College Options 101

Choosing a college is one of the most exciting decisions. But it is also tricky because there are so many different options available.


  1. Most high school students start their college search in their sophomore and junior years. It is an exciting time of trips to new places and tours of beautiful campuses. But with more than 4,000 colleges and universities around the country, it can be overwhelming to start the process. 
  2. Some students will shoot for the the top ranked academic institutions. Others will search for programs that fit their degree ambitions. And still more will focus on location when choosing their college. 
  3. Though many young students have their hearts set on a dream school, it is also vital to factor in the expenses of tuition and living costs. Student debt can stay with graduates for years and affect career decisions. So it is important to take a realistic look at pursuiting your dreams and making smart financial decisions. 
  4. The #1 Factor in Choosing a College -- Ep. 72
  5. One smart way to save on tuition and still get a chance to attend your top school is to spend a year or two at a community college first. Community colleges often have quality transfer programs to state universities. And they offer an affordable way to complete your general education credits and spend time saving. 
  6. CLEP testing, also known as College Level Examination Program, is another smart way to complete general units. These exams usually serve as effecient ways for people to earn college credit for skills or training they may have acquired outside the classroom.
  7. A popular alternative to traditional college is online education. E-learning, as it is often referred to, is a growing field with many bachelors and masters programs which can be taken at home on your computer. 
  8. Before deciding to pursue online courses, prospective students should make sure that it is the right option for their personal learning style. And prior to enrolling in classes, it is imperative to research the online institution and check that it is fully accredited. 
  9. About 6.7 million students are enrolled online. But not all will choose to complete their entire degree online. During summer and winter, many students enroll online to take interim classes that will help them catch up on credits to graduate on time. 
  10. When it comes to higher education, the options are numerous. But that just means a greater opportunity for each student to find the right program to fit them individually.