"This comprehensive book is an X–ray; slapped into its ′light box′ of readable prose, it reveals the hidden structure of the admissions process and is full of pragmatic advice about every aspect of that structure."
Daniel T. Langdale, former director of admissions at Caltech and associate director of admissions at MIT
"As a former admissions officer, I appreciate how effectively Alison and Anna distil their knowledge into practical strategies for every student. But it′s as a parent that I really love this book: the tone is friendly, affirming, accessible, and calm. This is great advice with a rare, big–picture perspective."
Jennifer P. Weil, former admissions officer at Yale University and parent of a 17–year–old boy applying to college
Written by two former admissions officers at top universities and current admissions coaches, this book is a must–have for preparing a winning college application. The authors reveal the mystery behind what college admissions officers are looking for and show applicants how to leverage their credentials, stand out in the overcrowded applicants′ pool, and make a genuine, memorable impression. This is the book that will help the college–bound get off the "like many others" pile and onto the acceptance list.
- Includes instructions and examples for every component of the college application, from writing the essay to answering questions like "Why do you want to go to College X?"
- Shows how to avoid underestimating the importance of critical features on any application
- Includes the latest information on Common Application 4.0 and corrects outdated, holdover advice still stressed in many other books
This book is filled with step–by–step advice that students and parents can use immediately and will refer to again and again.
PART 1 Getting Started 1
1 Big Decisions 3
2 Your Plan 13
3 Your Story 22
4 Your Résumé 35
PART 2 Completing the Application 61
5 Th e Application as a Whole 63
6 Factual Questions about You and Your Family 72
7 Education and Academic Questions 85
8 Activities Lists 91
9 Really Short Answer Questions 117
10 Short Answer Questions 127
11 Essay Questions 133
12 Why College X? Questions 167
13 Disciplinary and Criminal Background Questions 179
14 Miscellaneous Other Questions 188
15 Additional Information Questions 197
16 Supplementary Materials 201
17 Test Score Reports 212
18 School Reports 229
19 Recommendations 250
20 Interviews 271
21 Th e Application as a Whole Redux
PART 3 Crossing the Finish Line 295
22 Th e Logistics of Submitting and Following Up 297
23 Application Updates (Including Deferrals, Wait Lists, and Correcting Mistakes) 310
Closing: You re Done, Now What? 327
About the Authors 331
Alison Cooper Chisolm and Anna Ivey work together at Cambridge, Massachusetts–based Ivey College Consulting, an admissions coaching firm that helps applicants around the world get into top U.S. colleges.