College Admissions Timeline

college application timelineFreshman Year:

  • Develop a recommended class schedule of college preparatory courses according to your planned college major. Contact your guidance counselor for assistance. Establish strong study habits and commit to a consistent study routine.
  • Be organized. Work on effective time management techniques. Use a day timer/planner to manage your day(s) and week(s).
  • Become involved in a community service project.
  • Work to enhance your vocabulary skills and your writing abilities. Commit to ten new words a week.
  • Learn to use the library effectively, including computer research.
  • Investigate possible extracurricular activities for your Resume of Achievement.
  • Begin to think about your sophomore class schedule.
  • Improve your reading skills with books, newspapers and magazines outside school requirements.  

Sophomore Year: 

  • Continue to keep your grades up.
  • Continue to be involved in a community service project.
  • Sign up for extracurricular activities and be involved in leadership roles when possible.
  • Consider the teachers from whom you will request recommendations.
  • Take the PSAT for the first time.
  • Plan your junior class schedule. Challenge yourself, choose your classes wisely.
  • Begin to look for a summer job. Look for work in the areas of vocational interest if possible. 

Junior Year: August Through December

  • Review your cumulative grade point average.
  • Take the PSAT for the second time.
  • Continue to be involved in a community service project.
  • Attend a local College Fair.
  • Discuss possible career interests with parents.
  • Pre-register for the ACT/SAT Achievement Tests. Review "Sample" ACT/SAT Tests.
  • Take the ACT/SAT Achievement Tests. Take ACT/SAT prep class if needed.
  • Write prospective colleges for catalogs and admissions/financial aid information. 

Junior Year: December through June 

  • Develop a list of colleges and begin your college selection process.
  • Begin your career interest analysis, research and perspective vocational /career interviews. ¢ Complete the Student College Survey and review your answers.
  • Begin to plan your college visits. Visit your top three colleges this spring if possible.

Senior Year: September through October 

  • Complete/review the College Search Preliminary Worksheets on the colleges that you are considering.
  • Update your career interest analysis, research and your vocational/career interviews.
  • Continue to be involved in community service project.
  • Plan your college visits, including the various interviews, to narrow your field.
  • Review for the SAT/ACT tests, again. ¢ Send thanks you notes to the list of references that you have chosen for your recommendation letters.
  • Prepare your final list of extracurricular activities for the Admissions package, see sample provided.
  • Prepare your final essays for Admissions package for the colleges you are applying to.
  • Prepare your Resume of Outstanding Achievement for your Admissions package, see sample provided.
  • Check with your Guidance Department and apply for local scholarships that you qualify for.
  • If you plan to apply early decision the application need to be completed by Nov 1st.

Senior Year: November through December

  • Develop your final list of colleges
  • Plan your remaining college visits.
  • Apply for admissions to at least six colleges to increase your financial aid opportunity. Remember to apply to (2) Safety colleges, (2) Probable colleges, and (2) Reach Colleges

Senior Year: January through July

  • Pick up the necessary Financial Aid Applications from the Guidance Department. Or fill out on the Internet at
  • Review the Financial Aid Application instructions to assure an accurate filing.
  • Complete all Financial Aid Applications and mail prior to the earliest college deadline.
  • Review the Student Aid Report (SAR) and make note of your EFC.
  • If the SAR is incorrect, return to the appropriate Processor with corrections.
  • If the SAR is correct, hold and send to the college of your final choice.
  • Send the Verification and IRS forms to each college requesting verification.
  • Review all financial aid packages sent from the colleges.
  • If housing deposit is NOT mandatory, request an extension until final decision is made.
  • If housing deposit is mandatory , be sure to send request for refund within deadline.
  • Review final financial aid award offers and make your final decision.
  • Send in the signed financial aid award offer with the SAR to your final college choice.
  • Send in the deposit and final grade transcript to your final college choice.
  • Send in all pertinent loan applications to your final college choice.

Speak Your Mind