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College Prep Starts in Middle School

Your son or daughter may just be starting middle school, but it can be an ideal time to start career and college planning. Starting the process now, before college application deadlines loom, will make the process easier.

In ACT research, middle and early high school students reported high educational expectations. Over three-quarters (77%) of students indicated that they planned to enter a four-year college or university. Although most students planned to pursue postsecondary education, fewer described their high school program of study as college preparatory.

ACT recommends that students take a rigorous core curriculum.

Standardized tests help schools measure what their students are learning. Students also can use those tests to make sure they are on track for college. The EXPLORE® test, which is usually offered in 8th grade, gives students an understanding of their academic strengths and weaknesses. It also offers ideas for possible career areas students should consider based on their measured career interests. Ask your school's counselor if EXPLORE is available in your student's school.

Parents can review their child's tests scores, and help identify subject areas for improvement and the appropriate classes and resources for additional study. Help your student explore careers and identify course options now and through high school. Starting early will give your child a solid jump on planning his or her future.



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