is one of the premier hubs for college preparation, providing resources for everything from standardized test prep to college selection (plus, they have their own scholarship fund!).
A Brief Overview of the College Board
According to their website
, “The College Board is a
mission-driven, not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity.”
It was founded in 1900 to help students
gain greater access to higher education
and it’s now made up of 600+ academic institutions.
The College Board attempts to level the academic playing field, making excellent education accessible to all students. Every year, it helps over 7 million students seamlessly make the transition from high school to college through testing and academic resources.
So without further ado, let’s take a look at what the College Board has to offer, and how it can help you increase your college opportunities and success.
The College Board is perhaps most well known for the
, which stands for the Scholastic Aptitude Test. The SAT is a standardized test commonly used by college admissions boards to assess your academic skills in several areas. Not all colleges require it, but many do. So, if you’re college-bound, there’s a good chance you’ll be taking it.
Because the College Board develops and administers the SAT, it’s also the best go-to for SAT-related resources. Here’s what you can find on the College Board to help you with all of your SAT needs:
. There are plenty of SAT prep courses and materials out there, but we advise going right to the source since the College Board writes the test. If you don’t have the time or energy for full practice tests, check out these
is $49.50 without the essay and $64.50. And this isn’t including any fees for additional subject area tests, late fees, change fees, and so on.
These costs can rack up, especially if you plan to take the SAT more than once to achieve the highest score possible. Fortunately, the College Board offers SAT fee waivers to juniors and seniors who qualify.
If you’re struggling to pay the SAT fees, you may be
are college-level courses developed by the College Board that are offered at high schools. Successful completion of an AP course and exam can earn you college credit in that subject area. For example, many colleges allow students to forego taking Composition 101 (a common core, college Freshman course) if you complete AP Literature and Language and pass the test with a 4/5 or higher.
AP course offerings vary from school to school. But, currently, the College Board offers a wide range of AP courses in art, design, art history, English, music theory, economics, psychology, calculus, statistics, the sciences, and modern languages.
If you’re on the fence about taking an AP course, it’s always a good idea to do some research on the colleges you’re interested in attending to see if they accept AP credit. And if you’re a freshman or sophomore in high school who is interested in taking AP courses as an upperclassman, then you should plan on taking honors courses now.
Remember that AP courses are challenging, but they can
save you a lot of time and money
down the line. They can also help you get on the right career path. Check out this super cool
. Like the AP program, CLEP allows you to take and pass exams on certain academic subjects in order to prove your proficiency and earn college credit.
Unlike the AP Program, CLEP
require you to actually take a course! So if you think you’re pretty strong in a particular subject matter, it can’t hurt to take a CLEP exam and submit it to participating colleges—you may just earn some college credit!
in the United States accept CLEP exams for college credit
So if a certain subject (or subjects!) is your strong suit, consider taking a CLEP exam to earn college credit for the knowledge and skills you already possess. Way to save time, money, and energy by putting your best foot forward!
College Planning Resources
Preparing for college can feel overwhelming. How do you know which major to choose? Should you really know which career is the right one for you
? These questions can be hard to answer at the start of your journey.
Never fear: The College Board offers a wealth of resources to help you prepare and plan for your college journey and beyond. And just an FYI: you’ll need to create an account to get the most out of these tools. But it’s totally free!
helps you search and find the right college just for you! You can search for the perfect fit based on the following criteria:
Test Scores and Selectivity
Type of School
Campus & Housing
Majors & Learning Environment
Sports & Activities
Paying (Financial Aid, Tuition Costs, etc.)
Additional Support Programs
Within each of these categories, you can set even tighter parameters. For example, you can search for colleges based on your SAT score, your desire to have a car (or not on campus), your extracurricular activities, and so on.
With 3,690 colleges in their database, you’re bound to discover plenty of college options—including ones you’ve probably never even heard of before!
that allows you to search and find a TON of viable careers and career paths based on your skills and interests.
What we love about this database is that you’ll likely discover careers you weren’t even aware of yet! And, Career Finder also provides useful information about the national job growth of each profession, so you can get a sense of which jobs will be most competitive, most potentially lucrative, and so on.
College Application Fee Waivers
If you’re applying for multiple colleges, the application fees can
add up. However, if you take the SAT (and use a fee waiver for it, as discussed earlier), then you’re in luck.
You can now apply for non-federal financial aid using a
, which stands for the College Scholarship Search Profile. This application will help you search and apply in one place for financial aid opportunities such as scholarships and grants. You can
read more about the CSS process here
There is a $25 fee to use the CSS profile. But the College Board also issues some
CSS fee waivers
to eligible students.
For most colleges, completing the CSS Profile is optional. But, for others, it’s a mandatory component of your financial aid application. So, make sure to check with your college’s financial aid department.
Keep in mind, however, that you will still need to file a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), which is how you’ll apply for and receive financial aid from the government. Check out our
ultimate guide to completing your FAFSA
Looking for More Ways to Plan and Pay For College? our site’s Got Your Back!