Myth #1: College is only for unusually bright people
College students do not need to be any more gifted, superior, or unusual in their mental abilities than anyone else. Most college graduates are perfectly ordinary people in terms of memory, attention span, arithmetical understanding, comprehension of concepts, and other abilities. How they differ from most people is in their willingness to stretch their minds and exercise their mental abilities.
Myth #2: College is only for unusually creative people
Again, college students needn't be more creative than others. But they do have to apply their creative abilities to learn new things, new ways of doing things, new ways of seeing things.
Myth #3: You have to be young to go to college
If you are 25 years or older, you will have plenty of company. At state universities and community colleges, older adults are the rule, not the exception. The average age of a part-time evening student is 29.
Myth #4: You have to have a lot of free time to go to college
It is best, when attending college part time, to take only two or three courses. If the class schedule is arranged in terms of your work or family responsibilities, you can generally find times and places to study.
Myth #5: It takes a lot of money to go to college
The average community college is subsidized by state and local taxes, so fees are relatively low. And financial aid of many kinds is available. And if you're on active duty or in the Coast Guard Reserve you can get some degrees without paying a penny out of pocket.
Myth #6: It takes a long time to complete a college program
By going part time, it can take you longer to earn a degree. However, many schools have accelerated terms, allow students to earn credit by taking examinations such as those offered by the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), and award those who are or have been in the military with credit for their job experience and military training. Many community colleges also offer certificate programs in trades and vocations which can be completed in less than two full-time years.
Myth #7: You have to pass an entrance examination
Although high scores on standardized examinations such as the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) are required for admission to some state universities and selective private colleges, this is not true of community colleges. Also, many colleges and universities that have partnerships with the Coast Guard do not require entrance examinations. The majority of community colleges welcome all applicants after you've taken placement tests in English and math. If you do your first two years of college work toward a bachelor’s degree at a community college, your work can transfer to a four-year college or university without entrance examinations.
Myth #8: You need to know what you want before enrolling
You don’t necessarily have to know what major you want to pursue before you begin taking college courses. You can declare something general such as Liberal Studies. If you’re aiming toward a bachelor’s degree, the first two years (for the most part) consist of taking general education courses. In most cases it is not necessary to take more than two or three courses in your major in your first two years. You can use the first two years of college as a way of discovering what you want to major in.
Myth #9: Professors tend to be hostile to older, nontraditional students
The majority of college professors look upon their work as not merely a job, but as a high calling. Teachers love to teach. They want to help you succeed. If you demonstrate a genuine willingness to learn, the professor will find this both exciting and rewarding.
Myth #10 College graduates don't really earn that much more money than non-graduates
The average college graduate earns about twice as much money per year than the average high school graduate. See Why Should You Get More Education?