According to a survey of independent educational consultants, this is what colleges want to see in applications:

  1. a high school transcript that reflects rigor and challenge
  2. high grade point average in major subjects, though slightly lower grades in AP or IB are preferred to all A’s is less challenging courses
  3. high standardized test scores consistent with high school performance
  4. a well-written essay that gives insight into the student’s personality
  5. passionate involvement in a few meaningful activities
  6. strong counselor and teacher recommendations
  7. ability to pay
  8. depth of leadership rather than many leadership titles
  9. demographic and personal characteristics that contribute to a diverse and interesting student body
  10. intellectual curiosity
  11. special talents



What Colleges Want to See