Changes announced by ACT

The ACT recently made several important announcements. Make sure you've prepared well before you head to the test--not just content-wise but also logistically. Here are the important takeaways: 

1. Registration for the September 7-8 test window opens on Friday, July 20. Register as soon as you can--there is limited availability at testing centres, so make sure you get a slot!

2. Test takers taking the test will receive a whiteboard and marker, not scratch paper. One side of the whiteboard will have a grid on it and the other side will be blank.

3. By September 2018, nearly all international test-takers will have to take the test in a computer-based format. However, students who have 50% extra-time accommodations can request the paper-based exam instead of the computer-based one, if they so choose. Students with other accommodations must still take the paper exam. 

4. It will now cost $150 (around Rs 10,300) to take the ACT without Writing. It will cost $166.50 (Rs 11,500) to take the ACT with Writing. 

5. The choice of which testing dates to offer and which testing windows to offer (morning or afternoon) will be up to the individual test centres.Make sure you check the times and dates carefully!

6. As has been the case before, test takers can have their ACT scores sent automatically to up to four universities/colleges, free of charge. Students now must rank those universities in order of their preference, and the universities will see where they ranked on students' lists. 

Test Dates: ACT Deadlines for the Coming Months

ACT

September 7-8, 2018 // Register by August 10, 2018

October 26-27, 2018 // Register by September 28, 2018

December 7-8, 2018 // Register by November 2, 2018

February 8-9, 2019 // Register by January 11, 2019

April 12-13, 2019 // Register by March 8, 2019

(Late registration option available)

*For each of the two days within an ACT testing window, there will be morning and afternoon sessions offered. Session availability may vary by test center. Learn more about the changes coming to the ACT test at international test centers.

Test Dates: SAT and Subject Tests Deadlines for the Coming Months

New SAT I, Subject tests and ACT dates announced!

SAT I & Subject Tests

6th October 2018 // Register by 7th September 2018

1st December 2018 // Register by 2nd November 2018

9th March 2019 // Register by 8th February 2019

4th May 2019 // Register by 5th April 2019

* Make sure to check if the subject tests that you want to attempt are being conducted on the day you choose

Good luck with preparations, and on test day! 

EdBrand Happiness Survey

How happy are students with their colleges and EdBrand?

We recently conducted a small survey amongst our past students to understand how happy they were with their respective colleges and to analyse what they thought about our services. 

The brief results are illustrated below:

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We strongly believe in working with students to get them to their Right-Fit College.

 

A Right-Fit college envisions a social and academic environment, which matches a particular student’s personality. This match implies a higher chance of growth and success for the student.

 

Based on feedback from our students, almost 93% of them believe that they are at a Right-Fit College.

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Safety Colleges are the ones where a student is likely to get into without much effort. Match Colleges are where the student should get into if they realise their full potential while applying. Dream Colleges are where the students can potentially get into if they excel beyond their current capabilities.

Based on our feedback, almost 94% of our students got into either their Match College or their Dream College

 

This means that almost 94% of our students realised or enhanced their application potential, while working with us. 

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EdBrand Feedback: What do students think about our services?

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These were the words used by students to describe their engagement with us. The most common description was “Engaging and Conversational,” with almost 80% of students using that term. The other important descriptions based on their frequency were: Empathetic, Care and Attention, Personal Development.

 

 

 

Travelogs: Arjun Goes to London!

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Follow Arjun on his exciting journey across college campuses in the UK

King’s College:

Set in the heart of London, King’s College campuses are scattered across the picturesque streets (seen in movies, read in books) making history and culture come alive. Some of the older buildings are around River Thames allowing one to cross bridges on a daily basis. The nearly 200-year-old institution boasts of an impeccable and diverse alumni having produced academic prodigies as well as Nobel prize winners. The institution is best known for its Medicine and Law courses . They emphasise on tailored teaching, training and internship programmes, through innovative research collaborations to generate new approaches and insights. The location permits access to London’s museums, collections and libraries making it a holistic learning experience for the student.

