ACT Scores and Scholarships Reply

While the SAT (or rather, the PSAT) is famously associated with the National Merit Scholar competition, the ACT can sometimes be overlooked as a source of college money. However, do some quick research and you’ll see: those points can be pretty valuable in the long-term, even after you’ve gotten your acceptance letters.

Can I Really Get Money for College Based on My ACT Score?

Yes! Keep in mind, though, that scholarships won’t be automatically awarded, because they’re not given by or administered through the ACT organization. Instead, you’ll have to look to individual organizations, foundations, and universities and apply through them. Does this make it a little more complicated to get scholarship money? Sure. Is it worth it, for (potentially) thousands of dollars off your college tuition? Definitely.

How Much Money Can I Get?

It really depends. Mostly, it depends on how high your score is. Scores of 30+ are in a good range for scholarships, because they place you well in the top ten percentile of test-takers.

Scholarship dollars are just one of many reasons why it’s important to start prepping for the ACT early. Taking the PreACT, for example, gives you great test-day experience without any of the pressure of the official exam (but no, you won’t qualify for any scholarships through PreACT scores). If your school doesn’t offer the opportunity to take the PreACT, or you missed testing for another reason, take an ACT practice test to get a sense of where you’d score if you took the test today.

Remember, these tests don’t tell us anything about how you’ll eventually score on the official exam: they only provide a snapshot of where you are right now. And that’s a really good thing, because once you know where you are, you can make a plan to reach your goals.

How Can I Get My Score Higher?

Maybe you’re aiming to get a perfect 36 (which will qualify you for lots of scholarships); maybe you’re trying for that stratospheric 30+; maybe you’re just trying to get your score as high as possible (one of the best goals, if you ask me). Whatever goal you’ve set, you’ll need to be methodical about reaching it.

Start with your PreACT or ACT practice test scores. Look at the questions you got right and wrong, and try to classify them. Where were your highest sectionals scores? Where were your lowest? Did you miss a lot of geometry problems? Were scientific experiment questions your hands-down favorites?

From there, you can evaluate what you’ll need to study to boost your score as high as possible. Take into consideration the time you have left before test day; get a great ACT study guide, and be realistic—even if you end up retaking the test a few months from now, that score could still put you in the running for major scholarship money.

So…How Do I Get This Money?

The first thing to do is to check with schools at which you’ve been accepted (or are applying) to make sure that you’re in the running for any scholarships they have available. Some schools will automatically consider all applicants for scholarships, while others require separate applications.

Then, you’ll have to do a little digging. Check out scholarships in your area, given by organizations like the Rotary Club. Check out scholarships given for students working towards particular career goals (like future CIA employees—true story). You’d be amazed at what scholarships are available, so get out your laptop, start Googling, and don’t forget to follow up with your guidance counselor, who may have experience with some of these organizations.

One last thing to keep in mind: not all ACT scholarships are created equal. Some scholarships use ACT scores as just one aspect of overall applications—so while a higher ACT score can help you get those scholarships (or get you more money), your GPA and other factors, from where you live to your ethnic background to your career plans, can also come into play. So do your research before sinking lots of time into each application!


Rachel Kapelke-Dale is a High School and Graduate Exams blogger at Magoosh. She has a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University, an MA from the Université de Paris VII, and a PhD from University College London. She has taught test preparation and consulted on admissions practices for over eight years. Currently, Rachel divides her time between the US and London.


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.

Studious Matron: 4 Reasons Why Mothers in College are Everyday Heroes Reply

Many mothers these days are seeking a way out of their traditional roles in order to do something that fulfills their goals. For many, this includes going to college to get a degree. Mothers face many more challenges than the average 18-year-old faces at college, and for this reason, they are truly heroes.

They Balance Parenting and School

An 18 year old who has just left high school to go to college has plenty of time to work on getting good grades. However, mothers attending college have to delineate their time to make room for a multitude of relationships as well as to deal with all the household tasks that go along with parenting. They must often work their classes around their children’s school hours and extracurricular activities.

