Preparing for College: A Parent-Child Collaboration

EEsther October 14, 2023 7:01 AM

When it comes to preparing for college, it's not just students who have to gear up. Parents also play a critical role. This guide will help you, as parents, collaborate effectively with your children in their college prep journey.

Understanding the College Admission Process

As parents, it's crucial that you familiarize yourself with the college admission process. This includes understanding the application timelines, requirement of standardized tests like SAT or ACT, the importance of extracurricular achievements, and so on.

Role of Parents in College Admission

Your role isn't just limited to being a cheerleader. It involves providing emotional support, helping your child research different colleges, understanding financial implications, and potentially even helping out with application essays. Remember, you're a guiding force, not the one driving the process.

Financial Planning for College

College education comes with a hefty price tag. Financial planning is a major part of college prep that parents need to take the lead on. This includes exploring scholarship opportunities, understanding the FAFSA process, setting up a college fund, and more.

Choosing the Right College

Help your child identify the right fit. This means considering factors beyond just reputation - course offerings, campus culture, location, and financial aid opportunities are also important.

Here's a checklist to help you and your child in this journey:

Activity Parent's Role
Research Help in researching different colleges and their admission requirements
Applications Support in filling out applications and writing essays
Test Preparation Encourage and facilitate test prep for SAT/ACT
Visits Attend college visits and open days with your child
Financial Planning Take the lead in understanding and planning for college costs
Decision Support your child's decision, but let them have the final say

Transition from High School to College

This is a significant transition not just for students, but also for parents. Parents should help their child develop important life skills like time management, budgeting, and self-care, which will be important as they move away from home.

Remember, preparing for college is a parent-child collaboration. It's about working together and supporting each other through this exciting, albeit stressful, time.

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