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Applying to College in New York

Applying to college in New York is not much different to applying to college anywhere else in the U.S., the one exception being that competition for places in New York colleges is even fiercer than in most other states.

Due to the competition for places when applying to college in New York it is important for students to be fully informed of the criteria colleges in New York use in their admission processes.

To ensure that you stand the greatest chance if success when applying to college in New York it is useful to break down that criteria and assess which factors of a student application are most important and why.Admission officers review the courses a student chooses, class rank, test scores, activities, leadership experiences, and personal characteristics. When it comes to grades, colleges prefer to see slightly lower grades in more-challenging classes than high grades earned by a student who pads his or her schedule with low-level courses to achieve easy A's. Most schools have a good sense of what your high school's curriculum is like and how tough the courses and grading tend to be. Regionally assigned admission representatives who visit high schools and attend area college fairs keep colleges informed about your school and its courses.

A student's grades in college-preparatory classes remain the most significant factor in college admission decisions. Students who have challenged themselves by taking a number of college-prep courses—at the advanced level if possible—and performing well will have the best shot at admission to a selective public or private school. Class rank has declined in significance as many private and religious schools have eliminated student ranking. Standardized test scores remain important.

Other factors that affect the admission decision vary from small private schools to large state universities. Small, selective schools pay greater attention to personal statements and essays, teacher and counselor recommendations, leadership experiences, and the individual talents of applicants. Small schools may even offer the chance for a face-to-face interview.

Personal statements and essays are both a measure of the student's writing ability and a means of learning more about the student's personal background, beyond what's listed on the application. Sometimes students are asked to discuss how and why they are interested in a particular college or field of study. They may be asked to write about how an individual, a work of art, an event, or a situation has influenced them. Research the college(s) to which you are applying in-depth. Do more than find out what programs they offer and what grades they look for. Look into their history, their mission statement, the make-up of their student body and what non-curricular activities they offer and encourage. It is these details that can make the difference to success or failure when applying to college in New York. This in-depth knowledge displays an interest in that specific college and not just a wish to attend any college.

It is a combination of these factors and the attention to each of these elements that will set your application apart from the competition.

Studying in New York wishes all our readers the greatest success when applying to colleges in New York.


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