By Alex Hollis (@wvedutech)
With the cost of university tuition on the rise once again for 2013-2014, more and more students are opting to attend community college to earn their associate degree before transferring to a 4-year private university. Although this is a smart and increasingly popular strategy to save (a lot of) money, you do want to make sure you plan ahead to avoid some potentially costly, stressful, and time-consuming pitfalls. Here are the 5 steps to making sure you set your transfer plan up right:
1) Backwards Plan: Simply put, establish your end goal – what universities do you want to apply to / transfer to? What major are you thinking of pursuing? You will need to know these details in order to make your transfer seamless and stress-free.
2) Ace your placement test: Acing your placement test might sound silly (and, admittedly, like a shameless plug to purchase our ACCUPLACER and COMPASS prep products) but it is extremely important and will determine what classes you place out of early on, which determines how fast you can get your associate degree and transfer out.
3) Figure out what credits transfer: Avoid this mistake that plagues many transfer students. Know what your target university will accept and not accept for credits and plan your schedule accordingly.
4) Connect with admissions advisors at your target school: Make sure you cross your t’s and dot your i’s by connecting with an admissions advisor at the school you are looking to transfer to. Ask what they look for in a transfer student, let them know you are applying, double check the dates that your applications are due. At the very least, you show the initiative by calling them up and it may help you stand out among the other applicants.
5) Earn your associate degree: Study hard, get good grades for classes that count, and apply to your dream school!