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Finding what you need and want in college admissions is often more trouble than actually applying to the colleges. To help you along the way, here are some of the best, most useful and/or informative websites we have come across. Let us know if you have found others.

academic resources

Alliance for Young Arts & Writers
The largest scholarship and recognition program for teenage artists and writers in the United States

Center for Talented Youth (CTY), Johns Hopkins University
Johns Hopkins/CTY is one of the most respected organizations of its kind in the United States serving gifted and talented youth.

1. Academic competition list
An up-to-date list of links to selected academic competitions in the Arts, Speech, Social Sciences, Journalism and others, as well as Journalism and Writing competitions, Essay contests, and Language competitions

2. Academic Summer Programs
Links to Regional, State and Local Talent Search Summer programs, University-sponsored programs for high school juniors and seniors, and other directories

3. Career Exploration Resources
From A-Z, different links to information about a variety of careers, including Accounting, Art Therapy, the CIA, Filmmaking, History, Museum Careers, Photography, Science Writing and Veterinary Medicine. Also link to different self tests and self assessments, including personality type, career assessments, etc.

4. College Search and Application

Links for college planning, search and virtual campus tours, as well as scholarship and financial aid resources.

5. Distance Learning Programs and Tutorials list
A list of links to web-based programs, classes and other educational experiences that students can get involved with including full high school programs, university based programs for full credit courses, and other programs offering credit and not for credit courses.

6. Early College Enrollment Academies during school year
A list of program links for students who want to begin college either part-time or full-time one, two or three years before the usual freshman year of college.

7. Gifted and Talented (G/T) Resources
Links to gifted and talented organizations and resources, state gifted and talented associations, G/T mailing lists and listservs, resources for gifted students with learning disabilities, etc.

The Concord Review
Quarterly journal where high school students can submit their papers and research for publication

International Baccalaureate Program

A highly academic program of courses, similar to AP, offered by some high schools

Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation, Colorado
A national summer arts institute offered to 60 artistically gifted public and private high school juniors in which internationally recognized artists in residence serve as primary instructors.

The National Writing Board

Sponsored by The Concord Review, Inc, this site provides an assessment service for history research papers of high school students.

The Telluride Association
Special summer academic programs offered for underserved students


application services

The Common Application
Nearly 400 private and public colleges and universities use The Common Application

Universal College Application

This new application is used by about 80 colleges and universities.



College Countdown website and blog
Get the latest information about college admission topics from Dr. Marcia Cantarella, Frank Palmasani and Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz.

Jay Matthews, educational columnist, The Washington Post
Okay. Jay Matthews doesn't have a blog, but pay attention to whatever he writes in The Washington Post. He's one savvy dude.

Lynn O'Shaughnessy, The College Solution
No one knows more about financial aid than this very savvy writer.

Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz, college section blogger, Huffington Post
Every week, Marjorie writes about all kinds of admissions and college "stuff."



Black Excel
An award-winning website devoted to African American students.

Catholic Colleges
Sponsored by the National Catholic Colleges Admissions Association, this site identifies US colleges that are affiliated with the Catholic Church.

I'm First! Center for Student Opportunity
A website that offers traditionally underserved students, including first general, low-income, rural and minority student populations, with information, a search for colleges and universities known for recruitment and retention of underserved students and more.

Christian Colleges
For students who want to apply to colleges that combine their academic life with a Christian religious and lifestyle.

Colleges That Change Lives
40 colleges identified by former New York Times education writer, Loren Pope, that provide an unusual commitment to high quality education, accessible professors and sense of community.

Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU)
A website devoted to the success of Hispanics in higher education.

This website provides information about Jewish life a many different colleges in the U.S.

Historically Black Colleges
A listing of the historically Black colleges and universities in the US by region, state and alphabetically

Jesuit Colleges
A listing of the 28 Catholic Jesuit colleges and universities in the US

Women's Colleges
The Women's College Coalition is an association of women's colleges and universities in the US and Canada whose mission is the education and advancement of women. They are particularly interested in the recruitment and retention of women in math, science and engineering and the development of women's leadership.


college fairs

Colleges That Change Lives (CTCL)
The 40 colleges that are identified by CTCL are involved in year round college fairs in cities all over the country.

Exploring College Options
Representatives from Duke, Georgetown, Harvard, Penn and Stanford gather to offer information and advice about college admissions in all 50 states.

National College Fairs, National Association for College Admissions Counseling (NACAC)
A list of free college fairs sponsored by NACAC throughout the U.S. in which hundreds of colleges participate and both students and parents are welcome.

Performing and Visual Arts College Fairs
A list of colleges fairs sponsored by NACAC designed for students (and their parents) interested in pursuing study in the areas of music, theater, dance, visual arts, graphic design, and other related disciplines. Many regular, as well as specialized arts colleges participate.

college information

College Navigator
Offered by the U.S. Department of Education, this remarkable website offers information that no other site offers, including yearly updated information on every college in the US regarding the percent of applicants admitted (under the Admissions Heading), general information, estimated student expenses, programs and majors, campus security, etc.

