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Adegbite Victor Oluwaferanmi
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Factors to Consider when
Choosing a School.

Choosing a school is a big decision, and
can easily become overwhelming. There
are many factors and variables that need to
be considered when making the decision.
Here are several important variables to
consider when selecting a college. Review
each one and then identify the ones most
important to you. When you are considering
schools, you can then refer back to this list
to see if the school offers programs and
services that match your priorities.

Cost
Cost is an important factor to consider
when choosing a school. Ask yourself if you
can afford tuition if you are accepted into a
particular school. Remember to factor in the
financial aid the school is likely to offer
you, and to find and apply for as many
scholarships as possible.

Location
When looking at schools, ask yourself
whether you'd rather be in a rural, suburban,
or urban location. How far is the school
from where you would live, and does that
matter to you? Does the town require you to
invest in a car or will you be able to use
public transportation to access the town in
which you live in.

Selectivity
Some schools are more selective than
others. You may want to research the
acceptance rates of colleges you're
considering before applying. More well-
known colleges are generally more selective.
Consider your chances of being accepted
into a well-known “name school,” and ask
yourself whether you would be happier at a
lesser-known school. Although a degree
from certain colleges has a lot of weight
behind it, in the end what really matters is
the quality of the education you receive and
the experiences you have.

Services and Programs for International
Students
If you are travelling from another country
for school, you may want to look into any
international student programs and services
provided by a school. Does this school
provide a variety of programs, services and
activities to help with the cultural
transition? Your school should have your
best interests at heart; make sure that any
school you’re considering is committed to
taking care of your needs.

Size
Size is an important factor in the college-
choosing process, and everyone has their
own preferences. Some people find that they
learn better in small classes, with the
possibility of one-on-one time with their
professors. Others prefer large lecture halls,
where students are more or less expected to
fend for themselves. Ask yourself which of
these is more conducive to how you learn.

Percentage of Graduates Accepted at Top
Graduate Schools
When choosing a college, you want to know
that you will be receiving a top-quality
education, and that you will have many
options available to you after college. Even
if you’re not sure at the moment whether
graduate school is in your future or not, you
may want to research the acceptance rate
of graduates. Knowing that you will have
options after graduation will help lend you
peace of mind.

Social Life
Your college will be your home for the next
four years (at least). You’re going to want
to know what the social life is like. For
example, do most students live on campus
or is it a "suitcase" college where most
students have to live off-campus? What do
students do for fun? What’s the schools
reputation? Is it a party school? Does it
have the activities you are interested in ?

Special Athletic or Extra-curricular
Activities
If you are involved in sports, theatre, dance,
art, or any number of other interests, and
wish to continue these activities in college,
or if you are interested in becoming
involved in a new activity, you’ll want to
check the availability of these activities on
any college campus you might be
considering. Does the school have
intramural sports teams? A cappella
groups? A belly dance ensemble? Wherever
your interests lie, make sure that any college
you apply to can satisfy those interests.

Retention and 4-Year Graduation Rate
When considering a college, you might want
to research what percentage of first year
students goes on to second year, and how
many first-year students remain at the same
school after four years. If the transfer rate
at a certain college is particularly high, that
might be a strong hint that the college does
not meet a large number of students’ needs
in some way. Additionally, you’ll want to ask
what percentage of graduates earns their
degrees in four years; at some schools it
takes longer than others. Ask yourself if
you’re willing to spend more time and
money to earn your degree.

Safety
Safety is one of the most important factors
to consider. Over the past few years, crime
has been increasing, even on college
campuses. When considering a college, look
into its crime statistics and find out what
steps the school is taking to ensure the
safety of its students.

Personal Preferences
There are many additional variables to take
into consideration, questions that may be
more important to some students than
others. For example, are you more
interested in a co-ed or single-sex college?
Would you prefer a private or public school?
Religious or secular? The answer to all these
questions depends entirely on the personal
preferences of the student choosing the
school.
Most of these questions can be answered by
the Admissions Office or the International
Student Office at the school you are
considering. You should also ask to speak
with other international students on campus
to get their feedback.
This list should just get you started. There
may be other issues or concerns that are a
priority for you. With so many schools to
choose from, you are likely to find one that
meets most of your criteria. Take some time
to list any other factors that are important
to you. Then start doing your own research!.


www.internationalstudent.com/student-news/articles/choosing-a-school/

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