Developing Your College List

Generally, your college list should comprise of 9 to 12 colleges. This may seem like a lot, but you want to give yourself options for admissions and most importantly financial aid.

Here is how you should break down your list.

Category 1: “Safety” Schools

Generally, admissions to these schools is either automatic (via your school rank) or your entering scores and GPA far exceed the average score admitted. In terms of percentage, you have higher than a 50/50 chance of being admitted into this university. Please note that this does not include specialty programs or honors programs. 


Category 2: “Match/Target” Schools

Generally, admissions to these schools is slightly greater than 50% but not a slam dunk. You meet or slightly fall under/over the generally admitted standardized scores and GPA of admitted students.


Category 3: “Dream” Schools

These schools have the lowest acceptance rates in the nation. You should only consider these schools, not because of the name, but because of the resources and/or programs they offer students at the undergraduate level. Bring your “A” game in the application, because once you submit your application, you don’t know what they are looking for to make up their incoming class!


You can get a sense of where you might fall with a specific school by searching the school’s website and finding the entering class statistics. It’s usually called the entering school profile and it is usually in the admissions section.

I can help you make your college list!

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