Tips for Your College Tours

Most colleges offer campus tours and information sessions. You can learn a lot from them—if you are an active participant.

Taking the campus tour is a rite of passage for college applicants. Once you've done a few tours, you may be tempted to skip them. But don't. Tours are great vehicles for getting a student-led introduction to the college.

What You'll See on a Campus Tour

You will see campus highlights such as the dorms, classrooms, libraries, museums, the student store, the stadium, the gym, the theater, and the student union. A current student usually leads the tour and answers questions. Tours typically take one to two hours.

What You'll Learn from an Information Session

An information session may be part of your tour, or offered separately. It presents a basic overview of the admissions process and financial aid, academic programs, and undergraduate life. This may answer many of your questions. Sessions typically take about an hour.

What to Look for on a Campus Tour

The tour will show you many of the places students frequent most. So try to picture yourself in each setting you visit. Keep an eye out for the following:

What to Ask the Tour Guide

A tour gives you a golden opportunity to ask questions of an actual student. Avoid questions that can be answered on the college's website or in its viewbook. Here are some examples:

Try to ask the same questions on each tour and briefly note the answers. This will help you compare colleges when you get home. You may feel like you're asking too much, but tour guides are well-prepared to answer these types of questions.

Tips for Campus Tours

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