Road Map for January: Juniors

One of the most important things you can do this year is to make a special effort to get to know your teachers. Generally 11th grade teachers are the best choices for letters of recommendation, but the opportunities to develop relationships are more limited with remote or hybrid learning, and you have to really be proactive.  Give your teachers every chance to get to know you, and have great things to write about you, by taking advantage of any opportunities that are available, such as office hours or extra help sessions. (It goes without saying that you should also be meeting expectations with respect to all assigned work and deadlines.) For more tips on positioning yourself for great recommendations in this unique year, check out this article.

To help with your college exploration, the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) has now started posting the lists of colleges that will be participating in its virtual fairs in January and February. You can save the dates for the live events and get a head start by watching the on-demand videos that are available now. Students will also be able to use the virtual fair site to schedule remote meetings with admissions reps for individual schools.

While some schools offered the PSAT in October, others are giving the exam later this month. About 3% of students who take the PSAT are recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation as Commended Students or Semifinalists based on their scores. If you’re not able to take the exam on either of these dates but want to be considered in the competition, there is an alternate entry process, which requires an SAT score instead. Click here for details.

I hope you’ve been able to take your practice SAT and ACT, choose your test and decide on test dates. If you need additional guidance on this, register for This Is Only A Test: Standardized Testing for the Class of 2022 this Thursday, January 14th. In this two-part workshop, I’ll provide an overview of the SAT and ACT and an update on the growing test-optional movement and the changing landscape.  Each student will receive a PDF practice SAT and ACT and instructions for printing, taking and scoring them at home, followed by a personalized recommendation on which exam to take, when to take it, and how to develop your test prep plan. Click here to register.