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This weekly email searches main media outlets finding stories that may be of interest to high school counselors, college admission officers and related organizations, with links to the original stories. It is published by de facto, inc., publishers of other e-newsletters.

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Big Picture

Parents study up on how to improve college prospects for their children
PBS.org - Newshour - Oct 24, 2013
GWEN IFILL: Now: how some Los Angeles schools are trying to improve students' college prospects by focusing directly on their parents....
Will Online Education Render Traditional College Obsolete?
Forbes - Oct 29, 2013
Technological change has made online coursework very competitive with the traditional means of teaching. Will it lead to dramatic change in college, or have only a minor impact? Consider the analogy to music....
States with the most and least affordable colleges
USA Today - Oct 29, 2013
Average in-state tuition at public four-year universities rose by just 2.9% this year, the smallest increase in more than three decades, according to data released last week by College Board. When adjusted for inflation, it has barely increased at all.....
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College Admissions Process/Strategies

Using FAFSA Against Students
Inside Higher Ed - Oct 28, 2013
Some colleges are denying admission and perhaps reducing financial aid to students based on a single, non-financial, non-academic question that students submit to the federal government on their applications for student aid...
Does Applying For Financial Aid Hurt Your College Admissions Chances?
Forbes - Oct 29, 2013
The article in the GW Hatchet read like a scene ripped from a high-school-senior’s nightmares. “The University admitted publicly for the first time Friday that it puts hundreds of undergraduate applicants on its waitlist each year because they cannot pay GW’s tuition,...
More Mistakes to Avoid in Your College Application
Huffington Post - Oct 25, 2013
The challenges facing Common Application may be making the headlines, but many students applying to college with or without Common App are hurting their chances of admission by failing to follow some pretty basic steps:...
6 College Admissions Myths: Busted
Huffington Post - Oct 28, 2013
The way in which universities admit students can seem like a bit of a mystery -- even after completing the process yourself. Misguided assumptions and well-circulated rumors litter mainstream thought. Don't allow yourself to fall for them! Here are six common college admissions myths to avoid: ...
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Common App Problems

Common App finally admits to 'isolated' server problems
DC College Admission Examiner  - Oct 26, 2013
In a notice posted on Facebook late last night, officials from the Common Application finally admitted that for some time, the troubled system has suffered from isolated “server” problems....
More College Application Deadline Changes
College Admission Examiner  - Oct 26, 2013
As Common Application woes continue, more schools are changing their Early Decision and/or Early Action deadlines to help students apply on time. Check with the schools you are applying to for the most up-to-date information. Here is the most recent list, compiled by Application Bootcamp:...
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Letters of Recommendation

Getting great letters of recommendation for college
Charlotte Observer  - Oct 29, 2013
At this time of the year most seniors are so caught up in their essays that many of them forget about another important component of their college application: the letter of recommendation. ....
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College Essays

The Perfect College Essay? Check Your Exaggeration, Drama And Self-Aggrandizing At The Door
WBUR.org - Here & Now - Oct 29, 2013
It’s that time of year again. Otherwise well-adjusted high school seniors melt down in stress-induced tantrums and parents hover over their desks demanding, “Is it done?” ...
Seniors: An Exercise to Help with Your Essays
True Admissions Blog - Oct 29, 2013
Seniors, how go your essays? If you’re struggling a little, we have an exercise we’ve found to be particularly effective for students whether they’re just starting or working on that fourth or fifth supplement! It’s one of our favorite writing prompts and one we often use when working with students in essay workshops:..
5 admissions essay topics to avoid
SAT Prep Examiner - Oct 29, 2013
Not all admissions essays are created equal. While colleges and universities may, at times, require applicants to speak to a specific subject, others allow individuals to determine their topics for themselves. Such freedom can prove to be both overwhelming and/or disastrous for students with little idea of what to discuss. ...
From the pros: Best college essays hint at who you are
Boston.com - Oct 24, 2013
The college essay: It is daunting. It can cause sleepless nights and stomachs to churn. Countless hours are spent trying to find the perfect subject, the perfect description, the perfect words to portray the winning experience that will green-light an application. ...
15 college essay tips from BC, Wellesley and Wheaton admissions officers
Boston.com - Oct 24, 2013
Together they have more than 90 years experience reading, and judging college essays: John Mahoney, director of undergraduate admissions at Boston College, Jennifer Desjarlais, dean of admission and financial aid at Wellesley College, and Gail Berson, vice president and dean of admissions at Wheaton College. ...

