Admissions Counseling

Frequently Asked Questions

I’m on the fence. How can I get a more hands-on understanding of what you actually do with admissions consulting? What if it’s not what I’m looking for?

We believe that you should do either or both of two things.  First, you can schedule your free first consultation call.  Here, you’ll talk to an admissions advisor who can answer your specific questions about how our process works.  The call is absolutely free and we aim to help you regardless.

Second, you should take advantage of our 100% Refund Policy, which you can essentially see as a 3-Day Risk-Free Trial.  This is the best way to see hands-on how we work, as you’ll be working through the live admissions process.  For many customers, experiencing is believing, and this experience of the actual process will show you how amazing our admissions consulting really is.

The process is simple.  Just sign up for our product, and you’ll be assigned to a first consulting session.  If you don’t like our consulting, then anytime before the first session, or even after the first session up to three days, you can request a refund from us.  And we’ll give you 100% of your money back, no conditions attached.  All the college consulting we will have already given you will be totally free.  That is how confident we are that you’ll love us once you try us, so sign up now!

Do you assign me one personal consultant who will follow me through all my applications, or do you switch consultants at random?

We absolutely assign you a single personal consultant who will follow you throughout the entire application process, through every school and essay. We believe that having a single dedicated person who understands your background deeply and develops all your applications yields the most effective outcome.

Your consultant will also receive additional support in two ways. First, your consultant can get help from any other consultant on our team, in case extra opinions may be helpful. Secondly, PrepScholar administrators oversee all students in the Complete Admissions Package program, guiding your application strategy and crafting your narrative. You’ll have multiple eyes looking at your application to end up with the strongest possible application.

Beyond the minimum, we have much more content than 40 hours available – with thousands of practice questions and detailed lessons, you can spend hundreds of hours learning with PrepScholar. Our program has worked well for students in as few as 3 weeks or helped them for as long as 2 years.

How do you match me to a consultant?

From our large pool of the world’s most talented consultants to choose from, we match you to the ideal consultant for you based on 3 factors: 1) the colleges you are applying to, 2) your career and academic interests, 3) your personal background and personality.

As an example, a student from the USA who is applying to Williams College for liberal arts will be best served by a consultant with a background in liberal arts admissions and has past success getting students into those colleges.  On the other hand, an international student from India applying to MIT for engineering will be best served by a consultant who has gotten into MIT as a student and knows the exact scores on math competitions that many engineering schools look for.

Our customized matching to your ideal consultant increases your chances of getting into your top choice schools.

What colleges will we aim for?

Our goal is to make sure you have at least one great school to attend after high school, while also aiming for top-choice reach schools.

Therefore, we plan to apply to a range of schools that contain safety schools, target schools, and reach schools. Very roughly, safety schools are those to which we feel we have a >70% chance of admission; reach schools are those with a <20% chance of admission; and target schools are in between.

The % chance of admission is first based around 1) your coursework, GPA, and SAT/ACT scores and 2) the school’s admissions rate, and average GPA/SAT/ACT.

This is just the starting point for our list of schools. You may have special preferences for schools based on your personal interests, and we’ll make sure to apply to all schools to which you have a good fit.

How many schools do you suggest we apply to? Should we apply to schools that are clear reaches?

We recommend applying to a balanced list of around 15 colleges. Our Complete Admissions Package covers applications for up to 20 schools, with the University of California campuses counting as a single school.

If you are a competitive applicant for extremely selective colleges (those with admission rates below 10%), a balanced list might include 8 reach schools, 5 target schools, and 3 safe schools—all of which you would be happy to attend. 

Why so many reaches? Our admissions philosophy is that applying to each extra reach school incurs a small cost—the time to research, draft, and polish one or more supplemental essays—but has a chance of a large reward. With acceptance rates dropping, casting a wide net is a good strategy if your aim is to get into a brand name school. Therefore, we generally recommend shooting for the moon, so even though it takes us more time to prepare more applications with you, you can be sure we have your best interests in heart.

However, applying to too many colleges with lots of supplemental essays actually leads to diminishing returns in application quality. There is a reason the Common App limits you to 20 colleges! We also discourage applying to a school where your odds of admission are more or less zero. Striking the balance between quality and quantity of applications will be up to your consultant, who will ensure that your list is optimized for your goals and dreams! 

What test prep do you include in the Complete Admissions Package?

Your scores for the SAT, ACT, and AP/IB exams are important factors in your application. Therefore, the Complete Admissions Package includes:

· test-taking decisions – whether taking additional tests is important for your target colleges

· overall test prep strategy – how to study and how to track score improvements

· test date timing – when to take tests in relation to college application deadlines

· timeline management – how to budget time for test prep and · accountability – we will make you stay accountable for studying for tests

With these fundamentals in place, you will be well positioned to succeed in getting great test scores.

If you need additional help on test content (such as SAT math problem-solving strategy), we can supplement your admissions package with a PrepScholar SAT prep program or ACT prep program, or 1-on-1 tutoring. All PrepScholar Admissions students are eligible for significant discounts on PrepScholar test prep programs.

How can I make sure my student will work well in your online environment?

Our working style is especially strong with international students.  We can get you the most effective application even when you’re halfway around the world.

Communication happens through the Internet in two ways. First, you’ll talk with your consultant through live video chats with programs like Zoom or Google Meet. Live video chats will be used for personal discussions, brainstorming meetings, and regular progress meetings – anytime that talking would be more effective than emails.

We deal with time zone differences all the time, and we are always able to work with students in places like India, China, Europe, or the Middle East. Many of our consultants are happy to take calls in the early mornings or late nights in USA time — often as early as 6 AM US ET, or as late as 11PM US ET. Second, work that is centered around documents will be done primarily through email and online document services like Google Drive and Dropbox. This type of work includes essay drafting, essay editing, and application document preparation.

No matter where you live, we’ll be able to work with you to build the strongest application possible.

What are our immediate next steps to get started?

After you pay for your package, we’re going to start building the foundation for your college application.

Our first step is sending you our Complete Student Profile Questionnaire. We want to understand your childhood, your most important influences, your goals for the future, and much, much more. This questionnaire will prompt you to introspect at a level you may never have before. This assignment takes about 2-5 hours for most students.

Next, we will match you with your personal consultant. Within the next week, you will have a live video chat with your consultant, where your consultant will dig deeper into your background and ask many clarifying questions.

Next, we will start building your overall application strategy. This is where the critical personal narrative starts taking shape. What is the story that we want to tell about you? What is your past, present, and future? What is going to tie together all your experiences in a way that will be exciting to colleges?

These three first steps kick off our process, which will be thorough and tailored to your every need.  We don’t finish our service until after you’ve heard back from all colleges and accepted your top pick!

To kick off this process, schedule a consultation today!

Do you offer a Referral Program?

Yes! Our referral program is a perfect way to help someone find the right admissions consulting service while also earning a referral reward for yourself.

If you know someone who could benefit from working with PrepScholar Admissions, please share their contact information with us or send them our way. As a token of our appreciation, for every referral that you send our way that results in a purchase, we will send you a Gift Card with a value of 5% of the purchased package’s price.

This offer applies to current/past PrepScholar Admissions clients. The purchased package must be our Complete Admissions Package, Annual Mentorship Package, Full Essay Service, or our Application Review Service.

To refer someone or to ask any questions, please call (866) 811 5546 or email [email protected]