by Alex Keller, ’14

As a new school year commences, the question of what one is planning for college comes up with increasing regularity as seniors begin their college application process and other students continue their search. While researching colleges can be daunting for students without the right tools, some students have found their own methods for picking the right school for them.

After a long search for colleges with a good film program, senior Ellie Hall recalls back to the beginning of her search.

“I tried to look online but I had trouble finding reliable sources so I went to Barnes and Noble and got a book that told me the top 50 film schools,” Hall said.

From there, Hall began her list of possible schools that fit the criteria she wanted in her future college.

UAHS College Counselor Kathy Moore encourages using books but warns students about the disadvantages of using books in the college search process.

“Books such as Fiske Guide to Colleges and The Princeton Review’s Best College Guide are good [places] to start and give an overview of many schools. However, there are many wonderful colleges and universities that aren’t covered in these books,” Moore said.

After beginning with books, Hall concluded her search with the internet, a source other students, like 2013 UAHS graduate Ava Esler, chose to start with.

“I searched around online a lot… [for example] [was] a good website to look at pictures and see what people are saying,” Esler said.

College Prowler is a website that contains reviews and tips on colleges from current and previous students along with scholarship options.

Along with College Prowler, Moore recommends exploring other sites such as,, and College Navigator.

“There are many wonderful websites students can use. Family Connection is a great place to start because it allows students to explore schools and build their list,” Moore said. “It is important for UAHS students to become familiar with Family Connection because they will use this as they apply to schools their senior year…Students should also visit websites of the colleges they are interested [in].”

After seeing the use of books and websites Moore simply advises attention to content.

“Whether using books or websites, students need to look for as much information as possible about the school [they’re interested in].”

image caption: There are many resources for students to get access to college resources, such as books shown above. Popular guides include Fiske Guide and Princeton Review.

image by: Sheridan Hendrix