Today the College Board, the organization behind the SAT, announced sweeping changes to the standardized exam that will launch in the spring of 2016. As College Board president David Coleman promised last year when he announced that a new SAT was coming, the changes are meant to make the SAT less “coachable” and to make it more relevant to what is taught in high school classrooms. The changes also make the SAT much more like the ACT (the SAT’s chief competitor), although you won’t see any mention of that in the College Board’s publicity announcements for the new SAT.
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Bowdoin College, located in the coastal town of Brusnwick, Maine, is a small liberal arts college ranked #14 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings.The exclusive school boasts famous alumni such as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Nathaniel Hawthorne. More recently, current assistant professor of computer science, Daniela Oliveira was awarded the prestigious Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers by the White House for her research in computer security. This is an extraordinary honor for a small liberal arts college competing against large research universities.
Ever since I saw their first concert freshman year, I wanted to join my high school jazz band. I loved the sound and the energy the band had on stage; they looked like they were having a great time. However, I was a classic AP track student with a packed schedule; I managed to squeeze in marching/concert band first period, but for my first two years I just had to watch them play from the balcony where the concert band sat.
Brown University is ranked number seventeen on the Veritas Prep College Ranking list. The quaint campus of this research school is located in the middle of the historic town of Providence, Rhode Island. Brown was founded in 1764 making it the seventh oldest school in the U.S; it offers a wide variety of degrees in seventy concentrations. This university is known for having the spirit of openness; they have proven this on more than one occasion, starting with becoming the first school to accept students from all religious backgrounds.
It’s no secret that earning a college degree or a graduate degree can lead to a higher-paying job. But do you realize just how big the difference can be? We’ve broken it down to show you what kinds of jobs — and how much pay — you can expect when you earn a degree. You should never choose a major or a line of work solely for the pay, but keep these stats in mind if you’re wondering whether or not you should go back to school.
The University of Pennsylvania is located in Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, and began as a charity school in 1740. Under the influence of Benjamin Franklin, the school developed its roots in training students to become leaders in public service, business, and government. The private university has fewer than 10,000 undergraduates and ranks #13 on the Veritas Prep Elite 61 list of colleges.
If you have an impassioned desire to probe the far reaches of deep space, get chills at the thought of programming DNA for molecular robots, or long to one day win a Nobel Prize, then Caltech may be the school for you. California Institute of Technology, located in Pasadena, California, is a premier private research university whose mission it is to “expand human knowledge and benefit society through research integrated with education.”
Dartmouth College is ranked number twelve on the Veritas Prep list of the top sixty-one colleges in the United States. Located in Hanover, New Hampshire, it is a research university that offers a large selection of degrees for undergraduates and graduates alike. Roughly 6,100 students attend this beautiful campus, designed around its exquisite natural setting. Founded in 1769 by Eleazar Wheelock, Dartmouth is the ninth oldest college in the United States.
Swarthmore College is ranked ninth among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. It is a liberal arts and engineering college that is part of a three-college consortium including Harverford College and Bryn Mawr College. The school, which was founded by Quakers, has a long legacy of tolerance, social concern, and civic responsibility.
Pomona College is ranked tenth in the nation among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. It’s one of few liberal arts colleges on the West Coast and part of the Claremont College Consortium. The consortium includes five schools, all on adjacent campuses, and two graduate schools. The 5C community, as the students affectionately call it, shares resources including a university-sized research library. The consortium arrangement also has the advantage of offering students abundant academic, extracurricular, and social opportunities; students can eat, live, and take classes on all five campuses.
The answer to this question (which, by the way, I’m asked more frequently than any other question when I’m teaching SAT prep) is no.
Instantly, I’m always asked, “Well, do I need to score in the 99th percentile to get into (Harvard, Princeton, Yale)?
One thing that we love to do around Veritas Prep HQ is declare our opinions. Whether it’s about football, health food, traffic etiquette, dancing, or stand-up comedy, everyone here has an opinion. Even more fun is when we stick our necks out and make some predictions about where we see test preparation and admissions going in the coming year. We’re often right, and we’re always entertaining.
When it comes to getting a good education students are not only looking for the perfect school, but also the best school for their budget. That is exactly what sets Amherst College, ranked 8th by Veritas Prep, apart from other elite colleges; they utilize a need-blind admission policy. This simply put means the student’s family’s financial situation bears little importance for admission to their college.
And just like that, a whole year has flown by again! Last January, we posted four predictions for the world of test prep and admissions. As fun as it is to make predictions, and it’s even more rewarding to look back at some point and see how we did. (“Oh my… We predicted THAT would happen?”) If you predict enough things, some of them will eventually happen, right?
The University of Chicago is ranked number seven of sixty-one schools on the Veritas Prep list. It also appears among the top ten schools on the Forbes, US News, and ARWU lists. This Midwestern research university offers a variety of undergraduate degree programs, but a majority of campus students are enrolled in graduate degree programs. Situated in the famed Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago, the mid-sized school is diverse with 56% minority students and 51% female students.
