CHECKLIST FOR YOUR APPLICATIONS:
By the end of Junior Year, provide your counselor with all the materials they will need to write your recommendation:
Student Questionnaire (your responsibility)
Activity Sheet (filled out by you)
Parent Information Sheet (completed by one or both parent)
Create a Common Application account. The new Common Application form is usually available in early August.
Sign FERPA agreement and complete the list of “Colleges I’m Applying to” in Naviance.
Ask Teachers for recommendations and ensure they are aware of all application deadlines. (Note: Some teachers send via Naviance while others send via mail. Check with each teacher to understand what their requirements are. If they send by mail they will ask you for stamped/addressed envelopes.)
Give Record Release Forms to your Counselor at least 10 school days before application deadline (one form for each of the schools you plan to apply to).
Complete the Common App (and any other applications) including Essay and Supplements (if required; you must check for each school).
Request that Test Scores be sent (from The College Board for SATs or from ACTstudent.org) and pay fees.
Pay the application fee
Check that each school to which you have applied has received all of the information you and your counselor have sent before the application deadline. Many schools, once you have applied, will assign you an account so that you can track the status of the application materials.
Complete local Scholarship form and give to your counselor (form available in early January; deadline for submission is early March).
The following items are sent to each of the Colleges you’ve chosen to apply to by your Counselor.
Secondary School Report
Your transcript through the end of Junior Year
1st Quarter grades (unless you request that they not be sent)
Final grades (sent only to the school at which you plan to matriculate)
At the end of Junior Year, complete the Parent Information Sheet (give to your student and/or their counselor so that counselor may use the information in their recommendation.
For Financial Aid, complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and the CSS Profile, in required (only some schools require this form). Check deadlines for submission.
Naviance Log in
Introduction to Naviance- a PowerPoint presentation
The Hingham High School Counseling Department is using a fantastic new web-based college and career counseling software program by Naviance. The program enables students and families access from home to do college searches and to see college-admissions data from Hingham High School as well as national statistics.
Naviance has extensive data on each school and can provide a wealth of information to the student in the college search and application process. The College Search module allows students to enter criteria for their desired types of schools and to generate a list of schools which meet these criteria. A student can then follow links to general information about a college as well as to an individual college’s web page for deeper investigation. Students can then compare their personal profiles to national as well as Hingham High School data and compile a list of prospective schools.
Together students and their counselors can share lists of prospective colleges. The data available, along with a student’s personal interests, will help counselors, students, and their parents investigate the sometimes overwhelming number of post-secondary options available.
Through junior seminars and ongoing individual meetings, counselors continue to introduce our students to the Naviance software. By entering the site with your user name and password, you and your student will be able to access his or her personal data page including GPA, all standardized test scores, the college search function and much more.
TYPES OF ADMISSIONS
The types of application plans students encounter during the college admissions process are explained below. Be sure to read each college’s literature carefully and consult your counselor if you have any questions about the different admissions plans.
Regular Admissions: Many colleges establish an application deadline by which all applications must be received or postmarked, such as January 1, January 15, or February 1, etc. All students are then notified of the colleges’ decisions at a uniform response date, typically on or before April 1.
Early Decision: This plan is offered by many colleges to applicants who are sure they want to attend the college. This college clearly should be the applicant’s first choice. Traditionally, the deadline for early decision applications has been November 1 or 15. Colleges then render a decision by mid-December. Under the early decision plan, colleges may accept, deny or defer students to the regular admissions pool. Some colleges also have a second round of early decision (usually in January or February). These later plans have the advantage of giving students more time to think through their decisions. You should not apply under an early decision admission plan unless you are certain that you want to attend that college. If accepted under this plan, the acceptance is binding which means the student is under an obligation to attend the college and to withdraw or forego applications to all other colleges.
Early Action: This program is another option for early notification of acceptance. However, under this plan, if admitted the applicant is not obligated to attend that college and the student may apply to other colleges. If admitted, the student has until May 1st to decide just as with a regular admissions plan.
Under the early action plan, colleges may accept, deny or defer students to the regular admissions pool. Colleges typically offer either an early decision option or an early action option, although some colleges now offer both.