Famous Alumni: Florence Nightingale, John Keats, Virginia Woolf, Desmond Tutu

Fees: Home: £9,250

 

Imperial College London:

Sitting cosily amidst London’s famous tourist locations like Hyde Park and Royal Albert Hall, Imperial’s main campus is located in South Kensington. Having been founded in 1907, the original college exists within Central London, enabling exposure to its vibrant London life. South Kensington, being a prime sightseeing land, contains educational and cultural sites which can be accessed at discounted rates by the students of Imperial College.

The University is renowned for having UK’s most diverse student body where the international community amounts to almost 50% of the student body. Within this space, cultures collide and collaborate ensuring that Imperial thinks and acts internationally. Popularly known for its Science and Technology courses, it is a perfect segue into the competitive job market. Highly regarded for its employability, Imperial lets its students access London’s business and financial sector for future prospects.

Famous alumni: Alexander Fleming, H.G. Wells, Cyrus Mistry.

Fees: Home: £9,250

 

London School of Economics:

Unlike most UK campuses which are scattered across the landscape of London, all 0f LSE’s campuses are located around River Thames, Covent Garden and Theatreland, and other London sights. LSE occupies a prime location in London’s Central Zone. Since all the buildings are located a few streets from each other, the campus has a real community feel to it.

The University is the world’s foremost social science institution with courses like Government, International Relations, Sociology and Economics being popularly sought after. At the undergraduate level, their Accounting and Finance is arguably one of the best in the UK. One of the buildings is next door to the Royal Courts of Justice, while the financial district, Westminster and the Houses of Parliament are all within walking distance of each other. This makes for an exciting place to study, especially for students hoping to pursue finance, politics or law.

Famous people: Mick Jagger, David Attenborough. B.R. Ambedkar.

Cost of attendance - £18,408 pa


 

Queen Mary University:

Queen Mary University of London is set in the east of London. Famed for its rich history, community spirit and cultural scene, East London houses some of the quirkiest art galleries, vintage shops, and world food markets. This section of the town adds to London’s already vibrant and culturally rich variegated landscape. Other than this, Queen Mary has 4 other campuses across London.

Queen Mary is a place for anyone who wishes to build on their extracurricular skills. Whether it's the Quidditch Society, the Jewish Society or the Labour Society, there's something for everybody.

Queen Mary is a place for anyone who wishes to build on their extracurricular skills. Whether it's the Quidditch Society, the Jewish Society or the Labour Society, there's something for everybody. Ranked 5th in the UK, this member of the Russell Group is regarded as one of the best for Medicine, Law, Dentistry and Film.

Famous alumni – Peter Mansfield (Nobel Prize in Medicine, 2003), Prannoy Roy (Journalist).

Fees: Click here

 

SOAS:

Founded in 1916, SOAS desired to move away from the all-to-familiar Euro-Centric approach to education. SOAS, a leading institute in the study of Asia, Africa and the Middle East, offers its students over 350 course combinations to choose from. Due to the limited research conducted in Asia and Africa, all tutors are masters of their respective fields. The environment makes for a lively, intimate sphere of discourse between students and tutors. The SOAS library is one of the best libraries covering Asia and Africa in the world. Added to this, the British Library that is only a short walk away creates an academic’s dreamscape. Having a focus on the international, SOAS considers itself to be a global community. Students are encouraged to study a language along with their degree programme. Focusing on the social sciences, SOAS is well known for IR, Politics, Development and Economics.

Famous Alumni: Aung San Suu Kyi, Bernard Lewis (British-American historian of oriental studies)

Fees- £16,907pa


 

University College London:

Founded in 1826 in the heart of London, University College London was the first university in England to welcome students of any religion and the first to welcome women on equal terms with men.

Balancing academic rigour alongside entertainment, UCL promises a range of facilities for both ends. Their multiple specialist libraries along with online subscriptions aids research on campus. UCL is home to three museums besides having special collections of archaeology, geology, ethnography, science and engineering. The university also gives credence to a students’ wholesome development by letting them indulge in theatre and sports. The Bloomsbury Theatre hosts student events while their full-size football, rugby and lacrosse stadiums encourage sports and fitness.

UCL Institute of Education holds its position as the world number 1 in Education, with Archaeology, Architecture/Built Environment and Anatomy & Physiology all ranking in the top 5 globally. Dentistry, Medicine, Pharmacy & Pharmacology, Psychology, Geography and Anthropology follow closely in the top 10.

