What High School Students Wish Parents Knew About the SAT and College Admissions

Parents are pretty important to the college application process. They help us with essays, take us on college trips and comfort us after rejections. And we are so thankful!

But they can also definitely get on our nerves. If we were being completely honest, here’s what I think most of us would tell them:


1. We’re already facing so much pressure from our peers! We don’t need more at home.

Trust us when we say we know grades and SAT scores are a big deal. We care about this stuff way more than you think we do.

Mean girls at school are gossiping about where one person got in and what another person got on their SATs.

Our friends are breaking down from all of the stress.

We know we have to succeed academically. The whole world is making that very clear.


2. We don’t want everyone knowing our business.

We know it’s tempting to tell our grandparents, aunts, uncles, and neighbors all about our grades, scores, and college acceptances, but please don’t! It’s kind of private information. When we want people to know, we will tell them.

This also goes for written supplements and personal statements. If we send you a draft of our personal statement to edit, don’t send it to other people to ask if they will take a look at it. Many of us are very self-conscious about our writing or the personal content we have chosen to share with colleges. Ask permission, please.

Back when you were in high school, this kind of stuff might not have been considered private, but times have changed. College acceptance has grown incredibly competitive. And we are trying to handle this stressful process as gracefully as possible.


3. Stop all of the nagging.

We know what we have to get done and when. Let us organize ourselves!

We’re about to be in college. In just several months, we’ll be completely in charge of ourselves. We’ll even be doing our own laundry! (OMG.) We might as well get used to the independence now.

Trust that we can be responsible with our time management.


4. Be calm.

You may be just as stressed out as we are. But we need someone to calm us down. Don’t fuel the flames of our anxiety.



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  • Nadira Berman

    As a Summer Marketing Intern, Nadira is excited to help high schoolers prepare for the SAT and ACT. As a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania, she is considering studying economics. In her free time, she reports for the school newspaper and styles photo shoots for the school's fashion magazine. Besides fashion and journalism, her passions include bagels, smoothies and Netflix.

By the way, Magoosh can help you study for both the SAT and ACT exams. Click here to learn more!

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