What Should I Expect from Community College Admissions?

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  • Written By: Lily Ruha
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 11 November 2019
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The community college admissions process generally involves an admissions application, placement tests, submission of specific documents, and meetings with an academic counselor. If a student will need financial aid, then an appointment with a financial aid officer may also be required. Other steps in the community college admissions process include registering for college classes, paying college tuition, and obtaining a student identification card.

Applying for community college admissions typically begins with an application process. The application requests important information such as the student's name, address, date of birth, and record of previous schools attended. Each community college sets its own fee structure for its application process. After filling out the application and paying the required fee, students are generally advised of the next step, either in person or in writing.

The next step in the community college admissions process generally involves providing necessary documentation. This may include bringing in a government-issued identification card and a high school diploma or equivalency diploma. A college student identification card may be issued at this stage of the process. Community colleges will typically also request a copy of transcripts from the student’s high school or other colleges attended. If the student has already taken standardized achievement tests, documentation of these scores will also need to be submitted to the community college.


Depending on the specific college and intended program of study, students may be required to take placement tests as part of the admissions process. These tests are designed to determine the student’s proficiency level in a subject area. If a student wishes to enroll in a higher level math class, for example, he may be required to take a math placement test to demonstrate his mastery of math skills. Students who are new to a country may be required to take placement tests to assess their proficiency in the local language.

The community college admissions process usually includes a meeting with an academic counselor. This initial conversation allows the counselor to learn about the student’s academic interests and to provide guidance on course selection and college planning. Students usually leave their first meeting with the academic counselor with a list of courses they need to complete to reach their intended academic goals. The goals may involve taking courses in general areas of interest, earning an associate’s degree, or completing the courses necessary for transfer to a four-year university.

Students will generally also receive financial aid information during the community college admissions process. Information about grants and loans is usually available in writing or may be explained by a financial aid officer. Students can expect to receive a clear explanation of the college tuition costs and a general estimate of the costs of books and other materials they will need to meet their community college goals. Once all necessary steps and paperwork have been completed, students may then register for community college classes.


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