Terms to Know

Admissions Exams:

Most colleges accept scores from either the ACT or SAT for admissions. Not all schools require SAT Subject Tests.

SAT I: A four hour exam that measures a set of skills - verbal and mathematical reasoning as well as writing skills.

SAT II: Subject Tests - One hour primarily multiple choice tests that measure achievement in specific subject areas.

ACT: The ACT is a college entrance exam that measures educational development in English, mathematics, science and writing.  Scores are reported as 1 -36 with 36 as highest. 

Some schools may not require SAT or ACT for admissions. For a list of those schools, click here.

Application Terms:

Common Application: 1 application that can be used by any school that accepts it. For more information, click here.

Early Action: Students apply at an early date (early fall). Students are not obligated to enroll if admitted (non-binding).

Early Decision: Students apply at an early date (early fall). Students are obligated to enroll if admitted (binding).

Regular Admissions: Set deadline date (January - March). Decision given by April.

Rolling Admissions: Colleges consider student's application once they have received all necessary materials. Decision is given shortly after that point.

Deferral: When a student’s application for early decision or early action is postponed and will be considered with the regular applicant pool.

Waitlisted: A waitlisted applicant may be considered for admission if there is space after admitted students have decided whether or not they'll attend.

Financial Aid:

FAFSA: Free Application for Federal Student Aid - Required for students seeking aid by nearly all colleges. Must be filled out in senior year after January 1. www.fafsa.ed.gov

CSS/Financial Aid Profile: Required for students seeking aid at approximately 10% of the nations 4-year colleges, including most highly selective institutions.

Student Aid Report: A form sent to families in response to their submission of the FAFSA. This report will indicate the Expected Family Contribution.

Work Study: A program in which students take campus jobs as part of their financial aid package. To participate in a work study program, students must complete the FAFSA.