Created By: College Mapper, Inc.
Focus: College prep
Big Picture: Embracing the underlying philosophy of its name, College Mapper provides a clear, easily-navigated roadmap to all things related to getting into college. Its main audience, students, gets a bevvy of powerful guidance tools, including a college and scholarship search, an admissions task tracker, and a forum for questions and advice. Counselors and parents have associated tools that allow them to monitor and add action items to their students’ task lists. The site requires registration for use of all its features—but it’s free, and the resources it provides are comprehensive and well thought-out.
Big Challenge Solved: Where a lot of college-and-career-readiness resources are dense and head-scratching, College Mapper provides a welcome dose of clarity. A clean layout and pleasant visual style makes perusing a joy.
Must Use: Sure, lots of sites have college search engines, but this is one of the most robust we’ve seen (not to mention comprehensive—its database contains in the neighborhood of 7,500 U.S. colleges and universities).
Most Unique Tool: Under Resources, students can search through a variety of college summer programs, giving them a chance to be on campus and explore their academic interests, all before graduating high school.
Best Middle-School Student Tool: Another fun resource is the College Terms Glossary. Sorted alphabetically, students can get familiar with the lingo that any and all college-prep work will surely be steeped in.
Best High-School Student Tool: Once registered, sophomores, juniors, and seniors have access to enrollment in online curriculum programs from select colleges, offering college credit and a jumpstart on higher education.
Protip: We noticed that answers to questions in the Forum come swiftly—same day—so users can expect to get their queries satisfactorily handled right away.