They Often Do It Alone

While it is stressful to work college classes around other peoples’ schedules, it is even more difficult when the mother must do it alone. There are numerous single mothers attending college these days. According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, 26% of undergraduate students are parents, 71% of these are mothers and 43% of these are single mothers.

They Are Not Scared to Learn Something New

Mothers attending college are definitely people whom their children can look up to for guidance. They prove that it is worthwhile to try something difficult, to put oneself out for a few years to reach a greater goal and to achieve more with their lives than they previously had.

They Are Earning Advanced Degrees

The need for advanced degrees in the United States is expected to increase significantly by 2025 according to Huffington Post. Many mothers who already earned baccalaureate degrees are going back to school for master’s or doctorate degrees. These women earn significantly more than their baccalaureate counterparts do. For example, an online master of nursing can set women up to be nurse managers and educators.

Not only do mothers attending college have to worry about their grades, but also they must ensure that their children continue to receive the attention that they need. Additionally, some of these mothers hold down jobs, stretching themselves thin. However, most mothers find that attending college does pay off for them in greater career fulfillment, increased wages and better quality and satisfaction of life. For following their dreams and improving their lives, they are truly heroes.


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. Anica is a writer for Ohio University, which offers a range of degrees including an online master’s in athletic administration.


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.

4 Things to Consider When Applying to Universities Reply

Choosing a college can be really easy. Or really hard. It all depends on a number of factors, some within your control and some beyond it. There are some components, however, that universally need to be considered when deciding on colleges that should be on your application list.

  1. Fit

Perhaps the most important thing to consider is fit. This is why it’s important to actually visit any universities you are seriously considering attending. Meet people – staff, professors and students – to really get a feel of the place and see how you feel about fitting in there. Not every college is for everybody, and you might find yourself simply liking the feel of some over others. Lots of schools have a website like this one for UC Clermont College. Spending some time on the schools website can help you get a feel for what the culture there will be like.

  1. Cost

While it’s not something most potential college students want to think about, the reality is that cost is always something you must consider when applying to universities. If you get more financial help to attend one school over another, that alone might make the decision for you. Or it might not. Always apply to schools you want because you might end up with more financial aid than you thought, and your college experience is not to be decided by money alone. But cost should always be a factor.

  1. Breadth Of Degree Choices

You are likely to change your major during college – that much is a fact. So if you’re looking at a very small school for a very specific program they are well-known for, what happens if you want to change your major and you then find there are not many other options to choose from? The smart thing to do is not only have a few majors in mind you might be interested in pursuing, but applying to colleges that have programs in a handful of subjects you are interested in, as well as other options you might not have even considered.

  1. Your Chances At Getting In

Have a good idea of the acceptance rate and average accepted student GPA of the schools you are considering. It might be best to simply not apply to any you have no realistic chance of getting into. If you are applying to a school or two that might be hard to get into, go the extra mile when crafting your application, essay and interview to present yourself as a student they want to accept. But also realistically determine if you’ll be able to keep up in the academic environment of those schools if you are accepted. And always apply to a “backup” school that you’re sure to get into.

The decision of what colleges to apply for is a very personal one, and there are a lot of things to consider. The benefits of a college education, including becoming a more well-rounded human being, better employment aspects and better lifetime salaries make it all worth it. Ultimately, follow both your heart and your head, as well as consider the four factors mentioned above, and good luck on those applications!


Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from Utah. She enjoys tennis and spending time with her family. Kara recommends looking into diplomacy programs for more information on degrees that can help save the world.


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.

How To Help Improve Public Education While Earning Your Degree Reply

One of the best ways to prepare for a rewarding career is to complete a degree program in your chosen field. Whether you are planning to pursue a career in education or just have a desire to help people reach their full potential, students can promote higher education in a variety of ways. Consider these helpful tips to advocate higher education as an important necessity in today’s competitive economy.

