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Showing 1-1 of 1 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 5 reviews
on November 26, 2001
As a professional college advisor, I purchase the updated version of the Fiske Guide to Colleges for my office the moment it is available. Why Fiske as opposed to the Princeton Review, Kaplan or Peterson's you ask? Because, in my opinion, it is one of the best publications on the market today.
There are several features which make it both unique and user-friendly. For families just beginning this difficult process, I have found that the most useful inclusion in this guide is the section where it states where students who apply to a certain college also apply. So, if you research Georgetown (of course I had to use my alma mater for an example) and really like the school, Fiske would tell you that students who applied to Georgetown also might apply to universities like U Penn, Duke, Harvard, Johns Hopkins and UVA. Thus, Fiske is a great help in expanding and creating a student's list. It is also an excellent starting point.
Another one of my favorite features of this guide is that it discussed the academic strengths of a college. If for example, you are thinking about engineering as a major, Fiske will let you know if that is considered to be a strong program of study at a particular university. While some may feel that high school seniors do not really know what they want to study or do in life, I have found that a student who wants to study chemistry, for example, will often end up majoring or minoring in a science or related field. The same holds true for those interested in liberal arts or social science. While this generalization does not hold true in every case, it is a trend that I have noticed. If you are concerned about switching majors and not locking yourself into one particular program, look for a school that is strong across the curriculum as opposed to one that focuses in a particular area. By examining Fiske's strength of program listings for each school you are interested in, you will better be able to determine if a school can meet your academic needs.
There is one way in which Fiske could improve future guides. It would be useful to have a table in the Appendix which listed schools by strength of major. Hence, if you were seeking an institution that was strong in economics, you could reference the appendix's economics section and review a list of schools whose economic programs were considered strong. This would make the guide easier to use.
Overall, I would advise you to make the Fiske Guide one of your first purchases when beginning the college process in January of your junior year. It will be an excellent resource and serve you well up to the day you mail your applications.
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