All Articles by Ryan Hickey

Ryan Hickey is the Managing Editor of Peterson's and an expert in college, graduate, and professional admissions. A graduate of Yale University, Ryan has worked in admissions for nearly a decade writing test-prep material for the SAT, AP exams, and TOEFL, editing essays and personal statements, and consulting directly with applicants. He enjoys sharing his knowledge to aid others in achieving their educational goals and, when he gets a break, loves hiking and fly fishing with his wife and two border-collie mixes.

Peterson's Ultimate Guide to Getting Into College

Getting into college is rarely as easy as turning in an application to one or two schools. Shrewd students begin preparing for college years before it’s time to apply — sometimes as early as middle school. The application process can be intimidating, but with proper preparation and support from family, students will find themselves ripping open acceptance letters in no time. This guide outlines some great online resources that can help you navigate this process.

By Ryan Hickey updated on May 04, 2015

10 mistakes to avoid when pursuing an online degree

Just like there can be pitfalls in traditional education, there are potential pitfalls in online education that can keep you from achieving your highest level of success. Here is a list of the top 10 errors that students make when pursuing an online degree program.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

5 big advantages of online education

The past decade has witnessed a seismic shift in online education at the collegiate level. While naysayers abound, the growth in quality and variety of college programs available either partially or completely online demonstrates that online education has become an integral part of postsecondary education. Because of this, the level of respectability of online programs is increasing rapidly, and you may be wondering what the advantages are of pursuing your education online.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

5 disadvantages to consider about online education

For good reason, the Internet is buzzing with positive information about online education. The advantages are numerous, from lower costs to accessibility to flexibility. However, a quick look around the real world clearly demonstrates that most students are still choosing traditional classes. Are these people just ignorant? No. There can be multiple drawbacks to online education in comparison to traditional classroom education.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

5 most common misconceptions about online education

With so much changing in online education and the great variety of the types of courses and programs available online, misconceptions abound that have created a sort of urban mythology about online education. In this article, we’ll separate the facts from the fiction.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

Major differences between online and traditional college programs

The differences between online and traditional college programs extends far beyond either being in a classroom or being at home in front of your computer. Before choosing one or the other, take the time to learn about the important differences between online and traditional education so that you can find the ideal collegiate experience that works best for you and your lifestyle.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

Make the most of online courses

Enrolling in an online course is relatively easy. Getting the most out of it is more difficult. However, if you take the time to plan ahead and know what to expect from your online courses or degree program, then you can get the best value for your time and money. Follow these five real-world tips to make the most of your online education.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

The history of online education

Online education is nothing new. Okay, the technology is relatively new. However, the concept is over 170 years old and has its origins in a correspondence course offered in Great Britain where the instructor sent lessons and received students’ completed assignments by mail. Distance learning was born, and today’s online courses are modern versions of their humble predecessors.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

Online vs on-campus: Which is right for you?

Despite all of the benefits, an online program is not for everyone. At the same time, students who have not done well in traditional classrooms are finding success in online education. How can you know which one is right for you?

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

What kind of person typically does well with online education?

Online education is more than just a typical class but with computers. While there are many similarities, students who do well in online classes generally have a particular set of skills that allow them to navigate the differences between the two types of learning environments.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

Real-world cost comparison: Online vs. on-campus

It can be exceptionally difficult to do a side by side cost comparison for any two college programs, and this becomes even more challenging when attempting to compare online programs to programs offered on campus. Is it really cheaper to take a class or earn a degree online than it is through a traditional program? Typically, yes. However, you need to do your homework and find out what hidden fees and what hidden tradeoffs there are for any program.

By Ryan Hickey updated on December 05, 2014

Four Unique Scholarships from Peterson's Scholarship Search

There are a huge number of interesting scholarships available today, available for everything from academic excellence to unique skills and hobbies. Let's take a look at 4 particularly intriguing ones available through the Peterson's Scholarship Search Tool.

By Ryan Hickey updated on April 24, 2014

4 Scholarships that are Easy to Apply For

Applying to college is hard. Paying for college is also hard. Here are 4 scholarships that are actually quite easy to apply for. Why not earn money for college the easy way?

By Ryan Hickey updated on April 07, 2014

High ACT Scores: Need-to-Know Tips and Strategies

Don't cram. You are being tested on knowledge that you have accumulated over the course of the year. And over the past few months especially, you've been taking ACT prep.

By Ryan Hickey updated on March 20, 2014

3 Great Entry-Level Careers that Don’t Require a Bachelor’s Degree: Pharmacy Technician, Legal Assistant, and Protective Services (Police and Firefighter)

One day you’ll be a pharmacist, a lawyer or the Chief of your precinct. However, you want to get started on your career now and gain real world experience as well as build your network of connections. Most of all, you’re passionate about what you want to do and don’t want to wait four to seven years to begin working. Therefore, you might want to earn a two-year degree for an entry-level job and then acquire further education as you gain confidence in your skills and opportunities for advancement arise.

By Ryan Hickey updated on November 08, 2013

Degrees for Careers that Don’t Require a Bachelor’s Degree: Finding the Right Program for You

As the costs of education continue to climb, many people find themselves in a bind. They need to get a degree that is beyond high school but do not want to risk their futures by leaving school with a mountain of debt. Getting a bachelor’s degree is a great goal, but what if you don’t need a bachelor’s degree for the career you want?

By Ryan Hickey updated on November 08, 2013

Ivy League Schools: The Affordable Choice?

With the price of a single year often costing more than $50,000, few would consider Ivy-League and other elite schools "affordable" - but is that really what it costs to go there for most students? Read on to find out!

By Ryan Hickey updated on October 17, 2013

FAFSA, Scholarships, and Loans: An Overview

Figuring out how to pay for college can be an extremely daunting task. Read on for helpful overview information on major sources of funding: FAFSA, Scholarships, and Loans.

By Ryan Hickey updated on October 17, 2013

Parents - Planning for Unexpected College Costs

You've saved for years, finalized your part on your student's FAFSA, and assisted your child in securing a student loan. Financially, however, your work is far from done. In fact, a parent's work is never done when it comes to the costs associated with seeing a son or daughter through college.

By Ryan Hickey updated on October 17, 2013

Turn a Passion and Talent for Art into a Fulfilling Career

Artistically Inclined? There are countless college and career options that help you channel your creativity into a fulfilling occupation!

By Ryan Hickey updated on September 30, 2013

The 10 Dos and Don'ts of College Applications

Check out this list of the top 10 dos and don'ts of college applications to make sure you know what you need to do during college application season!

By Ryan Hickey updated on August 02, 2013
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