College Counseling Program
APU offers a personalized and comprehensive college counseling program that focuses on helping each student to find a group of colleges that fits her interests and special talents.
Freshman and Sophomore Years
We believe that it is essential to give each student plenty of time during her freshman and sophomore years to develop her interests, take intellectual risks and change her mind. Every course offered by APU is appropriate for students planning to attend a rigorous and highly selective college. Indeed, we require every student to take a well-rounded curriculum that pursues subjects in depth and give them little choice in these years. Although we seek to keep the freshman and sophomore years free of formal college conversations, freshmen and sophomores are welcome to drop in to speak with the College Counseling office if they have a question. Parents are equally welcome to call at any time with questions.
SAT II Subject tests:
We do not recommend any SAT II tests for freshmen or sophomores.
This is given to all sophomores at the end of the school year. This is a diagnostic test that is scored by APU and returned to the student and the parents. It is entirely confidential and is designed to give the student a starting point from which to plan their SAT test preparation.
Our formal college counseling program begins in the junior year. In January, juniors are assisted to start identifying their interests and talents and begin their search for colleges that are a good fit. At this time, each junior meets individually with their assigned College Counselor, which is followed by at least one meeting together with the student’s parent(s). Juniors are also encouraged to make an appointment or drop in to talk with their counselor at any time.
APU recommends that students begin their SAT preparation with a few sessions at the end of the sophomore summer or early fall of the junior year before the October PSAT. For this reason, APU provides PSAT review classes in September and October during the Junior Year. Students should then take a break from SAT preparation until January, so that they can focus on classes and extra-curricular activities.
Students will use their PSAT scores and their progress in January and February to decide when to take the SAT I. It is important to remember that most students show significant improvement (50 points on each section) between the PSAT and the SAT, even without test preparation. This comes from natural growth and maturation over the course of the year.
PSAT Review classes during Junior Year
PSAT test given to all juniors
December, January, May or June:
SAT II test dates.
Junior College Night
Individual student and parent conferences
SAT I (many juniors)
SAT I or II (all juniors)
AP Exams (some juniors)
SAT I or II (all juniors)
ACT (rarely taken)
Summery Study Tour and College Visits
Do something meaningful to you (work, volunteer, travel, enrichment classes).
While the goal of the junior year college counseling program is to gather information and expand a student’s awareness of their college options, the goal of the senior year program is to narrow the student’s choices to a list of approximately eight colleges and to write effective applications. The weekly Senior College Seminar meets during the fall term and walks seniors through the college applications process. Topics include writing essays, filling out applications, interviewing, applying for scholarships and financial aid, and meeting with college representatives visiting APU’s campus. In addition, seniors have unlimited individual meetings with their College Counselor all year long, as well as at least one meeting together with their parent(s) early in the fall. In the winter and spring, Senior Seminar focuses upon making the transition to college. Discussions include: health issues, changing relationships with friends and family, managing money and philanthropy.
October, November, and December:
Make sure to research thoroughly your college campuses and make any possible visits.
Meet with college admissions representatives visiting APU.
Retake SAT I and/or II tests, if needed.
- Seniors applying Early Decision must finish SAT I and II tests by October (or sometimes November).
Early Decision application deadlines.
Early Decision admission decisions arrive.
Regular Decision application deadlines.
Regular Decision admission decisions arrive.
A deposit is due to the college you will attend.
Wait-list decisions are made.