How Colleges are Handling College Tours

Find out the different ways colleges are providing campus tours. From car tours to virtual tours, get ready for a unique experience!

How Colleges are Handling College Tours

With colleges reopening for their current students, it’s a lot riskier for in-person college visits to take place. Concerned with the safety of their students, colleges have to decide whether they would rather have in-person campus visits or virtual tours.

As much as the in-person experience of visiting a college is exciting, safety concerns with COVID-19 have made it difficult for students to visit them. Numerous colleges have resorted to moving everything online. Virtual college fairs are now taking place, in which college representatives will virtually be able to visit high schools.

According to The New York Times, The National Association For College Admission Counseling has information on the changes to admission processing for different colleges. Students can find all the information needed for a college, such as testing policies and virtual tours, by simply searching for their specific college and viewing all the links provided.

Virtual tours can either take place live or be previously recorded. In previously recorded tours, students are able to witness the different facilities provided, ranging from the library to dormitory rooms. During live events, students will often be watching as an admission officer gives a presentation on the academics and facilities offered at the school. There’s definitely a benefit to attending a live session, for participants are able to ask questions during the session.

While there are many advantages to virtual tours, such as saving time and money, there are also some disadvantages that students face. Viewing a college online may seem a bit impersonal compared to actually visiting the campus. Missing out on the student body and atmosphere of the school, students aren’t able to get a personalized experience of the campus. If students have any questions it will be a lot more difficult to get a quick, straightforward response. Depending on the school, the information put on their websites may be limited.

For those colleges that are having campus tours, there are specific guidelines that visitors have to follow in order to attend. All visitors are required to wear a mask and stay the distanced six feet apart, something that is required in most states. Depending on the school, visits can vary between one family or a handful of students per tour. 

According to the news site Inside Higher Ed, some colleges, such as Toledo University, have been doing campus tours since June. When visiting, students are asked to fill out forms regarding their visit and whether they felt safe during their tour.

A couple of other colleges took a more creative turn. According to Inside Higher Ed, the University of Southern Indiana has taken to having car tours. Each tour allows up to five cars, with the admission staffer leading the way. The families stay in their cars as they drive past various spots, as the admission staffer talks to the students via zoom. Although the car tours have recently declined due to the reopening of in-person tours, they were widely popular amongst the students not only attracting rising seniors but underclassmen too.