Higher Education Websites

Creating a website to promote higher education is an excellent way to inform the general public about the advantages of earning a college degree. Students can use website builders such as Weebly or Wix at no additional cost. Many website builders come with templates that makes it easier to create content. It’s important to explain how higher education can help people achieve career goals as well as provide helpful ways to finance the cost of college.

Utilize Social Media

Social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter have gained popularity in recent years. Promoting higher education from your social media websites is a quick and easy way to reach large audiences. Common ways to advocate higher learning include posting articles and links for people interested in continuing their education. Students can also create blogs on various education topics or share personal experiences of how higher education changed their life.

Guest Speaking and Networking

Students can use their communication skills to help promote higher education. It’s important to encourage friends and relatives to continue their education. Education can also be a great conversation topic when meeting new people. Many students volunteer as a guest speaker at a local high school to help young people prepare for college. Common speaking topics include general admission requirements and tuition assistance programs. Students can also attend networking events and career fairs to promote public education.

Higher Education Careers

A career in higher education administration is an excellent occupation for people with a passion to help others succeed. According to the Washington Post, the career outlook for higher education administrators is positive and stable. A masters in higher education administration is offered at colleges such as Abilene Christian University. These degree programs cover topics related to diversity issues, student development, and conflict resolution.

Students can make a difference in their community by promoting higher education. Creating a website or posting to social media is a great way to advocate public education. People can also volunteer as guest speaker at local schools or pursue a professional career in higher education administration.


 

 

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.

How to Make the Best Use of a College Counselor Reply

Your college counselor can be a coach, strategist, and therapist all rolled into one. Generally speaking, they’re professionals who assist students with academic goals, careers, and campus life. Here are just a few of the reasons you should seek out your college counselor.

Make a list

You can discuss your life goals, aptitudes, and preferences with a counselor in order to discover what you should look for from higher education. Are you a better fit for a degree in computer sciences or sports medicine? Perhaps you’re already tied to a job but it’s your dream to serve the community. An online master of public administration might be the best option. Your counselor can help you compose a list of factors helping you narrow down your choices to the most rewarding options.

Graduate programs

Most students are faced with choice of going on to grad school. The right school for your talents, goals, and finances might be difficult to determine. A college counselor can help you locate the best opportunities in terms of finances, prerequisites, the programs you’re a good fit for, and related career opportunities. They can help you tailor your current undergraduate course schedule or prepare for your GRE. You don’t want to gamble on any aspect of your education.

Plan your career

One of the chief motivators in going to college is to prepare for a good career. Many people graduate with a degree only to find there’s very few opportunities in their field, or wind up spending year after year in a job they hate while struggling to pay off student loans. A college counselor can provide career advice to prevent you from falling into these situations. The sooner you begin planning your long-term career with your counselor, the better your chances of real-world success.

Lower anxiety

Many college counselors say that the number of students they see with psychological problems is growing. If you’re having difficulty adjusting to the pressures of study, finances, and campus culture, a college counselor can be your friend and mentor. Their job is to help you successively complete your educational goals and prepare you for a career. Before anxieties become depression or disrupt your relationships, talk it over with a counselor.

If you start planning before you graduate, you can eliminate bad choices that waste time and money and affect your future. Your college counselor will be happy to help you realize your dreams.


Dixie Somers is a freelance writer and blogger for business, home, and family niches. Dixie lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and is the proud mother of three beautiful girls and wife to a wonderful husband. She can be found on Facebook and Twitter.


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.

Home-Based Jobs Students Should Consider For More Monthly Income Reply

Though college years can be the best time of every student’s life, they can also be marked by difficulties that prevent the student from making the most of that period. Apart from the inevitable hard work, studying, researching and meeting all sorts of deadlines, a lot of students also face serious financial constraints, which add additional pressure to the existing workload.