Famous Alumni: Mahatma Gandhi, Alexander Graham Bell, Christopher Nolan.

Fees : Click here

 

University of Arts London:

With a desire to create and enrich the cultural sphere of London, six colleges that had been set up during the 19th and 20th centuries came together in 2004 to create the University of Arts London. It is a collegiate university specialising in art, design, fashion, media, communication and performing arts. Being the largest college in Europe specialising in arts and design, the following 6 are a part of these collegiate structure each having its own vibrant culture, philosophy and focus.

• Camberwell College of Arts
• Central Saint Martins
• Chelsea College of Arts
• London College of Communication
• London College of Fashion
• Wimbledon College of Arts

UAL graduates go on to work in and shape creative industries worldwide, and the university has launched the careers of many creative and cultural leaders, including over half of all Turner Prize nominees.

Fees: £19,350 p.a.


 

Regent’s University, London:

Regent’s University main campus enjoys beautiful, tranquil surroundings while being just minutes away from all that Central London has to offer. A short walk away, the Marylebone campus, home to the fashion and design school, sits in a lively historic area, known for its up-market boutiques, cafés and design shops, which retains the artisan feel of the Georgian village it once was. At Regent’s, London is your classroom.

Regent’s offers a personalised experience for students by conducting a high number of contact hours and small tutorial sizes, along with personalised career services. With around 4,500 students, it is small enough for personal mentorship, and yet large enough to get a diverse range of student interaction.

Regent’s offers both British and American degree programmes in a wide range of fields:

a.       Business and Management

b.      Psychology

c.       Drama

d.      Film and Media

e.       Arts and Social Sciences

f.        Fashion and Design

Language learning is also key; for some students this is a mandatory part of the programme, while for others it is an option. Most courses place a strong emphasis on experiential learning. Their practically -focused courses and study abroad opportunities develop students’ skills and employability in and outside of the classroom.

Famous Alumni: Ruby Wax (American actress), Lucy Beresford (British author)

Fees: £17,000

 

London Business school:

Located in Marylebone, London Business School is surrounded by a chic residential area with a village feel, centred on the independent boutiques and smart restaurants of Marylebone High Street. LBS is in proximity to several museums and tourist sites. The famous Madame Tussauds and Sherlock Holmes museums could make for a weekend visit while events at the adjacent Regent’s Park could keep one entertained throughout the year.

As a student of London Business School, you won't just be stretched intellectually. Students become a part of a diverse and ever-expanding international community where the concepts of business and international intermingle to create global impact.

Having an extreme focus in business, London Business School has collaborated with other universities in London to enable directional training in the chosen course. They offer two types of core courses: Business Fundamentals Core and Tailored Core. The Tailored Core enables students to design their MBA in a manner that suits them best.

Famous alumni: Cyrus Mistry, Kumar Mangalam Birla (Aditya Birla Group), Tony Wheeler (Lonely Planet)

Fees: £78,500


 

University of Chicago Booth School of Business:

London is home to one of Chicago Booth’s three global locations for its Executive MBA Program. The city provides a central location for opportunities where Chicago Booth can partner with many corporate supporters as well connect with the over 1,700 alumni living in Europe.

London’s Woolgate Exchange is located a block away from the Bank of England. Being a prime location for hands-on experience, Chicago Booth’s European campus lies in a city of central importance to the global economy.

Students of the Executive MBA Program will experience what makes Chicago Booth unique: its long-standing commitment to empowering bold thinkers and inquisitive minds to challenge, innovate, and create lasting impact in the world. The satellite campus also offers non-degree Executive Education programmes.

 

Fees: £125,815.20


 

New York University, London:

NYU London is an academic centre of New York University located in London. Students at NYU London take advantage of a wide range of academic programs complemented by the rich cultural experience of living in one of Europe’s most storied cities. Students who spend a semester at NYU London live and learn in the heart of Bloomsbury, a neighbourhood that is home to several museums and academic institutes.

Each semester, NYU staff plan day trips to places such as the historic cities of Bath, Cambridge, and Oxford. In addition to exploring London’s myriad cultural sites, students often participate in short-term or semester-long community service projects.

