2018 Oct 10: RHS - The College Search
Rockdale High School has always provided students with the tools needed to take that giant step to higher education. Historically, RHS has had a large percentage of students who graduate attend colleges and obtain their bachelor’s and, in many cases, master’s degree or even doctorate. The first step, in all cases, is deciding what college or university to attend, so this week RHS Principal Tiffany Whitsel has great information regarding making that very important decision.
As you begin your college search, one of the first decisions you need to make and one that helps narrow your list is what size college you want to attend. There are many options, from small colleges with fewer than 1,000 students to large state universities with more than 35,000 students. What's best for you depends a lot on your personality and academic goals.
The Big College Experience
Do you picture yourself at a big university that offers everything from televised sporting events to countless degree programs? Are you itching to break free of the high school fishbowl and enjoy the anonymity that comes with being one of thousands of students? Then a big college might be a good fit for you.
Here are some of the benefits associated with big colleges:
- Wide variety of majors and courses
- Well-stocked libraries
- Variety of housing opportunities
- Well-funded sports programs
- Wide range of academic choices and student activities
- State-of-the-art research facilities
Things to Consider
To succeed at a big college, it's best to go in knowing what subjects or general areas you're interested in pursuing. Students who do best at large colleges tend to be go-getters who are not afraid to speak up and take advantage of the many opportunities available.
Introductory classes at a large college may contain hundreds of students. Some students find this environment exciting. Others feel overwhelmed.
Administrative red tape is also something to think about — large colleges tend to have a lot of it. For example, enrolling in a course that's not part of your major may require multiple signatures and approvals.
The Small College Experience
Do you enjoy personal attention from teachers and advisers? Then a small college may be just what you need. Some students find that a smaller setting is a better fit. Although there may be fewer facilities, there are also fewer students to compete with.
Here are some of the benefits associated with small colleges. Small class sizes
- Hands-on learning opportunities
- Individually designed majors
- Strong advising system; advisers know students well
- Strong sense of community
- Professors, not teaching assistants, teach most courses
- Opportunity to get to know professors well
Things to Consider
Small colleges don't offer as many majors as big colleges; however, some of them let you design your own. Courses at small colleges are usually taught by professors, not teaching assistants. The professors may even know your name and areas of interest.
Be aware that small colleges do not have the research facilities of large universities. If you're hoping to be a research assistant, find out what kind of work and facilities are available before you apply.
Although you'll find a robust social life at most small colleges, you'll find less in terms of big sporting events and variety. However, there is often a stronger sense of community and connection.
Start Your Search
Whether you're considering a big university, a small college, or something in between, you need to carefully look at all options, and determine what's most important to you. Use College Search https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-search to research two-year and four-year colleges and find some that meets your needs.