A chill is in the air but college applications are just heating up. Are you ready for everything you need to do in November to get into college?

Let’s get right into it! Here are the 5 things to do this month.

Earlier in the series: 
October College Checklist for High School Seniors
September College Checklist for High School Seniors

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1) Send your Early Action / Early Decision Applications

You should apply to one college Early Action. Because Early Action decisions typically aren’t binding, you can apply without getting “locked-in” if you end up changing your mind later… say your financing doesn’t come through, or you get into a more preferred school. Early Decision is almost always binding though, so make sure you only apply Early Decision if it’s a school you definitely plan to go to if you get in.

2) Polish Your College Essays

If you’re applying Early Action or Early Decision, you should definitely already have a college essay (or two!) ready to go. Now’s the time to take a second look at your essays, have a trusted friend look at them, and work to make them perfect.

Read: 8 Fast Tips to Write an Amazing College Application Essay

3) Check in with Teachers and Counselors

Talk to your teachers about how you’re doing in class. Remember that while you’re trying to get into college, you’ve still got to manage finishing high school. Letting your grades slip now could still affect your ability to get into your dream school.

Meanwhile, your school counselor will be able to help make sure you’re on track with your college application process. If you haven’t started the conversation with them about your college plans, now’s the time!

4) Work on Your College List

By this point, you should have a pretty solid list of colleges you’d like to apply to. It’s okay if right now you don’t have a 100% solid list, but you should have more than just a couple.

The biggest mistake you can make is applying to too few colleges. Apply now, see if you get in, and then decide where you’ll go later.

Read: How Many Colleges Should You Apply To?

5) Learn about Financial Aid

It’s time to start asking the serious money questions. Your school counselor and your parents can definitely help here. Look for financial aid seminars and events you can go to (they’re out there just waiting for you!)

While you’re looking for financial aid, remember that you’ve got scholarships, loans, and of course there’s your own out-of-pocket expenses. Remember that college is an investment in your future, so don’t rule out loans entirely. They could well be worth it!

Read: Stop Worrying About Graduating Debt Free

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Authored by Jared Meyer

Jared specializes in communication in higher education. He writes about getting into college and succeeding once you're there. He's the editor of the American Honors Blog.