Congratulations on starting your senior year of high school! This year is a bittersweet time where you will be focused on applying and making the transition into college but also a time of reflection of your growth and knowledge gained over the last 17-18 years.
The best time to start applying for college is as soon as possible. After you have conducted your research on which schools you would like to apply to and completed your college visits, it is best to keep track of deadlines of the colleges you want to apply to. However, it is best to be organized and apply as soon as possible. There are many colleges that have rolling admissions or strict deadlines, so make sure you take note of this and apply accordingly.
In addition to applying the colleges, make sure to stay on top of your current schooling and extracurricular activities. If you need to take any additional tests like the ACT or SAT, make sure to have the tests sent to your colleges that you applied to. Also, ask your teachers for letters of recommendations and meet with your guidance counselor for additional advice. Likewise, do not forget about applying for scholarships and taking note of when those deadlines are approaching.
In the end, follow these steps for applying for college:
1. Make a list of majors/locations/type of school (public, private, large, medium, small, city, small town, etc.) you are interested in.
2. Make a list of colleges that you are most interested.
3. Narrow down the amount of schools you want to apply to with about 3 target schools, 2 reach schools, and 2 safety schools.
4. Research the deadlines and other application requirements for the colleges.
5. Make a checklist with all the things you need to complete to apply for the schools like essays, test scores, and letters of recommendation.
6. Make a checklist of all other tasks needed in addition to applying for school that relate like scholarship applications, submit financial aid forms, test scores, etc.
After all these steps: Congratulations! You have applied to college and will have to wait for responses, but in the meantime, keep up the good work and finish your senior year strong! college applying college-advice
Some great sources:
I would recommend that you have the common app filled out prior to the fall of your senior year, or not long after. It is best to get most of your applications in by November as some schools I have seen have Nov. 15 deadlines. It helps to take tours in your junior year and summer heading into senior year so you already have a good idea of where you want to apply!