Your College Visit Checklist

Categories: Admissions Advice

Summer was made for rest, relaxation, and … college visits? There’s a reason every time you check Facebook lately you’re inundated with photos of your friends on gorgeous college campuses. Most soon-to-be juniors and seniors are taking advantage of summer break to visit their dream schools, and you should too!amherst college visit

No matter if you decide to take an organized tour or head out on your own, it’s important to know what to look out for and what questions to ask while you’re on campus. Here’s our handy college visit checklist.

Things to Do (and What to Think About While You’re Doing Them)

Visit the library

  • What do you think of the resources?
  • Are librarians there throughout the year to help students find what they need?
  • Are there designated quiet sections in case you need a silent place to study?

Eat in the cafeteria

  • How’s the food selection?
  • If you have dietary restrictions, can the cafeteria accommodate them?
  • What are the meal plans like?

Tour the campus

  • How big is it?
  • Do you feel safe?
  • Are the classroom buildings up-to-date?

Check out the dorms

  • What are living arrangements like?
  • Can you choose your own roommate if you’d like?
  • How far are the residence halls from your classes, transportation, and the cafeteria?

Head to the rec center

  • Are the facilities in line with what you expect?
  • Can you see yourself having a good time with friends here?

Sit in on a class

  • Is the course taught by a professor or a teaching assistant?
  • How does the class size compare to what you expected?
  • Are students encouraged to participate in discussions?

Questions to Ask …

The admissions counselor

  • How do my qualifications stack up against other applicants’?
  • What types of financial aid are available? How do I qualify?
  • Will my Advanced Placement credits be accepted?
  • Does the average student graduate in four years?
  • What are some popular clubs or activities?

Your tour guide or a student on campus

  • Why did you choose this school?
  • What’s on-campus life like? What do people do for fun? On the weekends?
  • Is it difficult to get into popular or required classes?
  • What’s your favorite thing about this college? Your least favorite?
  • Are you satisfied with the education you’re getting?
  • Is it easy to get to know new people?
  • What’s a typical day like?

Based on your preferences, there are definitely other things you should check out – if you’re an athlete, chances are you’ll want to chat with some coaches or check out a stadium. If you’re into journalism, you may want to grab a copy of the school paper or talk to some contributing writers.

Make sure to take plenty of photos – both for future reference and for the chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card or one of 50 Cappex caps! Just post a shot of your visit on Instagram and tag it #CappexCollegeVisit by August 9, 2015, to be entered to win.  Have fun – and good luck!

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Original Post Date: June 29th, 2015

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Eight Schools That Offer Classes On The Beatles


The Beatles’ music has been celebrated across the world for over 50 years. So it’s no surprise that there is a “National Beatles Day” – which happens to be today, June 25. In honor of the Fab Four, we’ve pulled together a list of colleges that offer classes on the Beatles. But with a legacy like theirs, we suspect there are plenty more Beatles classes out there.

Illinois Wesleyan University

Students at Illinois Wesleyan University may take a history class called “The Beatles And Their World.” This course looks at the way the Beatles’ music influenced the fashion, religion, war, and drug use in the 1960s.

Augustana College

Freshmen at Augustana are required to enroll in either a first-year liberal studies sequence or the honors program. Those who go the liberal studies sequence route have the opportunity to take “Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Beatles.” Students in this class study the Beatles’ legacy and what has made them so influential after all these years.

Skidmore College

Although these classes aren’t offered regularly, Skidmore College students have two opportunities to learn about the Beatles. “The Beatles Seminar: Beatles Biographies” and “The Beatles Seminar: Music of the Beatles” focus on the lives of the band and the music they created, respectively. If those seminars are not offered, “British Rock and Popular Music in the 1960s” is sure to cover the Beatles.

Wheelock College

Wheelock College offers a music course called “Music of the Beatles.” The emphasis of this class is critical listening and thinking about the Beatles’ music. This is considered to be an advanced course, so students must have already taken one music course or get explicit permission from the professor to enroll.

Indiana University

Indiana University has offered this in-depth song-by-song look of at the music and lives of the Beatles since 1982. The purpose of “The Music of the Beatles” is for students to come away with a deeper appreciation of the Beatles’ music and develop critical listening skills. Students are tested on books about the Beatles and the bands’ records – but that’s no big deal for a Beatles fan, right?

Keene State College

Keene State College offers an online course called “The Beatles: Cultural History.” As they learn about the cultural impact of the Beatles, students work on a course-long research project about the political/cultural context of a Beatles film or album.

