Defeat College Application Procrastination

Thu May 5, 2016

counselor

 

Procrastination affects everyone, especially high school students. Back in 1991, procrastination and self-regulation among high school students was seen as a major issue (Jones et. al. 1991). A quarter of a century later, procrastination continues to be a significant issue among the student population. In 2007, it was found that approximately 80 to 95 percent of college students procrastinate (Novotney), and we can safely assume those numbers are fairly similar among high school students. One of the areas procrastination is often seen is the college application process and this can lead to life-changing consequences. It is a fact that students who apply early can receive many benefits such as early acceptance, reduced stress, more time for the decision making process, and the possibility of a better chance of acceptance (ACT article). If students do not submit their applications in time for early action, they will lose out on these benefits. 
This is where counselors come in. Assistance from counselors is an excellent way to help reduce students’ procrastination. Students really respond to assistance. In fact, it has been shown that when students were offered assistance when it came to filling out FAFSA reports, they were more likely to do so (Bettinger et. al. 2012). The same principle extends to college applications. If students receive help, they will be more likely to get their applications done on time and experience much less stress.
It’s important for counselors to dedicate specific time to helping students with college applications to ensure students submit them on time. One example of this strategy in action is seen in Hoffman Estates High School. They came up with the wonderful idea to host what they call “Application Mania Night,” in which the counselors offered three hours of their time after school to help seniors with their “half-done,” “almost-done,” or “not even started” applications (Kazlusky 2010). Programs like Application Mania Night run by dedicated counselors encourage the timely submission of applications by providing the assistance necessary to combat student procrastination. 
For counselors, time spent working on college applications is also a great time to remind students of their goal—to get into the college they want. It’s often easy to lose sight of the goal when a stressful college application is in the way. Reminding students why they are applying in the first place is a good way to motivate them and refocus their energy towards college attendance.
Procrastination affects everyone, especially high school students. Back in 1991, procrastination and self-regulation among high school students was seen as a major issue (Jones et. al. 1991). A quarter of a century later, procrastination continues to be a significant issue among the student population. In 2007, it was found that approximately 80 to 95 percent of college students procrastinate (Novotney), and we can safely assume those numbers are fairly similar among high school students. One of the areas procrastination is often seen is the college application process and this can lead to life-changing consequences. It is a fact that students who apply early can receive many benefits such as early acceptance, reduced stress, more time for the decision making process, and the possibility of a better chance of acceptance (ACT article). If students do not submit their applications in time for early action, they will lose out on these benefits. 
This is where counselors come in. Assistance from counselors is an excellent way to help reduce students’ procrastination. Students really respond to assistance. In fact, it has been shown that when students were offered assistance when it came to filling out FAFSA reports, they were more likely to do so (Bettinger et. al. 2012). The same principle extends to college applications. If students receive help, they will be more likely to get their applications done on time and experience much less stress.
It’s important for counselors to dedicate specific time to helping students with college applications to ensure students submit them on time. One example of this strategy in action is seen in Hoffman Estates High School. They came up with the wonderful idea to host what they call “Application Mania Night,” in which the counselors offered three hours of their time after school to help seniors with their “half-done,” “almost-done,” or “not even started” applications (Kazlusky 2010). Programs like Application Mania Night run by dedicated counselors encourage the timely submission of applications by providing the assistance necessary to combat student procrastination. 
For counselors, time spent working on college applications is also a great time to remind students of their goal—to get into the college they want. It’s often easy to lose sight of the goal when a stressful college application is in the way. Reminding students why they are applying in the first place is a good way to motivate them and refocus their energy towards college attendance.

 

Procrastination affects everyone, especially high school students. Back in 1991, procrastination and self-regulation among high school students was seen as a major issue (Jones et. al. 1991). A quarter of a century later, procrastination continues to be a significant issue among the student population. In 2007, it was found that approximately 80 to 95 percent of college students procrastinate (Novotney), and we can safely assume those numbers are fairly similar among high school students. One of the areas procrastination is often seen is the college application process and this can lead to life-changing consequences. It is a fact that students who apply early can receive many benefits such as early acceptance, reduced stress, more time for the decision making process, and the possibility of a better chance of acceptance (ACT article). If students do not submit their applications in time for early action, they will lose out on these benefits.

This is where counselors come in. Assistance from counselors is an excellent way to help reduce students’ procrastination. Students really respond to assistance. In fact, it has been shown that when students were offered assistance when it came to filling out FAFSA reports, they were more likely to do so (Bettinger et. al. 2012). The same principle extends to college applications. If students receive help, they will be more likely to get their applications done on time and experience much less stress.

It’s important for counselors to dedicate specific time to helping students with college applications to ensure students submit them on time. One example of this strategy in action is seen in Hoffman Estates High School. They came up with the wonderful idea to host what they call “Application Mania Night,” in which the counselors offered three hours of their time after school to help seniors with their “half-done,” “almost-done,” or “not even started” applications (Kazlusky 2010). Programs like Application Mania Night run by dedicated counselors encourage the timely submission of applications by providing the assistance necessary to combat student procrastination.

For counselors, time spent working on college applications is also a great time to remind students of their goal—to get into the college they want. It’s often easy to lose sight of the goal when a stressful college application is in the way. Reminding students why they are applying in the first place is a good way to motivate them and refocus their energy towards college attendance.

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Bettinger, Eric, Long, Bridget, Oreopoulos, Philip, and Sanbonmatsu, Lisa. “The Role of Application           Assistance and Information in College Decisions: Results from the H&R Block Fafsa Experiment.”     The Quarterly Journal of Economics 127, no. 3 (2012): 1205-1242.

”Early Decision & Early Action,” CollegeBoard, accessed May 3, 2016.                 https://professionals.collegeboard.org/guidance/applications/early

Jones, Craig, Slate, John, Bell, Stacey, and Saddler, C. “Helping High School Students Improve Their          Academic Skills: A Necessary Role for Teachers.” The High School Journal 74, no. 4 (1991): 198-        202.

Kazlusky, George. “Application Mania 2010 Letter.” IACAC Illinois Association for College               Admission                 Counseling High School Counselor Toolkit. Accessed March 29, 2016,                 https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qt666bjayhemmv6/AAD3WzsCdd9Im_LG8O1opIC6a/Senior%20Y                ear/Application%20Mania%202010%20letter-GK.doc?dl=0.

Novotney, Amy. “Procrastination or ‘Intentional Delay’?,” American Psychological Association, accessed March 30, 2016, http://www.apa.org/gradpsych/2010/01/procrastination.aspx.

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