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Articles / Applying to College / How to Decipher College Confidential Acronyms

Sept. 15, 2016

How to Decipher College Confidential Acronyms

Question: Is there a thread on CC with an explanation of Acronyms? Or can one be started and people add as we go. Sometimes you are reading discussions and with the Acronyms which google does not pull up sometimes, we totally miss out on information.

HYPS? HBCU? SCEA? DD1? DS2? The admissions world ... and College Confidential in particular ... does indeed present an alphabet soup of acronyms and abbreviations that can be difficult to navigate without experience or assistance. But, actually, there are a lot of acronyms and abbreviations that Google does pull up. That's where “The Dean" herself (who was born when a "Web site" was where Wilbur met Charlotte ;-) ) goes to decipher College Confidential code and where you, too, can find lists that come straight from CC and date back over a decade.


Here, for instance, is one helpful thread which was started in 2005 and has rocked on for 24 pages, right up until this past July. http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/parents-forum/52585-abbreviation-thread.html

Lee Bierer, an independent college counselor and nationally syndicated columnist based in North Carolina, offers these common admissions-specific acronyms in her blog: http://collegeadmissionsstrategies.com/test-knowledge-admissions-office-terms-2/

But the best advice that “The Dean" can provide is that, if you spot an unfamiliar acronym or abbreviation in a post, simply ask your fellow CC members to clue you in with a polite “PXT" (Please Explain That) ... but not with a “WTF?" :evil:

Written by

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone knows the competitive and often convoluted college admission process inside out: From the first time the topic of college comes up at the dinner table until the last duffel bag is unloaded on a dorm room floor. She is the co-author of Panicked Parents' Guide to College Admissions; The Transfer Student's Guide to Changing Colleges and The International Student's Guide to Going to College in America. Sally has appeared on NBC's Today program and has been quoted in countless publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, People and Seventeen. Sally has viewed the admissions world from many angles: As a Smith College admission counselor for 15 years, an independent college counselor serving students from a wide range of backgrounds and the author of College Confidential's "Ask the Dean" column. She also taught language arts, social studies, study skills and test preparation in 10 schools, including American international schools in London, Paris, Geneva, Athens and Tel Aviv. As senior advisor to College Confidential since 2002, Sally has helped hundreds of students and parents navigate the college admissions maze. In 2008, she co-founded College Karma, a private college consulting firm, with her College Confidential colleague Dave Berry, and she continues to serve as a College Confidential advisor. Sally and her husband, Chris Petrides, became first-time parents in 1997 at the ripe-old age of 45. So Sally was nearly an official senior citizen when her son Jack began the college selection process, and when she was finally able to practice what she had preached for more than three decades.

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