The Ivy League Goes Test-Optional…Almost

Following both Brown’s and Yale’s test-optional announcements, yesterday evening, June 15, Harvard became the seventh Ivy League college to suspend the requirement of SAT and ACT scores for Fall 2021 first year applicants.  Why is Princeton, as the last remaining Ivy League, still requiring standardized test scores for Fall 2021 first year applicants? Since the Ivy League can be considered…

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When will we go back to “normal”?

“When” is stumping even the best scientists and medical researchers. And, while historical virus outbreaks may offer precedent, uncertainty is still pervasive, creating complexity for families seeking to make educational decisions, like choosing a college.  Recently, Warren Buffet’s long time Berkshire Hathaway collaborator, Charlie Munger, who also earned his wisdom being alive for the last 96 years, offered this pith…

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Is COVID-19 Affecting Admissions Rates?

The chart above is a comparison of the admissions rates between Fall 2019 and 2020 at a sampling of the most selective universities, ranked from lowest difference to highest.  Brown University and Princeton University both dropped their admit rates slightly in 2020, possibly indicating a confidence in their school’s brand that the COVID-19 health crisis with the subsequent economic and…

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Fiscal Reckoning Dead Ahead

The $14 Billion bailout for U.S. colleges and universities as part of the recent CARES Act will not solve the widening financial deficits in higher education. Costs to maintain buildings and the physical grounds, despite the lack of students present on campus, as well as salaries to faculty and staff must still be paid. Additionally, many university officials also spent…

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Managing a return to normal in the time of COVID-19

Emerging from “shelter-in-place” is not as simple are reopening school and college campuses, and welcoming students back into the buildings. The on-going health risks of subsequent outbreaks of COVID-19 absent a proven treatment or vaccine, along with the convoluted governmental structure to protect public health, creates complexity for students and parents trying to plan for their continuity of education.  As…

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Potential Second Wave of COVID-19

At the end of March, Harvard researchers predicted that there may be a second wave of COVID-19 infections in Fall 2020. For millions of students and parents, researchers forecasts could mean further interruptions to their educational plans. Without intermittent social distancing, according to Harvard resesearchers, we risk, across the globe, continued epidemic outbreaks of COVID-19 and subsequent economic and social…

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Top 25 Nationally Ranked Universities Adopt Pass/No Pass-Style Grades for Spring 2020

To date, thirteen of the top twenty-five US News & World Report nationally ranked universities, all adopted Pass/No Pass-style grading systems for the spring term, due to the COVID-19 health crisis: Princeton #1, Harvard #2, Columbia #3, Yale #3, Massachusetts Institute of Technology #3, University of Pennsylvania #6, Stanford University #6, Johns Hopkins University #10, Dartmouth #12, Brown #14, Cornell…

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Suspensions of Normal Educational Operations at U.S. Colleges

NOTE: Check back regularly for updates, as educators’ responses to COVID-19 are evolving as quickly as the virus evolves. Last Updated: March 18, 2020 at 12:27 am PST The following is a partial list of universities where administrators have suspended in-person classes and are directing faculty to transition all instruction online, as changes are happening rapidly. Additionally, the suspension of…

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Liberal Tech

A recent Forbes article, highlighted the importance of humanities and other liberal arts degrees, despite the cultural norm that STEM is the only means to economic prosperity. The human to human connection is what bridges technology with it’s intended outcome: more efficiency based on information. Although technology is a more efficient means to collate data, a human translator helps those…

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AP Exam = Stress?

Now that AP (Advanced Placement) tests are imminent, the stress level of high school students (and by extension—their parents) is noticeably increasing. Not only are students taking multiple tests in a few short weeks, students are also in the last month of a long school year, and the pressures of thinking that college admissions officers will be scrutinizing their every…

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Advanced Placement Exam Registration Changes for 2019-20

The College Board, which administers Advanced Placement (AP) exams, will require students to register for May 2020 AP exams in November 2019. Alternatively, if students decide to register for the May 2020 exams after the November registration period closes, they’ll pay an additional $40.00 late fee.  Conversely, if students decide not to take the May 2020 exam(s), students will be…

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Only 2.43% Made the Cut

By definition, “highly selective college admissions” means more applicants denied than accepted. Harvard’s admissions results put the exclamation mark on the above statement. 98% or 40,003 people, a combination of “36,119 regular decision applicants, plus the 4,882 students deferred in the early action process” were denied admissions for Fall 2018. And, before assuming that applying Early Action gives a greater chance…

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Guest Post: The Meritocracy-Diversity Divide

Affirmative action policies could use closer scrutiny—but don’t lose sight of their benefits. AFFIRMATIVE ACTION is an increasingly rare sort of debate, the kind where both sides present a valid analysis of a complex and thorny issue. This is not always the case. On climate change, the left is reacting to a real, imminent problem, though they often do so…

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Early Admissions: “The New Normal”

In what’s increasingly becoming an “Arms Race” of admissions, more and more students are applying early admissions.  The higher admit rates during early admissions in comparison with the regular decision period seemingly indicates greater chances for admissions.  For the current Class of 2021, 14.5% of Early Action applicants to Harvard were admitted, while during Regular Decision, only 5.1% of the…

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