Most colleges offer different opportunities for perspective students to explore their campus.
OPEN HOUSE provides students & parents with generalized information
typically presented to a group of individuals. Topics covered:
admission process, housing, financial aid, and more. A tour of the
campus is also included.
~A PERSONAL MEETING provides students
& parents with more specific information generated by interacting
directly with an admissions counselor. Students may be able to meet with
professors in their major. A tour of the campus is also included.
traveling to your campus is a hardship most campus' have virtual tours
on their website that will allow you to at least gather some information
about the look of the campus.....but this will not give you the "feel"
of the campus which is a key component to making your final decision.
THE CAMPUS VISIT
of the most important parts of your college research is the campus
visit. Visiting the colleges on your list will give you a firsthand
impression of the students, faculty, staff, facilities, and programs. On
a visit you can learn what the admission office is looking for in its
applicants, gain a feeling for the academic and social atmosphere, see
the study/living/recreation facilities, talk with students, and get a
sense of the surrounding community.
WHEN TO VISIT
offices are open all year, but visiting when classes are in session is
best. If you visit in the summer, you can certainly learn about
admission and get a general tour of the campus, but it might be hard to
get a good sense of the atmosphere of the college.
~The best time
to visit? Spring Break of your junior year can be ideal. Even if you are
not certain where you might eventually apply, if you can visit one
large, one medium size, and one small school, you will be better
prepared to make final decisions about where to apply.
have narrowed your list in the fall of the senior year, you may want to
make return overnight visits to schools to which you will be applying.
On these visits, plan to go to classes and interact with students on
~If at all possible, try to visit colleges before you
apply. You may discover the school is not at all what you had thought it
would be based on the online research you had done. However, attending
accepted students visit programs at the colleges you have visited
previously can help you narrow down your choices.
VISITATION DAYS: Some colleges will offer spring programs for juniors
and fall programs for seniors. Check online or contact the admission
office since you may need to make a reservation.
HOW TO PLAN A VISIT
good campus visit takes two-four hours, including time to get a sense
of the surrounding town or area. Don’t try to visit more than two
schools in one day.
~Figure out an itinerary: where you want to travel, how you will travel, how far one school is from another.
the admission office at least two weeks ahead of time to schedule your
visit. Admission offices have set times for tours and information.
of all the things you want to do when you visit and ask what the
admission office can help you with: talking with an admission officer,
taking a tour, attending a class, meeting with a professor in an area
that interests you, eating a meal on campus, talking with a coach or
advisor of an extracurricular activity that interests you, etc.
~Research each college before you go visit so you’ll have specific questions to ask.
~Contact students you might know at the school before you plan to visit.
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU VISIT
~Focus on people, place and programs in your visit.
~Talk to as many people as you can: students, dining hall workers, tour guides, faculty, etc.
~Look at a campus newspaper and check out campus bulletin boards.
~Wander through snack bars and student centers and observe how students interact with each other.
Files Related to College Visitation
College Visitation Checklist
Questions to ask While on a College Visit
Links Related to College Visitation