Rolling Admissions: Under this program a college considers a student’s application as soon as all the required credentials have been received. Notification of acceptance or rejection is mailed as soon as a decision is made. Colleges that follow this practice may make their admissions decisions continuously over several months in contrast to the practice of other colleges which accumulate their applications until a deadline date and then announce all their decisions at the same time.
Deferred or Delayed Enrollment: Most colleges allow an accepted candidate to postpone enrollment in a college, generally for one semester or one year. The accepted student must send a letter to the college of his/her choice requesting deferred enrollment and must send in a deposit by May 1, to hold his/her place.
Candidate’s Reply Date May 1 is the common date by which accepted applicants must indicate their intention to enroll at the college they choose to attend. By use of a common reply date, students may evaluate all notices of admission and financial aid awards before deciding on any one college, allowing students to make informed decision
Massachusetts state law requires that students earn a Competency Determination as a condition for high school graduation. The Competency Determination will be awarded to students who pass the grade ten MCAS English Language Arts, Science, and Mathematics tests. Most students at Hingham High School will take the Biology test in June of the year they complete the Biology course. If a student needs additional chances to pass Mathematics or English Language Arts, he or she will be able to take the tests four more times before the end of 12th grade and will have additional opportunities after high school as well. Additional Science tests are given once per year if needed. Students who perform very well on the MCAS and in other academic areas may receive a prestigious Certificate of Mastery from the Commonwealth and qualify to receive free tuition at Massachusetts state colleges.
PSAT / NMSQT:
The PSAT/NMSQT is a national test, which is administered by all high schools in October. The PSAT takes approximately three hours to complete and is divided into three sections: Critical Reading, Math, and Writing Skills. All juniors planning post-secondary education are strongly encouraged to take the test for a number of reasons, including:
It is good practice for students to familiarize themselves with the timing and format of the SAT
It gives students an indicator of how they will score on the SAT Reasoning Test
Students can see how they compare to other college bound juniors
The PSAT must be taken junior year if a student wants to be considered for a National Merit Scholarship. The selection of National Merit Scholars is done on the basis of scores obtained on the PSAT. All registration is done through Hingham High School and is not available on the College Board website. Students may visit the College Board website for more information and for online practice in conjunction with Khan Academy. Following the PSAT, students can visit PSAT Extra to read explanations for all the test questions, prepare further for the SAT, and access a tool to explore careers, majors, and colleges.
The SAT Reasoning Test is a college admission examination comprised of two sections: Reading & Writing, and Math. Scores range from 200-800 for each section. The highest possible combined score is 1600 (2400 prior to 2016).The SAT is typically taken in May or June of a student’s junior year, and once more in October of November of senior year if necessary. The test itself is offered several times per year through Hingham High School, and is also available through other high schools. Please refer to the college board calendar for all exam dates and registration details. To register for the SAT Reasoning Test or for more information, go to the College Board website. Please note that in 2024 the College Board plans to transition from paper to computer testing. More information about this transition will be posted as it becomes available.
The ACT Assessment, or “A-C-T” as it is commonly called, is a national college admission examination that consists of tests in English, Reading, Mathematics, and Science (as well as an optional writing section). ACT results are accepted by virtually all U.S. colleges and universities. Unlike the SAT, the ACT is not an aptitude or an IQ test. Instead, the questions on the ACT are directly related to material learned in high school English, Mathematics, and Science courses. Because the ACT tests are based on what is taught in the high school curriculum, students are generally more comfortable with the ACT than they are with the traditional aptitude tests or tests with narrower content. Students will typically take the ACT in May or June of junior year. The test is offered several times per year. Please refer to the ACT calendar for all exam dates and registration details.
REPORTING SCORES TO COLLEGES
It is important for students to know the testing requirements of each school they are considering applying to for college. It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of registration deadlines and to have test scores sent directly to colleges from the testing service. This can be done when initially registering, or following the exam by visiting the testing company’s web site. For the SAT, students can release and transmit scores to colleges of their choice by sending to ETS (Educational Testing Service–the test producer of the SAT) the release form in the registration booklet or on-line.
In recent years more colleges and universities have become “test-optional” schools, meaning that some programs do not require SAT or ACT scores as part of admission requirements. If the student is concerned about his or her performance on standardized tests when applying to colleges, it is recommended that he or she researches colleges and universities where SATs and/or ACTs are optional.