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#1. 75 percent of high school seniors are accepted to their first-choice colleges; but less than 57 percent can afford to attend, according to a UCLA study.
That’s a 40-year low. Financing college was the largest factor the surveyed high school seniors cited for not attending their top choice college after being admitted.
Therefore, you must investigate the college’s financial aid programs before you apply. Do they offer merit aid in the form of scholarships and grants? What percentage of accepted students receives college-based financial aid? What is the average financial aid award? Source
#2. Only 0.4 percent of undergraduates attend one of the Ivy League schools. There are over 6,000 accredited institutions of higher learning in this country. Source
#3. Harvard College is suspected of grade inflation. The median grade is an A-, and the most frequently awarded mark is an A. Source
#4. 14 of the world’s 25 largest stadiums belong to American college football teams. Source
#5. The cost of college textbooks has risen 812% in the past 30 years. That’s more than healthcare costs, housing prices, and college tuitions, all of which have risen faster than the rate of inflation. Source
#6. Michigan Technological University boasts a real-life ski resort on campus. Heavily discounted for students, Mont Ripley (one of the snowiest "mountains" in the country) offers 112 acres of ski terrain, 24 runs, and two chairlifts. Source
#7. University of Missouri has a lazy river and beach resort! The 'Tiger Grotto' features a zero-depth pool entry with a high-powered vortex, lazy river and waterfall. Source
#8. Seton Hall University offers free laptops and smartphones for students! Source
#9. The average 2016 grad has $37,172 in debt. Source
You had a bad day! You messed up your ACT. You were ill, tired, or it was just an anomaly — a bad day. What to do?
You are in for luck! Unlike the SAT, you can actually delete your ACT test record and the scores. Really? Don't believe us?
Check out the link below and scroll down to the the question:
How do I delete a test date record?
To delete your scores for a particular test date, you must submit a written request. Write to:
ACT Institutional Services
P.O. Box 168
Iowa City, IA 52243-0168
(N.B. ACT's policy requires that the score was obtained from a paid registration (that is, not state or district-mandated testing) and has not yet been sent to any colleges.)
Wow! Colleges won't see your scores if you bombed your ACT test. What a relief? Now you can take your test with no pressure. And unlike the SAT you can actually see your score and then delete them. SAT allows test-takers until 11:59pm on the Wednesday following the test to decide whether they want to cancel their scores, but you won't know what your scores are. With the ACT you can see and decide to keep or delete your scores.
Regardless, we suggest to prepare strong and let your strengths truly shine in the ACT test.
Learn with Hillview Prep's ACT Bootcamps. The Hillview Prep Smart Scoring System for ACT introduces a structured manner that tests elements such as, conceptual understanding, pacing during test, assesses you real time to discover your learning style and gives you feedback right when in matters most. Consider trying us out. Call or email us for a free consultation. We guarantee success or your money back.
Catholic schools have been using the HSPT as part of the admissions process for more than 50 years, and the test has not changed in years. HSPT has stood the test of time and can be quite a challenging test.
1. The First Real Test
If your child hasn’t taken a standardized test before, this will be the first time he will sit for a long test. The HSPT evaluates five categories, namely: language, reading, and mathematics proficiency lasting over two and a half hours.
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Most international students take the SAT to prepare to apply to U.S. colleges. But the SAT is not the only test available. Another test, the ACT, is accepted by all U.S. colleges, and we think you should take that first.
The ACT is a more straight forward test and surveys your knowledge learned, whereas the SAT is more focused on critical thinking and reasoning, a challenge for many non-native English speakers.
The ACT is also becoming more popular in the United States. For the first time last year, more graduating seniors had taken the ACT than the SAT.
While the number of international students choosing the ACT is rising, they still represent a smaller portion than those from the U.S. The most likely reason is that Chinese students aren't usually aware of the ACT. Plus, there has not been a major marketing push by ACT internationally, despite having 400 testing centers worldwide.
While the SAT tests critical reading, math and writing, the ACT tests English, math, science and reaching. Given its focus on science, the structure of ACT is conducive to international education and standards. The only issue is mastery of English, which is challenge for international students who are non-native speakers of English.
For those with language challenges, consider a Skype session with Hillview Prep. Can Shakespeare help you solve ACT Science? Yes, he can. If you are good in Science, but struggling in the test, try improving your reading comprehension! What does reading comprehension have to do with science? Simply put, both sections have the same approach and same comprehension methods. Contact us for a free consultation to learn more about our ACT prep courses.
Recently, ACT launched a new test, the Pre-ACT.
