masters of business administration online degree is likely to pay off.

Trendy degrees are a bad option unless you are sure the trend will last. Why? Everyone who cares about sustainability, or gender equity, or whatever is trending is looking to earn those degrees. By the time you enroll in a degree program and complete the degree, as much as three years from today, the market may well be saturated.

If you want to work in business to promote sustainability, a finance degree may actually be useful. You would know how to make the business case for reducing the company’s waste, or energy use, or both. American companies only recover 20% of the aluminum and 15% of the textiles the country uses for example. A person with a solid training in business and finance could figure out how to make money by increasing those numbers.

If you want to earn a valuable graduate or undergraduate degree, it pays to be realistic, avoid trends, and look for an online degree option.


Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky Snowball. Connect with her on Google+and (@LizzieWeakley).


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

3 Ways a Higher Education Degree Can Help You Fight Poverty Reply

Fighting poverty can be a very difficult process. It’s a huge issue and one that a single person cannot solve. Without the efforts of individuals, though, it’s an impossible problem to solve. If you want to do your part to fight poverty, one of the smartest things you can do is to pursue a higher education. Below are just a few of the reasons why a college degree can help you fight poverty.

You Can Learn the Causes

While many people talk about how having a degree can help them after college, one should not forget the knowledge that one gains during school. When you pursue your degree, you’ll have a chance to take classes that will expand your mind and teach you more about the causes of poverty. While action is always the most important thing, it is always a good idea to have a solid base of knowledge. The more you know about the causes of poverty, the better you will be able to direct your efforts so they make a real difference.

You Can Contribute More

When you get a degree, you have a world of opportunities opened up to you. If you want to fight poverty, then, you can specialize in an area that helps you to make a real contribution. You can, for example, get a library science degree online so you’d be able to contribute to local school and public libraries. A good degree puts you in a position not just to learn more about poverty, but to start making an active change in the world. Your degree is the gateway to making real change.

You Can Lobby for Change

While this infographic states that poverty has fallen across the course of the 20th century, there’s still a great deal of work to be done. When you get a better education, you can put yourself in a better position to make sure your voice is heard. Higher education degrees allow for better access to the public space and help more people to take your point seriously. If you want to help bring attention to the cause, you need to get a better degree.

Getting a degree is only one step on the road to fighting poverty, but it is an important step. It will help you learn more, give you ways to contribute more, and allow your voice to be heard more easily. You have an important role to play in this fight, but only if you have the right tools.


 

 

Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She loves the outdoors and spends most her time hiking, biking, and gardening. For more information contact Brooke via Twitter  or Facebook.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Top 5 Reasons Adults May Want to Get a College Degree Reply

Many adults never pursue a higher education. This might not seem like a big deal, but the truth is that you might just benefit from going back to school. It’s never too late to improve your education, and there are a lot of programs out there that are designed specifically for adults, such as those that offer night classes or online schooling. These are some of the top five reasons why adults might want to consider getting a college degree.

  1. Self-Improvement

Some adults who don’t go to college never regret it. Others do, however. If you’re someone who has always wished that you had gone to college, you should know that it’s not too late. Going back to school can be great for self-improvement and can help you feel a true feeling of accomplishment.

  1. Kids

If you have kids, you might want to encourage them to go to college. However, you might feel as if you can’t really encourage them to do so when you haven’t done it yourself. By going to college, you can set a great example for your children and show them how important getting an education really is. This might encourage them to follow the same path when they graduate from high school.

  1. Starting a New Type of Career

If you’ve been injured at work and have been working with a workers’ comp attorney, you might no longer be able to do the same type of work. If this is the case, you may need to pursue a new field. Going back to school can help you do so. It can also be an option for someone who is bored or unsatisfied with their current career and who are ready to make a change.

  1. Moving Up the Ladder at Work

If you’re happy with the field that you work in but would like to move up the ladder, you may have to further your education. If you go to school to earn a degree, you can get the skills that you need to excel in a new job position. Plus, you’ll be doing what it takes to actually reach your goal.

  1. Boosting Your Resume

Even if you are perfectly qualified for a job in your field, you might have found that competition is tough. If you’re having trouble getting a job, going back to school could be an option. Getting an education in your field could help you stand out against others who are also competing for the same position. This could help you finally get the position that you have always wanted.

As you can see, there are many reasons why adults might choose to go back to school. If it’s something that you are thinking about, you may want to pursue it. Once you find the right school, you might find that going back to school is one of the best decisions that you will ever make.


Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky Snowball. Connect with her on Google+and (@LizzieWeakley).


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Student Commuter: 4 Driving Safety Tips You Might Be Missing Reply

Depending on where you live, it’s fairly common for students to commute to various schools to receive higher education. If you’ve been driving for a while, then you probably think that there aren’t many safety concerns to be aware of on the road. There’s always something to watch for when you’re driving as there are never the same people or road conditions from one day to the next. There are a few tips that you might be missing that can keep you safe as well as the people who are in your vehicle.

Adjust The Mirrors

When you look through your mirrors, you probably see the road behind you and the road on either side of the car. One thing that you might not know about your mirrors is that you shouldn’t be able to see your own vehicle in them. If you adjust the mirrors in this manner so that the only thing that you see is the road or your surroundings instead of your vehicle, then you’ll reduce the blind spots and decrease the chance of accidents when you’re changing lanes.

Large Vehicles

While you’re driving, you have to share the road with larger vehicles. These include transfer trucks and garbage trucks. They can’t always see if you’re behind them on the road. If you can’t see their side mirrors, then they can’t see you. Garbage trucks have an added disadvantage in that there is usually a person on the back of the vehicle and a device that opens and closes. If you’re in an accident with a garbage truck because of an obstructed view, then consider talking to a garbage truck accident attorney who can help you file the proper claims.

