For Juniors Only...

posted Feb 8, 2012, 3:23 AM by Unknown user
Hello, Juniors and Parents of Juniors!  It's hard to believe how quickly this school year is passing.  We are past the halfway point and only three weeks away from the end of Trimester 2.  As a Junior your most important job is to keep studying hard and earning the highest grades you can earn.  There are, however, several other important things for you to be doing this year. 

Those of you who intend to apply to universities in the USA or Canada (and a few in other countries) will need to take the SAT or ACT at least once this year.  Check the websites of schools where you may send an application to see if SAT / ACT is required.  Some schools also require or recommend that you take SAT Subject Tests (also called SAT 2 tests).  Check those websites to be sure!  There only 2 SAT dates and 1 ACT date left this school year:

    The SAT:     May 5 (Register by April 6)   Register early!  Seating is limited to 35 at ISD, first come, first served!
                       June 2 (Register by May 8)
    The ACT:     June 9 (Register by May 4)

Research colleges and universities now!  You will not have time to do serious research on colleges and universities next year.  Most universities in the USA will want your application before Christmas, some by December 1 or earlier.  Do the research now and then visit as many of the schools as you can during spring break and over the summer.  This takes time now but will make your life so much easier next year!  Talk to the current seniors about this and get their input. 

Two good places to start with college and university research are The Common Application and My College Quickstart on the CollegeBoard website.  Your PSAT score report provided you an Access Code to use with My College Quickstart; this free service has a lot to offer, so please check it out and take advantage of it!  (If you lost your report I can give you your access code.)  The Common Application also has a very good college research tool for the 450+ colleges and universities that use Common App.  You can create your free Common Application account now and start creating your list of schools.  However you do your research, the key is to get started now.   

Essays are required on many, if not most, university applications.  These essays need to be your BEST work and cannot be done quickly at the last minute.  So start working on a rough draft of your essays this year.  The essay topics vary from school to school, but once you write an essay you may be able to use it for other schools.  Always save your drafts and "tweak" them for other applications.  A good place to start is The Common Application, which offers you a choice of six topics including "choose your own topic".  The internet and the school library has a lot of information to help you with college essays.  Tips, techniques, and samples of successful essays can be found online and in books in the library.  Your job is to start early and have your essay(s) perfected by next September.  Please plan to have a rough draft of a college essay turned in to me by the end of the school year. 

Remember my door is always open to help you with all of this.  Drop by for help, with questions, or to browse the college and university information in my office.  See you soon!