Guide in Choosing A College University


This is a Guest Post by R. Marcelo

So, you passed the UPCAT, the ACET, the Freshmen Admissions Test at DLSU, the USTET and other college entrance tests given by other prominent universities here in our country.


It was another step heading towards achieving your goals.

What will be your next step? Getting ready for college life? A more challenging phase in every student’s life.

But, have you made up your mind on which university to choose?  Considering you passed all the Big Four’s college entrance tests?

I would want to help you with your dilemma. However, given that you are qualified to enroll in those schools, honestly, you’ll be on a roller-coaster decision process. Oh! My. The Big Four (UP, ADMU, DLSU, and UST) are considered the top universities here in our country. For the past consecutive years, all four have been included in the top 500 world university rankings conducted by international university ranking entities in the world.

How lucky and bright your future will be when you get to be accepted into one of these top caliber universities.

How will you decide?

Let me take you on a brief summary about the Big Four.

Ateneo De Manila University (ADMU)

Who wouldn’t want to experience collegiate life in Ateneo? Walk the ground at the Loyola campus with your latest gadgets and have conyo chit-chats with your schoolmates. Sosyal^_^.

If you prefer to be an Atenista and don their Blue Eagles shirt, prepare for a semestral academic classes (2 semesters per school year) paying 70k plus (Philippine pesos) on tuition costs per semester. Tuition fees at Ateneo.

So, if you happen to pass the ACET and got a good scoring, it will be indicated how much tuition are you going to pay (percentage discounts). And, even if it is a premier private school with staggering fees, they also offer 100% full scholarship and other stipends to deserving students. However, you’ll be facing tough competition in securing scholarship as there are many student applicants every year. Because, truly, the university upholds their foremost objective: Ateneans aim for excellence.

Please do check out ADMU website on the scheduled confirmation dates of your enrollment. And also, it is important to check out what are the necessary requirements to bring on the said appointment date. Reservation fee for your slot is 4k PHP. This is waived when you decide not to enroll in the school.

De La Salle University (DLSU)

Choosing to be a Green Archer means you’ll be gasping in awe each day you set foot in the Taft Avenue branch -engineering marvels on every edifice particularly those newly constructed. DLSU took pride in giving quality education and providing top-notch facilities to the students.

At DLSU, they’ve adopted the trimestral academic calendar, meaning there’s classes all year round cut into at least 12 weeks per semester. Tuition costs at DLSU vary on the programs taken. Undergraduate courses may be between 40k-50k per semester. The university offer grants, scholarship and discounts to deserving students.

If you happen to elect DLSU as your undergraduate program university, check on their website for the date needed to confirm your enrollment. The university is charging 5k PHP as reservation fee for the slot provided for you. Same as in Ateneo, reservation fee is waived when you decide not to enroll but the same amount is credited to your tuition costs when you decide to enroll.

University of Santo Tomas (UST)

A National Historical Landmark, UST is the oldest university here in our country. Pass through the Arc of the Centuries, is an event conducted to formally welcome every freshmen into the campus. At UST, you get to experience their most popular event, The Paskuhan, which is a night of student festivities. UST has the most diverse undergraduate program along with UP, of course. Check out their website how much is tuition costs on every academic programs.

University of the Philippines (UP) –Peyups

Considered as the “premier” university in the Philippines. This is a state-run university. Meaning it is given allocation from the national budget. The reason why the university can support as many students, the Iskolar ng Bayan. Hence, application/admission process (the UPCAT itself) is very competitive. Certain grade predictors along with the UPCAT score is considered in every applicant.

Once you’re chosen UP, expect loads of xeroxes (textbooks aren’t required to be purchased) and many hours reading in the library. There’s no uniform required in UP except in some campuses and/or degree programs. So, haul up on more jeans and shirts into your closet especially if you’ve gotten a slot in UP Diliman. The biggest branch in the whole UP System. The one with a bigger dormitory, too.

For tuition costs at UP, as I said, budget is provided by the government. However, tuition is not AT ALL FREE AT UP. Tuition and other expenses are subsidized by the government and as part of the socialized tuition (STFAP) the cost of tuition a student pays depends on the family’s income. Thus, the lower your family’s income is, the lower is your tuition fee. The highest payment I made for one full semester is around 13k pesos (19 units).

I hope I helped out even with the short information I have stated here. Deciding for a college university is for you and your parents to decide -weighing all the factors: tuition costs, school facilities, accessibility, university vision. However, decision ultimately rest solely on you -your goals, your dreams. When you know what you want to achieve, definitely, you’ll reach the decision what would be the best university for you.

Here’s few blogposts my mom writes hereon which led me to the university where I am now…These may help in your quest.

Preparation for College -College Entrance Test and more

Deciding on a University

Registration and Enrollment Day

How Much is the Tuition Costs -STFAP and Bracket syatem

By sharing your thoughts and plans to your parents, they may be able to help you decide. Choosing a college university is crucial. For, it will be one of the deciding factor in finding a sustainable career for you.

Guest Author:

R. Marcelo
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Science in Biology Class 2012
University of the Philippines- Baguio

Secondary Education: Bongabon National High School Class 2008

Good luck graduates.


Feel free to click on the comment section below this post to write down your queries and I will happily reply back the soonest.

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Many thanks.

11 thoughts on “Guide in Choosing A College University

  1. it’s indeed tough to make a choice where to attend school, even what to major, you are so blessed to have parents to guide you in your decision making. our parents always want the best for us and they are very objective in their evaluation.

    i love what you said about:

    “decision ultimately rest solely on you -your goals, your dreams. When you know what you want to achieve, definitely, you’ll reach the decision what would be the best university for you.”

    – that describes very well you are in such a very supportive family, so happy for you. glad as young as you are, you know your goals, your dreams and what you want to achieve. congratulations on finishing your undergraduate degree.

  2. my nephews and nieces are studying/have studied at the big 4 except ADMU. they all have a hard time choosing before, this article will be of great help to upcoming kolehiyalas.

  3. Lucky are if you happens to enrolls in any from the 4 Top Philippines Universities. Dagdag pogi points as they say in our street lingo. But I believe dedication is more of a factor to excel and achieve what a college student dreams to be.

  4. I agree, the person concern should be the one to make the decision. But just a plain reminder to students, you need to justify your decisions by striving hard to reach your goals. Parents are there to guide and support, do not neglect them.

  5. I actually did not have a hard time choosing a university back then because there were not so much of a choice. i enrolled in AdDU (in Davao) and had two years there, it’s indeed true when you wear that Ateneo uniform… hehehe. :-) there’s something to that name… thanks for this informative post.

  6. Great tips! finally we have one tailored for Philippine academe. This is is an excellent guide for incoming freshmen.

    Thank you for sharing!

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