Milestones Autism Resources

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Home Resources Tool Kits Post-Secondary/College Tool Kit Applying to a specific program

PART 7. I know what school(s)/program(s) I want to apply to, how do I go about doing that?

  • The application process is different for each college, university or program. Make sure you have a good understanding of what is needed to apply, including high school transcripts, teacher recommendations and what essays you will need to write.

  • Start working on your college applications early, ideally the summer before senior year of high school. Keep track of application deadlines carefully to plan ahead. Also note that many colleges give preferential admissions to those who apply early. 

  • Draft your college application essay(s) the summer before your senior year of high school, if your potential colleges require them. Look at the essay prompts and think through what topic and approach you want to use. Get feedback from teachers, your guidance counselor, and leave plenty of time for revisions.

  • Many colleges require you to start school at the beginning of the school year, not mid-year.

  • Most colleges require a minimum SAT/ACT test score to be accepted into their school. After taking a sample test or the real test the first time, you may want to work on college test prep to try to improve your SAT/ACT scores for your preferred school or program. Be realistic about how much a test score is likely to improve. Some colleges take your best SAT or ACT test score, while some schools average multiple test scores.

  • Work as a team on the application, references and transcripts to make sure that you turn them in on time. Allow plenty of time for school staff, teachers and guidance counselor to provide any needed information or recommendations.

  • Prepare for the cost of applications which may influence how many colleges you apply to. Some colleges may waive the application fee in various circumstances such as if you ask while visiting the college. Ask your guidance counselor for advice for the specific colleges you are interested in.

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