Potential Mistakes to Avoid When Choosing a College

November 05, 2020 By Isuriz

Choosing the right college is a daunting task that typically requires a lot of research. Many students start considering what college they would like to attend while still in high school. To make your dream a reality, it is helpful to work with a college list builder.

In a prior blog, we offered some tips that could help you in finding the right college.  Now, we will focus on potential mistakes to avoid when choosing a college.  By doing so, you could save yourself time, money and frustration. 

Mistake # 1- My parents have already chosen a university for me

If you and your parents disagree on the college you should attend, one approach is to discuss the issue with them, and see if it can be worked out. When talking to your parents, you can share your thoughts and dreams about a school, and in particular focus on what you are looking for in a college. While parents generally have your best interest at heart, it is important to speak up since you will likely be responsible for the decision on where you go to school. Also, neither your parents, nor relatives know you as well as you know yourself.  So, while it is valuable to receive feedback from your parents, you should be part of the decision on where you go to college. 

Mistake # 2- Blindly following your friends

While it is important to have friends in college, that should not be the only priority.  After all, this may not factor in your unique abilities and whether the college is the right to allow you to maximize your own potential. Therefore, you should build a college list that matches and ignites your passions and meets certain criteria instead of going for a college only on the basis of where your friends are planning to attend.

Mistake # 3- Applying to only one school

In certain instances, parents set a goal for themselves to only send their child to a prestigious college and there are often other options.  The fact is that top educational institutions usually attract talented applicants from all over the world. Therefore they are distinguished by great competition, and you need to be careful to not put all your eggs in one basket. 

While there are options for applying early decision or early action to prioritize your first choice school, it important to broaden your list beyond a single college.  For example, if you are interested in sports and dream of becoming a professional athlete, find a college by looking at the varsity athletic teams. On Isuriz, one of the filters that you can select is Varsity Athletic Teams, and you can choose to display schools with  there is an options ranging from basketball to golf to bowling. In general, the best choice is a college that will allow you to discover and realize your potential.

Mistake # 4- Overemphasizing rankings 

As mentioned in the prior blog on tips for finding the right college, rankings are an important variable to consider.  However, it should not be the only variable or you should not put too much weight in it.  The position of the college in the ranking can fluctuate, and it may not include all of the data points to consider when selecting a college.  Therefore, while the information can be helpful it is important to understand that there can be limitations.

Mistake # 5- Inadequate preparation

Going to college is an ambitious endeavor that needs a lot of your attention, and it can be a highly competitive process.  Therefore, to have a greater chance of success in finding the right college for you, it can be helpful to build a college list so that you understand your options.  However, this can take some time to figure out your preferences.  While Isuriz is able to make this process easier by organizing the colleges on the basis of likelihood of acceptance, and providing customized recommendations for how many colleges to pursue, it is up to you to decide on your own preferences.  Therefore, give yourself enough time to do it. 

You are embarking on one of the most exciting periods of your life.  It is our hope that this information has been useful, and Isuriz can assist in this endeavor.  If you have questions when using Isuriz, do not hesitate to contact us.