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Sunday, November 1, 2015


Why Does the SAT Wield So Much Influence?

How Is the College Admissions Landscape Changing?

These are two questions that will be addressed in a presentation that Doug Melody, Director of Guidance, will offer on Thursday, November 12th at 6:30 pm in the EOSHS auditorium.

The College Board is introducing its new SAT in March.  Find out what prompted these changes and what the new test will look like.  Learn how the SAT is used in a variety of ways - not just in the admissions process with individual students.  The SAT wields influence in other spheres as well.  Also find out what "test optional" means and why more colleges are implementing this option in their admissions process.

With changing demographics and financial resources evaporating, several colleges are now faced with the challenges of meeting enrollment numbers while also balancing their budgets.  Find out how these challenges are influencing the college admissions process and attendant costs for higher education.

Registration Process for MCC Courses

College Career Pathways (CCP) is a collaborative program between area high schools and Manchester Community College (MCC).  It's designed to allow high school students to sample the challenge of college-level work and earn college credits while attending high school.  The CCP courses meet the same level of challenge taught at the college level and, in fact, are taught by EOS teachers who have been certified by MCC.  Students earn "dual credit" (credits from their high school and credits from MCC).

Below is a list of courses offered at EOSHS that are eligible for MCC credits. Registration for credit is now open.  The registration deadline is December 30, even for courses that students will complete in the second semester.  In order to be eligible to earn college credits, students MUST complete the application.

Accounting 1A (MCC ACC 115)
Human Anatomy & Physiology A (MCC BIO 115)
Intro to Criminal Justice (MCC CJS 101)
Video Productions 1 & 2 (MCC COM 240)
Child Development (MCC ECE 101)
English 12A (MCC ENGL 101)
Allied Health (MCC HLT 103)
Communications (MCC COM 173)
Tech-Prep Culinary Arts (MCC HSP 101)
Quantitative Literacy (MCC MAT 109)
Algebra 3 and Trigonometry (MCC MAT 138)
Physics A (MCC PHY 110)
Foundations for College Success (MCC SD 111)

In order to be enrolled in the CCP Program, students must first complete an on-line application.  For those students who have have previously enrolled in MCC courses, they will need to register with their NetID.  Students who cannot recall their NetID should contact the Guidance Office to retrieve it.    With one's NetID in hand, students should then follow the instructions for registering by clicking on here.  Students can also contact MCC at  MA-CCPinfo@manchestercc.edu for more information.

For students new to this registration process, click here for specific instructions to follow when completing registration and here to access the registration site.


Also note that Adobe Flash must be installed on any computer used to register online through the MCC portal.

PSAT Score Reports Due for Return in December

Over 250 students sat for the new PSAT on Wednesday, October 14th. This test is a shortened version of the new SAT. It does not include the essay that is now optional on the new SAT. The PSAT can be a relatively accurate predictor of performance on the SAT.

It can also serve as a valuable learning tool in preparation for the SAT. Aside from "experiencing" the test in a formal setting (albeit not the three-plus hour version), test-takers receive a detailed itemized analysis of their test results. The EOS Guidance Department collects the test booklets with student names on them and then mails each student's test booklet home along with the score report. So, students have the opportunity to review each question, observe which ones they answered correctly, and which ones they answered incorrectly. Furthermore, with each question tagged by a specific content area label, students can also identify areas that may need further attention when preparing for the SAT.

If used properly, the score report can be a very valuable learning tool. For those who took the test, they should expect to receive this information by mail in early December.

UConn Part of New Coalition

Below is an announcement published on the website of a collection of over 80 colleges and universities that have formed a coalition designed to increase access to higher Education.  UConn is one of these schools.

An unprecedented coalition of diverse public and private colleges and universities is coming together to improve the college admission application process for all students. The Coalition is developing a free platform of online tools to streamline the experience of applying to college. The initial iteration of the platform will be available to freshmen, sophomores and juniors in high school beginning in April 2016.

This new site is being introduced along with a good deal of controversy.  Two articles posted under "For Reading" address this controversy.

Click here to access the website and gather more information.  The link is also under "Helpful Links".

Federal Law Requires Colleges to Provide 

Real Cost of Education

A federal law was passed several months ago that requires all college websites to provide an online tool called a net price calculator that is intended to give a more accurate estimate of real costs for students and families. An article appearing in USA Today at the time the law went into effect describes the legislation and its intended effects. What it's not meant to do is provide "sticker shock" but rather a more realistic - albeit, estimated - view of costs for attendance.

A website managed by the federal government that's labeled College Navigator - National Center for Educational Statistics (available in "Helpful Links" below as well) already provides a good deal of this information. You can also find a direct link to the college cost calculator under "Links to Financial Aid".  

Using these tools may reveal that some schools which may appear to be out of reach may, in fact, be affordable if sufficient financial aid (based upon need) is provided. At any rate, the time invested in using these tools may reap the net effect of finding affordable options for higher education.

Financial Aid Workshop for Parents
EOS Lecture Hall
Tuesday, December 8 @ 7:00 PM
More Information Will Follow in Next Post

Tuition Break for Connecticut Residents

Looking for a discount on college tuition? Well, the New England Board of Higher Educationmay have a program for you. Called the Regional Student Program (RSP) Tuition Break, this program is a partnership comprised of the public colleges and universities in New England that offers more than 700 undergraduate and graduate degree programs and provides a significant discount on regular out-of-state tuition rates to eligible students.

Here's how it works - residents of one New England state are eligible when they attend certain public colleges in the other five New England states and pursue majors not offered by public colleges in their home state. This means that a CT resident may enroll in an out-of-state public school in New England and pay what amounts to almost in-state tuition provided that the major pursued at the college is not one offered by any of the public colleges and universities in CT.

If interested (and why wouldn't you be?), you can find more information about the program as well as majors available elsewhere at Regional Student Program Tuition Break.

Test Optional

Several colleges and universities - mostly smaller schools - have chosen to become "test-optional" institutions, meaning that students are given the option of submitting their SAT/ACT scores. On the surface, it may appear that these schools are making the claim that other measures are far more important to consider than some standardized test taken on some Saturday morning. In fact, this may be the case since research indicates that students who choose not to submit scores perform just as well in the college classrooms as those students who do submit scores. Of course, there are cynics who believe that there are other strategic reasons for implementing the "test-optional" policy. This will be saved that for another time.

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