College Admission Process
Congratulations on deciding to go to college! There are several steps in the college admission process. Like most things, it doesn't happen overnight; it is a gradual process so you do not want to wait until the last minute. Early admission is always the best way to go! Request your application for admission early. Complete the application and return it early with all of the required documents for admission.
Some colleges accept applications as early as September of your Senior year!!
Steps to Follow:
- Select your colleges - about 8 - 10 months prior to entrance
- Contact these colleges and request catalogs and applications for admission prior to entrance date.
- Check entrance requirements: ACT or SAT, SAT Subject Tests, TSI, and/or high school courses required. Also check on Advanced Placement (AP) test requirements.
- After selecting two or three colleges, return the completed applications and fees to the colleges. For Texas Institutions for Higher Education, most colleges use the ApplyTexas site for applications.
- If you have not taken the ACT or SAT by this time, if required, take the test early so the college will get the scores early; it takes about a month for scores to be processed.
- If you have not heard from the Office of Admissions a month after having sent the completed application for admission to the college, contact them to verify that the application has been received and is complete.
- Compare all tuition fees, room and board costs, and select your college of choice.
- Apply for all endowment scholarships at the college of choice. Be aware of the scholarship deadline set by the university.
- Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online. FAFSA is available on October 1st of every year. Texas priority deadline is usually March 15th of each year. FAFSA is a first-come-first-serve basis! Contact the Financial Aid Officer at the university/college for additional information on scholarships and aid available to you.
- Apply for housing with the college of choice and meet the deadline for application. Every institution has a specific date.
The above suggested procedures hold true for most two or four year colleges, both publicly supported and private institutions. The same is true for most post-secondary vocational or technical schools or institutions such as Texas State Technical College , Lincoln College of Technology, or Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology.
High School Course Requirements for Universities and Junior Colleges:
Each institution has certain specific admission requirements which will indicate which high school courses you are required to have in order to attend that institution. For example, a four year university requires biology, chemistry, physics, Algebra II and four years of English; plus, you will need to graduate on either Recommended, Distinguished, or Foundation High School Plan with the courses listed. Research your college of choice and make sure you are taking required high school courses geared towards a college preparatory plan.
University (4 year college) - Most institutions require the following high school credits:
4 credits of English
4 credits of Math (including Algebra II)
4 credits of Science (including Biology, Chemistry, Physics)
4 credits of Social Studies
2 years Foreign Language
Junior College (2 year college) - Most institutions require the following high school credits:
4 credits of English
3 credits of Math
3 credits of Science (depending on student's high school graduation plan)
4 credits of Social Studies
College Entrance Exam Requirements:
Most colleges require either the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) or the ACT Assessment Test (ACT). Registration information for these tests may be obtained from your counselor or from the "College Wall" in the high school foyer. You may also click on the links above to register online for either of the tests.
Junior colleges require the Texas Success Initiative test. You must meet the exam scores listed below in order to register for college courses; otherwise, you will be placed in remedial English or math courses (these courses are not for college credit):
Writing: 349 with a 4 or 5 on the essay
When you apply for Federal Financial Aid or FAFSA, you are applying for three or more types of financial student aid.
Helpful Link to determine if you need to file for
Texas Application Student Financial Aid or Free Application for Federal Student Aid:
GRANTS: these are financial aid programs that students do not repay. Grants are often called "gift aid."
LOANS: these are subsidized or unsubsidized financial aid student loans that must be repaid.
There are two types of loan programs:
WORK STUDY: this allows the student to work and earn money to help pay for college. The money you earn is applied directly to the cost of your education.
Other Federal Programs:
- Air Force ROTC Scholarship Program
- AMERICORPS: Corporation for National and Community Service
- Army ROTC Scholarship Program
- Navy-Marine Corps ROTC Scholarship Program
- Service Academy - Air Force
- Service Academy - Army
- Service Academy - Coast Guard
- Service Academy - Merchant Marine
- Service Academy - Naval
- U.S. Army Reserve
- U.S. Bureau of Indian Education
- Veterans Affairs Education Benefits for Dependents
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- Nursing Student Loan Program (NSL)
- Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students (SDS)
The purpose of the program is to provide grant aid to financially needy students enrolled in Texas public two-year colleges. Applicants must:
- Be a Texas resident
- Show financial need
- Have a family contribution of no more than $2,000, if applying for a first-time award
- Register for the Selective Service, unless exempt
- Be enrolled at least half time (6 semester credit hours) in an associate's degree or certificate program at a public two-year college in Texas
- Not have been granted an associate's or a baccalaureate degree
- Not have been convicted of a felony or a crime involving a controlled substance
This grant provides assistance to students with financial need. Applicants must:
- Be Texas residents, non-residents or foreign students
- Show financial need
- Register for the Selective Service, unless exempt.
Public colleges or universities in Texas make TPEG awards from their own resources. Only in-state (Texas) public colleges or universities may participate in the program (no private, non-profit or career colleges or universities). Deadlines and amounts vary. Complete the FAFSA and contact the financial aid office at your college for additional information.
The 80th Texas legislature created the Top 10% Scholarship to encourage students who graduate in the top 10% of their high school class to attend a Texas public institution of higher education. For the upcoming year, all qualifying student who submit their FAFSA or the Texas Application for State Financial Aid (TAFSA) and have financial need may be eligible if they enroll full-time in a Texas public college or university in the fall semester of their graduating year.
The Texas Application for State Financial Aid (TAFSA) is for students who are not eligible to complete the FAFSA because of citizenship status. House Bill 1403/Senate Bill 1528 states that some non-documented students may qualify as residents for higher education purposes such as in-state tuition and financial aid.