Table: How to Choose a Consultant
-- Get a list of names from your high school guidance office, college admissions offices, and the Independent Educational Consultants Assn. (www.iecaonline.com, 703 591-4850)
-- Look for someone who has worked as a college admissions officer or high school guidance counselor
-- Make sure the person spends at least one-third of his or her time
visiting campuses, attending professional seminars, and going to college fairs
-- Be wary of anyone who offers to help write an essay, rather than just go over it, or promises to get a student into a particular school
-- If your child has a learning disability, seek a counselor who specializes in working with such students
-- Check several references
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