NICHE'S College Prowler
Another useful website that offers written reviews of current students.

The National Center for Fair and Open Testing (Fair Test)

A listing of all colleges and universities that do not require test scores

Colleges That Graduate Future Ph.D.s
The Institutional Research group at Reed College provides their research on the top ten schools who produce the highest number of future Ph.D.s in the All Disciplines, Biological Sciences, History, Humanities, Math and Statistics, Political Science, Social Sciences, Chemistry, Physics, Physical Sciences, Anthropology, Foreign Languages, Linguistics, English and Literature, Area and Ethnic Studies and Astronomy.

National Science Foundation List Of Undergraduate Colleges That Produce The Most Science And Engineering Doctorates

The University of Texas at Austin's website links list
In one place, this website offers the names and website links for all the four year and two year colleges in the United States by state and alphabetically
A free college Internet resource that offers a college search function, descriptions of over 4000 colleges with photos, videos and actual reviews by students, as well as admissions expert answers to students questions.


college searchES

College Board's BigFuture
Finally, someone has come up with a college search mechanism that is really useful. And that someone is College Board. This website asks you more questions than most about what you want in a colleges; therefore, it offers you a more sophisticated list of college choices based on your answers. There are also sections on finding colleges, exploring careers, paying for college and more.

An excellent college search website that also offers useful information and college profiles.

College Mapper
A wonderful new resource for students that helps them develop a good college list and also keep track of the various college admissions tasks.


extracurricular activities

If you are having trouble finding activities that you like, let alone love, go to Ideas for Extracurricular Activities for a list of ideas, as well as a process to go through to identify possible things to do.

Natural High

A totally cool organization that supports students in doing what they love to get "naturally high," instead of turning to drugs and alcohol.


Financial aid

For a way to begin getting informed about the topic of Financial Aid, go here on this site for both definitions and good advice.


A financial aid form provided by the College Board and required by many private colleges for students seeking financial aid.


One of the most useful, accurate, comprehensive financial aid resources on the internet.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a form provided by the federal government that is required by public colleges and universities from students seeking scholarships, grants, loans or work study jobs.

FAFSA Forcaster
Offered both in English and Spanish, this link helps families get a preview of the financial aid they might be eligible for.

How College Financial Aid Works
A very useful explanation of how the financial aid process works, including what financial aid is, how you apply, what the usual formulas are, what happens when you qualify (and if you don't), merit-based scholarships, local and national scholarships, what if you need to get a job, ROTC, etc.

Student Loan Network Blog
All kinds of very useful information regarding student loans, federal loans and alternative loans.

Student Scholarship Search
Students, parents and counselors rave about this helpful website.


independent consultants

Independent Educational Consultants Association

A professional organization for educational placement advisors working in private practice.


national associations

National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC)
NACAC is the association for college admissions professional, including college admissions officers, high school counselors, independent admissions counselors and others. Most of the website is for admissions professionals, but there is a special section devoted to students and parents.

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA)
An athletic association some colleges belong to rather than NCAA.

National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)
The athletic association to which most colleges belong.

1. Information About NCAA Student Athlete Eligibility And Recruiting

2. List Of Colleges And Universities And Their Respective Sports


online education

Kahn Academy
Students love this site because they can learn just about anything, including math, science, computing and test prep.



US News & World Report College Rankings
Provides yearly rankings of national, liberal arts and other colleges in the U.S.


summer experiences

Allen's Guide, Summer Camps and Travel Programs
A very useful website that leads you to a wide variety of resources including Summer Camps, Arts Summer Camps, Summer Camps in Europe, Religious Camps, Competitive Sports camps, Special Needs Programs, Summer Jobs, etc.

Another guide that lists Sports Camps, Adventure Campus, Art Camps, Teen Programs and Tours, Special Interest Camps (e.g., chess, circus, Farm, Magic, etc.), Religious Campus, Special Needs Camps, Military Camps, etc.

Peterson's Summer Programs
An online service that allows you to search for specific kinds of characteristics, including length of time, geographic area, specific interests, etc.


testing resources

ACT Website.


1. Advanced Placement (AP)

2. College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

3. Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship
Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT)

4. SAT Reasoning And Subject Tests

TOEFL (Test Of English As A Foreign Language)


travel abroad and exchange programs

Council on Standards for International Educational Travel (CSIET)
CSIET is a well-recognized organization devoted to identifying reputable international youth exchange programs at the high school level.







visiting colleges

College Tour Company
A very reputable tour group.

If you want to know more about this and other admissions topics, read
Getting into the Best Colleges for you
. Order it here!



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