College Scorecard - Helping US Students Choose College

It's fall in the US and College applications are being written left, right and centre, but how do the students know which college is best for them and what they want to pursue? A new tool called the College Scorecard has been released in the USA just in time for the College application season. We take a look and see what all the fuss is about!

What is College Scorecard?

College Scorecard is a new website created by the US Government to help student and their parents decide on which College will be best for them, their subject area and their finances. The website is designed to help students choose from the wide range of American Colleges, as well as giving them information about funding options for their study.  

college-scorecard-screenshots

Using College Scorecard

The main section of the website is searchable by:

  • Programs/Degrees
  • Location
  • Size
  • Name
  • Advanced Search by Public/Private/Specialized Mission/Religious Affiliation

Once you have searched for all of this information, you can filter your results by:

  • Average percentage increase in earnings from a High School graduate 
  • Average annual cost
  • Graduation rate
  • Average salary after attending
  • Name 
  • Size

Each institution then has a profile page containing all of the relevant information about the College incuding popular programs, average admission requirements, average loan amounts plus much more.

Additional Information

 In addition to the powerful search function on the site, College Scorecard includes helpful links for information about applying for financial support at university, including a calculator for working out how much financial support you may be eligible.

Types of Aid from the Federal Government

Federal Student Aid FAFSA4caster

Our Verdict

College Scorecard is a great tool if you like to work out things by numbers, but in reality choosing a College is a highly personal thing which is about far more than just the cost, courses available and entry requirements. The campus that will become your new home for the next 2 or 4 years needs to be a place of beauty that will inspire you outside of class. The website does not take into account geographical location, student satisfaction, societies and extacurricular activities and specific alumni which will also afect a student's choice of College. It feels like the tool was made for parents to look out for their children's best interest, but I think using it as anything more than a long-list for potential universities would be foolish.

We recommend speaking to an education counselor at your High School and using tools like i-studentglobal.com/student-blogs for students' accounts of their time at university all over the world, as well as WhyStudyHere? - a site of student testimonials from Universities and Colleges in the USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, New Zealand and Australia. 

Visit collegescorecard.ed.gov for yourself and let us know what you think in the comments below.

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