Choosing colleges to apply to is the first step in your college journey. There are more than 2,200 four-year colleges and universities in the United States1, so it can take some time to find the right colleges for you. You have to figure out what you need in a college before you start researching schools to match what you want.
You don’t have to panic about finding the right colleges to apply to. We have all the resources and tips you need to find your best-fit colleges. Edward B. Fiske and your other college search mentors are ready to help you.
Keep an open mind while choosing colleges to apply to.
The biggest mistake of beginning applicants is hyperchoosiness—or "perfect-school syndrome.” If a college seems to have most of the qualities you seek, give it a chance, and don’t limit yourself to one dream school. Having a first choice college is fine, but the whole purpose of a college search is to consider new options and uncover new possibilities.
Don’t expect any quick revelations during your college search. The answers will unfold in due time. My advice? Be patient. Set priorities. Keep an open mind. Reexamine priorities. Again, be patient.
Ready to get started? Check out the articles below to jump start your college search.
1. “Introduction.” Fiske Guide to Colleges 2014, Edward B. Fiske. Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks, 2013. p. xvii.