School Search Tips

Study Habit Tips

Public School Types





Selecting a College

There are many choices when it comes to study after high school. Students should consider the differences between a two-year community college a large public university, and a small private University. There are benefits associated with every college option. Students should also consider many different factors in this decision including geographic area, location, campus diversity, size of the institution, professional goals, and financial cost.

Types of Schools
Public and Private Colleges and Universities

State sponsored ¡V Primarily funded by state and government agencies

Subsidized by the state

Resident vs. non-resident tuition

Generally lower cost

Examples: UC Berkeley, UCLA, UT Austin, Univ. of Virginia, Univ. of Michigan, etc.

Funded by endowments, tuition, donations

Either Independent or religiously affiliated ¡V primarily funded by private donations or from religious or other organizations and student tuition.

Private institutions are usually governed by a board of trustees.

Usually cost more (also give out more Financial Aid)

Usually offer smaller class sizes

You need to consider at what you want in a school and need a school to have and which institution can provide that
Examples: Harvard, Yale, Stanford, NYU, Duke, etc.
In general, both public and private colleges and universities offer:

Bachelors degrees

Graduate studies (Graduate and Professional Degrees)

Broader curriculum with more areas of study

Different kinds of schools offer variety of experiences

Differences between a college and a university:

Colleges are usually smaller, but not always

Distinctions between the two are getting smaller and smaller. It used to be simpler to tell the difference, usually a college was either ¡§liberal arts¡¨ or a ¡§teaching college¡¨ focusing on undergraduate degrees where as a university supported ¡§research¡¨ and therefore graduate and professional programs

Often a public system would have both colleges and a university, but the distinctions are getting harder to tell

Students need to look at each college or university on a case to case basis to decide if it meets their academics and personal needs.

Community Colleges, Also known as "two-year colleges" or "junior colleges", offer two years of study leading to an Associates degree and are designed to transfer students to four-year colleges. Community Colleges offer specialized training similar to a technical college or vocational school; in other words studies focus on preparing for the workforce.

What You Get: 					What You don¡¦t Get:
Open enrollment 					Campus life
Economical					College experience
Part-time option					Less focus on academics
Smaller Classes					University environment
Build remedial skills					Less prestige
Less pressure					More outside distractions	
Teachers likely to be skilled teachers

Vocational Colleges, are Privately owned and operated. They offer short course length/(5-12 months. Some are longer (court reporting ¡V 2 years). The curriculum generally has a job training focus.
Examples of types of careers:
Cosmetology, Mechanical repair, Court reporting, Paralegal services, Travel services, Secretarial, Medical assistant.

Technical/Training Schools award Associate degrees in: General education and elective courses. It prepares students for technical occupations. (Examples: Accounting, Dental hygienist, Computer programmer/analyst). These schools also award Technical diplomas/Apprenticeships/Certificates.
Technical Diploma: Usually offered to meet needs of businesses (Examples: Automotive maintenance, Accounting assistant, Pharmacy technician
Apprenticeship: Industrial or service trade
Certificate programs: Demonstrate completed coursework in focused study area (Examples: Advanced organizational leadership, Customer service, Landscape specialist)

What You Get:					What You Don¡¦t Get:
Specific training					General education
Defined career path				Bachelor¡¦s Degree
Complete quickly					Prestige
Narrow focus					Broad focus
						Less job opportunities
						Less opportunity for advancement

Factors to Consider
Choosing the right place to study after high school is very important.

There are many factors to consider:

Is it a challenge?

Is it a new experience?

What kind of environment and people do I want to be around?

What kind of setting do you want to study?

Do you want to stay some where close enough to go home on the weekends?

Do you want to live at home?

One thing to keep in mind is that there is no ¡§right¡¨ answer¡K there are many factors to take under consideration, the best school for you might not be best school for your best friend; your top choice might not be your parents¡¦ top choice.
Choosing the ¡§right¡¨ school means choosing a range of schools ¡K then the admission¡¦s department at those schools will decide whether or not you are the ¡§right¡¨ student for them!



Academic Rigor






Religious Affiliation



Admission Criteria



Overall Environment


Access to public transportation (easy to get around)

Diverse student body


Small Town/Big City

Downtown/Out in the country

Distance from home



Emphasis on research or teaching

Single gender (all women¡¦s or all men¡¦s)

Coed (Men and Women)

Liberal arts/teaching college

Specialized (known for particular field)

Course offerings/Areas of study

Whether or not you think you¡¦ll get in, remember you need a range of schools

Find out what each school is looking for

What is the average GPA?

What is the average SAT?

How many letters of recommendation do you need and from whom?

What type and how many personal statements/essays does the school require?

Cost of Tuition

What type of financial aid available is through the school?

What do they do about undocumented students?

How hard is it?

What is the core curriculum like?

What kind of services do they offer to students? Summer programs? Centers?

Ratio (teacher/student)


Teacher Assistants?

Renowned Faculty ¡V What is the schools ability to attract respected faculty?

Military Academies are funded by the federal government, that means that they are FREE; you need a letter from a congressperson to ¡§nominate¡¨ you for admissions, which is not that difficult to get if you are a good student

Is ROTC available?

Does the school have one?

What kind of services are available?

Does the school have clubs that interest you or that you have always wanted to try?

What sort of competitive teams or club sports are offered?

Are there things you like to do on-campus or nearby off-campus?

What the campus looks like?

What condition are the buildings in?

Housing - is it offered and/or available to students or is off-campus housing affordable/available?

Are athletic facilities available to non-athletes?

Are there places to study that work for you?

Visit the campus if possible, especially the Student Union or Student Center

¡§Interview¡¨ current students from your area or recent graduates ¡V admissions offices and alumni associations can often help you get in touch with these people in your community. You have time to do this!!

What is the reputation of the school? Is it known to be progressive, preppy, welcoming, etc.

Where might you feel comfortable?

What is the ethnic breakdown of the student body?

HBCUs ¡V Historically Black Colleges and Universities

HSIs ¡V Hispanic Serving Institutions

What is the male/female ratio?

What student support services are offered/accessible?

© Copyright 2023 PCAPPA2003 Education Tips. All rights reserved. Unauthorized duplication prohibited.