9 Tips For Parents Helping Their Child Look For Colleges

9 Tips For Parents Helping Their Child Look For CollegesThe college journey is an exciting and important milestone for your child.  As a parent, you will play a key role in supporting your child throughout their journey.  This journey can be stressful for you and your child, but with the right approach and support, you can help make it less stressful.  East Ohio College is here to provide you with some tips to help your child on their journey!

1.) Start Early

Start the college journey early. Although starting early is crucial, this does not necessarily mean touring colleges in your child’s early teens. What this means is that there are multiple parts to your child’s college search, so it is important to leave enough time for everything.

Although some colleges no longer require the SAT or ACT, students should still take at least one. According to an article by CollegeData, there is still uncertainty surrounding whether the changes to the SAT and ACT requirements are permanent. Furthermore, the report states that strong test scores can still help your chances of admission. Starting test preparation early can make it possible for your child to take the test multiple times to get the best possible score. Also, students are able to superscore these exams at certain colleges. Colleges that allow superscores take the best score on each section, even if the student took multiple tests.

Also, starting early allows your child to better prepare. Your child can join extracurricular activities to strengthen their application. Additionally, your child can complete possible prerequisites in high school, which would make their college experience more manageable.

2.) Explore Your Child’s Interests

Talk with your child to determine their interests and what they want to do when they graduate. When looking at colleges, it is important to make sure that the college offers a degree in what they want to do. If your child is unsure what they want to do, do not worry! There are many resources that can help identify what careers your child may wish to pursue. One way is to take a career test to gauge what career may or may not be a good fit for your child.

3.) Try To Find The Right Fit

Make sure that you help your child find the right fit for them. Start by making a list of things your child may want in their future college. Would they prefer smaller or larger classes? Do they want to stay close to home, or do they want to travel to a different state or country? Would they rather have a campus in the city or be more isolated? These are just a few questions you should help your child answer. 

Also, research colleges and universities that meet these conditions. Start with a simple Google search and look through the school’s websites to see if they fit. From there, start looking at more specific things about the school from third-party sources. One such source is Niche. Niche provides ranking, reviews, and other information about thousands of nationwide schools.

4.) Visit Campuses

Start planning campus visits once you help your child reduce the number of possible choices. It is important to be prepared for these visits. High Point University provides 16 questions to ask on your next college visit. 

Also, do not be overbearing during college visits. Although the occasional question is fine, let your child ask the majority of the questions. Ultimately, be sure to respect your child’s wishes and decisions.

5.) Remember That The Decision Is Not Yours

At the end of the day, even if you disagree, the decision is not yours. Although voicing your concerns is encouraged, don’t voice them in a way to try to sway your child’s decision. The college your child chooses is where they will spend the following years of their lives, not you. Do not try to force your child to go somewhere you wished you went or where you went. 

6.) Foster Independence

When your child is off at college, it will be on them to meet deadlines on their own. The college search can serve as an introduction to this. You can still help your child, but your child must monitor their progress on several requirements, such as college essays and scholarship deadlines. East Ohio College is here to provide your child with some time management tips.

7.) Teach The Importance of Finances

When going to college, there are three major aspects of finance that your child needs to consider.

Financial Aid

The first thing is financial aid*. School can be expensive; financial aid can tip the scale in favor of one school or the other. It is a good idea to compare financial aid packages between different schools.

Work Studies

Students may have the opportunity to take part in a work-study program. Work-study programs are a great way to make money during the school year to help pay for college.


As mentioned before, college can be expensive. It is important to help your child set up a budget to ensure they have enough money. Expenses can pile up, and with classes, it is unlikely that your child will be working full weeks. Here are some budgeting tips for your child.

8.) Don’t Pressure Your Child Into Rushing Their Decision

Although there are deadlines, and it is critical to meet those deadlines, try not to pressure your child into rushing their decision. Your child’s decision will determine where they could spend up to the next eight years of their life. It is important to give your child the time and space to come to their decision, but it is also important to make sure the decisions are made on time. That is why it is crucial to start your college journey early.

9.) Support Your Child’s Decision

No matter what, support your child’s decision. The college selection process is a very stressful process. By constantly questioning and belittling your child’s college of choice, you only add stress to your child.

Also, be prepared to comfort your child if they are not accepted into their first choice. Unfortunately, it is possible not to make it into their first choice or top picks. As a result, be sure to have several strong alternatives and be there to console your child if they are upset about not being accepted.

How To Start Your Journey Today

Begin your future at East Ohio College by exploring our nursing, allied healthcare, and professional programs. Reach out by calling the admissions office at 330-385-1070 or Requesting Information today!

*For those who qualify.