Are guidebooks, relatives, and rankings useful in choosing a school?
Guidebooks can be very useful and unbiased sources of information about colleges you are interested in attending. These sources contain the latest information, and will give you a good overview of each college. Relatives and rankings should be taken with a grain of salt, as these sources are not always reliable. While relatives will tell you about their particular experiences, every person is different and may have different views. It is always best to visit the campus and form your own opinion. Students and families should be cautious of rankings, as the methodologies behind many of these rankings have flaws. Also consider that just because a school is ranked highly, does not mean it will be the best "fit" for you. The bottom line is that students should attend a school where they feel most comfortable. I often say to my students to simply listen to your heart. If your heart is telling you that this can be home for four years, this is probably a college you want to attend.