There goes another year. Faster than you can say “99th-percentile instructors,” 2013 has come and gone, leaving in its wake a trail of excellent Veritas Prep blog articles. As we start to wrap up the year here at Veritas Prep HQ, wrap our Secret Santa gifts, and prepare to break in the new hires at our annual holiday party, we thought this would be a good time to share some of our biggest news and most popular articles from the past year.
Here at Veritas Prep, we have a long list of reasons to be thankful this year! From our students, to our incredible teachers and admissions consultants, it’s truly been an amazing year.
We are excited to announce that starting today through Monday, December 2nd we are making available our biggest discounts of the year on all of our services (discounts on MBA admissions consulting services will be available through Wednesday, December 4)! Whether you are trying to hit Round 2 business school deadlines or are planning on taking the SAT next year, make sure to take a look at our discounts and register before these prices are no longer available.
College ratings are one of the ways that many students and their families choose to look at schools they’re thinking of applying to. Many schools and educational institutions rank colleges by a number of different criteria. Organizations that create college ratings include Forbes Magazine, U.S. News and World Report, The Wall Street Journal, and now Veritas Prep.
Do college admissions officers look at your Facebook page and Twitter posts? The short answer is a resounding “Yes.” It may be a surprise to find out who views your social media pages, and how your posted information can change their mind about you, so be careful when posting personal information.
Once upon a time, high school junior Michelle, in preparation to apply to competitive colleges, enrolled in AP Biology. In her AP Bio course, Michelle studied concepts involving evolution, cellular processes, genetics and how biological systems interact – all at a college level. She also developed better reasoning skills in order to analyze data and think more like a scientist. The following Spring, Michelle took the 3-hour AP Bio Exam and scored a 5, the highest score possible. She mastered the content, received college credit and was able to skip Introductory Bio once she was admitted into her top-choice college.
Is there a more popular starting point for school research than college rankings? There’s certainly no shortage of rankings available, but many of them end up being large data dumps that are ultimately unhelpful. Still others, in an attempt to stand out from the crowd, rank universities on obscure criteria, such as cafeteria food, Greek life, or ease of parking a car… All good things to know, but would you really base such a huge decision on criteria like that. (If you’re about to say “Yes,” then we recommend that you talk to a college admissions expert ASAP!)
College admissions season is in full swing now that we’re in the fall. This can be one of the most stressful times for a high school student as well as for hopeful parents who want to see their kids go to great colleges and universities. To make matters worse, the admissions process and landscape can be very tough to navigate and students and parents are not always fully-informed of all the options and strategies available to them to give students an edge in the admissions process. One especially confusing aspect is early admissions programs.
If you’re using a credit card to pay for your college application fees, and will have to borrow a significant amount of money during your undergrad years, it’s important to start developing good money management skills now so you can avoid the “credit card crunch” that plagues many students when they first leave home.
Can’t get away from your Facebook or Twitter accounts? Using social media in your SAT prep is a great way to meet other students and take advantage of resources beyond the Official Guide. Follow these Twitter users to supplement your SAT practice!
To keep all of your SAT and college related tweets in one place, you can create a specific list for these handles so you aren’t distracted by your friend’s updates while you’re solving the free question of the day.
Finding financial aid for college is one of the most important, but also most difficult tasks for parents and students as they go through the process of applying for higher education. To learn where to obtain college funding, it’s very important to look at each of the programs offered by the various players in the financial aid arena. Each player has advantages and disadvantages, and most people will want to consider more than one source of funding.
Extracurricular activities are a crucial part of the college application process that students need to think about well before their senior year of high school. Unfortunately, most students don’t realize how important extracurricular activities are until they start filling out their college applications. Don’t let that be you! Here are 5 tips to approaching extracurricular activities:
U.S. News has just released its ranking of top American colleges an universities for 2014. (It’s like model years on cars… Next year, in 2014, they will release the 2015 rankings.) There has been some movement, though not a lot of it, among the top 25 schools. Although this happens every year, we got a chuckle from each of these “top 25″ lists, neither of which is actually 25 schools long. We guess it’s just hard to choose sometimes.
So it’s time to apply to college – no, it’s time to apply to colleges – as in like 7+ schools. The exciting prospects of getting into college, living away from your parents, partying like a rock star and of course maybe one day having a job are currently being overshadowed by the arduous tasks of writing admissions essays, filling out applications, requesting letters of recommendations, taking standardized tests and breaking up with your high school sweetheart. So much to do!
Unless you (or your parents) happen to be Warren Buffet or related to Bill Gates, you’ll probably be spending a good chunk of time your junior and senior years looking for financial aid for college. Here’s a few quick steps to jump-start your plan!
