It’s 48 hours away, but there’s still time to act on the ACT


Try teaching yourself 11 school years worth of English, reading, mathematics, and scientific reasoning in a few days. On second thought, don’t. Very soon, you’ll be breezing through the English, reading, math, and scientific reasoning sections of the ACT, but traditional cramming isn’t going to help you get there.

3 Reasons Why Traditional Last-Minute Cramming Won’t Help You Ace the ACT:

  1. You’ll tire yourself out by taking several long practice tests that will only frustrate you. The ACT will test you on years of material that you’ve learned throughout your school career. Long practice tests in the final moments leading up to the ACT won’t improve your knowledge or help you isolate your strengths and weaknesses. You’ll only exhaust yourself.
  2. There’s too much material. You may attempt to furiously memorize ACT vocab, but the chances that the specific words you’ve agonized over will appear on the test are quite small. The time you’ll spend making flashcards won’t be worth the score reward.
  3. You won’t know what to focus on. Beyond the four main sections of the ACT, the test is a web of concepts that test very specific abilities. Without guidance, you won’t be able to target your true weaknesses.

On the other hand, Edupath’s free College Passport for ACT app can help you soar on test day by targeting your prep and maximizing every precious minute of study time.

5 Reasons Why Edupath College Passport Is Your Ticket to Acing the ACT:

  1. Study in short 10 minute bursts. Unlike traditional practice tests, Edupath College Passport allows you to focus on test prep one core concept at a time in manageable segments.
  2. Isolate your strengths and weaknesses. Immediately, you’ll know the categories of questions that you’re missing. Edupath’s targeted approach will allow you to cultivate your specific weaknesses until they become your strengths.
  3. Concept help and tips. Stumped? Edupath College Passport offers hints and tricks to make even the most difficult questions solvable. Uncover concept secrets for test day that will help you approach tens of questions.
  4. Immediate and accurate score predictions. As soon as you finish a burst of questions, Edupath will update your progress. Watch your score and confidence grow instantly.
  5. Free and from anywhere. Forget lugging around a heavy prep book, Edupath College Passport is easily accessible from your mobile device. Whether you have a few minutes in between classes or en-route to extracurriculars, kickstart your prep anywhere, anytime.

Download the free mobile Edupath College Passport ACT now at!



How to Get into Your Dream School (without Actually Walking on Water)


You could ace your SATs, rack up a perfect GPA, score a membership in MENSA–and still mess up applying to college. How?

By blowing any or all of the approximately 2.9 zillion important college application deadlines that you’ll soon be juggling (while simultaneously attending school, staying on top of extracurriculars, keeping up with your social life, and generally trying to walk on water).

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5 Reasons College is Totally Worth the Cost


Wake up, go to school, do homework, repeat. Sound familiar? For some students, this routine starts in preschool and continues on all the way into college. Pressure from parents and peers alike can make the progression from high school to college seem natural and unquestionable – it’s just what you do. But why?

Every year, millions of students around the world enroll in higher education programs, yet many have no clear idea why they are doing so. Meanwhile, a growing number of critics in the media single out rising tuition costs and high-profile dropouts, leaving some students confused about the value of a college education. We’re here to clear the air. At Edupath, we support higher education and think that students should know just how valuable a college education can be. Here are 5 ways that college can benefit you personally.

1) MONEY. Let’s face it, at the end of the day, everyone needs an income. And guess what? Despite what you may have heard about dropout entrepreneurs, college graduates earn more… a lot more. On average, college graduates earn about twice as much as high school graduates. While college loans are nothing to scoff at, your increased income will totally be worth it, as this graph suggests.

Education Pays Graph from the Bureau of Labor

More Learning, Less Problems

2) JOBS. Much like money, everyone needs a job. And guess what? College graduates are twice as likely to be employed as high school graduates, as our lovely graph demonstrates above. Plus, that doesn’t even count job satisfaction! Compared to high schoolers, college graduates are twice as likely to be satisfied with their education, jobs, and finances.

3) KNOWLEDGE. Whether you attend a liberal arts college, a research institution, or a technical school, you will be learning all sorts of new things. Interested in art history or computer science? Take a class on it! If you like a subject enough, you can always major (or minor!) in it. As a bonus, you can use your portfolio of classwork when applying for jobs or graduate school.

#YOLO, Education Edition


4) SKILLS. Aside from memorizing textbooks, you’ll also be building valuable professional skills, like working in teams, analyzing information, and managing your time. What’s more, you’re also developing the ability to take care of yourself as an adult. For many students, college might be the first time you’re in charge of your own laundry, meals, or finances. College is a great incubator for these types of life skills; think about it, where else will you have access to a large staff of people who are basically paid to support and guide you as you figure things out? Unlike the real world, college is full of safety nets.

5) FRIENDS. The friends you make in college are – for many people – friends you’ll share for life. Bonding with your peers through shared experiences (good or bad!) helps create lasting friendships and social groups. Your college cohort may also be an important part of your future professional network, and for some hopeful romantics, the chance to meet Mr. or Ms. Right.

Guy in Yellow Photobombs

BFFs 4 Life…except, maybe, for the guy on the right…

Let’s review: Money, Jobs, Knowledge, Skills, and Friends…and that’s just the tip of the iceberg (we haven’t even mentioned extracurricular activities). While it’s true that many college-related costs have gone up, the value of a college education is still crystal clear. Plus, services like Edupath’s very own (free!) Total College app make it cheaper than ever to get there.

But don’t take our word for it, ask the graduates themselves. When asked whether they thought their experience was worth it, college graduates overwhelmingly say: yes. So don’t go to college because your parents expect you to, or because other people are doing it; go to college because – in the end – you’ll be investing in yourself.