Keep Your Headlights On

Instead of waiting until it’s dark, turn the headlights on when you get in the car. It’ll save time later, and it’ll keep you from forgetting to turn them on at all. Accidents can sometimes be reduced if people had their headlights on all the time because drivers would be able to see other cars that are coming in the opposite lane or that are driving in front of them.

Scan The Road

Always scan the road in front of you. Pay attention to road conditions and the other cars on the road. Scan your eyes along the horizon as this is a good focal point while you’re driving and generally gives the best view for most road issues that might be present.

Driving is never the same from one day to the next. You’re faced with drivers who don’t know what they’re doing or who are distracted. Focus on what you’re doing while taking in the actions of those who are around you to decrease the likelihood of an accident.


Emma is a freelance writer currently living in Boston, MA. She writes most often on education and business. To see more from Emma, say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2 or Facebook.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

10 Mistakes Community College Students Make When Transferring to Universities Reply

Community colleges are attractive to a broad range of students, who need affordable educational programs focused on special interests. In the fall 2015, 24% of full-time undergraduates were attending community colleges. The American higher education is known for the extreme costs associated with it. Thanks to community colleges, low-income students get access to education.

However, many community college students want to step up their education and earn a bachelor degree, so they usually opt for a transfer program. Although university education costs a lot, many students explore scholarship options, as w ell as the opportunity to work while studying. According to a report published by the Community College Research Center, 33% of the students who enter a community college transfer to a 4-year institution.

Are you one of the community college students considering this option? Then this article will provide you with essential tips and the most common mistakes you need to consider before you begin the transfer.

Steps to Take When Transferring to University

  • Choose your target university as soon as possible. You need to know what requirements you should meet, so you can focus on them while you’re at a community college.
  • Arrange a meeting with a transfer adviser at the university you’re interested in. They will provide proper guidelines for you to follow.
  • Some private colleges require you to get the associate’s degree before you transfer, and others prefer it. With proper planning and depending on the situation, however, you may make an early transfer.
  • Explore scholarships! This should be an ongoing process. Don’t forget to put the application deadlines in your Google Calendar and set reminders in order not to miss any chances to get a scholarship.

Now that we got the preparations out of the way, we can focus on an equally important aspect: avoiding the mistakes most students make when transferring.

Mistakes that Affect Your Chances to Transfer to University

  1. Not Knowing What Transfers

If you don’t know what courses are transferable to colleges and universities, you’ll end up taking the wrong ones at community college. This means you can’t make an early transfer since you’ll lack the credits necessary for it. Take the courses with a single goal: they help you get to university.

  1. Not Considering the Options

Yes, you do need to focus on a target university when working towards a transfer. However, this doesn’t mean you should be completely inflexible regarding this decision. Examine both private and public 4-year institutions and visit few campuses, so you’ll choose the perfect school for your needs and goals.

  1. Avoiding the FAFSA

FAFSA, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, looks too detailed and hard to complete. Many students think they qualify anyway, so they decide to send an application on their own terms. The truth is that scholarship committees prefer the FAFSA. It gives them a format that’s easy to evaluate.

  1. Not Providing Parent Information in the FAFSA

Many students are paying their own bills and filing their taxes, so they think the parent information in the application is irrelevant. Still, they may be considered dependent students according to the dependency guidelines determined by the Congress. Don’t skip this part of the application!

  1. Not Writing an Impressive Transfer Application Essay

The appeal of your essay will make or break the application for transfer. Peter Nelson, a college essay and test prep tutor from Superior Papers shared actionable tips for students to follow when completing their application essays:

  • Focus on a particular interest or event that shows why this university is the perfect choice for you. Show how you’ll contribute towards the diversity and development of its community.
  • Don’t use flowery language. Admission officers hate it.
  • This is a personal essay, but it shouldn’t be too in Avoid the language you use when talking to your friends.
  • Do not send the application before you revise and edit the essay for a few times, so you’ll get down to its finest version.
  1. Not Clarifying Your Questions

The course of transferring may seem quite perplexing and can make you feel unrest by raising many questions along the way. Putting down all your queries is a good way not to miss the point and figure out all the essential details that can make a difference in your application process.

  1. Not Keeping Touch with the Transfer Adviser

All universities enable community college students to get guidance. Not setting a meeting with an adviser is a big mistake. Moreover, your communication with the adviser won’t be limited to a single meeting. You should keep them updated with your plans and the steps you’re taking towards the transfer, so you’ll get all the tips you need.

  1. Not Visiting the Campus before Applying for the Transfer

You have to be 100% sure this is the university you want to go to. Take a tour! Sit on a class, see the dorm rooms, and use the opportunity to talk to a faculty member, so you’ll get more information about the major you’re interested in.

  1. Stressing Out

The transfer process demands focus and effort. It’s normal to be concerned about the way things turn out. However, it’s important to stay cool, meet the people you need to meet, and have a plan. When you do things according to a plan and you get proper guidance, you’ll overcome the stress.

  • Leaving Everything Until the Last Minute

Start preparing for your university transfer early. You will need to do everything thoroughly since it is your future at stake. That means making mistakes is very probable when the application deadline is dangerously close. Allocate your time wisely to map out your best course of actions.

Hopefully, the tips above will help you make a smooth transition. The most important thing is to develop a detailed plan and stay focused. Use your time at your community college to work towards the transfer!


Rachel Bartee is a blogger and freelance writer dreaming of a tour round the world to write a story of her greatest life adventure. For the time being, she feels inspired by her daily yoga sessions and studies Interpersonal Relationships. Talk to her on Facebook and Twitter.


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