Tips for High School Juniors
The college search process can be long and daunting. For many students, beginning the search during junior year can help alleviate stress and avoid procrastination and the last-minute rush. Here is some information about our general academic requirements and some tips for your college search.
Your Academic “Check-Up”
For many students, junior year is the most challenging, and rewarding, of their high school career. College admissions counselors often look to the junior year as an indication of a student’s readiness for college and significant emphasis will be placed on the trend in this year’s grades. As you register for classes, keep a few things in mind:
• Now is the chance to make sure you meet the minimum requirements for admission. Redlands recommends a college preparatory program that includes four years of English and two or three years each of a foreign language, lab science and social studies. Three years of math up to and including Algebra II is required.
• Many high schools fully open Honors, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses to juniors. We encourage students to take these courses, but also to be realistic. Overloading on challenging courses can hurt your GPA and your chances for admission.
A Basic Timeline
• Sign up to take the PSAT.
• Start thinking about your college search. Educate yourself on the wide variety of colleges and universities and what characteristics are most important.
• Consider taking a leadership position in a club or activity you enjoy. For Redlands, quality, not quantity, is key. Stick with activities, clubs or sports that you’re passionate about, not just because they beef up your résumé.
• Keep your eyes open for local college fairs—you may even have one at your high school. These are great opportunities to see a wide variety of schools and to talk one-on-one with an admissions representative. Check out our College Fair list to see when we will be in your area.
• Register to take the SAT, ACT and/or TOFEL.
• Start visiting local colleges: large, small, public and private. Get a feel for what works for you. Develop a list of 15-20 colleges that interest you.
• Visit Redlands! We offer tours, information sessions, admissions appointments, day-long and overnight visits. This is a great way to see who we are and explore our beautiful campus.