Start Preparing Your Teenager for College


  • Author Joe Murray
  • Published September 23, 2011
  • Word count 536

Education needs to be a priority in your teen's life. It is very important for your teenager to be taking the right courses in high school. You'll need to work with your teenager's school to be sure they are getting all of the courses needed for college. The guidance office at your teen's high school is there to provide students and families with guidance about a variety of topics, including everything that has to do with college search.

Your teen should also take a look at extracurricular activities such as being involved with a community organization, in sports or other student activities. These are all things colleges will look for on the application. Colleges pay very close attention not only to your teen's grades in school, but also to the attitude your teenager has about school. Promoting a positive school experience in high school benefits your teen.

Picking a college major is one of the biggest decisions after deciding to go to college that a teen has to make. Not all colleges are the same. Each one has their own strengths that they excel in; so before you decide where to attend you first need to decide on what you wish to major in. Call the admissions offices and inquire about the majors. Be sure to ask if your teen can hold off on choosing a specific major. Most college’s give 1st year students a generic course loads and specific major courses aren't given until the second year. This may help your teen knowing that a decision does not necessarily have to make in that first year.

Once your teen has an idea of what career they wish to pursue, you can then decide on which college to attend. Be sure to apply to at least two if not more. This will give your teen a backup plan should they not get into the first college of their choice.

Consider enrolling your teen into an SAT preparatory class. If necessary, allow your teen to take the test more than once. While a lower grade on this test will not keep your teen from attending college completely, a higher grade will provide more opportunities into the college of their choice and can also help with scholarship funding.

When it's time to start filling out college applications, some preliminary work may be required. Encourage your teen to read the entire application over and take notes on what information needs to be collected in order to answer all of the questions. There may be a need for items such as teacher recommendations, copies of awards or class certificates. Fill in the application in pencil first so if any changes need to be made, s/he can do so without ruining the application paper.

The cost of a college education is always a major concern for parents and chances are you have many questions about those costs. You can, however, receive help for college costs. There are a variety of grants, scholarships and student loans available to help offset the expense. Keep in mind that although it may take awhile to pay off a college degree, it is one of the best investments you and your teenager can make.

This article was provided by 17 Going on Adult, a program designed to help families with tense relationship issues, while also focusing on preparing kids for life after they turn 18. For more good parenting tips or help with the transition from adolescence to adulthood please visit their website at:

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