Tsinghua International School offers professional college/university counseling. The counseling office helps students to find their best-fit colleges or universities and guide them in their applications to maximize their chances for success.
The counseling office conducts a variety of programs to help and support students. Beginning in grade 10, students can meet with visiting admissions officers during the school day. In grade 11, the college/university counselor meets with individual students and parents to help them consider options and assess admission chances. Students work on their personal statements with the help of English teachers and the college counselor. The school submits a number of documents in support of each application, including an assessment of the student from the college counselor, recommendations from teachers, the student’s academic transcript, and a profile describing the school’s academic program and community.
Every year, from September to November, and March to May, more than 50 different universities worldwide will visit THIS. Students in 10th grade and above are encouraged to attend the university presentations and use the opportunity to speak with admissions officers. Students are able to learn about individual colleges and universities through one on one interaction with these admissions representatives. In recent years, we have hosted admissions officers from Boston University, University of British Columbia, Brown University, University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania, University of Rochester, Yale University, and many others.
Tsinghua International School is part of the Beijing Western Consortium, a group that consisted of Affiliated High School to Peking University, Beijing 101 Middle School, and Beijing Bayi School. Every semester, each school takes turn hosting a large university fair that would be open to the public. In March of 2018, THIS hosted the second Beijing Western Consortium University Fair. Over 75 universities from the US, Canada, Europe, Hong Kong, Japan, and China came to THIS to speak with students and parents about their universities and conducted workshops on various topics of the admissions process.
Most competitive colleges and universities worldwide require standardized tests as part of their admission application. Students should either take SAT (Test Center Code 74344) or ACT (Test Center Code 865170) plus additional exams such as SAT Subject Test. Students enrolled in AP courses at THIS will automatically take the AP exams in May of each year at our school. Our school’s CEEB code is 694296. Students should also register to take the TOEFL or IELTS if they had been in language support or transferred to our school in high school. Chinese universities require HSK.
Universities use different application systems to receive student applications. Over 400 US universities plus a handful abroad use the Common Application while some also use the Coalition Application and some have their own application. The University of California has its own application system. All Canadian universities have their own individual application except for Ontario where they can use one application to apply to all universities in Ontario. Students applying to schools in the UK should register for a UCAS account.
Starting in 10th grade, THIS students are allowed to attend university presentations on our campus during class time. We encourage students to consider these factors when they are learning and researching colleges: student to faculty ratio, geographic location, size, academic profile, campus culture, cost, etc. Search engines like this can help students narrow down their list for American universities. Students should also consult individual university websites, speak with their counselor, and engage with the university admissions office. If given the chance, always visit your prospective universities. Learn how to make the most out of your onsite campus visit here.
Financial Aid and Scholarship 101
Different types of financial aid and scholarship are available for both domestic and international student. Each university will have their own policy and students should be proactive in researching and reaching out to universities that they are interested in applying. American students applying to US universities should learn more about FAFSA, which is financial aid from the federal and state government. Other schools might also require the CSS Profile for non-federal aid. Students can also use search engines on College Board and Fastweb to identify suitable scholarships.
The summers before 11th grade and 12th grade are especially important and students should use them as opportunities to explore different interest areas. Students can do a variety of meaningful activities ranging from doing community service, learning a new skill, doing an internship in a potential career choice or taking different university courses. Many universities also offer summer programs for high school students, which could be a good way to get a taste of what it would be like to be a student there. Please see below for a list of programs that our students have participated in before.
BridgeU is an application management platform that we have purchased to make the application process easier to manage for students and teachers. In BridgeU, students can explore different career paths, higher degree options, and university requirements. Counselors can make see the progress from each student and remind students of relevant deadlines. School official documents such as recommendation letters and transcripts will be sent electronically via BridgeU. Students will have individual access to BridgeU starting in 10th grade. Please visit here to log in to your BridgeU account.
4 Year Roadmap
Do well in your academic study; join different clubs that are of interest to you; practice time management skills and learn to prioritize; improve your English.
Continue to do well in your academy study; take APs if recommended; become deeply involved in your school and/or out of school clubs; take the TOEFL at the end of the year if you’re ready, and apply to summer programs that are interesting and/or helpful to you; do not test prep all summer.
Take challenging APs that are interesting and relevant to what you want to study; take leadership roles in your clubs; attend university presentations at school; take your first SAT or ACT; take SAT 2 if needed; apply for summer programs
Continue what you’ve been doing in Grade 11; continue to test if you did not reach a satisfying score; finish the college application process under the guidance of the counseling team.
The Insider’s Guide to College gives you a detailed breakdown of your junior and senior years.