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Jan 12, 2017 12:07 PM EST

College Admission 101: 5 Strategies For Parents To Survive The Admission Process

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The college admission process is a very stressful time for everyone, especially for parents who are torn between letting their college-age children be independent and make decisions for themselves. Although they know they might not be the best decisions and the ordeal in doing so can take its toll on both parents and child bound for college, here's how you can survive the whole process and avoid the pitfalls.

Act as their mentor

It might be difficult but at this point in time, parents need to serve as guides and mentors instead of an authority figure. Avoid forcing your decision to them instead ask questions that would make them stop for a while and consider. Instead of saying, "I think this major is good for you," try asking, "how would that major help you in the future?"

Focus more on their goals in life

Just talking about college will come across as nagging them to make a decision right there and then. To remove the pressure that could lead to misunderstanding between you and your child, ask them about their hopes and dreams as well as their doubts and anxieties. The conversation would be much better if it's spontaneous.

Talk to the school counselor

If your child's school has a counselor, talk to them to keep you up-to-date with deadlines and requirements. Don't muddle your decision by listening to friends and relatives regarding what is right and 'best.' Although they mean well, nothing beats the expert who has the first-hand information.

Be aware about the process

What you and other's experiences are different than what your child will experience. What worked in the past, even if it's just a year the went by, might not work now. Instead, educate yourself by researching online and attending college nights. Searching college websites for information is also a good step to informing yourself.

Avoid nagging

Stopping yourself from nagging might probably be the most difficult to accept because it's the most natural thing parents do. However, it won't work to your advantage. Instead, create a calendar and schedule and place it where everyone can see it and be reminded what needs to be done next.

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