The idea is similar to the PSAT: Give students a preview of the experience of taking the real test, and thus help them prepare for the college entrance examination.
Following are nine important facts that students and parents should know.
1. Similar but Shorter: The PreACT closely mirrors the ACT, but is shorter. While the regular ACT is 2 hours and 55 minutes long (3 hours 35 minutes if you add the Writing section), the PreACT is only 1 hour and 55 minutes long.
2. Sections: The PreACT has the same four multiple-choice sections as the regular ACT: English, Math, Reading, and Science. There is no Writing section.
3. Scoring: Both exams will be scored on a 1 to 36 scale.
4. Cheaper: The PreACT is $12 per student rather than $15 for the PSAT.
5. Flexible Scheduling: Schools can also administer the PreACT whenever they want during the school year, whereas the PSAT has a specific October testing date with only one alternate date available.
6. Difficulty Level: The questions on the exam will be questions from past ACTs that have been reformulated, so the difficulty level of the test is on par with the regular ACT. The point of the test is to help students get a better sense of where they would score on the real ACT and how much more they need to prepare before taking it.
7. College Planning: There's more to the PreACT than practicing for the ACT. PreACT test-takers will be asked to provide information on their interests, the courses they plan to take in high school and their expected college major. The idea is to help parents and counselors start important conversations related to college and careers.
8. No Competition--Just Practice: Unlike the PSAT (NMSQT), the PreACT has no scholarship competition. Its sole purpose is to prepare students for the ACT; scores will not have any direct effects on the college admissions process. It's really just a practice tool.
9. For the 10th grader: Taking the PreACT as a 10th-grader might help a student determine what he or she has to do to get ready for the ACT.
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, became available on Oct. 1 this year, three months earlier than in the past.
1. File Early.
As a result of the earlier FAFSA release, a small number of colleges have moved their financial aid deadlines into November or December, ahead of their admission application deadlines. A lot of aid is first come, first served, so you should still submit your FAFSA as early as you can. This is especially true for cash-strapped state universities.
2. Filling in your Financial Info is Easier.
For students starting college in the fall of 2017, families will use 2015 income tax information. Now you can use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to automatically fill in parts of the FAFSA based on your 2015 return.
3. You Don't have to List Everything.
Report only the types of assets and investments that the FAFSA specifically asks about. For example, don’t include your IRAs, 401(k) plans, and other retirement accounts, which are not supposed to be counted on the FAFSA.
You should also omit any equity you might have in your home and the value of any small business you own that has fewer than 100 employees.
4. File even if you don’t Expect Aid.
Just submitting a FAFSA will automatically qualify you for a low-cost federal student loan of up to $5,500 for freshman year.
The interest rate on undergraduate student loans is currently 3.8% plus about 1% in fees, which works out to an annual percentage rate of roughly 4.1%.
The FAFSA is also required for many other kinds of aid, including work/study jobs; federal parent PLUS loans; scholarships from state agencies, private foundations, and colleges; and, in a few cases, merit aid.
A new study looks at the reasons so many eligible students never even apply. Nearly all students qualify for federal aid, and 85% of four-year college students receive some type of aid.
Yet 20% of all undergraduate students failed to fill out the financial aid application in 2011-12, according to the U.S. Department of Education.
Why don't they apply? Some of the reasons are:
“I have not heard much about financial aid.”
“Scholarships and student loans? I think you’d have to be in a certain percentage to get financial aid?”
“I have no clue.”
“I’m not sure about financial aid but isn’t that like support from friends and family to help you in college?”
Non-applicants in the study also believed they would have to repay grants—such as Pell Grants, the cornerstone $30-billion program upon which more than 9 million students with financial need rely to fund their postsecondary education.
With the FAFSA form now available to students three months earlier on Oct. 1, there’s no time to waste. This year, the FAFSA is also simpler because many more families can autofill tax information already filed with the Internal Revenue Service.
Students left more than $2.7 billion in aid on the table in 2014. This year, apply early to get your financial aid.
Some Students tend to crumble under the pressure and information overload of bigs exams. Use these specific tips to prepare wisely for and ace all of your multiple-choice, math, and essay tests at school.
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Having homework problems? Check out 10 shortcuts to improve your homework experience.
1. SAVE TIME in 10 minutes
Take 2 minutes to put loose papers into the folders and the next eight minutes to reread notes and/or handouts from school. These 10 minutes will save you hours of searching and studying.
Plus, reviewing your notes transfers information to long-term memory, saving hours of study time when test time comes around.
