General Information on the Application Process

Books

The College Admissions Mystique, by Bill Mayher

College Admission: From Application to Acceptance, Step by Step, by Robin Mamlet & Christine Vandevelde

The College Solution: A Guide for Everyone Looking for the Right School at the Right Price, by Lynn O’Shaughnessy

Colleges Unranked: Affirming Educational Values in College Admission, edited by Lloyd Thacker

Crazy U: One Dad's Crash Course in Getting His Kid into College, by Andrew Ferguson

Fiske Guide to Getting Into the Right College, by Edward Fiske

Fiske What to do When for College, by Edward Fiske

I’m Going to College—Not You!: Surviving the College Search with Your Child, ed. Jennifer Delahunty

Letting Go: A Parent's Guide to Understanding the College Years, by Karen Levin Coburn and Madge Lawrence Treeger

The Thinking Student’s Guide to College: 75 Tips for Getting a Better Education, by Andrew Roberts

Where You Go is Not Who You'll Be, by Frank Bruni

Websites

bigfuture, by the College Board:  This website provides an excellent college search engine as well as a variety of planning tools.

College and University Rankings A site from The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Education and Social Science Library. This site has a wide array of links for rankings of colleges and universities and related information.

College Board The central web site for the PSATs, SATs, SAT Subject Tests, and APs; also provides a great deal of information about planning for, finding, applying to, and paying for college.

College Confidential Resources on choosing a college, applying, and financial aid; also home of the most active college application discussion community on the Web. These discussions are interesting, but take them with a grain of salt.

College Data Resources include articles, a college match tool, college profiles, and a scholarship finder.

College Navigator  Provides a search engine, planning resources, and financial aid information.

College Results Online Allows students to compare graduation rates at schools around the country.

CollegeView Information on the college search, applications, campus life, and financial aid; good site, but heavy on advertisements.

Peterson's Information on getting started, college searching, financial aid, and testing.

Princeton Review Information on schools, testing, and financial aid; includes a school match calculator.

Unigo  Rankings and reviews of colleges.  As always, review the unedited content with a skeptical eye.

US News & World Report The value of the rankings is up for debate, but this site has a great deal of interesting education news.

Wisemantech A giant array of links compiled by a retired college guidance director and counselor.

Looking for Colleges

Books

The Best 376 Colleges, by Princeton Review

The College Finder, by Steven Antonoff

Colleges that Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About Colleges, by Lauren Pope

Cool Colleges for the Hyper-Intelligent, Self-Directed, Late-Blooming, and Just Plain Different, by Donald Asher

Creative Colleges: A Guide for Student Actors, Artists, Dancers, Musicians, and Writers, by Elaina Loveland

The Fiske Guide to Colleges, by Edward Fiske

The Hidden Ivies, by Howard Greene and Mathew W. Greene

The Insider's Guide to Colleges, by the Yale Daily News Staff

Looking Beyond the Ivy League, by Loren Pope

The Public Ivies, by Howard Greene and Mathew W. Greene

Websites

NSSE Pocket Guide to Choosing a College

College Maps Offers wall maps of US colleges & universities

Macleans Magazine about Canadian education and information about applying to Canadian schools.

Big Future College Board's search tool

College Data College Data's search tool

Colleges Ranked by Number of Degrees by Major Provides a searchable site that shows how many degrees are awarded annually in each major by institution

Financial Aid

Books

FastWeb College Gold: The Step-by-Step Guide to Paying for College, by Mark Kantrowitz

Websites

FAFSA: Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Department of Education Federal Aid Information: Broad information on applying for aid, including details on how to fill out the FAFSA

CSS Profile: Financial aid service of the College Board; required by many colleges and universities

MHEC: Maryland Higher Education Commission's information on state financial assistance programs

https://myintuition.org/: Estimator for financial aid awards at several highly selective private colleges

FinAid: General information on financial aid and scholarships

Fastweb: Free scholarship clearinghouse

Fastaid: Free scholarship clearinghouse

Scholarship Scams: The Federal Trade Commission's overview of scholarship scams

Central Scholarship Bureau: Information about no-interest loans and scholarships for Maryland residents

Center for Student Opportunity: Scholarships for students of limited financial resources, underrepresented minorities, and whose parents did not go to college

Sallie Mae Loan Repayment Calculator

Gap Year

Books

Lonely Planet's The Big Trip: Your Ultimate Guide to Gap Years and Overseas Adventures, by Joe Bindloss, Charlotte Hindle, and Andrew Nystrom

Planning Your Gap Year: Hundreds of Opportunities for Employment, Study, Volunteer Work and Independent Travel, by Nick Vandome

Taking a Gap Year, by Susan Griffith

Taking Time Off, by Colin Hall and Ron Lieber

Websites

AmeriCorps.gov

www.cityyear.org

Study Abroad An extensive directory of semester- and year-long educational programs abroad

Travel Planning Gap Year travel planning guide

Gap Year Directories. Each of the following websites allows students and parents to research gap year ideas, travel, jobs, organizations, and internships.

GapYear.com

Real Gap Experience

Where Are You Headed?

College Admissions Blogs

University of Chicago's "The Uncommon Blog," https://blogs.uchicago.edu/collegeadmissions/

Tufts University's "Inside Admissions," http://admissions.tufts.edu/blogs/inside-admissions/

University of Virginia's "Notes from Peabody," http://uvaapplication.blogspot.com/