College Preparation

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college preparation College Preparation Time

Do you know the deadline dates for college preparation? If you are a college-bound high school student there are many dates you should be aware of – and some right around the corner. If you are a 9th or 10th grader you have some time, but the clock is ticking for you 11th and 12th graders. In a series of podcasts with college-test-taking expert, Jean Burk she shared those dates and important information you should know.

The great thing is being homeschooled. I gave my kids study-hall credit and allowed them time each day to prep for the SAT. This allowed them to do timed practice tests, study areas where they had weaknesses and truthfully, it helped tremendously.

College Preparation – PSAT and SAT

  1. For 11th grade – this is the year to take the PSAT – why? The PSAT is a test that is used to select National Merit Scholars. This could mean a full ride and free college to many universities. In order to take the PSAT, you must sign up with an area high school (or check your state or local homeschool group) or even the school board in your area. You must do this in advance. But, if you miss this important test there is a little-known secret – listen to podcast 60 here to learn more.
  2. For the 11th grader now is the time to take the SAT in October, November, and December. If you put time into studying, you are ready to take the test. If you take the test at different times, you have to study all over again. You do not have to show anyone your test results until you are ready. (See super score in number 3 below)
  3. For the 12th grader, you can take the SAT  in October, November, and December if you want to increase your score. Most colleges allow for a “super score,” which means that the scores are taken from different sections of the test. So, if you scored better in math in December and better in the reading portion in October you can use those test results as one.

FAFSA – Free Application Federal Student Aid 

I always thought that this meant student loans and it was not a necessary part of the process for college since my children really did not want loans or debt. Well, I was pleasantly surprised to hear from Jean in her podcasts – FAFSA Equals Free Money and the FAFSA Top 12 Best Kept Secrets that this is just a small portion of what FAFSA provides.

Why is it important to sign up for FAFSA?

  1. High school students can find grant money they didn’t know they qualified for.
  2. The student fills out the form (first download the PDF so you are prepared) and lists their own assets (not parents)
  3. You give your tax information for two years prior – so when filing date comes around Oct. 1st there is no need to delay.
  4. You can qualify for other available scholarships.

You don’t know unless you try. Right? Didn’t your mother always tell you this? Just be sure to avoid the top mistakes people make when filling out the FAFSA application and you can be one of those families who can be debt free after college!


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