As a general rule, applying to two-year county and community colleges is much easier than to a four-year school, often requiring only a high school transcript or minimum test score. colleges in the aggregate level has become more competitive but most colleges admit a majority of those who apply; the selectivity and extreme competition has been very focused in a handful of the most selective colleges.
Recent trends in college admissions include increased numbers of applications, increased interest by students in foreign countries in applying to American universities, These trends have made college admissions a very competitive process, and a stressful one for student, parents and college counselors alike, while colleges are competing for higher rankings, lower admission rates and higher yields to boost their prestige and desirability. (Total freshmen enrollment at the top 100 most selective schools where an admit rate is below 35% is below 200,000 out of 2.90 million total freshmen in all post-secondary institutions).
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In 2019, more than 50 people were charged regarding an admissions cheating scheme.
Millions of high school students apply to college each year.
Private and affluent public primary education, test-prep courses, 'enrichment' programmes, volunteer service projects, international travel, music lessons, sports activities – all the high-cost building blocks of the perfect college application – put crushing pressure on the upper middle class and their offspring.
The college applications process can be stressful for parents of teenagers, according to journalist Andrew Ferguson, since it exposes "our vanities, our social ambitions and class insecurities, and most profoundly our love and hopes for our children".
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