Just The Facts, Please

In an article written by Brennan Barnard, author of the book, “The Truth about College Admission: A Family Guide to Getting In and Staying Together;” he attempts to educate parents and students about how and where to find the truth surrounding all the gossip that causes stress during the college application process. A wide array of subjects are addressed including test-optional policies, high school quotas, the silver bullet for admission, the gap year effect, fickle admissions departments, more being better, the impossibility of being admitted at some colleges and what is really going on with financial aid. It would do every family good to find this article and read it together a few times a year beginning when the student is in eighth grade.

The overarching intent of the article is to teach parents and students not to believe everything they hear. There are many sources by which a claim can be substantiated and hopefully we will one day come to realize that just because you saw it on the internet doesn’t mean that it is true. A lot of maniacs have computers with internet connections…

The question of standardized testing has received increased attention during the pandemic because so many testing dates were cancelled. Many colleges responded in a sensible way and waived the test requirement. Some of those decisions will be temporary while others are permanent. Don’t let anyone convince you that students are at a disadvantage if they don’t submit test results. When the colleges say optional, they mean it. A number of links are available in the article for those who need convincing. The gap year effect is also due to the pandemic. Rest assured that even the colleges who saw the largest numbers of students defer matriculation for a year have stated that the effect on next year’s admissions will be negligible.

A couple more myths you can forget about are high school quotas and the silver bullet. Colleges are going to accept the brightest of their applicants who compliment the culture that they have created on their campuses. If a group of those desirable applicants happen to attend the same high school, it is of little consequence. Also, there is no one thing that a high school student can do to guarantee admission. If you don’t go out and find the article, at least do a little research before letting someone stop you from applying to your favorite college.

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