Students receive a broad liberal arts-based curriculum. The satellite campus offers several courses in the following disciplines:

a.       Science

b.      Business

c.       Fine Arts

d.      Theatre

e.       History

f.        Politics

g.       Africana Studies

h.      Economics

i.        Journalism

j.        Math

k.      Psychology

l.        Literature

While the curriculum draws from the city’s vibrant culture, students are also taken for field work and site visits into London’s cosmopolitan centre.

Fees: £5214.12 - £7624.26


 

 

University of Notre Dame:

The London Undergraduate Program (LUP) offers Notre Dame undergraduates the chance to broaden their intellectual and cultural horizons by living and studying abroad in London for one semester. Both campuses of Fischer Hall and Conway Hall are located close to River Thames and are surrounded by leading London universities. The city’s cultural SouthBank Centre as well as Waterloo Gardens and Embankment Gardens are close by.  

Students take part in a variety of academic and extracurricular activities, including field trips, plays and theatre tours, museum visits, and weekend outings across the U.K.

The core course Inside London provides students with an immersive experience into the political and cultural history of the city. Through other courses, students are also allowed to perform on the stage of Shakespeare's Globe under the leadership of specialist practitioners. LUP’s collaboration with King’s College London, enables students to access courses at the local university. Majority of classes are taught in Fischer Hall by faculty from a wide range of British universities and colleges and even, visiting faculty from the home campus.

Fees: £38,426.85

 

Richmond, the American University in London:

Study Abroad students are based in Kensington Campus, which is in the heart of the city. The space is in proximity to Kensington Palace, Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A), Natural History Museum and many more amazing sites.

Home to King Arthur, Shakespeare, the Beatles and Harry Potter, England has an enduring record as one of the world's most influential centres of cultural development. It would take more than a quick trip to even begin to explore its many historic and contemporary treasures, from Stonehenge to Stratford-on-Avon, to London with its magnificent museums, historic churches and towers, lively theatre scene, bustling markets and cosy pubs. Students are encouraged to spend a summer, a semester or an academic year studying in England.

Richmond offers a wide range of programmes in the Humanities, Social Sciences, Business and the Arts. So, whether or not it is classes in International Business, an Internship with a London-based fashion PR agency, or a summer drawing class in historic Italy, there are plenty of opportunities for students to experience. Study Abroad students are encouraged to participate in the life of the University, from trips, clubs & societies to International Night.

Fees: £7854.46 (9 weeks)
 

 

Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts:

The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art is situated in a theatre venue towards the east of Tottenham Court Road. Seen as a shopping street, this road had featured in several creative works from My Fair Lady to the Harry Potter series. Established in 1904, RADA has built an outstanding reputation for its shared passion for theatre-making as well as its strong links to the arts industries.

RADA offers vocational training for actors, stage managers, designers and technical stage craft specialists. Specialising in film, television and theatre, RADA owns 5 theatres and a cinema adding to a hand-on experience for its students. Their exceptional standard of facilities, teaching and productions, and the personalisation of training tailored to the needs of each student enables personal growth.

 

Fees: £18,640 p.a.

 

Courtauld Institute of Art:

Courtauld Institute of Art is situated along the banks of River Thames and is very close to Somerset House. Surrounded by a large community of creative businesses, artists and makers, the Institute specialises in history of art and conservation.

Students become a part of a vibrant intellectual community united by a passion for knowledge about visual culture. Courses aim to give students access to the best available research-led teaching, and to world-class learning resources, starting with their own specialist libraries and the treasures of The Courtauld Gallery.

The only undergraduate course offered by the Courtauld is a BA in the History of Art. This is a full-time course designed to introduce students to all aspects of the study of western art. The course equips students with a critical understanding of art from antiquity to the present, thus giving them an ideal foundation for further academic study. Undergraduates are usually taught in small groups, and as often as possible directly in front of original works of art and architecture.  

Alumni: Several members of its alumni are directors of famous museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the National Gallery, London; the National Portrait Gallery, London; the British Museum, London, and the Museo del Prado, Madrid.

