We have all been there, the daunting pressure of choosing which college to attend. Don’t worry, you’re not the only one, and many wise students before have made these mistakes so that you don’t have to.

Here is a list of 6 common mistakes you should try to avoid in your college selection criteria. Maybe your parents will want to see this list too.

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Rushing the Application

When you want to find the perfect college you don’t want to be leaving it to the last minute. Yes, we know high school is demanding and it seems that there is no time for anything, but setting aside time to do your research will definitely help you get to your number one choice.

Following Your Friends

During the buzz of high school it is easy to think you will never have friends like these and so going to the same college makes the most sense. Wrong. Make the decision on which college to attend based on your needs, wants and aspirations. Remember, you will make new friends, and your old ones will still be there when you come home for vacations.

Family Pressures

Another big no no is to feel pressurized by your family. Many students have reported feeling obliged to go to the same college as their parents because of a sense of family duty or tradition. Though it might work out for you, try to see if the college is a good fit. If not, talk to your parents and explain why you see yourself somewhere else. Don’t forget, they are going to be supporting you financially, so better keep them on your side.

The Party Illusion

Many colleges market themselves as being great social environments. The promise of non-stop parties and fraternities are not the main factor you should be considering when choosing a college. Obviously having a social atmosphere is important, but the most crucial thing is that you learn and get the best education you can to prepare you for work. You know, that thing that you will need to do for the rest of your life.

Not Applying Out of Fear

A huge mistake students make when applying to colleges is actually not applying. Many of you will have doubts about your grades and abilities to get into certain colleges and often don’t even apply there. If you are interested in a school there is no reason why you should not apply, what’s the worst, they say no? But they can also say yes.

Cost Obsessions

Students fall into two categories. Those that obsess about the cost of their college years and those that don’t consider it at all. It is best that you avoid either of these and opt for a more sensible approach, both considerate but not obsessive to the point of madness. Don’t let fees put you off too, in the end a student loan is a student loan, and your choices will help you climb up the financial ladder in order to pay them back.

Sinead Mcintyre