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Fiske Guide to Colleges 2006 Paperback – July 1, 2005
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
About the Author
Edward B. Fiske served for 17 years as education editor of The New York Times, where he realized that college-bound students and their families needed better information on which to base their educational choices. He is the author of the bestselling annual The Fiske Guide to Colleges and The Fiske Guide to Getting into the Right College. He lives in Durham, North Carolina, near the campus of Duke University.
Top customer reviews
"Fiske Guide to Colleges 2006" (774 pages) is a curious book in my opinion. It lists the "best and most interesting" colleges. I couldn't find exactly how many are listed, but from the looks of it, I'd guess about 300 (750 pages, with about 2.5 pages per college). While the descriptions give a good flavor of a particular college, there are some essentials missing, such as the exact tuition/room/board (there is only a general 1 to 4 star rating on how expensive a college is). Also not helpful in my opinion is that the colleges are presented alphbetically, rather than by state (although there is an index by state).
This is certainly not the first book to go to if you are at the very beginning of the college search. My daughter is simply looking to get basic information, and she did not spend a lot of time with this book. This is always a subjective rating, of course, but I also feel there are better books out there, although this book may be more helpful to get a second (or third) opinion once your child has narrowed down his/her selection of colleges of interest.
liked the story-like format that gave a glimpse of what I believed to
be what a particular school would "feel like" if I attended it. I
ultimately chose Pomona College and graduated in 1996.
One of the passages from the 1991 book describes that students
sometimes relax by "tossing a frisbee between kegs of beer parked on
the lawn". Pomona's alcohol policy was changed in 1990 to EXPLICTLY
prohibit any activity of this sort...this SIMPLY WASN'T ALLOWED...in
fact this passage was so out-of-step with campus culture as to be
laughable. During my first two years at Pomona (1992-1994) there was
something of an alcohol gestapo that sought out students drinking in
their own rooms, to say nothing of stomping out any possibility of
public consumption of alcohol. The point is, at least one of the
book's descriptions about campus culture was WAY off base...perhaps it
was a remnant from an earlier time (mid 1980's?) when campus culture
would have permitted public consumption of alcohol....perhaps the book
was just a year or two out of date?
Well, in ensuing years I sometimes picked up the latest Fiske guide in
a bookstore to see what was being written about my school. 1994, 1995,
1998, 1999, 2000...each edition maintained the same exact passage
about kegs on the lawn.
I began to wonder if Fiske ever actually revised the content of the
book apart from adjusting the fluctuating SAT and demographic numbers.
I have not read the most recent version, but BE WARY. If their
description of my school can maintain a grossly incorrect passage for
more than a decade, what might be written about the school that you're
interested in that is similarly incorrect or outdated?
DO NOT TRUST THIS BOOK to get it right. Use multiple sources and VISIT
the schools you're thinking about if you can afford to do so! Good
luck to you!