College Vocabulary

Admission procedure - The process with which the institution decides to review applications and make enrollment decisions.

Early Action - Students apply earlier than the regular admission pool and find out results before the regular admission pool deadline. If accepted, there is no binding agreement to attend.

Early Decision - Students apply earlier than the regular admissions pool and find out results before the regular admission pool deadline. If accepted, there is a binding agreement to attend.

Rolling Admission - As applications enter the Admissions Office, decisions are made. Therefore, there is an advantage to submitting your applications early in the fall. 

Deadline Admission - There is a deadline for submitting applications. After the deadline, the institution reviews the applications at that time. 

Open Admission - This procedure is used by two-year community colleges. This policy states that anyone who is 18 years of age or older can be admitted.

Application Package - This information is sent to each college to which you are applying. The package usually contains the following information: application (biographical information and essays), letters of recommendation, transcript, official copies of college entrance exam scores (if required by college), and student resume (optional).

Campus Visit - Visiting each prospective college's campus is critical in determining actual interest in the colleges.

College Entrance Exams - These standardized tests are required by some two-year and most four-year colleges to determine admission. The ACT and the SAT-I are both widely accepted, however some colleges may have a preference. Some four-year colleges may also require the SAT-II Subject Tests.

Community College - A Community College is a two-year, post-secondary institution. Course offerings generally include a transfer curriculum with credits transferable toward a bachelor's degree at a four-year college, and an occupational or technical curriculum with courses of study designed to prepare students for employment in two years.

Credit Hours - Courses taken in college are measured in terms of credit hours. To earn one credit hour, a student must attend a class for one hour per week for the whole semester.

Degree - A degree is granted for the successful completion of a prescribed program of study. There are three basic types of degrees:

Associate's - obtainable at a two-year community college

Bachelor's - offered by four-year colleges and universities

Graduate - obtained after the bachelor's degree, i.e., Masters or Doctorate.

FAFSA -(Free Application for Federal Student Aid) The universal application for financial aid, including loans, grants, college work-study and other federal and state programs.

Financial Aid - Aid is made available from grants, scholarships, loans, and part-time employment from federal, state, institutional, and private sources. Varying amounts from these programs are combined in an "award package" to meet the cost of education. The amount and types of aid awarded are determined by financial need.

Full-Time /Part-Time Enrollment - A full-time student is enrolled in 12 or more credit hours in a semester. A part-time student is enrolled in less than 12 credit hours in a semester.

Major/Minor - A major is a student's chosen field of study. It usually requires the successful completion of a specified number of credit hours. A minor is designated as a specific number of credit hours in a secondary field of study. A minor typically compliments the major.

N.C.A.A. - This association determines student eligibility to participate in Division 1 or 2 collegiate level athletics upon review of their high school transcript.

Prerequisite Course - A required course taken in preparation for another course.

Scholarships - Money awarded to students who meet the designated criteria. Scholarships can be obtained in the following ways:

Application- Application based scholarships are available in the Guidance Office, through community organizations and via the Internet.

Graduation - School personnel consider students for local scholarships just prior to graduation.

College - Colleges offer a variety of academic, service-based, and athletic scholarships. Information should be available by contacting your local college.

ROTC - A scholarship program that offers an all expense paid college experience in exchange for military enrollment at officer status upon graduating. For more information visit the ROTCxweb site at

Transcript - The transcript is a permanent academic record of a student. It may show courses taken, grades received, academic status and honors received.