2. Work in 30-Minute Blocks—THEN TAKE A 5 minute break
Set a timer and limit each study or work session to 30 minutes. Challenge yourself to finish a certain amount of work within that time. The adrenaline rush of the challenge will improve your focus. Set another timer for five minutes, relax or stretch. Start another 30-minute block of homework.
3. Create a User-Friendly Planner that works for you
A lot of students who keep a planner forget to use it throughout the day. Experiment! Find a way that works for you. Maybe, you want your parent to review your planner. Maybe an aide at school. Maybe you want it on your phone or you want a nice notebook or visual cues.
4. Sip Some GLUCOSE!
When kids do homework, they should sip (not gulp) lemonade or a sports drink. These beverages deliver glucose to your brain, which is its only source of fuel. The more fuel you have, the more you will be able to work effectively and efficiently.
5. Skip Problems That Stump You
If you come to a homework question that you find confusing, highlight or circle it and move on. Let your brain work on the problem in the background as you work through easier ones. Then come back to the ones that stumped you, or ask for help.
6. Review Your Notes Out Loud
Your brain will process the information in three ways: through your eyes as you read it, your mouth as you say it, and your ears as you hear your own voice. This improves your focus and memory.
7. Create Test Questions from Your Notes
Did you know testing is better than studying? So, why not write your own questions? It will help you learn better than reciting or memorizing information. The process forces you to think about the information at a higher level, which will help you learn more things, thus shortening your study time.
8. Read Your Textbook: Just Not Every Word
Read through related sections of your textbook, but don’t read every word. Read headings, diagrams, and captions to photos and illustrations to get started. Set your timer and spend one 30-minute block reviewing a textbook chapter. Your enhanced comprehension will help you sail through your homework.
9. Do a Quick Review Before Class
Review the table of contents and key headings before teachers lecture about them in class. This process gives your brain enough knowledge to help you pay better attention in class. You can reduce study and homework time if you have a deeper understanding of the material.
10. Get Ready for School at Night
Kids who are night owls are often groggy in the morning, so it’s easy to forget things if you are trying to get organized. Instead, gather all of your folders, books, notebooks, and supplies, and put them in your bag before you go to sleep. When you don’t deal with chaos in the morning, you have more resources to stay focused through the day--and for your homework.
It was Laura's first session. She had been attending a prestigious school was struggling greatly with reading and writing. Her mom, a Stanford grad, brought her in on a recommendation from another parent. After our first conversation, I understood exactly why her writing was poor.
I asked, “Hi, Laura. What did you do today at school?”
She responded, “Well...” “Like…” “But…” “and then…”
I could tell right away that her speech had no structure and was all over the place. It was almost like her ideas were trapped in her mind.
I decided to change her learning strategy. Instead of writing, we began with speaking exercises. We spent our session formatting conversations about her day in the most basic, minimal, yet effective sentences.
I asked, “Laura, how was your day?”
She Responded, “Well, like...”
I stopped her, “Let's try again. How was your day?”
Her response, “My day was great. I woke up at 7 then went to school then Tegan and me turned in...”
I stopped her once more, “Start over.”
She replied, “My day was great. I woke up at 7 and went to school. My friend Tegan and I turned in our math project.”
Our speaking exercises were working. In a short amount of time, forming basic sentences turned into developing eloquent sentences with complex grammar. She was becoming a more expressive and confident speaker. She was now ready to write.
Laura’s much improved speaking ability immediately translated into improved writing. She was able to gather her thoughts more efficiently, creating more meaningful content. I also noticed that her grammar and organization had drastically improved. She was blossoming into an exceptional writer.
Our learning methods enabled Laura to discover her natural speaking and writing abilities that she never knew she had.
With the right methods, any student can discover his or her natural ability to excel at any subject.
What makes you succeed? Come join us and find out!
The University of Pennsylvania is known to many as UPenn or Penn.
Penn is an Ivy League university situated in the heart of Philadelphia. Established in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin, Penn is one of nine colonial colleges that predate the founding of the United States and is the first U.S. university to have a medical school.
After four long years, Penn graduates join one of the most powerful alumni networks that includes Warren Buffet, John Legend, Donald Trump, John Huntsman Jr., Sharon Stone, Mehment (Dr.) Oz, Andrea Mitchell, and more recently Naomi Biden (granddaughter to Vice President Joe Biden) and Tiffany Trump (daughter of Donald Trump).
But is the University of Pennsylvania right for you?
Penn academic departments consistently rank in the top of their fields for business, nursing, communications, education, engineering, and medicine among others. You apply directly to one of the four schools that best fits your interests and academic goals: College of Arts and Sciences, Wharton School of Business, School of Engineering and Applied Science, or the School of Nursing.