University of Southern California

University of Southern California is known for its music school, so of course it offers a class on the Beatles. “The Beatles: Their Music and Their Times” looks at the music, lyrics, career strategy, and the cultural and technological impact of the band.

Berklee College of Music 

As a school completely dedicated to music, Berklee offers multiple classes about the Beatles. “The Music of the Beatles” looks at the structure of the band’s music, along with the personal histories of John, Paul, George, and Ringo. Berklee also offers “The Music of the Beatles Ensemble” which allows students to participate in recreating the Beatles’ music.


Original Post Date: June 25th, 2015

The 5 Best Women’s Colleges You Haven’t Heard Of

Let’s face it: Not many of us seriously consider attending a women’s college these days. Why? Maybe the campuses seem too small, the idea seems too outdated, and we worry we won’t have any guy friends to hang out with. But guess what? None of those things are true.

Women’s colleges have grown and changed over time. They’re no longer finishing schools for southern belles – they’re fun, academically challenging environments for strong, independent females. And stats show women’s college students carry serious clout after graduation. Even though only 2 percent of college grads get their degree from a women’s college, their alumnae account for more than 20 percent of women in Congress and 33 percent of women on Fortune 100 boards, according to a report from Sara Kratzok and Casey Near. Need proof? Hillary Clinton, Meryl Streep, Nancy Pelosi, Diane Sawyer, and Gabrielle Giffords all went to women’s colleges. And if you’re thinking about a postgraduate degree at some point, remember that women’s college grads are 1.5 times more likely to earn them than public university alumna.

If you want lots of individual attention, a strong campus community, and a school with a mission you can believe in, it’s worth considering a women’s college. Here are a few you probably haven’t heard of:

Mills College

Location: San Francisco, CA
Size: 1,500 students

Mills College
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  • Ranked one of the top colleges and universities in the West by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Into sustainability? Good. Mills was named one of the top green colleges by the Princeton Review.
  • Ninety-five percent of undergrads receive financial aid – the average award is $39,482.
  • It’s near everything – hip San Francisco, the scenic Oakland foothills, the several gorgeous regional parks are at your doorstep.
  • Find out your chances of getting into Mills College.

Alverno College

Location: Milwaukee, WI
Size: 2,700 students

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  • Alverno prides itself on teaching students the “eight abilities.” They include communication, analysis, problem solving, valuing, social interaction, developing a global perspective, effective citizenship, aesthetic engagement.
  • Milwaukee has it all – beautiful fall scenery, cool cafes, and plenty of entertainment. Bonus: it’s bike friendly!
  • There are no grades – instead, you get a narrative transcript that highlights your growth and accomplishments.
  • Ranked as one of the top four Midwestern colleges in U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges” guide.
  • Find out your chances of getting into Alverno College.

Stephens College

Location: Columbia, MO
Size: 1,100 students

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  • Consistently ranked as a top Midwestern College by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Stephens traditionally focused on the creative arts, but has created new health science programs to keep up with demand. No matter what your interests are, you’ll find a major that fits them.
  • Columbia may not be a major city, but it’s got just enough going on to keep you engaged. And with the University of Missouri and Columbia College nearby, it’s easy to branch out and meet people off campus.
  • Find out your chances of getting into Stephens College.

Simmons College

Location: Boston, MA
Size: 5,000 students

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  • With an average class size of 18, you’ll get plenty of individual attention at Simmons.
  • Has been featured on U.S. News & World Report’s list of best graduate schools, best American colleges, and’s list of best colleges and universities.
  • Simmons puts a focus on women’s leadership and helping students find meaning in their lives and careers.
  • Located in the heart of Boston, there’s always something going on near campus.
  • Find out your chances of getting into Simmons College.

Mount Saint Mary’s University

Location: Los Angeles, CA
Size: 2,800 students

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  • Mount Saint Mary’s puts an emphasis on building women’s leadership skills.
  • Named the No. 1 college “That Adds the Most Value” by MONEY Magazine.
  • Want a graduate or professional degree? Almost 70 percent of Mount Saint Mary’s alumnae go on to earn them.
  • With a tight-knit community, you’ll build lasting friendships and always have someone to hang out with. And isn’t that one of the best parts of your college experience?
  • Find out your chances of getting into Mount Saint Mary’s University.

Original Post Date: June 23rd, 2015

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