What Elite Universities are Looking For

Source: Penelope Trunk blog, Apr 2012

  1. Good grades are a commodity, so they don’t help in the admissions process.

  2. Your kid will be evaluated on the stuff that is NOT school.
    What this means is that top colleges are devaluing standardized tests. They don’t care if you learn the national curriculum. They don’t care if you can get an high score on the SAT. These achievements are commodified in the way that learning has been commodified. What really counts now is showing passion, drive, and accomplishment outside of standardized learning.


  3. Going to school undermines endeavors that really impress admissions officers.
    … most of the hooks that get kids into top schoosl are driven by creativity. For example, Conrad Tao got into Columbia without any AP classes or SAT tutors. He just had his piano and a GED. But the blog Marginal Revolution has a great summary of how teachers in school suppress creativity because teachers don’t like creative kids.
    So the only colleges that are really worth a student’s time and money are colleges that don’t value time spent in school.
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