merit-based scholarship money for college

Easily get THOUSANDS of Dollars for College!

Parents, did you know?… Your child can get thousands of dollars in scholarships for college by getting “decent” grades. Even with as low as a 2.7GPA, a student can still get $6,000 per year to ASU with solid SAT scores in merit-based scholarships. Imagine what even higher grades and higher scores can garner. Since money is such a big concern when it comes to college it, is important to know how to easily receive it by taking the right steps.

(If you want more details, get our FREE e-guide by clicking here that shows you the 5 essential keys you must take to get a piece of the scholarship pie). Or continue reading below to learn more!

What kind of awards are “merit-based scholarships”?

Merit-based scholarships are ones granted by colleges and universities based on merit, not on need. So it does not matter how much a student’s parents make. It does not matter what a student’s FAFSA paperwork looks like. The only things that matter are performance-based measures like GPA and test scores.

How do I make sure my child gets them?

There are two main goals to achieve to be in the running for merit-based scholarships. As long as you start taking initiative now, your son/daughter can get a substantial amount to use for college. If you know what scholarship awarders are looking for it is easier than you may think. Below we have listed 5 keys you should focus on right away to make sure you get that free money.

First, the goals we are trying to achieve:

Goal 1:  Increase unweighted GPA
Goal 2:  
Get as high math + critical reading SAT test scores as possible

Why are these the main goals to getting merit-based scholarships?
Most college scholarship awards only care about your unweighted GPA (no extra points for AP or honors classes) and your math + critical reading SAT score (no writing). Therefore, to be the strongest contender for this merit-based scholarship money, students need to focus on increasing their unweighted GPA and math/critical reading SAT scores.

Keys to achieve these goals:

Keys 1: Take the right classes

Because the unweighted GPA is most important when it comes to merit-based scholarship applications (and many times college admissions apps as well), students need to be strategic about the classes they take throughout high school. Just because a student can take an AP or Honors class instead of the on-level class, does not necessarily mean he/she should.

Sure, AP/Honors classes are more rigorous so students will be pushed more, learn more, and likely grow more academically, but if a student is struggling with too heavy a load, dropping an AP/Honors class or two may be a huge advantage in the scholarship game.

If a student does not have a solid chance of earning an A, I recommend dropping to the on-level course. Getting a “C” in an AP class does count like a “B” in the weighted GPA calculation, but most merit-based scholarships ask for your UNweighted GPA. With the unweighted GPA, “A’s” are king. Students need as many A’s as possible.

So look over your child’s schedule and report cards. Could he/she get more A’s by dropping an AP/Honors class or two?

Key 2: Get help before it’s needed

Because the unweighted GPA is such a huge factor in scholarship winning, and students need as many A’s as possible in their classes, the minute a student is struggling in a class or overall with balancing everything academically, it is time to get help! (And even before is better!)

Help may come in the form of a family friend or peer giving the student advice on how to manage his/her time and schedule. Or it could be in the form of group or private tutoring on subject matter. Or it could be in a reward system to help motivate the student to do better in class and get up those grades.

As the co-owner of a tutoring company of course I have a lot to say about the benefits of tutoring! But there are a lot of great free resources out there too that families can seek out and use to their benefit.

Key 3: Prep for the PSAT / SAT / ACT early

The other big half of the scholarship winning recipe is getting top test scores. As high as the student can get. And with the SAT specifically, most schools care most (or only) about a student’s math and critical reading scores (ignoring writing often times).

To achieve these top scores, follow Steps 4 and 5 below!  Additionally, students should take full practice exams as often as possible to get used to the high-pressure, timed feel of these important tests and to practice answering the content questions. The more students practice, the better they will get at recognizing trick answers, applying smart pacing techniques, and knowing what the question is asking.

Further important preparation comes in the form of test prep courses, studying from test prep review books, increasing one’s vocabulary, and reviewing commonly tested math concepts. Test prep classes will also reveal and drill proven test-taking strategies that will increase students’ score immediately once applied. Oh, and did we mention how preparation is the key ingredient in reducing test anxiety?

Key 4: Have a strong foundation in Math

This step should be a focus of all students K through 12th grade. It is no secret that many student and even parents groan at the thought of doing math. Why the fear? Why the pain? Why the avoidance? It stems to a lack of understanding or a feeling of lack in mastery. Give your kids the gift of filling in those gaps so that they are confident and capable in a subject most people run away from.

Strong math skills will help better grades. Ding! Strong math skills will help better test scores. Ding ding!

If you are not sure where the gaps might be in your child’s mathematics understanding, there are many ways to figure it out. Conference with the teacher, play practice math games with your kids and see where they are making errors, and best of all, have your child do an assessment test to pinpoint specific areas that need reinforcing.

(Get a copy of our free Merit-Based Scholarships Guide below and look inside for a free math assessment and report give-away)

Key 5: Have a strong foundation in Reading

This key should also be a focus of all students K through 12th grade. Strong readers have an advantage over their peers through out school and on scholarship applications. Being able to understand what you read,  extrapolate meaning from ideas in written form, and even express yourself clearly through writing all stem from strong reading skills.

Strong reading and literacy skills help students get better grades in a multitude of subjects. Ding! Strong reading skills help student score higher on standardized exams. Ding ding!

Strong math skills will help better grades. Ding! Strong math skills will help better test scores. Ding ding!

If you are not sure where the gaps might be in your child’s reading abilities, there are many ways to get more insight. Conference with the teacher, play practice reading games with your kids and see where they are making errors, and best of all, have your child do an assessment test to pinpoint specific areas that need extra review.

(Get a copy of our free Merit-Based Scholarships Guide below and look inside for a free math assessment and report give-away)

 

Take action now!

Want to learn more about these 5 Keys to Unlocking Merit-Based Scholarship money? Receive a free copy of our detailed e-guide that includes:

  • specific instructions for steps you can take now
  • tons of free resources
  • real examples of scholarships available based on GPA + SAT combos
  • a grade by grade checklist
  • and more
  • FREE
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Todd VanDuzer

Co-Founder & CEO at Student-Tutor
Hello! My name is Todd. I help students design the life of their dreams by ensuring college, scholarship, and career success! I am a former tutor for seven years, $85,000 scholarship recipient, Huffington Post contributor, lead SAT & ACT course developer, host of a career exploration podcast for teens, and have worked with thousands of students and parents to ensure a brighter future for the next generation. I invite you to join my next webinar to learn how to save thousands + set your teenager up for college, scholarship, and career success!
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