The main question that most future college students ask themselves is whether they should actually attend a college immediately after finishing high school, or if they should take a year off, maybe do some soul or path searching or even attend community college. And while most students tend to ignore community colleges simply because they consider the bare thought of attending them a real shame or embarrassment in front of their friends, some students find them advantageous. If you do not have a truly clear view on this subject, here are some aspects you could consider before making that crucial decision.
 
What can you do at a community college? Pretty much the same stuff you can do in a four-year college: study, pass exams and get a degree. It might take you a shorter amount of time to graduate – half the time, to be more precise, but this does not necessarily mean you will have half the knowledge of someone who attended a four-year college. The courses will cover most of the subjects any regular college or university is providing, and getting an associate’s degree at the end of the two-year program could help you land the job of your dreams, without any extra hassle.
 
How can you get in? By simply sending your application form and showing proof you are a high school graduate. You might be asked to bring some extra proof of your knowledge and skills, especially if you plan on attending a nursing program or an IT program in order to get your associate’s degree. Your SAT score is also very likely to be required. Moreover, you will not be requested to do any college preparation, which is something you will be asked to do if you decide to attend a four-year college.
 
How much does community college cost? The good news is you will not have to spend an awful lot of money on college, as these programs are much cheaper as compared to four-year colleges; in 2007, the tuition for full-time community college students was $6,400. This sum was comprised of tuition and other fees, housing and food. Plus, there are plenty of financial aids that are being handed out to students; in 2007, these aids were rising up to about $2,200 per student.  
 
four-year college As long as you pay attention to your courses and make sure they feature transferable credits, you should be good to go. Make sure you inquire about an articulation agreement between the community college of your choice and a four-year college you might want to attend at a later time. As long as such an agreement exists, all you have to do is keep a close eye on your exam scores and make sure you are prepared to get the approval you need to get into a four-year college of your liking. You need to be well-informed, so do this before you enroll in a community college and learn all about their achievement criteria within their articulation agreement.