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Action Plan: High School Sophomores


  • Meet with your counselor to discuss your college plans. Review your schedule with him or her to make sure you’re enrolled in challenging classes that will help you prepare for college. Colleges prefer four years of English, history, math, science, and a foreign language.
  • Start a calendar with important dates and deadlines.
  • Get more involved with your extracurricular activities.
  • Use College Search to find out the required courses and tests of colleges that you might be interested in attending.
  • Go to college fairs in your area.

Consider Taking the PSAT/NMSQT

  • Sign up for the PSAT/NMSQT, which is given in October. Ask your counselor which date is offered at your school. Get free online PSAT/NMSQT practice.
  • If you’re taking the PSAT/NMSQT check ‘yes’ for Student Search Service® to hear about colleges and scholarships.

Prepare for Tests

  • Use the access code on your PSAT/NMSQT score report to sign in to My College QuickStart. With this personalized planning kit, you can prepare for the SAT using a study plan based on your PSAT/NMSQT results and explore lists of suggested colleges, majors, and careers.
  • Talk to your counselor and teachers about taking SAT Subject Tests in your strong subjects this spring. Take Subject Tests such as World History, Biology E/M, and Chemistry while the material is still fresh in your mind.

Learn about Colleges

  • Learn about college costs and how financial aid works.
  • Use the College Savings Calculator to see how much money you’ll need for college, whether you’re on track to save enough, and what you need to do to reach your goal. Talk to your parents about financing college.
  • Visit colleges while they’re in session.
  • Find out about college firsthand from college friends who are home for the holidays.


Stay Focused

  • Sign up for college preparatory courses.

Explore Summer Opportunities

  • Look for a great summer opportunity – job, internship, or volunteer position.
  • Check with your counselor and search online for summer school programs for high school student at colleges.

10th Grade Lists of Activities

10th Grade List of Activities


  • Go to career day at your school or elsewhere.
  • Check out Tech Prep courses; and how to obtain college credit for classes taken in high school.


  • Keep up with your classes; grades are one of the top things universities consider.
  • Learn the difference between PSAT/NMSQT and PLAN® Tests and prepare for these exams.
  • Attend the district college fair and learn more about colleges.


  • Update your six-year plan
  • Start a savings account and begin to check scholarship sites.
  • Get to know your four year high school graduation plan; plan your classes with your counselorake PLAN® Test.  Prepare in advance by reviewing study guide.
  • Register for Saturday administration of PSAT/NMSQT .  Prepare in advance by reviewing study materials.


  • Learn the difference between dual credit, AP, IB and CTE articulated courses.
  • Become familiar with college entrance requirements.



  • Decide what leadership roles you would like to consider.
  • Do your best on your semester exams.
  • Volunteer in your community.
  • Research occupations that are in demand and consider what career you would like to pursue.


  • Review you PLAN results and determine if you are "college ready" based on your scores.  Review objectives that you need to improve on as you prepare for the ACT test to be taken your junior year.
  • Review your PSAT results and determine areas of growth so you can be better prepared for the PSAT test to be taken for NMSQT consideration.  Check with your counselor if you have questions. 


  • Update your six-year plan
  • Look into dual credit courses and other challenging courses as you begin to prepare your junior year course requests.
  • Research summer programs that focus on particular subjects, like science or math.
  • Research career clusters and begin to identify areas of interest.


  • Begin to research colleges that offer majors that would lead you into careers that you are interested in.
  • Review your course requests for next year and be certain all of the required subjects have been scheduled for your junior and senior six year plan.
  • Volunteer in your community and make sure you are maintaining a log of activities.


  • Do your best on the state tests.
  • Continue to volunteer and become involved in extracurricular activities.
  • Continue to do research on careers, i.e. educational requirements, job outlook, salary, etc.
  • Continue to research college and universities that offer majors that will lead to career preparation.


  • Begin looking at scholarship opportunities.  There are some available for all grade levels but these generally require essays.  Check scholarship sites.
  • Begin to work on your resume.  Include all extracurricular and volunteer activities.


  • Visit colleges and universities that I have begun to identify as possibilities.
  • READ! READ! READ! This helps develop vocabulary and helps prepare  students for courses taken in  junior year.
  • Talk to adults who know about the careers of interest.
  • Volunteer in the community.