You DO Need to Study for the GRE

You DO Need to Study for the GRE

Much as you may dread it, you do, in fact, have to study for the GRE. Applying to grad school almost always comes at a messy, inconvenient life moment. You're stressed out and handling dozens of other projects and goals... but still. You have to learn the test. You need to know the basic skills. You need to take a practice test. And here's how to do that. 

PS I bombed the first time I took the GRE. So for the record, you're not alone. 

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How to Know You're Choosing a Worthwhile Online Master's Degree (Guest Post)

How to Know You're Choosing a Worthwhile Online Master's Degree (Guest Post)

Online degrees earned a bad rap, since many early online degree programs were offered by for-profit universities focused on pumping out graduates as inexpensively as possible. However, that reputation is changing as traditional universities begin to embrace distance learning and online degrees.

Many top universities are beginning to realize that their reach should not end at the edge of campus, and online graduate opportunities are expanding. If you've decided that an online program might be right for you, how do you choose a quality program? 

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Calming Parental Fears: How to Approach the College Selection Process

Calming Parental Fears: How to Approach the College Selection Process

Choosing a college is a momentous decision: one that will have an enormous impact on where you’ll be and what you’ll do for the next four years of your life. It feels like it should be entirely personal, like the only one really impacted by your decision is you.

Of course, if your parents are helping you pay for school, they (quite accurately) feel like they have a considerable stake in the decision as well.

Here are some strategies for managing the college search profess in a way that will make everything far smoother, less conflict-prone, and more comfortable for everyone involved. 

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What is College For?

What is College For?

It is easy to take things for granted—to forget to question why we make the plans we do, or why we interact with the world in certain ways. Sometimes we are so busy chasing a goal (graduation, a job, a plan, etc.) that we forget to pause for a moment and ask ourselves very real and foundational questions. For example: 

WHAT IS COLLEGE FOR?

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College Logistics: How Do I...

College Logistics: How Do I...

At every stage in the college journey, there is a plethora of shifting logistical and practical questions. Early college questions (How do I register for classes? How do I use the gym? How do I use the online homework website?) give way to mid-college questions (How do I prepare to go abroad? How do I decide if this is the right major for me? How do I move off-campus and deal with all the accompanying real-life logistics?) and finally to the questions that plague soon-to-be graduates (How do I turn in my thesis? How do I get transcripts? How am I going to make it in the real world…)

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Cultural Preparation for Studying Abroad

Cultural Preparation for Studying Abroad

If at all possible, you should try to get a jumpstart on learning about the history and culture of the place you’re about to call your temporary home. Think about it as a kind of cultural acquaintance-making. You will by no means be able to learn everything about a country before you go. But some exploration ahead of time will mean you are better prepared and will have more context to understand the experiences in your new home.

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The Confused Graduate: Guest Post on the Complications of Life After College

The Confused Graduate: Guest Post on the Complications of Life After College

Some people enter college knowing exactly what path they will take, beginning freshman year and ending in a job. For many others, it's not such a direct route. 

First, make sure you know that NOT knowing is completely acceptable. You just have to design a path for yourself that will allow you to explore your options. College is a huge investment in terms of time and money, so when you go, it’s better to be sure you have a solid idea of what you might want to do. Set goals for yourself, and if you don’t meet them, don’t be too hard on yourself. Just try again, and stay focused on finding what you can do for the long haul, and don’t sweat the small things.

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Styling Your College Essay: Advice from a High School Language Arts Teacher

Styling Your College Essay: Advice from a High School Language Arts Teacher

This advice for crafting a college essay comes from a high school language arts teacher, who speaks from many years of helping high school students prepare for college. As you write your college application personal essay, keep this question in mind:  Are you able to get beyond voiceless reporting to an engaging description which makes use of various stylistic devices so as to persuade?

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High School Graduation: What Next?

High School Graduation: What Next?

Graduation can be a bit of a jolt. Suddenly you’re not a high school student anymore, and you’re not a college student yet. You’ve just accomplished one of life’s big milestones, and you have the next on the horizon. It’s the short-term future that’s tricky: it’s filling these next few months.

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The 5 Books to Read Before College, According to Professor X

The 5 Books to Read Before College, According to Professor X

This list of the five books you should read before college builds on two previous lists: one from me and another list by former philosophy major and frequent contributor to My College Advice, Miles Raymer. Professor X has more than 20 years of science teaching experience at the University of Oregon, and has previously written contributed an article entitled "The Transition From High School to College" on this site. Enjoy!

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Imagined Plan B Futures

Imagined Plan B Futures

I maintain my “Future Plan B” options with full daydreaming passion. But I also cultivate them as possible stepping-stones to the future, if my Plan A should ever change course or stop being viable.

My "Plan B" list has to do with skills to be gained and experiences to be had. They are ideas I love in the manic, dreamer side of my personality, and also satisfy my more methodical, practical self.

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Chore avoidance technique No. 37

Chore avoidance technique No. 37

Student life is taken up with a series of exciting opportunities and new ideas. It’s all about the classes, homework, networking, writing, researching, friendships, relationships, events on campus, and all the clubs and sports and opportunities you can cram into your days. You’ve got four years for all the fun and personal development you can possibly cram into that time.

And, of course, there’s all the time-demanding stuff that’s way less fun as well—the stuff that comes with being a grown-up person in the world.

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The Benefits of College Credits in High School

The Benefits of College Credits in High School

College-level classes will help you prepare for what you’ll be expected to learn once you arrive on campus. And the credits you earn before you arrive on campus will increase your freedom in coursework, flexibility in travel, and your overall opportunity to take advantage of the full breadth of the college experiences available to you. 

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