Got a Big Problem With Standardized Testing?

Here's Help.

Has your child taken the SAT or the ACT multiple times — but never scored anywhere near his or her ability level? This happens more often than you think. Some students just don’t do well with standardized testing, no matter how hard they try. Even though they’re going to make great college students and end up having wonderful careers.

So — what’s a parent to do?

standardized testing

You could try an inexpensive, self-paced prep course, or —

You might look at colleges that don’t require standardized testing.

There’s a growing sentiment across the US that standardized testing doesn’t actually help in the admissions process. More and more colleges every year are saying, “We don’t even want to look at standardized tests anymore.”

You can find a complete, alphabetized list of all the US colleges that don’t require standardized tests on Fairtest.org. There’s a massive number of them.

(Just stay away from “for-profit” colleges. To determine whether a college is “for profit” or not, look up its name on collegedata.com for free. If you see the word “PROFIT” in the search bar, pass that college up.)

Many very good colleges don’t look at standardized tests.

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Is It True You “Can’t Look At Your Kids’ College Grades”?

You’re bleeding money to pay for your son’s college. You hope he’s attending class, studying for exams, and getting help when he’s stuck. But is he? Some people say that you can never know for sure, because, “parents aren’t allowed to look at their kids’ college grades.” Is this actually true, though?

college grades

Nope. It’s not true at all.

Oh, don’t get me wrong. It is true that because of FERPA laws enacted in 1974, colleges can’t show you — or tell you — any academic information about your child. But here’s what can happen. Your child can tell you himself. The college student you love can log you in and show you that he or she is OK.

“But what if my kid doesn’t want to show me his college grades?”

Here’s my suggestion. Wait until he asks you for money.

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When to Call the College’s Disability Services Office

This article was originally posted here on November 13th, 2017. It was updated and reposted here on September 7th, 2018.

Are you parenting a teen or a college student with a disability of any kind? If you are, you need to know about the wonderful services offered by the disability services office on your child’s college campus.

disability services

Whether your child has a physical disability, a learning disability, a mental health disability, or any other kind of disability, the college’s disability services office will provide extraordinary, kind, supportive help.

“When should we first contact the college disability services office?”

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Can College Debt Hurt Academic Performance?

What Does the Research Say?

 

debt affects academic performance

There’s no question about it; the ability to focus and concentrate for extended periods is absolutely critical to college academic success.

In his outstanding book Deep Work, author Cal Newport says this about extended periods of focus and concentration: “Deep work is the ability to focus without distraction on a cognitively demanding task. It’s a skill that allows you to quickly master complicated information and produce better results in less time. It’s like a super power in our increasingly competitive twenty-first century economy.”

Can student loan debt interfere with the focus and concentration necessary for doing “deep work”?

College students say yes.

In this article by college student Ashley Bulchandani on dailytarheel.com, she tells adults exactly how she feels. “As a current college student, I am personally struggling with college debt and paying off my loans.” She worries that, “debt accumulation can stress out students and lead to negative behaviors such as drinking, smoking, working a lot, and not focusing in class.” She points to research showing that, “excessive college debt results in overall low academic performance in college and low graduate school attendance.”

The happy news is that parents can help. A lot.

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