Luckily, there are now more options for students to make some extra cash while studying than ever before. What’s more, there’s an increasing number of jobs that students can do from their home or even dorm room, which allows them more flexibility in terms of working hours and also a much wider potential market to look for an employer.

Let’s take a look at some options that require various skills and come with moderate or significant financial compensations.

Online tutoring

Tutoring has been a popular choice for a long time, but it was with the development of modern technology that it has really made a huge breakthrough internationally. Instead of receiving students at your home or working with them in the kitchen, all you now need is a good internet connection, a computer and a headset.

Whether you can help someone improve their language skills or understand complex math formulas, your market is no longer limited to your neighborhood, which significantly increases your chances of getting a job.

Transcription

One of the jobs that have also become much more global is making transcripts of audio recordings. Truth be told, there are various types of software that do the same job with little or more success, but there is a strong demand for people able to perform this task.

For some kinds of recordings, such as medical or legal, you need to get a certificate which testifies that you understand the basics of the relevant field. However, if you manage to obtain such a certificate, you’ll be rewarded with a well-paid job.

Online surveys

Another way to make money online is to conduct paid surveys. Many companies are interested in finding out as much as possible about the habits and opinions of their target groups and are ready to pay to get hold of such valuable information.

You are required to carefully answer the prepared questions and be honest about your answers and you’ll be rewarded with a small amount of money or a coupon. As you can see, this is not a job that’s going to help you save for a trip to Europe for example, but it might contribute to your budget.

Content writing

If your English is really good and you have a penchant for writing, you might want to consider becoming a content writer, i.e. someone who is hired to create content on a particular subject. The agency that hires you will give you instructions and a deadline you have to meet.

The benefit of this job is that you have a lot of freedom to organize your day and you don’t need to have contact with other people (a great advantage for those less sociable). Finally, you don’t have to look for clients, but simply make sure you produce quality content before the deadline.

Virtual receptionists

Many small companies can’t afford to hire a person to be available 24/7 to provide assistance to their clients and respond to phone calls and e-mails, which is why they opt for a virtual receptionist/assistant, who is again provided by an agency.

Virtual receptionists mainly communicate with customers over the phone or via e-mail, which means they need to have great people skills. Also, they need a basic training to know what the company does and what kind of information people most commonly ask for.

As you can see, there are quite a lot of options for students who wish to make some extra money without having to leave their room. All it takes are a computer, a stable internet connection and a certain set of skills, which depends on the job you’re after.

No matter how much you can make doing these jobs, you’re bound to enjoy having at least a bit more money in the bank to help you make the most of your student days.


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.

On Track to College: How to Teach Children about Higher Education Reply

Most parents want their children to go to college. Unfortunately, figuring out how to talk to them about it can be difficult. Fortunately, there are three things you can do to make sure your child is taught about higher education in a way that will help you both.

Set Expectations

What does higher education mean to your family? It can be difficult for a child to start thinking about college if he or she hasn’t had anyone to model expectations. If you expect that your child will go to college, start talking about it early on. Make sure he or she understands that this is the educational path that you support, and that you expect him or her to have college plans in mind while in high school. A little thought towards the future can go a long way.

Graduate Degrees

It’s also important that you talk to your child about education beyond the first four years. If your child wants a job in public administration, for example, you’ll need to talk to him or her about the possibility of getting a master in public administration or other degrees they may be interested in. Masters degrees are increasingly important in the work force, and teens who don’t know that might set their sights too low when they seek out a path in college. Giving your children a look at the whole educational process can be a great way to give them realistic expectations for their futures.

It’s About the Journey

It’s also important that you discuss college as just one step in your teen’s life. Sadly, there’s no guarantee that he or she will get into the college that he or she (or you) want. College should be viewed as chance for education, not just a goal in and of itself. If you are able to impress upon your child that college is a place to learn and to get on the right path, he or she can approach the experience without dreading what comes next. College is great, but it shouldn’t be the final goal of anyone’s life.

