Planning for College

What are admissions criteria?

Colleges differ in how they evaluate their candidates but most will consider the following: Grade point average, rigor of program, test scores, recommendations, activities/awards, personal essays, and interviews.

What are the different admission strategies?

  • Regular admission requires applications to be received on a given due date. Students are notified of the schools decision at a clearly stated period of time A student may apply to other schools without restriction.
  • Rolling admission allows students to submit applications throughout the year until the school reaches full capacity. Students should not procrastinate because many schools fill up and many still have "priority" deadlines. A student may apply to other schools without restriction.
  • Early decision (ED) allows a student to apply early (usually in November) and get an admission decision in advance of the usual notification date. ED plans are "binding," meaning you agree to attend the school if accepted. You may apply to other school regular admission but must withdraw all other applications if you are accepted ED.
  • Early action(EA) allows students to learn early in the admission cycle whether they are accepted by a college, but most EA plans are not binding. A student may apply to multiple colleges and compare offers of admissions and financial aid.
  • Early admission allows students to enroll before they graduate from high school.

What is on a high school transcript?

The school transcript includes a student’s courses and semester grades for all high school courses, including those earned while the student was in middle school.

What is Cumulative GPA and Weighted GPA?

GPA stands for Grade Point Average which is the average of a student’s semester grades for all high school courses. Each grade is given a value (A= 4 points, B= 3 points, C= 2 points, d=1 point and E=0) Weight is given to Honors, AP and Advanced courses where grades of C or better earn an additional value (A=5, B=4, C=3).

Where can my student do a college search?

There are many possibilities on-line, including, Family Connections of Naviance, CollegeBoard, and Petersons.

What is Naviance?

This is an internet-based program that supports the college application process. The Family Connection component includes allows students to compare colleges, make contact with schools, view statistics, and keep track of applications. Students can obtain registration information from Mr.Hock or their counselor.

Where can my student find information about scholarships?

Students can search for scholarships through link to the major databases on the web at Students should also check with prospective colleges for additional scholarship money.

May my student miss school for a college visit?

Visits to colleges are excused absences for seniors. Advanced written permission with verification is required.

What do these acronyms mean?

  • ACT: The American College Test is a set of four multiple choice tests that covers English, Mathematics, reading, and science.
  • AP: The Advanced Placement courses accompany the Advance Placement examinations. A qualifying score on an AP exam may give the student college credit in many colleges.
  • ASVAB: The Armed Services Vocational aptitude Battery is a career exploration tool used to identify student interests and aptitude.
  • CEEB: The College Entrance Examination Board identifies schools using a code. Sherwood High Schools CEEB code is 210940.
  • CLEP: the College-Level Examination Program allows students to demonstrate college-level achievement through examination.
  • NCAA: The National Collegiate Athletic Association handles registration to determine a student’s eligibility to play sports at a Division I or II college. Seniors who are student-athletes should register online at:
  • PSAT/NMSQT: The Preliminary Scholastic Assessment Test/ National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test is a practice for the SAT. Only students taking the test intheri Juinor year will be considered for the National Merit Scholarship Program.
  • TOEFL: The Test of English As a Foreign Language measure the ability of nonnative speakers of English to use and understand English.