Don’t hesitate to ask your college-experienced friends or family which factors influenced their decision the most.

Start your college search by figuring out what kinds of schools appeal to you.

When it comes to college wants and needs, every student is different. Your college search isn’t something you can copy from a friend or peer; it will be something completely unique to your lifestyle, personality, and academic needs. While your best friend might want a large public college in Pennsylvania, you might need a smaller, private school closer to home.

It’s way too early to look at specific colleges, but for now, we can narrow your search to certain types of institutions.

What’s important to you?

Before you check into any specific schools, determine which factors are most important to you. Some factors that might influence your ultimate college decision include:

  • College size
  • Location and town setting
  • Public or private
  • 2-year or 4-year
  • Degree programs
  • Reputation or school rankings
  • Religious affiliation
  • Coed or single-sex

Your initial college search

Once you narrow what’s important to you from the list above, it’s time to start searching. Using the Campus Explorer college search, you can learn which colleges are close to you, have the degrees you’re interested in, or any of the other factors you deemed important.

It’s still early, but if you find some colleges that pique your interest, don’t forget to save them by clicking on the “Save This School” link so you can easily retrieve them from your “My Saved Schools” at a later date.

Planning ahead or a little behind?
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Related Tools and Checklists

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High School Sophomore Timeline and Checklist

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