College Center » College Planning

College Planning

Welcome to our College Planning page. To enjoy this exciting time in your life, you need to approach it as an adventure which will end with your admission to a college that is right for you. Below are a few resources and key points to keep in mind. The College/Career Center is here to help you plan your future and walk you through the steps to get you where you want to go. Please visit our office and often, pay attention to PA announcements, and check out the College and Career Center web pages. 
Research Schools
Gather as much information as you can about the schools, and visit all you can. Use multiple resources to read about them, and (most important) go to each school's website. You can also register with several web resources to research schools. We highly recommend these: 


Naviance delivers an organized, easy to access experience to students' fingertips with familiar and intuitive tools that personalize and simplify the college and career planning process. Log-In Email: Use your BCCHS email


California Colleges

Search colleges by major and location as well as Careers. 


Students can explore colleges, careers, and even create personal roadmaps. 
Students can explore colleges and financial aid opportunities. 
Students can explore colleges and find college matches based on the student's profile. 
Students can explore colleges and their profiles, as well as scholarship opportunities. 
Students can take virtual tours of a college campus and learn more about the campus's admission profile.  
Students can explore colleges and find college matches based on majors, test scores, and student's profile.
California Public Universities
There are two types of 4-year public institutions in California: California State University (CSU) campuses and University of California (UC) campuses. Both systems are 4-year public institutions that offer an array of majors, careers, and degrees, including Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Masters and Doctoral programs. Each campus is different and offers different opportunities for students. 
Examples Minimum Requirements
Community College 
 Pierce College , Valley College, Mission College, Santa Monica
  •   Graduate High School or Older than 18 years of Age. 
California State University (CSU)
Cal State Northridge (CSUN); Cal State Channel Islands (CSUCI); San Diego State University (SDSU)
  • A-G Requirements (Grade of C or better)
  • Minimum GPA of 2.0 
  • SAT Reasoning Exam or ACT 
You can see your CSU Eligibility here
University of California (UC)
UC Los Angeles (UCLA); UC Santa Barbara (UCSB); UC Berkely (UCB); UC Irvine (UCI)
  •  A-G Requirements (Grade of C or better)
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 
  • SAT Reasoning + Essay or ACT + Writing 
  • SAT Subject Exams (Optional)
  • 4 of 8 Personal Insight Questions
  • Extracurricular Activities
Private Colleges
USC, Loyola Marymount, Occidental, Pepperdine, 
  • Varies by College 
  • Similar to UC requirements. 
What Factors Do Colleges Consider In Making Their Decisions?
School Records
  • GPA 
  • What courses have you taken? How demanding?
  • Standing in class: How do you look relative to your peers?
Test Scores
  • SAT Reasoning and/or ACT Plus Writing
  • SAT Subject Tests
  • Advanced Placement Tests
Outside Interests and Activities, Special Talents
  • How have you spent your time outside of class, apart from studying?
  • How have you spent your summers?
  • Athletic Involvement.
  • Long-term interests and affiliations.
  • Community service.
  • Leadership Roles.
Essay or Personal Statement
  • This is your opportunity to speak for yourself.
  • Explain what is not clear from your records and scores.
  • Be original.
  • Be honest.
  • Be noticed.
  • Choose people who know you well (non-relatives) and like you.
  • Request references early.
  • Encourage anecdotal references. 
  • Provide adequate information to recommenders.
Interviews and Meeting College Representatives
  • Make the appointment early.
  • Gather as much information as you can about the interview process.
  • Learn as much as you can about the school, and be prepared with questions.
  • Show genuine interest in the school (and the interviewer).