How to Choose a College Roommate
Learn how roommate matchmaking works and other tips and tricks on picking a college roommate.
When filling out a roommate questionnaire, whether online or by mail, be honest.
As you prepare for college life, one of the most important things you will do is pick a roommate. Whether you decide to room with an old buddy, or play roommate roulette with the school's housing authority, there are many factors to keep in mind.
What to Consider in a College Roommate
While you may think you’re better off rooming with someone you know rather than someone you don't know, consider your best friend's habits before deciding on a roommate choice.
- Do you have similar study, social, and sleep habits?
- Can you coordinate your schedules for cleaning and sleeping and playing?
- Do you have the same philosophy on borrowing?
Also consider asking these questions potential roommates that you may find through Internet roommate matchmaking or through your school’s housing department.
Questionnaire or Internet Roommate Matchmaking
The old-fashioned way to choose a college freshman roommate is by filling out a questionnaire supplied by your college. Based on your answers to a series of questions, your college will choose another student who is compatible with your likes and dislikes. But in the modern era new media, social networking, and Internet roommate matchmaking sites are quickly taking over the process of choosing a freshman roommate.
Social networking is still prevalent even among colleges that use the questionnaire method. Students use social networking sites like Facebook to check up on their prospective roomie in order to determine whether or not they will be compatible. Facebook can help to forge friendships between roommates long before students actually move into a dorm, but it can also help roomies decide if the college’s roommate choice isn’t necessarily the best choice.
To avoid potential rejections, some schools have decided to use the Internet to allow students to find and choose roommates themselves. San Francisco State University students, for example, have the opportunity to add their names to a list of freshmen looking for roommates. They are then able to use social networking sites to look at their potential roommates and pick for themselves.
In addition, the University of Utah has an online profile for students to fill out. The program then generates a list of potential matches, whom students can contact via the school's site.
Filling Out a Roommate Questionnaire
When filling out a roommate questionnaire, whether online or by mail, be honest. You will be living with this person for quite some time, so be truthful in your answers about yourself and about what you are looking for.