CPC and Finding the Best-Fit College

Updated: Jun 17


Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, which is why I don't spend time visiting college campuses to understand the best-fit schools for students. One student's idea of a walkable, beautiful, welcoming - insert any adjective here - campus - is personal.

Our role is to invest in, read, research, and identify relevant data that will help parents and students develop a balanced quality college list so that when it is time to visit, they are prepared. High-quality admissions data is critical to the success of any data-driven college planning process. To name a few data points...

  • Does the school have sufficient resources to teach and advise the student properly?

  • How likely is the student to graduate on time, pay off their loans, and get a good-paying job?

  • Was the school in a weakened economic state before the pandemic?

  • How to avoid average but expensive institutions on your college list?

  • Recognizing a small liberal arts college that may have financial issues based on lower endowments

  • Identifying hidden gems

  • Understanding different admission rates for limited enrollment programs

  • Updates to deadlines, test-optional policies, campus visits

Whether it's the latest admission rates, departmental admission rates, key application requirements, or affordability data, our goal is to minimize surprises and save you hours of time trying to track and gather all of this yourself. Over the years we've developed a strong understanding of where and when to look for critical pieces of information through a combination of constant research and technology to track changes.

Industry Publications - Programs of Study

Admission Information

  • The Common Data Set Updates - Colleges release their Common Data Set at various times during the year. Note that current CD sets all are at least one year behind so the latest CDS is for the Class of 2024 best case.

  • University Factbook Data

  • Admission rate updates for the latest class: We're actively tracking the latest published early and regular decision results (e.g. Class of 2025) and updating the CK database when all relevant rates are available from the colleges. By the time seniors are applying in the fall, most of the name-brand schools will be on current-year rates.

  • Admission rates by the department for limited enrollment programs (engineering, computer science, nursing)

  • Press Releases

  • Most Recently Published Academic Class Profile

  • School Websites

  • Demonstrated Interest Considered or Important

  • Interviews Considered or Important

  • Standardized Testing Options - We actively track changes to standardized testing policies and provide guidance

  • Common Application Updates in August

  • Changes to key application requirements

  • Changes to admission plan options

  • Changes to deadlines

  • Need Blind vs Need Aware Schools

  • Early Decision and Restrictive Early Action Acceptance Rates

School Quality and Academic Investment

Higher Education Trends

  • Institution Blogs, Releases, Fact Books

  • The Chronicle of Higher Education

  • College Scorecard

Cost of Attendance

  • Strength in need-grants

  • Strength in merit-scholarships

  • Separate deadlines for competitive institutional scholarships

  • Regional Tuition Discount Programs

  • Academic Common Market Guidance

  • FAFSA/CSS Profile Requirements and Deadlines

Some of these resources are free, some are not. Parents can absolutely invest time diving down the rabbit hole and exploring the incredible amount of content available. We help parents who would prefer to spend their time elsewhere. Allowing CPC to get wonky on data for their student frees up time for more substantial (and fun) dinner conversations. Want to find out more? Schedule a free conversation today.

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