College really IS worth it

College: Totally Worth It


Go, Grads!

In 2014, Edupath helped thousands of students get the test scores they needed for admission to their dream colleges. Congratulations to our graduates on all your hard work! We wish you amazing success on your next adventure!


The Edupath Team

Edupath is your path to college

Edupath is Your Path to College


Naked Confessions: What’s Wrong with “Tacky” Application Essays?


In a June 15 New York Times story, columnist Frank Bruni laments a trend toward students “oversharing” in their college application essays. Drawing on the remarks of a former Yale admissions officer, he goes on to describe the high-stakes faux pas of three unsuccessful Yale applicants (a self-described Casanova, a young woman with an unusually breezy attitude toward bodily fluids, and a guy worried about the size of his private parts).

NYT Columnist Frank Bruni

Frank Bruni: NYT Columnist & Admissions Essay Critic

Who Defines Poor Taste?

Bruni accurately highlights the sense of desperation that students and their parents may feel in the face of today’s ultra-competitive college admissions standards–a sense that can lead to disingenuous efforts to stand out from other applicants. He is not out of line, either, to wonder about the judgment of an applicant who submits a soul-baring essay when a more conventional approach might be a less risky option. Less sound, however, is a fundamental assumption that underlies Bruni’s criticism of oversharing: that certain topics–not just the unusually lurid examples he describes in detail, but also “eating disorders, sexual abuse, self-mutilation, domestic violence, alcoholism, [and] drug addiction”–are simply in poor taste.

One problem here is that taste, unlike GPA or SAT scores, is neither an objective nor a quantifiable measure of college aptitude. It is, however, a way that one class differentiates itself from another–specifically and historically, the “haves” from the “have nots.” All too similarly–and despite decades of social and educational reforms designed to level the playing field–access to higher education still skews across class lines.

Futurama Meme: Not Sure if Essay is Brilliant or Horrible

Unlike SAT Scores, Taste is Relative

Taking the Personal Statement Seriously

With its emphasis on matters of taste and convention, Bruni’s critique also overlooks the crucial issue of authenticity. Not for nothing do college officials refer to a student’s central college application essay as the “personal statement.” Some high school students, at 17 or 18, have led sheltered lives. Others have already faced extreme adversity. Both types of students are capable of flourishing in a college environment. Neither type should be penalized for writing candidly about the circumstances that have shaped their lives–and, more important, how they have dealt with those circumstances.

It’s important here to note that colleges explicitly attempt to tease out revealing information (applicants are not, as some assume,  given free rein in choosing essay themes). Consider, for example, the following Common Application essay prompts for 2014-2015; nearly all top colleges require a 650-word response to one of them:

  • Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
  • Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure.  How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn?
  • Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea.  What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
  • Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly content.  What do you do or experience there, and why is it meaningful to you?
  • Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

For one high school senior, a candid response to almost any of the above questions might center on their efforts to improve their time in the 100-yard dash, and lessons learned about perseverance and self-acceptance. For another, the response might focus on trying to cope with an absentee parent–and, again, lessons learned about perseverance and self-acceptance. The external factors described in these essays are, by definition, personal, specific, and unique to the individual writer. The real takeaway of a strong application essay, however, is unvarying. The point is not the external situation that the student describes, but their own efforts to influence or come to terms with the situation, and the personal growth that occurs as a result.

Using feathers and glitter to make an admissions essay stand out is not really a good idea

Honesty? Yes. Glitter? No.

Candor: Not the Kiss of Death

At Edupath, members of our staff have, in the course of their careers, reviewed hundreds of essays and helped students of differing socioeconomic status gain admission to college. Some of these students have chosen conventional topics for their essays–for example, how traveling, playing sports, being a camp counselor, or learning to embrace their culture of origin enhanced their personal growth. Others have written about some of the same deeply personal topics that Bruni cites as over the top, such as coping with an eating disorder or adjusting to a parent’s unforeseen coming out as gay.  In our experience, students who write about more revealing topics in a way that focuses on their personal growth do not fail to receive offers from their colleges of choice, including Ivy League schools.

We would hope that, contrary to what Bruni implies, the three “oversharing” students were not denied admission to Yale solely because their essays included content that he considers in poor taste. With its stringent acceptance rate of just 6.2% (meaning roughly 94% of applicants are denied admission), Yale is among the most selective colleges in the nation. In this competitive atmosphere, only students who emerge as top-tier across a broad range of assessments–including GPA, standardized test scores, extracurriculars, teacher recommendations, honors and awards, and community service–are offered admission. Surely these quantifiable measures influenced the Yale admissions officers’ decisions as much as the content of the “oversharing” students’ essays.

But if college admissions officer are really, as Bruni suggests, dismayed to receive personal statements that are, well, personal, then perhaps they need to ensure that the essay prompts themselves do not invite candid responses. Otherwise, the most successful applicants are likely to be those who have already learned an extremely cynical life lesson: that people don’t always mean what they say.

Keep Calm and Write Your Essay

Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose


Scotty McCreery, NCSU college student

Celebrities in College: 5 Famous Kids Who Aren’t Too Cool for School


Celebrities, as gossip magazines are constantly telling us, aren’t so different from us regular folks. They have “bad-hair” days. They “have too-fat-for-my-pants” days. They have “I’ll-never-love-again” days, “I-can’t-believe-I-actually-said-that” days, and “the-sad-thing-is-I-don’t-even-like-tequila” days. And, it turns out, a large number of celebs have also had “welcome-to-college-life” days, “wow-I-actually-had-fun-writing-this-paper” days, and “my-roomie-is-my-new-BFF” days.

Here’s the scoop on five celebrity kids who – despite fame, fortune, and killer bodies – craved the college experience so much, they just couldn’t stay away.

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