YCteen publishes true stories by teens, giving readers insight into the issues that matter most in young people's lives.
What's New
Email Newsletter icon
Write for Youth Communication: Video
Behind the Scenes: Teen writers describe what it's like to work at YCteen.
Follow us on:
Share Youth Communication Follow YCteen on Facebook Follow YCteen on YouTube Follow YCteen on Twitter
Follow YCteen on Facebook Follow YCteen on YouTube Follow YCteen on Twitter
College Application Timeline
Janill Briones

If you’re in high school and thinking about college, use this calendar to help plan.

Junior Year

Fall Semester

• Sign up for and take the PSAT.

• Start thinking about which colleges you might want to apply to. Meet with your school guidance or college counselor to help you figure out where to start.

Spring Semester

• Ask your counselor about free or low-cost SAT prep classes, and take one if you can.

• Sign up for and take the SAT.

• Call any colleges in your area that you might be interested in, and ask about taking a tour of the campus.

• Sign up for college tours.


• Make a list of schools you want to apply to. Research them online or in college books at the library.

Senior Year


• Research colleges if you haven’t already done so. Look for college guides in the library and check out university websites.

• Get started on your applications if you plan to apply for early decision or early action.

• Update your resume.

• Make an appointment to see your college counselor.

• Register to take the SAT (or SAT Subject Tests) in October or November.


• Start asking your teachers, coaches, and counselors who know you well for letters of recommendation.

• Take the SAT (or SAT Subject Tests) or register to take the December SAT (or SAT Subject Tests).

• Search for grants and scholarships.


• Get your essays proofread and give your proofreader plenty of advance notice.

• Make sure teachers send out letters of recommendation on time.

• Here’s another chance to take the SAT or SAT Subject Test.


• Finish applying to all of your choice colleges before winter break.

• Another chance to take the SAT or an SAT Subject Test.


• Fill out your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

• Have your counselor send your mid-year grade report to the colleges that require them.

• Search for more grants and scholarships.


• Contact the colleges you applied to and make sure they received all of the application materials if you haven’t heard from them yet.

• Fill out the state tuition assistance program (TAP) application.


• Search for more grants and scholarships.


• You’ll have received most of the college responses by now, so consider everything there is to know about each college and make your decision.

• Tell the colleges you aren’t going to attend that you’ve turned them down.


• If you take any AP exams, make sure your scores are sent to your college.


• Have your counselor send your final transcript to your college.

• Sign up for freshman orientation!

horizontal rule

For Teens
Visit Our Online Store