FAQ’s & College Application

Regardless of where you are in the college admissions process, there are some basic aspects of
the application process you should know about. Here are some common questions and
definitions that may help you better understand what you’re doing.


Why does my child need to work with someone other than his or her guidance counselor?
Many of today’s high school guidance counselors have large student caseloads and cannot dedicate much in the way of individual time to students. In addition to handling your child’s college advice, they are also responsible, on a daily basis, for test administration, student discipline, family issues, course selection, and more! Many guidance counselors and school administrators are pleased when parents collaborate with outside advisors because they know their students’ needs will be met.
Can I, as a parent, stay involved in the process?
We let that be a family decision as to how much you would like to be involved. However, we do like to say that this experience is meant to “Empower the student”, which means we set them up to make decisions they feel confident about regarding their future and college. After all, once they get to college, they will need to start making many decisions on their own and be able to feel good about doing so.
Is College Admissions Strategies a SAT preparation company?
We do not tutor students on the standardized tests; however, we have programs to help them figure out where their strengths and weaknesses are with the SAT and ACT tests. We also have a great online test prep program that works to identify those weaker spots, so they focus on what they don’t know. We also have community partners that we collaborate with if the student needs additional in-person help.
How will my child find the time?
We get it! Students and families are busier now more than ever and trying to fit one more thing in can be overwhelming at times. We suggest an earlier start the better for our students, so they are not rushed to fit everything in before application time. However, everything we do is by virtual meetings, so we can meet when and where works best for your family. We work on a time management plan with the student so they know how much time will be needed to meet certain goals.

College Application Terminology

Early Decision

An option that allows you to apply early (usually in November) to your clear first-choice college. You pledge to attend if accepted. If you’re a competitive candidate, you stand a better chance to be admitted under Early Decision

Early Action

Similar to Early Decision in timing (November due date for applications) but non-binding. If you are accepted, you do not have to enroll and you may take until May 1 to decide. Primarily an option offered by Ivy League schools, Early Action is fading in its popularity due to the move by colleges to seek an enrollment commitment from their applicants. Acceptance percentage is higher than that of regular-decision pool.

Personal Statement

Also known as the application essay. Personal statements are usually required by schools that are competitive, also known as selective. That means the schools don’t admit everyone who applies. The essay is used by admissions committees to learn more about their applicants. Personal statements are great opportunities to shine, if you’re a good writer. They can create anxiety in less-than-confident students, however.