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Never Visit a College Campus with Your Parents Again Thanks to Google
Time - Oct 24, 2013
It was a college road trip on steroids: when I was a high school junior, my parents and I visited 12 college campuses in less than two weeks. The three of us were in a car together for hours at a time driving up and down the East Coast, spreadsheets and check lists in hand, tempers slightly less in hand.....
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5 Easy Ways to Improve Your ACT or SAT Score
HerCampus - Oct 25, 2013
When the ACT and the SAT roll around, it can seem like four years of club meetings, volunteering, school functions and exams all boil down to a few digits in an envelope. No matter how sharp your number two pencils are, these are tests that require much more than wishful thinking. ..
What ACT Score Do You Need?
About.com - Oct 27, 2013
I hope the thousands of students who took the ACT yesterday had a good time with those #2 pencils. If you're wondering what scores you'll need to get into your top choice colleges ..
Face Common SAT Fears of International Students
US News & World Report - Oct 24, 2013
Many international students don't speak English as their mother tongue, which can intimidate students competing with thousands of others in the SAT and TOEFL tests. ..
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HSCW Counselors' Corners
Post - Oct 30, 2013
Administrative Support of Counseling Programs—The Counselor’s Role
It’s a busy time of year. Elementary and middle school counselors are involved with parent conferences, while high school counselors have the additional layer of early college applications to complete.... More

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Parents key to reducing teens' chances of being in a crash
Shreveport Times - Oct 28, 2013
It’s one of the most joyous moments of teen life and one of the most frightening for their parents: passing the driver’s license test. For teens, it’s freedom. For parents, it’s constant worry....
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Rating President Obama's College Ratings
Forbes - Oct 28, 2013
Finding the right college is complicated enough for well-prepared students from middle- or upper-class families with a history of college education. If you’re a low-income student, the first in your family to attempt college, ...
How to Grade Colleges
Kiplinger.com - Oct 28, 2013
Beginning in 1999, Kiplinger’s has published the best values in private colleges and universities. This year, our lists take on special significance. President Obama recently proposed tying federal financial aid to colleges’ performance, based on a ratings system that would let students and families select schools that provide the best value. ...
Lists That Rank Colleges’ Value Are on the Rise
New York Times - Oct 28, 2013
FLooking out over the quadrangle before him as students dashed from one class to the next, James Muyskens was feeling proud one recent afternoon, and why not? ...
“Bang for the Buck” and the Future of College Rankings
Washington Monthly - Oct 28, 2013
The New York Times has an interesting piece today featuring one part of our annual college guide, the ranking of the country’s best “Bang for the Buck” colleges, institutions that deliver the most to students for the least money. ...
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7 ways to find free money for college
CBS News MoneyWatch  - Oct 29, 2013
(MoneyWatch) 'Tis the season when parents and high school students who will be in college next year should start looking for scholarships. The good news is that scholarships are easier than ever to find and apply for thanks to online tools that can connect students to billions of dollars'....
College Admissions: 9 Scholarships Anyone Can Apply For
GoLocalProv College Admissions  - Oct 28, 2013
Many families wonder about private scholarships--sources of funding for college that are not offered by the federal government or colleges. Advertisements on the Internet make it seem as if there are abundant untapped private scholarships to fund education....
List of Colleges That Meet 100% of Financial Need
The Coillege Solution - Oct 18, 2013
If your family will need to depend on financial aid to attend college, your best bet is to find a school that will offer an excellent financial aid package to your child....
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MA State Colleges and Universities’ Tuition Among Highest in US
GoLocalWorcester  - Oct 26, 2013
The College Board released data this week that showed both "Trends in College Pricing" and "Trends in Student Aid", which showed that as of the 2013-2014 school year, Massachusetts had the 11th highest in-state tuition average in the country for public four year institutions,....
New York State Seeks to Scale Back Student Testing
New York Times  - Oct 26, 2013
The New York State Education Department, responding to concerns that standardized exams in reading and math have become excessive and unwieldy, will seek to ease the burden of testing.....
Shaky economy creates more North Jersey college commuters
NorthJersey  - Oct 25, 2013
Kari DiNicola wanted to go to college in California. She wanted the whole experience — roommates who became lifelong friends, study sessions in the library, late-night parties and decorating her dorm room....
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Teen dating violence: Resources for teens and parents
CBS News - 48 Hours  - Oct 26, 2013
Breakup violence among teens is a crime that has no zip code. It's urban, suburban, and rural. A relationship ends and what happens is an emotional surge of uncontrollable anger. It can be verbal or physical and sometimes, as in the case of Wayland, Mass., teen Lauren Astley, it can end in death.e.....
‘Am I Pretty or Ugly?’: When Teen Girls Court Haters
The Cut  - Oct 30, 2013
Evaluating the relative attractiveness of young women is an activity that occurs so frequently — in casual conversation, in online comments, on television, in football stadiums, on walks down the street, even while receiving awards from the president — that it approaches a national pastime.....
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