Five mistakes to avoid on your college application

With college application deadlines looming, admissions officers offer their take on the most common mistakes students make.

2. Taking the easy path

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    US history teacher John Jackson teaches an early college class at Franklin High School in Franklin, Ind., on Dec. 3.
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Some students worry so much about getting high grades that they don’t take courses that really challenge them.

“Colleges would rather see students earn a C in an AP course or a B in an honors course than all As in standard academic-level classes,” says Michael Curtis, a high school counselor in Bucks County, Pa., who created the MyHSCounselor.com college-planning portal.

Don’t just take his word for it. Seven out of 10 college and university admissions officials rated “strength of curriculum” as a top factor in applications, according to the 2010 College Admissions Report by the National Association of College Admission Counseling.

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