Beware of Admissions CON-sultants Hiding in Your Midst

Amidst the rise of the academic meritocracy, as increasing numbers of students qualify for then apply to college, selectivity for admissions annually increases, yet high school counseling staff has been inadequate for the demand, thus many families seek the help of private admissions consultants. But, in the Era of Educational Experts, when qualifications and motivations to help families range widely,…

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Required Math Courses Changing at the University of California (UC)

Students applying to the University of California (UC) for Fall 2022 admissions and beyond can now fulfill their third year of required mathematics with a variety of math courses, no longer required to take Integrated Math III, Algebra II or an equivalent. However, potential first year UC applicants should still take a Geometry or Geometry-equivalent course as one of their…

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The Responsibility of Freedom

Most teens eventually seek more independence from the watchful eyes of their parents, and many of them believe the freedom they so desire will be found attending college. Yet, just like Thomas Jefferson and the American Revolutionaries (or anyone seeking change), as so aptly advised:  Prudence, indeed will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and…

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The search for merit aid begins with the proper valuation of a college degree

“Do you help with scholarships?” is often one of the first questions that parents ask me. Fearful of the ever-increasing cost of college tuition, they (mis)perceive a college education as a large purchase, rather than an investment.  To invest in a college education, both institution and family mutually consent to a partnership. Yet, in any partnership, both parties must first…

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How to assess the value of a college education in order to avoid malinvestment

Comparing the published price of tuition along with the size of the student population can be one metric to value a university education. However, “shopping” colleges on price alone is shortsighted, thus families may overlook valuable educational opportunities.  Instead families should determine the value of any college education by discussing answers to reflective questions, starting with, “Why is a student…

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Advice on How to Answer COVID-Related Questions on College Applications

In the increasing subjectivity of admissions, as grades are affected by the transition to virtual learning and many extracurricular activities have been canceled or suspended until further notice, college admissions officers are seeking information about what students had planned, yet did instead.  Thus, students should reflect on their COVID-interrupted educational experience, to add context for their academic and extracurricular resumes…

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What the University of California test-free policy means for applicants

Given the University of California (UC) test-free admissions policy, potential UC applicants will need to rethink how they prepare for admissions as well as frame their qualifications when applying, as subjectivity in admissions evaluations will likely increase: As more students may be emboldened to apply, especially those who believe standardized test scores do not reflect their aptitude, thus increasing applicant…

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College admissions opportunities in the time of COVID

As college enrollments continue sliding, current college students, both those at four year colleges and those aspiring to transfer from a community college, as well as high school students seeking admissions in Fall 2022 and beyond will likely benefit.  Spring 2021 total undergraduate enrollment decreased by 5.9% at two and four year colleges in the United States, a greater percentage…

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How do I choose a college when I can’t visit the campus?

Although its difficult in the age of COVID to visit campuses, in no way should that diminish one’s effort to gain as much information as possible to make an effective decision when choosing a college from those which you’ve been admitted to diminish the risk of malinvestment.  Admitted students should use every virtual resource available from attending the special admitted…

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College Isn’t a Cure-All

Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic and Becky Frankiewicz writing for the Harvard Business Review (HBR) tackled the topic of higher education and full employment leaving out, for now, the idea of a lasting peace of mind. Of course, although there may be a multi-decade correlation between a college degree and three or less careers in one’s lifetime, equaling financial security, or as we…

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2021 Creative Marbles’ Educational Retainer Offerings Continued

As no two families are the same, we offer a diverse range of advising options for parents and students to retain our counsel, which were first introduced in the Elite and Selective Tiers. The following offerings in the Preparatory Tier backstop a families’ efforts with strategic, poignant guidance at timely intervals, utilizing the totality of experience as educators for the…

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Introducing our Fall 2021 Educational Retainers: The Selective Tier

To assist the diversity of high school seniors and their families as they seek the greatest value in higher education, we offer a variety of retainers which are a culmination of our nearly twenty years of practice as educational consultants, as well as our understanding of the current trends in education.  Seeking higher education isn’t simply filling in boxes with…

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Introducing Creative Marbles 2021 Educational Retainers

To serve the diverse needs of families, each with their own distinctive higher educational plans, we offer a suite of retainers. After each college application season, seeking to continuously improve our services concomitant with our experience, we reflect, study and adjust where needed. Over the next week, I will present our 2021 Educational Retainers, seeking as always to meet the needs…

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