 

Fees: £18,180

From the Horse's Mouth

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Why Admissions Officers' Blogs Provide Some of the Most Helpful Insight into the College Application Process

There is no shortage of reading material about the US college-admissions process—and sometimes, this poses its own challenge. Whether you're wading through huge books about application strategies, articles about the latest college news, or comments on message forums claiming to have the exact formula for Harvard admission, it's easy to feel overwhelmed and, at times, to get misled by inaccurate information. In all this, blogs published by admissions offices are a breath of fresh air and useful knowledge.

Most of these blogs are run off of colleges' official websites, which means that some of their posts are geared towards answering specific questions about that college or university. (For example, see this post on the University of Southern California's blog about different ways that prospective students can learn about the campus without having to visit.) You should use this to your advantage and pay special attention to the blogs of colleges to which you will be applying. But take note: a lot of posts on admissions blogs will be more generally beneficial for students applying to any colleges. For example, on the same USC blog, check out this post that gives advice on how to give an effective admissions interview, and this post, from USC’s senior assistant director of undergraduate admissions, on Making the College Admission Process About You.

Here are some links to some good admissions blogs, with excerpts of posts that you may find especially useful:

1. Planning Your Profile. The University of Illinois keeps a blog with lots of short posts, many of which are also useful for students who are preparing to attend college and wondering what academic and social life will be like in a US university. There are also plenty of basic admissions posts as well, such as this one, which gives a four-year breakdown of what students should be doing in each year of high school, to maximize the competitiveness of their applications. Here’s a snippet from the list of what students should start thinking about in their sophomore year of high school:

“If you already participate in some extracurricular activities, try to become more involved with them. Look for ways to take on leadership roles. You should also begin looking for great opportunities like a part-time job or a summer internship to help you further explore your interests.”

2. Managing Social Media During Applications. On the USC blog, see this post that addresses an issue that is especially relevant today: how applicants should manage their social media profiles around the time of college admissions.

“Make. It. Private.  Facebook allows you to “view profile as” so you can see what the public can see of your profile.  Adjust those setting so it isn’t a lot.  If you share things that you don’t want to be asked about in an admission interview, make it private.  It is far more likely that I will see your tweets than whatever celebrity you’re tweeting at, so just lock it down.”

3. Choosing Senior-Year Courses. The Tufts Admissions blog is an especially good one, providing a lot of insight into how admissions officers think and evaluate applications. Juniors, don’t miss this post, which provides guidance on how to choose the right courses for your senior year in order to impress colleges:

“Now is the time to pull out all the stops and make the most of your abilities.  If you’ve just had a solid three years, try to take it up a notch.  We often see students who we wax and wane about but, if that file has a REALLY challenging senior year, it can be enough to make us pause and say, “Ok, the heat’s on.  Let’s see how they’re doing at the midyear.”  A very strong first semester performance can make you a real contender in this process.”

This post from the Tufts blog, which breaks down various successful supplemental essays and explains what was effective about them, is also a must-read, especially if you’re thinking of applying to Tufts. Even if you’re not, this post provides really useful insight into what makes an effective “Why X college?” essay.

4. Advice for Parents. Tulane’s admissions blog is also well done, and quite up to date in its postings. Like many other admissions blogs, it contains posts that are geared specifically towards parents. This post provides some useful advice that they’ve generally found a lot of parents can benefit from.

More selective doesn't mean better. It just means more selective. This one's a great Deb Shaver quote. Rates of admission are not related to how "good" of a school it is or the experience your son or daughter will have there. Avoid looking at admission rates as a gauge of the school's strength.”

5. Anxiety Management and Perspective. Some of the most valuable insights provided on these blogs are not insider secrets about admissions, but a really valuable sense of perspective that it is often easy to lose sight of in the applications process. See this post, written on MIT’s admissions blog, by an MIT student reflecting on her high-school self, and providing advice to current applicants:

“On the blogs, we often talk about applying, and choosing, and submitting, and preparing. But if you’re a senior right now, that’s not what ought to matter. Do not apply to MIT because your life goal is to go to MIT. Apply because you enjoy something, even if that something is ephemeral and vague, and MIT is on a path to it. Not the only path. Not even the definitive path.”