High School Prep for College

High school is a rite of passage for teens in America. Socially, high school is an opportunity for students to develop as people, and to decide the path they want their lives to take. It’s important for you to challenge yourself scholastically during college, especially if your goal is to advance on to college. College admissions teams will not only delve into your transcript to view your coursework, but they will also review your standardized test scores for admittance.

Getting into your dream college means challenging yourself while you are in high school. Getting good grades is no longer enough to entice the college of your dreams to admit you into their program. Admissions wants to see that you earn good grades, but they also consider the types of courses you took in high school, how difficult the courses were, and the types of classes you took. College admissions personnel would much rather see a student earn a B in an advanced course than an A in a less challenging class.

Honors Courses

Challenge yourself by taking honors courses throughout high school. Not only will more advanced courses in math, science, social studies and English look great on your transcript, but they will also better prepare you for the course load in college. The National Association of College Admissions also recommends you take honors courses in a foreign language, because skills that can be applied practically, like being bilingual, will look better on your transcript.

Check out the electives being offered at your high school, too. If you’re interested in music, try taking a music theory course to learn how to write and play music. These skills will impress a college admissions board and also give them a greater sense of your interests and passions.

AP Courses

AP, or advanced placement courses are offered at most high schools throughout the country. Typically taken in your junior and senior year, these courses count towards your diploma, but can also be applied towards your college degree. This dual credit program is helpful for students who want to receive college credit while earning high school credit. Even if you don’t take the advanced placement test at the end of the course to receive college credit, having these courses on your transcript will benefit your college application.

Find Balance

While it’s necessary to challenge yourself throughout high school and to enroll in honors and advanced programs, it’s also important to find balance so you don’t overwork yourself. Equally important to advanced courses is getting involved in extra curricular activities like athletics and arts programs. Finding a balance will even out your transcript and showcase to college admissions staff that you are a well-rounded student.

Confused? Work with your high school career and/or guidance counselor to decide the best degree online for you, combined with extra curricular activities you will enjoy. Tell your counselor you are looking for the best schedule to prepare you for a college career and take their advice.

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