Pet Peeves of College Admissions Officers

Recently I happened upon a cool piece about what it is that irritates the fire out of college admissions officers. I can’t promise that this list will be exhaustive, nor can I promise that all AO’s everywhere share the exact same irritations, but if I was an AO, the list I’m about to share contains stuff that would absolutely get my proverbial goat.

Here is my revised and shortened list for college-bound students of what NOT to do.

When it comes to submitting college applications, DON’T:

1. Be someone you’re not.

2. Be rude on the phone.

3. Write about the wrong school while filling out an app. (bahahahaha!)

4. Provide vague recommendations.

5. Email or phone admissions officers with stupid questions you can figure out yourself from the website.

6. Be careless with social media.  (If it ain’t fit for your granny to see, don’t put it on facebook.)

7. Disrespect staff members in the admissions office.

8. Go overboard trying to curry favor with AO’s.  (Would really like to hear some of THOSE stories!)

9. Disregard directions.

10. Miss deadlines.

Got it? You may want to bookmark this post and refer to it while in college-application mode. 🙂


About the Author

Joanne Calderwood has been called America’s Homeschool Mom. She is an underwhelmed Mom of eight great kids, owner of, and an author and columnist. Her new book, The Self-Propelled Advantage: The Parent’s Guide to Raising Independent, Motivated Kids Who Learn with Excellence, enables parents to teach their kids to teach themselves with excellence.


One Response to Pet Peeves of College Admissions Officers

  1. "Asian American Admission Officer" says:

    Hello – thanks for this post, the list is great! I’m a former AO, and I’m sharing my pet peeves here:

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