As if there wasn't too much information out there already, prospective college students now have a new place to turn on the Internet for information on college prereqs, the application and admission process and paying for that degree -- BigFuture, direct to you from the folks who brought you the SAT and subject tests, your friends and ours, College Board.

At first glance, BigFuture looks like the be all to end all of college planning sites, until you delve deeper. Click here, click there, and you will find that there has been little more than a fresh coat of paint on the old College Board staples, and although the interface is more attractive, offering better placement and easier access, there really is nothing that this bigfuture gives us that similarly situated college planning websites -- and there surely are quite a few out there -- haven't shown us before.

Our friend and colleague, Lynn O'Shaughnessy of The College Solution penned an excellent piece on the present state of the bigfuture entitled, My Take on  the College Board's BigFuture. It's a good read, and highlights the shortcomings of this be all to end all college planning resource.

Why, even The College Whisperer chimed in (you would expect otherwise), offering his two cents (where College Board would no doubt charge a dollar):

"College Board’s BigFuture appears to be little more than a mishmosh crazy quilt of information that can be had, in better form and substance, elsewhere. Not user-friendly? Since when has College Board been user-friendly? Surprised there is no fee for the privilege of gaining entrance to the BigFuture, or, for that matter, the requisite response to a query with (a) all of the above, (b) none of the above, or (c) both (a) and (b) are correct.

I suppose College Board is simply trying to fill a niche — that which is occupied by college-bound students who rely on the college entrance equivalent of the Borg to gain knowledge on the methods and madness of the application, admissions and college financing process.

As with much else College Board rolls out (and rolls in), the logic is flawed, the reasoning vacuous, and the result a dismal failure."

Okay. Okay. We rarely miss an opportunity to rank on College Board, one of the last bastions of browbeating students while picking every last penny out of their parents' pockets.

In this instance, however, we feel justified in our potshots. Need to calculate college costs? You'll find a Net Cost Calculator on the website of virtually every college. Need to get facts and stats on colleges? Try Looking to take a tour of a college campus, or twenty? Check out Want to watch YouTube videos on college admissions? Go to YouTube, for goodness sake.

If The College Whisperer were a betting man, he'd venture a gamble that College Board's bigfuture will be among the most visited college resource websites. After all, they've got a captive audience -- for now.

Watch for the folks at ACT to launch a spanking new college resource site of their own. Perhaps they can call it, Back to the BigFuture!
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The road to college -- and finding the means to pay the tolls along the way -- begins at College Connection. Visit College Connection on the web at Speak with a College Connection counselor at 516-345-8766.