A good college fit isn't always the popular colleges, best universities, or the place your friends are going. For some, these institutions might be detrimental to your success. What good would it be for you to attend a school that doesn’t provide the things you need to succeed and achieve your potential? Don't get caught up in the perceived reputation of a college; the hype behind the college name will fade if the school is not a good fit. Reflect on the attributes you need to be successful and will allow you to reach your goals.

Here are some aspects to consider when researching colleges:

Find Your College: Narrow down your college from over 6,000 colleges, and explore resources to plan, prepare, and graduate from college.

Use College Navigator to start your college search. Select the college characteristics that matter to you (e.g., majors, costs, location, types of degrees available, etc.). 

Locate colleges by state or zip code. Then learn more about those colleges by easily connecting to their IPEDS data and websites. 

Compare colleges based on numerous criteria (including costs, debt, earnings by field of study, and more) through the College Scorecard. 

Reflect on what's important, where you want to be, and who you want to become. With those answers, you can figure out what types of colleges will allow you to reach your goals. 

Finding colleges that fit you best begins with self-discovery — that means getting to know your interests, your goals, and what's most important to you. 

Career colleges prepare students for specific skill-based careers. 

Common Data Set: If you plan to attend a college or university, use this information to inform your educational decisions and increase your chance of getting accepted into your dream school. 

For example, if your dream school ranks extracurricular activities "Very Important," you know that you need to get involved and exhibit leadership qualities.

(click the image below)