The College Solutions Blog

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

College blog
Featured image for “Getting Ready to Tackle the FAFSA”
December 9, 2014

Getting Ready to Tackle the FAFSA

FAFSA season officially starts on Jan. 1, which is when students who will be attending college in 2015-2016 can begin completing this critical financial aid form. Families must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid  to qualify for need-based aid. The FAFSA is the federal financial aid form that roughly 20 million financial aid applicants complete every year. Sadly,...
Read More
Featured image for “Why Affluent Teens Are Miserable”
December 2, 2014

Why Affluent Teens Are Miserable

In my experience, high quality, independent test-prep firms produce some of the best college newsletters. One newsletter that I always make sure I read comes from Compass Education Group, which offers test prep in Northern and Southern California.  Today I am sharing a thought-provoking post that Matt Steiner, who is Compass Education’s marketing director, originally wrote for the test-prep firm’s...
Read More
Featured image for “Saying No to Northwestern University”
May 5, 2014

Saying No to Northwestern University

A highly effective way to make college more affordable is to enroll in my upcoming course, The College Cost Lab. You can learn more about the class and enroll here. Lynn O’Shaughnessy Will your child end up going to his or her dream school? The odds are that your child won’t if the college or university is a rankings alpha...
Read More
Featured image for “We Are Done Paying for College”
April 27, 2014

We Are Done Paying for College

Last month, my husband and I sent off our final college payment. Bruce and I made monthly payments for seven consecutive years for our daughter Caitlin and our son Ben, who will be graduating from college in May. We did not take out any loans to pay for college and neither did our children. Our daughter Caitlin took the picture...
Read More
Featured image for “Learn How to Cut Your College Costs”
January 14, 2014

Learn How to Cut Your College Costs

Would you like to make college more affordable? I assume you do since you’re visiting my college blog. While visiting my blog and reading my book will certainly help you become a smart college shopper, plenty of parents, as well as college consultants, have urged me to create an online course that would include step-by-step instructions on how families can...
Read More
Featured image for “Schools That Award Lots of Merit Scholarships”
December 16, 2013

Schools That Award Lots of Merit Scholarships

I recently wrote a post that shared the colleges and universities that say that they meet 100% of financial need for the majority of their families. If you missed it, here it is: List of Colleges That Meet 100% of Financial Need The story prompted a mom to email me over the weekend with this question: Have you ever published...
Read More
Featured image for “Common Application Pandemonium”
October 16, 2013

Common Application Pandemonium

College blog post update: Since I first wrote the post below, there have been more developments in the continuing Common App fiasco: More schools are extending their Common App deadlines for Early Action and Early Decision. Here are the names of some of them:  Duke, Roanoke, Marist, Boston University, SUNY Geneseo Northwestern, University of Chicago, Columbia, Tufts, Barnard. The Common...
Read More
Featured image for “College Abacus:  A One-Stop Shop for Net Price Calculators”
October 9, 2013

College Abacus: A One-Stop Shop for Net Price Calculators

Today I’m sharing a conversation that I had yesterday with Amy Seldin, the founder of College Abacus. College Abacus is the place that I’d recommend heading to when you want to use any college or university’s net price calculator. If you don’t know what a net price calculator is, here is a brief description: A net price calculator will provide...
Read More
Featured image for “Should Your Child Apply Early Action or Early Decision to College?”
September 30, 2013

Should Your Child Apply Early Action or Early Decision to College?

Applying early action and early decision has become an increasingly popular practice among teenagers who are aiming for highly selective colleges and universities. Today I am happy to share with you a post written on this important topic by Peter Van Buskirk, a former admission dean,  higher-ed speaker and educational advocate for families. You can learn more about Peter by...
Read More
Featured image for “Beware of the College Red Carpet”
September 6, 2013

Beware of the College Red Carpet

I received an email yesterday from a friend of mine whose son is a brilliant high school senior. She wanted to know what they should think about invitations her son has received to apply to colleges through VIP or priority applications. Here is her question: My son has received approximately 10+ email/print invitations from schools to complete their priority applications....
Read More