If you want to talk to your child about college, make sure to start now. Begin setting expectations, talk about further education, and make sure your child knows that no one school is the only option. If you are willing to talk to him or her frankly, he or she just might start to understand why college is so important to you.


Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on Twitter and 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 4 Reasons a Medical Degree Is an Excellent Education Choice Reply

When a child gets asked about what they’d like to be when they grow up, a common answer is a doctor. When the follow-up question is asked, a child usually reasons that doctors help people. This is what makes this career path attractive to many. Well, this is true. Doctors do a lot to help people and a medical degree is an excellent educational choice to consider if you’d like to work in health care. There are plenty of reasons why it’s a great idea to pursue a medical degree as an educational option. Consider these four.

1. Positive Contribution

With a medical degree, you’ll be in a perfect position to give back to the world in a very palpable way. When people are in dire need of improved physical health, they’ll do almost anything to regain it. As a professional with a medical degree, you’ll get equipped with the expertise needed to help people resolve physical ailments and find solutions.

2. Mental Expansion

Getting into medical school is no easy feat. You’ll need to study and prepare for the MCAT. You’ll also need excellent grades in biology, chemistry and other science-related classes. You’ll need to learn to retain a ton of important information. Through this process, there’s no doubt whether or not your knowledge base will increase.

The medical school will naturally expose you to new lessons and a better understanding of how to approach the healthcare industry. You’ll also become an expert in your specific specialty. While medical school may be stressful and time-consuming, it’ll definitely expand your mind.

3. Personal Achievement

In society, certain careers are respected more than others. Doctors and lawyers are some of the most respected. Most people appreciate the amount of studying and work that goes into graduating with a medical degree. When you walk into a room and have letters behind your name, people will naturally perceive and approach you differently.

4. Professional Development

A medical degree is a great choice because it prepares you for the future. As the job market continues to shift and change, there will always be a need for medical professionals. Whether you choose a bachelor’s degree in sonography online, or you prefer ophthalmology or pediatrics, someone will always be in need of your specialty. Knowing this allows you to feel more freedom to focus on professional development and honing in on your craft.

There’s nothing like knowing that you’ve chosen a field that’s personally gratifying and enriching. If the thought of med school intrigues and excites you, do your best to give it your all and pursue this option.


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. Anica is a writer for Ohio University, which offers a range of degrees including an online master’s in athletic administration.


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 Study Hacks That Will Help You Ace Your Final Exams Reply

Every student knocks just how much the stress piles on when it comes up to exam times. The classic method of coping is drinking mountains of energy drinks and staying up for hours on end, but what if there were some more productive, and healthy, hacks that can help you ace your exams?

These 10 study hacks might just be perfect for you.

1. Reward Yourself

Rewarding yourself is a really important trick when you’re studying. When you know you are going to reward yourself, you give yourself something to work towards. So when you’re drawing up a plan for when you are going to study and when you are going to take a break, include some delicious treats, a YouTube or social media break, or some other kind of reward to look forward to.

  1. Using Online Study Tools and Apps

Thanks to the Internet, there are so many tools we can use to improve our studying. There are some amazing tools, including Memorize, Quizlet, and StudyGS.

If you need help referring your work, Cite It In can help, and both Marina Timer and Oxessays connects you with other students, as well as millions of learning resources.

  1. Drink Lots of Water

It’s tempting to drink sugary sodas and energy drinks to keep you going, but these only serve to damage your study performance. When you drink lots of sugary drinks, it’s only a matter of time before you begin to crash.

When you crash, you become lethargic and tired. This is the worst thing that could possibly happen when you’re studying – so instead, be sure to drink lots of water. This keeps you hydrated and healthy, and doesn’t make you tired!

