Tips on how to prepare your child for success in university

Tips on how to prepare your child for success in university:

The first year in high school is a great time to start thinking about how to prepare for college in a way that will set students up for success. Universities in the US may look at academic grades all the way back to year 8 or 9, so start preparing early and don’t assume that it’s just the final year of high school that counts. Depending on which University they want to apply for, students may need to sit for standardized tests (the ACT or SAT for US Universities), prepare application essays and demonstrate participation in extracurricular activities.  These are some ways in which you can prepare your child for university admissions while still in high school, even if they still do not know what major they are interested in, or what school they want to go to.

Connect with your Academic Advisor

Many students don’t even meet with their Academic Advisor until their senior year, but it is a good idea to connect with them when they start their high school journey. Academic Advisors can answer college questions, and lots of other useful information. Students can talk to them about their hopes for their future, and get their insights how to prepare for college, or share their experience on the University admissions process. They can also help students pick the courses they need to take to get better chances to be accepted into their program or university of choice, help them select the university that would be the best fit for them, and assist them in securing volunteer opportunities that would support their application.

If your high school doesn’t have an Academic Advisor or College Counsellor, you can book private sessions with an independent counselor, that can help you build your study plan.

Plan Ahead

By setting up a plan early in their high school career, and checking on their progress each year, students will be sure to stay on track. Once students meet with their Academic Advisors and build a University application plan, it is particularly important that they can achieve academic excellence in those courses they need for university admissions. The students’ academic records should reflect their abilities and their grades.

Students should choose subjects they love. The middle school years are great for exploring interests. Students will be given two or three electives to choose each semester, and that is the best opportunity to give them a try. Once in high school, subjects can play a major role in the direction students take beyond high school, and often university courses will have prerequisites, so it is important to consider them carefully before finalizing their selection. When selecting courses, students should consider their passions, interests, strengths, weaknesses, and potential career and university pathways.

Build Relationships with Teachers

A letter of recommendation from a teacher can be especially important when submitting university applications. Students should make a point to participate, ask questions, and be engaged in class.

Self-study & Extra-curricular Learning

Self-study will give students a serious boost in their marks, which will improve their chances of gaining admission into a top university. Universities in the Canada, US and the UK favour students who are more than just strong academically. The world’s best universities look to admit well-rounded applicants, who show passion, interests and dedication beyond the classroom.

Volunteer & Community Service Programs

Volunteer work and community service give students an edge when applying for scholarships and provides them with valuable work and social skills that can help students with their career and networking opportunities.

Universities want to see that students are involved in activities that don’t involve studying and that challenge them in some way. They look for students who will bring something unique to their school and enhance their culture in some way. Some universities would like to see applicants that are involved in activities related to what they want to study. This proves a real interest in the field, and they will bring passion to their studies. Taking on a part-time job or volunteer opportunity related to their field of interest may not only improve their application but also help them experience what it would be like to work in the industry after graduation.

Define the University that Would be the Best Fit

It is important to think about what the best university environment is for your child. Will your child thrive in a large university with thousands of students, or will s/he do better in a school that offers small class sizes? Do you want you child to stay in town or are you open to consider options in other cities or countries? Do they offer scholarships or fit within your budget? These factors will help you and your child narrow down on the best options out there. You will get information from many different schools, and by defining the kind of experience you are looking for, it will be easier to filter this information and decide what schools are worth looking into when the time comes.

Schedule a few campus visits at their top-choice schools. This provides a great opportunity to get a feel for each campus and envision living there.

Get ahead with College Courses

Taking advanced courses in high school will help students prepare for the demand of college workload and will look good in their college application. Dual enrollment, or dual credit courses are college courses that are taught either at the college or university or at the high school by a qualified instructor. These courses are more rigorous that the typical high school curriculum, but they count for high school credit and university credit at the same time.  Advanced Placement (AP) classes, can also award students university credit while still in high school, contingent on them passing a final standardized test.

These courses can give students a head start on college, help them choose their major, prepare them for their college-level work and strengthen their high school GPA and transcript. They can also improve students’ chances of gaining admissions, particularly if their goal is to study abroad at a top-ranked university.

Get a Tutor

There is a common misconception that students only need a tutor if they are falling behind a subject, but a tutor can optimise the student’s learning experience. Tutors focus on students needs and direct their studies accordingly, which does not normally happen in a high school. Many of them have sat the exams and know the most important content to study and what it takes to do well. 

Following these tips will help ensure your child is prepared for a successful transition to university. Remember, early preparation and academic guidance are the keys to a successful application. Be sure to utilize all of the resources and guidance your school has to offer. In particular, this is where private schools excel in assisting your child.

So, if you would like to learn more about how a private education can benefit your child check out this post or contact us directly below.