When the new Common Application essay questions were released back in February, we gave students some high-level advice on how to tackle the essays. Now that we have had even more time to think about the essay prompts, we’re back with some more advice on what you can do to ace the essays and maximize your chances of college admissions success.
As part of its annual ranking of colleges, Forbes released its list of the top 25 public colleges in America – a list that holds particular significance here at Veritas Prep headquarters with so many staffers’ alma maters making the list. Why is this list important for you? If you happen to have access to one of these schools with free or government-sponsored tuition rates – as an appointee to a military academy or as an in-state student to another school on the list – you’re eligible to receive an elite education at a massive discount. And even independent of a discount, these schools rank among the best available anywhere. Without further ado, the list:
The worst personal statements are boring to read, filled with clichés, or just downright untruthful. That may sound cynical, but so are many admissions counselors. Imagine reading essay after essay that all sound the same or start with, “Here’s why you should accept me….” It’s not easy to write personal statements OR to read them. Make your essay personal, and more compelling, with these few quick tips!
Continuing our summer series of school profiles, we will look at Yale University today. Brandon Marick, a Veritas Prep SAT 2400 instructor in Los Angeles, tells us what he loved about going to school at Yale, and why it just might be the perfect fit for you too!
1. What is one thing you should see on campus?
The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library – On a campus of beautiful 300 year old Gothic architecture, the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, erected in 1963, stands out for its unique architectural qualities. Beinecke is the largest building in the world reserved exclusively for the preservation of rare books and manuscripts. An air-tight, six-story glass chamber of books is enclosed by a windowless outer shell made of thin translucent marble. The marble shell protects the books from direct sunlight, while illuminating the building’s interior with a warm glow. While most students study in Sterling Memorial Library or Bass Library, the inside of the Beinecke can provide an awe-inspiring study break.
Perhaps it started on a January day in Chicago when elementary school students greeted teacher Frankie Beecroft, recently named Veritas Prep’s Worldwide Instructor of the Year, with an enthusiastic “Good Morning, Teacher of the World!” But maybe it started well before that, in classrooms and at dinner tables in Missouri and Michigan, New Jersey and Norway as the students who would become the leaders of Veritas Prep were inspired by teachers. Whatever the genesis, our lifelong appreciation of teachers and our firm belief that they deserve recognition for their yeoman efforts has led us here.
A week ago today, few people outside of greater Fort Myers knew anything about Florida Gulf Coast University. What a difference a week makes. #FGCU has been consistently trending on Twitter for days, now, and the admissions website crashed shortly after the Eagles dispatched Georgetown in Friday’s match-up FGCU is on the map now, joining Gonzaga, Virginia Commonwealth, George Mason, and several other schools that built a national reputation on the strength of an NCAA Tournament run.
Welcome to the first segment of a 4-part Veritas Prep College Readiness Series! Each segment will cover what students can do to prepare for college. Today’s blog post will give 9th graders advice on what they can do now to make sure they have a stellar college application.
Dear 9th Graders:
The people behind The Common Application have just released the new essay prompts (PDF link) for college applicants who apply in the 2013-2014 admissions season. As noted in The Common Application Board of Directors’ announcement, these new prompts are the result of two years of discussion about where essays fit in the overall college admissions process. This is the first big change to the essays in years (including to the word counts!), and it’s clear that the Common Application Board didn’t take the task of reworking these essays lightly.
There is no shortage of opinion and points of view here at Veritas Prep. We’re an opinionated lot, and we’re also not afraid to stick out our necks and make a few predictions about how we see the worlds of test prep and admissions evolving in the coming year. The following are four trends and news items we expect to see emerge at some point in 2013:
At least one Top 20 MBA program will introduce an all-online MBA program.
Right now, Kenan-Flagler’s MBA@UNC is still the only game in town when it comes to top-tier business schools offering real, full-blown MBAs available online. The segment certainly still has a ways to go in terms of burnishing online education’s reputation, and UNC has tried to tackle this problem head-on with ads that go as far as to warn that you probably can’t get into its program. With most of the elite American universities making much more aggressive strides into online education (most frequently with MIT & Harvard’s edX or Stanford’s Coursera), it’s not hard to imagine that another top-ranked business school will soon move to offer a full MBA over the Internet in 2013.
When I was in high school, I was received over half a million dollars in scholarship offers. Because some of these scholarship offers were school-specific, I ended up actually receiving approximately $237,000 to go to college. Needless to say, these scholarships still covered the cost of tuition, housing, textbooks, food, and all other college-related expenses during my undergraduate career.
Believe it or not, 2012 is almost over. If you’re reading this, it means that the world hasn’t ended, and that at least some of us still have electricity and Internet access, so we’re ending on a good note! As we at Veritas Prep wind down the year, we thought we’d share some of our biggest news, best posts, and most interesting topics from the past 12 months.