  1. Take Regular Breaks

Regular breaks are important. You don’t need to be taking hour-long breaks all the time, but a few breaks that are ten minutes long will be sufficient. These allow you to rest your brain for a minute, and they give you a fresh perspective on areas of study you might be stuck on.

  1. Write Your Study Notes

Writing down your study notes, instead of typing them, leaves a more significant impression in your memory. Numerous studies have shown that simply typing your notes doesn’t aid your memory, whereas taking the time to write down all your notes leaves a longer-lasting impression. So, get yourself a comfortable pen!

There are writing tools that offer assistance with your writing and editing skills, like Academized or Big Assignments. Besides, Paper Fellows provides advice from a wider writing community.

  1. Use Different Colors

When you are writing your notes, be sure to use different colors. By visually separating different notes using different colors, you can remember important points more easily when it comes to exam time.

  1. Don’t Wake Up Too Early

Waking up extremely early to study before your exam can only work if you have gone to bed early the night before. If you go to bed late and wake up early, you will be disrupting REM sleep, which has a huge influence on your memory. So if you intend to wake up early and study before your exam, it’s important you get to bed nice and early the day before.

  1. Read Out Loud

Writing down your notes can help you remember statistics and information, and so can reading out loud. When you read out words as you read them, you are more likely to remember them, according to multiple studies. Reading aloud also gives you a chance to comprehend parts that you previously struggled to understand.

  1. Turn Off Your Phone

Turn off your phone and social media, and put them in a drawer. Even seeing your phone or tablet in the corner of your eye gives you thoughts of being distracted. Merely thinking about checking Facebook can be as distracting as checking Facebook.

  1. Watch Videos

If you do need to use YouTube, be sure to watch videos that relate to your exam topic. Watching videos can be a really great way of improving your study experience, taking you away from the tedious task of reading and giving you a chance to learn in different ways.


Gloria runs WomenLed.org, which celebrates women’s achievements in the workplace and beyond. She believes that while women have made many advancements toward “shattering the glass ceiling,” there is still much to be done. It is her aim to help increase the number of women-led businesses by educating others about the topic.


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 Degrees That Can Help You Combine Everything You Love Reply

It is estimated that only 13 percent of the American workforce loves what they do. This is no way to live life, so consider the five following degrees that can combine work with what you love.

Communications Degree

Approximately 87 percent of people that work from home are happier than those that do not. This is likely due to the fact that you get to set your own schedule, and you can spend more time with your family. A telecommunications degree might help you achieve this goal though this is just one option.

Health Care

Some people feel good when they make a positive impact on others. One field that can provide you with the opportunity to help others is the health care field, which makes a health administration master’s degree a good choice. Something like this is especially a good choice if you are interested in the business world as well as the world of healthcare. It really is amazing how many degrees mix topics like this.

The Business World

Some people out there simply cannot deal with others telling them what to do. This is where a business degree might come in handy. This type of education gives you the tools to start your own business so that you can be in charge and, ultimately, be a lot happier. Sure, it may take a lot of work to get a business off the ground, but a person who desires to work on their own will be happier with this challenge than working under others.

Philosophy of Economics

An economics degree may be the right choice for those who are interested in learning how the economy works. This type of degree can open up all sorts of opportunities such as politics, law, or even a position in the business world. It is the kind of degree that can lead to various types of careers just in case you are not sure what you want.

Environmental Degree

You may be one of those people who are interested in finding a way to help humanity as a whole, which means that a job in agriculture might be the right choice. This encompasses information about biology, humanity, politics, and agricultural science. You might end up working for a company working to solve world hunger, and everyone wants to be in the forefront of that problem.

There is no doubt that there are other degrees that might satisfy the true calling of your soul. The key is to ask yourself what you really want, and look for degrees that can help put you where you really want to be.


Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from Utah. She enjoys tennis and spending time with her family. Kara recommends looking into diplomacy programs for more information on degrees that can help save the world.


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.