Just as Ben Franklin was known for his interests in many subjects, today Penn provides students with multidisciplinary opportunities to make the most of their education. For example, Penn's College of Arts and Sciences offers a number of dual degree programs: The Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business, Life Sciences and Management, and Technology and Management. Additionally, undergraduate students can take advantage of course offerings from any of the four schools, including some of the best business, engineering and nursing programs in the country.
For students who want to be on the forefront of emerging fields, Penn provides generous programming and resources for their intellectual and professional development. Penn's newest Networked and Social Systems Engineering program is the world’s first program to fully integrate the disciplines needed to design and analyze the complex social networks. Students in the program study the interplay of computer science, economics, and sociology while participating in cutting-edge research in networks, markets, optimization, and information management. For graduating seniors, Penn offers a unique chance for students to apply their education with real-world application through the President's Engagement and Innovation Prizes, both providing winner with up to $150,000.
One thing is certain - the University of Pennsylvania through its bountiful resources invests in the academic and intellectual success of its students during their four years as undergraduates and beyond. To learn more about other colleges and universities, stayed tuned for more College Crash Course articles on the Hillview Blog!
Who are you?
We all are different, so why make us similar?
One-size-fits-all classes do not work and leave many behind. We at Hillview Prep believe in identifying your learning abilities and work with that to help you achieve your goals. Just like you would not expect Chamberlain to score 3 pointers, or Curry to score from a foot away, why would you expect yourself to learn differently than your own unique ability?
The Hillview Prep Difference.
Take Control of Your Abilities and Develop your Academic Abilities for Life. If you are preparing for ACT, SAT, HSPT, ISEE or SSAT -- or just looking for academic help, try our newly launched Gateway Series.
The Hillview Prep Gateway Series offers a 24/7 access to personalized learning. We have incorporated our secret sauce into your gateway, coupled with support from our mentors, to help you learn faster, test smarter and score higher; guaranteed.
Try the Gateway Series today.
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If your child is overwhelmed with homework assignments, deadlines and tests, help him by creating a very powerful, yet simple routine: a daily planner!
Surprised? Yes, a daily planner can be a powerful tool. It can teach your child scheduling and prioritization skills. It can lighten her burden.
Here are some pointers.
Have her sit down with it every morning, to review how her time will be spent that day, and which tasks she needs to accomplish. Make sure the planner accompanies your child to school, and that he writes down all test dates, due dates, assignments, and so on in it.
When your child gets home from school, sit down with him and his updated planner. Together, review the homework assignments for the evening. Don't tell him what to do. Let the planner guide him. Ask him questions. You might ask, “What should you work on right now?”
Help her prioritize. Find out what works for her. Some students like to get the hard stuff out of the way, while other students prefer breezing through the easy stuff, while helping themselves to some confidence boosters on their way to solving harder problems.
Talk about the difference between urgent tasks (e.g., next day deadline) and tasks that are important but not urgent (learning a fundamental concept). This will help him gain experience setting homework priorities and gaining more control over his academic abilities.
Still having problems with homework? Consider hiring a learning specialist. At Hillview Prep, our learning specialists can help your child learn faster, test smarter and score higher. Guaranteed! Check us out at hillviewprep.com.
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Start at School and Finish at Home
If homework is a constant battle in school ask your child's teacher to allow him to do some of his homework at school, where the teacher or student helper can assist him as needed. This way he can get most of him homework done before coming home and finishing it at home becomes easier.
After-school Care Start to After-dinner Finish
If your child goes to an after-school care or to a homework club, have her do her homework there. After dinner, go over it and have her correct any mistakes she made. Also review for any test she has the next day. If you wait till after dinner to start homework, she would be too tired and distracted to do it, and you would get into a fight.
Use your Child's Daily Rhythms
Most children do much better if they do their homework relatively early in the afternoon—maybe not immediately upon coming home from school but certainly before dinner or supper. Stick to a consistent daily schedule. Do the homework at a specific time, say, at 5 pm, or before watching TV, playing video games, or going to the park. Some kids are early risers and that can be a terrific time to get homework done.
Is missing homework affecting your grades?
Homework challenges can be a constant struggle for many students, affecting both school life and life at home. Students who constantly miss homework fall behind in their grades, causing more unnecessary stress in school and at home.
Cutting homework time in half.
All students are unique and learn differently. Learning and productivity go hand in hand: A student's productivity level directly influences his or her learning potential and an optimized learning potential is a key factor to increased productivity. So which factors make you learn faster and perform more efficiently?
Tips for students:
Tips for parents: