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Have You Taken the ACT Test?

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Single moms have generally been out of school for a few years before they go back to earn a degree or complete a certification program. This means that the admissions process will typically include placement tests, aptitude tests and even personality tests that will gauge the student’s ability to complete their course work, to achieve a degree and to succeed in their chosen field. One of the most common tests required by colleges is the ACT Test. Have you taken the ACT? If not you may want to go ahead and take care of that before you begin the admissions process.

Because the admissions process can take several months and involve so many different collections of information including all of these evaluations and tests you can go into the admissions process prepared and one step ahead by taking the ACT exam.

The ACT test is generally given to high school students in their senior year, much like the SAT exam. ACT is a multiple choice test which covers the four main areas of education that high schools expect their students to have learned in order to graduate and move on to college. These subjects include English, Mathematics, Science and Reading. There is also an optional writing test which is designed to measure planning and writing skills based on a short essay.

Many times you can contact your local high school to find out when they administer the ACT and register to take the exam there. Your results will be one of the pieces of information you will have on hand when you begin discussing your degree program with a student counselor. If you have already taken the ACT when you were in school they may be accepted, but if you’ve been out of school for more than a year or two re-taking the ACT is a good idea to show your school of choice that you are prepared to begin the steps to further your education.

If you would like more information about the ACT test contact your local high school. Because the admissions process can be confusing and may often make you feel as if they want to know everything about you from what you ate for breakfast to the last time you went on a date, there is a reason for their intrusion. Colleges need to know that they are accepting students who can complete the programs, and it’s also a benefit for you because through the aptitude testing and conversations with a counselor you may find that your initial planned degree isn’t really what would be best for you. You may change your major before you even begin classes. This will save you money, save you the frustration of starting over after a semester and will help you make sure that the program you are enrolling in will get you to where you want to be.

Streamline the Admissions Process by Being Prepared

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Being prepared for the admissions process is one way to make sure that you aren’t stressed and at the end of your rope by the time you finish. Take some time before you begin your school’s admissions process to gather the information you may need. Meet with your student counselor and find out what is required, and what you need to have in order to apply and be admitted. Preparation will allow you to streamline your admissions plan and sail through the confusion that new students usually face.

As a single mom, you know all about keeping records, holding on to receipts and important information for your children. But many times along the way we forget that we need to keep things for ourselves as well. You’ll learn all about this as you prepare for your college admission. You may have to go back and obtain important documents that have been lost along the way.

Some of the things you will definitely need to have on hand when you begin your admissions process include:

  • Birth Certificate/Social Security Card
  • Proof of Residence
  • High School Diploma and/or transcript
  • Aptitude Test Scores
  • Cover Letter detailing your interests, experience and goals

Each school may have different requirements but the basics should apply to all admissions processes. By having on hand a lot of the information you will need when you begin your admissions process, you will also have everything you need to apply for financial aid, scholarships and grants. So start early collecting this important information that you will need over and over again as you work through all the red tape of getting enrolled in college.

Typically you should plan to begin your scholarship, financial, grant and admissions process at least 6 months before the semester when you plan to go back to school. Don’t let the paperwork and time frame frustrate or discourage you, just as earning a degree isn’t an instant process, neither is getting into school to earn that degree. Create a folder specifically for all of your school information and have it readily available at all times as you wade through the paperwork and admissions program.

You know as a single mom that being over-prepared is always better than being under-prepared. Streamline the admissions process to make it easier on you to get enrolled and on the way to your degree and your career in your chosen field. Don’t let little things like documentation slow you down!

Admissions Process for a Community College Degree

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So, you’ve decided to attend a local community college to earn a certification or degree. It’s close by; you’ve worked out your financial and child care arrangements and are ready to get started by enrolling and completing the admissions process. As a single mom you know that the time you have to invest in the admissions process and getting started are nothing compared to the effort and juggling it will take to actually earn your certification or degree so you may be champing at the bit to get started.

The first step is of course determining whether you qualify to attend a community college. While community colleges usually have an open door policy where anyone who can afford the classes can attend, there are generally two requirements: The student must be at least 18 years old and hold either a diploma or a GED.  If you have not completed high school you can get a GED before you begin your community colleges admissions process.

Most certificate or associate degree programs through community colleges require that you complete an application and pay an application fee. You will also need to present your accredited high school transcripts or GED scores. Many times these programs also require placement tests, so that they know exactly where you need to be to earn your degree.

It may take a while to get everything you need for admissions to a certificate or degree program at a community college, but schedule your placement tests and get them out of the way as soon as you can, then you can begin working through the paperwork requirements.

Schedule a meeting with a counselor to help you with all of the details of being admitted to the program and your class scheduling needs. Community colleges are pretty flexible and used to working with single moms. The counselor can tell you if you’ve missed any of the financial aid opportunities and go over the information for your program with you.

Once all the paperwork is done, tests submitted and course chosen, you can register for classes, pay your tuition and get your books. You are now officially a student!

Start Early On The Admissions Process

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Registering and being admitted to college takes not only perseverance, but it also takes a good deal of time. Don’t put the admissions process off until the last minute. Start early, get everything taken care of, and you’ll be able to start your semester stress-free.

Fall semesters generally begin around the end of August or the beginning of September, while spring semesters most often begin some time in January. A good time guideline is to begin planning 6 months before the semester you want to actually begin classes.

Your first step will be to contact the school to find out how long their admissions process takes and exactly what is involved. In general, there is an application, fees and official transcripts that have to be taken care of. There may also be an entrance exam that you must take before you are accepted.

Simply follow the steps and guidelines from your chosen school and complete everything within the time frame required. If you are applying for any sort of financial aid, you will want to do this as soon as possible when beginning your application and admissions process.

Meet with a counselor who will be able to help you with any issues you may be having with the admissions process and who will also be able to help you figure out a workable schedule between your education, work, and children. It is entirely possible for single moms to earn a degree, and many schools are working to make that easier. There are flexible schedules, night and weekend classes, and even online classes that you may be able to take advantage of.

While there is no set schedule for the admissions process, the 6 month guideline is a good time frame to allow for any issues to be resolved, to hear back about financial aid, and to get your schedule worked out before the semester begins.

If you wait too close to the semester to begin the admissions process, you will feel rushed and probably frantic as you attempt to juggle all the steps of admission along with your job and children within a short time frame. The more time you allow yourself to complete this process, the calmer and more prepared you will feel.

Going back to school as a single mom doesn’t have to be stressful. With the proper time allowances, it can be a smooth transition for all involved.