If, for example, you can't handle cold weather, then as much as a certain Ivy League or Top Tier school may be recommended based on your major, that might not be the right place for you. Because in reality, for some people, extensive cold weather may cause lethargy or instigate depression, which would be a tough environment to study and do well in, given the internal battle one would have to fight in order to succeed.
On the other hand, you might be set on a specific major now, and can allow that to drive your school considerations, but in reality according to the National Center for Education Statistics, 80% of college students end up changing their major at least once. And on average, most college students change their majors at least three times over the course of their studies. So being driven by your major today, should not be the main consideration of your college search. Here are three non-traditional factors you should consider when applying to college:
- Flexibility - does the curriculum allow me the flexibility to take classes in various fields of interest before making a major commitment? Will I still be able to graduate in 4 years while doing so?
- Innovation - does this school research ways to improve their technology, curriculum, and overall learning experience? Does this institution have a growth mindset or are they comfortable where they are?
- Quarter System verses Semester System - approximately 70% of colleges in the U.S. use the semester system while nearly 15% use the quarter system. Yet both have their advantages as well as disadvantages. The semester system allows for more time to improve grades due to longer exposure to the instruction. It also allows more time to adjust to the demands of college. While the quarter system offers more flexibility and options. The decreased time of learning which is typically 10 weeks for a course, allows students who thrive in that system the ability to focus on the learning material for a limited time period. For more insight on this issue, visit study.com.