College Information

Top Ten College Application Mistakes

  1. Fill out the application yourself. Admissions people know if your parents help, whether you have two different styles of handwriting or your admissions essay sounds more like a 45-year-old than a 17-year-old. It’s fine to get advice, but do the work yourself.

  2. Misspelling and grammatical errors – This is a big pet peeve of admissions people. If you misspell on something as important as the application, it shows that either you don’t care or you aren’t good at spelling. Some students even misspell their major. Don’t stop with a spell check – proofread for grammatical errors, too.

  3. Follow through and make sure that your application has been received. If you apply online, you should receive confirmation that the college or university received it. Confirmation could be an email message, a Web page response or a credit card receipt.

  4. Forgotten signatures – make sure you sign and date the application form. Often students overlook that part of the form if it’s on the back. Check that all spaces are completed.

  5. Read carefully – for example, if the form asks what County you live in, don’t misread it as Country and write United States.

  6. Listing extracurricular activities that aren’t – those that make the list include sports, the arts, formal organizations and volunteer work. Talking on the phone and hanging out with friends don’t make the cut. Make sure your activity information is accurate. Colleges may check with your high school.

  7. Not telling the Guidance and Counseling Center for GVHS where you have applied, so a transcript with ACT scores can be sent to that college.

  8. Writing illegibly – first impressions count, so take your time and use your best handwriting. It will make a better impression.

  9. Using an email address that friends might laugh about, but colleges won’t – select a professional email address. Keep your fun address for friends, but select an address using your name for college admissions.

  10. Not checking your email regularly – if you’ve given an email address, the college will use it. You don’t want to miss out on anything because you did not read your email.

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