The College Solutions Blog

Valuable insights from Lynn O’Shaughnessy
a nationally recognized college expert.

California universities
Featured image for “Will College Campuses Open in the Fall?”
April 28, 2020

Will College Campuses Open in the Fall?

Will college campuses open in the fall? It’s frustrating that no one definitely knows yet if colleges campuses will be open in the fall or if online education will predominate or there will be some hybrid of the two scenarios. In the interim, however, The Chronicle of Higher Education has been regularly updating a list of tentative plans that colleges...
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Featured image for “U of California and other colleges rush to dump SAT and ACT tests during COVID-19”
April 1, 2020

U of California and other colleges rush to dump SAT and ACT tests during COVID-19

High school students are stressed about when they will be able to take the SAT and/or ACT test again, but there is some good news during the COVID-19 pandemic . A steady stream of colleges and universities have been announcing that they will not require SAT or ACT test scores for the 2021-2022 school year and possibly beyond that admission...
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Featured image for “Elite Colleges, Entitled Teens and Guilted Parents”
April 6, 2019

Elite Colleges, Entitled Teens and Guilted Parents

The college admission season is winding down at this time of year except for this part: Parents are stressing about how they’re going to pay for the college that their children want to attend. Spring is when I hear from parents who are being guilted by their children to spend dangerously more than they should for a brand name research...
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Featured image for “College Admission Scandal: Symptom of a Larger Problem”
March 15, 2019

College Admission Scandal: Symptom of a Larger Problem

The college admission scandal that saturated the press this week made me think of a disturbing anecdote, which I heard last month, that blew my mind. I want to emphasize that shocking me is tough to do since covering the higher-ed industry – and it is very much an industry – has made me quite cynical and disgusted about how...
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April 2, 2018

Don’t Overlook College Graduation Rates

When building a college list, it’s critical to check college graduation rates. Paying for college is hard enough without adding a fifth or six year to the tab! And yet most students do not graduate from college in four years. Many parents whom I’ve talked to over the years seem shocked by this reality.  It is understandable since schools with...
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Featured image for “When College Sticker Prices Can Matter”
May 16, 2017

When College Sticker Prices Can Matter

College sticker prices are often meaningless because most students at state and private universities don’t pay it. Published prices, however, can be a helpful starting point when exploring what kind of price break, in the form of scholarship and grants, your child might get at a particular institution. Here’s an example: Your teenager receives a $15,000 annual merit award at...
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February 13, 2017

What Is a Research University?

Most students who hope to earn a bachelor’s degree will enroll at a university. The schools that students dream of attending are almost always research universities. It’s far less common for teenagers to end up at a college. I find that reality unfortunate because a college can often provide a better education for undergraduates than a research university. And it’s...
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Featured image for “Professor Ratings: Some Surprising Results”
June 14, 2016

Professor Ratings: Some Surprising Results

How do you know if the colleges or universities that your child is looking at would provide him or her with an excellent education? You won’t. College pricing is inching closer to transparency thanks to net price calculators and other tools,  but it’s difficult to form an educated opinion about the strength of a school’s learning environment. Evaluating an Institution’s...
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Featured image for “How To Measure College Grad Salaries”
April 18, 2016

How To Measure College Grad Salaries

When searching for schools, parents are increasingly asking admission reps this question: Will my child earn a good salary after graduating from your college? College and university admission staffs will enthusiastically answer yes (!!!) to that question, but proof is almost always flimsy at best. Schools typically brag about high job placement statistics for their graduates because they rely on job surveys of...
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March 21, 2016

3 Great College Search Tools

Most families don’t look far when searching for colleges. The vast majority of students, who go to four-year schools, attend public universities within their own state. And most find schools within 100 miles of their homes. Only 14% or so of students attend institutions more than 500 miles away. Nearby state schools can represent the best option, but that won’t...
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