How to avoid ‘senioritis’ and make the most of your senior year

It can be tempting for many seniors to slack off after filling out their college applications. Some students think that once their applications have been sent it's smooth sailing from then on, and some choose to relax and not study as hard as they could. The reasoning behind this is a rumor that some colleges only look at students' grades and attendance records before their spring semester of their senior year. Some seniors think that anything that happens after their college applications have been submitted doesn't matter.

Unfortunately for some, this is not the case. Sometimes known as "senioritis," taking it easy after submitting a college application can cost you your acceptance into a college. Many schools reserve the right to deny an applicant admission to their degree program if their grades drop below a minimum standard, and some students miss out on attending their dream schools because they allow themselves to coast during their spring semester.

However, don't let this put you off. If your grades do drop a little in your final semester, many schools will allow you to explain, so don't panic if you don't maintain a perfect 4.0 GPA. If this is a requirement of your acceptance, your college admissions letter may include this information. If it doesn't, or you're worried about it, ask your admissions adviser or contact your school directly.

One thing that's really important to college admission officials is seeing a commitment to challenging courses, and seeing applicants stick to it. Advanced placement courses are a great way to earn college credit and explore different subject areas, but they can also go a long way towards showing a college admissions board that you're committed to your studies and deserve your place at their university.

Something else to remember is that you may not receive your final grades and transcript until June or July, and if your grades slip below the threshold set out by your provisional acceptance letter, it may be too late to accept a place at an alternative school. This is one more reason that you should work hard right up until the end of your senior year.

Most college admissions boards realize that your senior year is one of the most exciting times of your life, so don't think that you can't go to prom because you have to study. Just take things in moderation, and work as hard as you can without missing out on the experiences that will make your senior year so memorable.

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