Your Step to Step Guide to Helping Your Teen Get into College/University

Ashley is a 16 year old from Torrance, CA with unique curly hair. She loves writing poetry, trying new experiences, eating spicy food, and socializing. Her dream job is to become a writer.

Does your teen want to go to College/University? Is he/she aware of the steps they must go through to get there? All over the world, college/university is a dream that many teens want to reach. More and more, teens are giving their best effort in and out of school to reach that goal. Some parents don’t even know what steps their teen need to take to get into college. The question that comes through a few of the population’s parents is: What steps are needed to get my teen to get into College/University? Here’s how you can help
your teen get into College/University.

1. Know what occupation your teen wants to pursue in their future:

This is a very important step because without knowing what occupation your teen wants to pursue, there’s no way you can help your teen into a college/university that’s right for him/her nor know what your teens ambitions are for their future.

2. Know what classes your teen needs to take for their future career and what the purpose of them is:

Many of your teens already have a definite idea of what classes are required to meet their future career standards and their purpose. Parents, you need to know this by:

– Researching what classes are best for their desired field: You can do this easily in a search engine by typing “what classes should I take to become a/an (your teens future
career) “

– Asking your teen what classes they’re taking and what their purpose is: Parents sometimes don’t even ask their teen what classes he/she are taking and what the purpose of them are, due to communication problems or by lack of thought.

3. Sign your teen up for the PSAT in mid October:

Your teen doesn’t have to take the PSAT, but it’s highly recommended. By taking the PSAT, not only does your teen have an idea what’s on the PSAT, your teen will have practice for the SAT; along with his/her chance of being qualified for scholarships and awards such as the National Merit Scholar honor. Your teen can only have the chance of being in the National Merit Scholar honor if he/she gets a good score on the PSAT and who is a junior in high school.

– Remember: The PSAT is only given out once a year at your teen’s high school in October.

4. Buy your teen a PSAT book:

This is recommended. By buying your teen a PSAT book, he/she will get lots of practice for the PSAT. Most PSAT books range from $13 and up, depending where you buy it. You can get PSAT books online or in stores such as Barnes and Noble. It’s always best to buy your teen a PSAT book a lot earlier than the PSAT is given, they’ll get more practice that way!

5. Have your teen practice and study their PSAT book:

Your teen needs to study their PSAT book; this will help them get a good PSAT score. If they don’t study their PSAT book, chances are they’ll struggle when it their time comes to taking the PSAT.

-Remember: The PSAT has 3 timed sections, which are Critical Reading, Math and Writing Skills. The Critical Reading and Math section is 25 minutes long and the Writing Skills section is 30 minutes long. Have your teen practice their test taking speed!

6. Keep track of your teen’s grades:

This is especially important. Your teen’s grades are one of the things Colleges/Universities look at, but it’s not the only one. Colleges/Universities look at other things such as involvement in school clubs, sports etc.

7. Motivate your teen to join clubs:

Colleges/Universities also look at what clubs your teen has been involved in. By your teen joining a club, he/she will also make new friends and experience new things. Your teen should take a club involving community service, this looks good on college applications.

8. Motivate your teen when they are feeling a failure to their success:

Your support is always needed when your teen feels discouraged of their efforts. A hug, a kiss or helpful advice can help your teen’s negative feelings vanish.

9. Award your teen’s hard efforts:

It’s always best to award your teens hard efforts every now and then. Awarding them with things such as a shopping spree or a night out with friends will make your teen feel happy and proud of their hard work. Your teen deserves it!

10. Let your teen study with his/her friends:

Don’t always isolate your teen in the house when they have homework or need to study! If your teen wants to go over to their friend’s house to study or do homework, let them.

11. Have your teen take the SAT:

The SAT can be taken without taking the PSAT. But, it’s highly recommended for your teen to take the PSAT for their own benefit. The SAT is given 7 times a year in October, November, December, January, March, May and June on Saturday mornings. The SAT is 3 hours and 45 minutes long and consists of 10 sections, which are 3 reading sections with a time limit of 1 hour and 10 minutes, 3 writing sections with a time limit of 1 hour, 3 sections of Math with a time limit of 1 hour and 10 minutes and an experimental section (reading, writing or math) with a time limit of 25 minutes.

Remember: The sections of the SAT can occur in any order.

12. Know what College/University is best for your teen:

It’s always best to do a College/University search online with your teen on the following websites:

Note: It’s always best to find more than one school that’s best for your teen.

13. Have your teen write a resume to the College/University that’s best for them:

After finding the right school, have your teen write a resume to the school with a heading, an academic profile, Co-Curricular Activities, Extracurricular Activities, and Work / Volunteer Experience, Honors / Awards and Hobbies / Interests / Travel. All resume format information can be found on:

A resume sample can be found on:

Note: Send the resume to more than just one school that’s best for your teen. Your teen should do this because the one school your teen wants to go to might not accept him/her.

Remember: Sending a college resume has a fee anywhere from $60-$80.

14. Look for financial aid and scholarship opportunities:

Your teen needs money to pay for College/University of course. It’s always best to look for financial aid and scholarship opportunities early.

A useful tip: Have your teen save up a few bucks from chores, working, Christmas/ birthday money, etc for College/ University. It’s never bad to start saving up early!

For more information regarding College/University, visit the following websites:

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2 Responses to “Your Step to Step Guide to Helping Your Teen Get into College/University”

  1. Chelsea
    November 8, 2010 at 6:56 am #

    This is a great article. It really is practically a job itself to get applications off to a university. Another thing to consider is if your teenager has issues like depression, bipolar, or an eating disorder (to name a few), and how well a campus is prepared to help them. The good news is that there are more options available in schools now than there were before, as discussed in this article:


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