Many colleges allow you to interview with an admissions representative, either on campus or in your hometown. Rest assured that it will not make or break you, but if you do score an interview, take it seriously. Admissions officers will consider it when evaluating your application, although they'll be much more interested in your grades, test scores, and essays.

Prepare specific questions.

Your interviewer will expect you to ask some questions about the school and talk about why you want to go there. Think about why the school appeals to you, what you want to study, and what you might do after graduation. Challenge yourself to come up with creative questions with answers that cannot be easily found on the college's website.

Practice like a prizefighter.

Being interviewed is a skill, and it requires practice. Sit down with one of your parents, a teacher or a friend and have him or her ask you questions. Answer them honestly and seriously. Then ask your "interviewer" how you came across. You'll also get better after each college interview, so try to arrange your schedule so that your last interviews are with the schools you care about most.

Be yourself…

Remember, the key to getting admitted (and being happy at college) is matchmaking. You want to be yourself so that the person interviewing you can discern if you would be a good fit.

…but be your best self.

You have many sides, so showcase the side of yourself that is professional, mature and confident. Don't show up looking like you just peeled yourself off the couch. Smile, and remember your interviewer wants the interview to go well too!

Stop worrying about the clock.

Most interviews run approximately 30 minutes to an hour. Students are sometimes told that the sign of a good interview is a long one. But most colleges schedule interviews back-to-back, so your interviewer is likely on a tight schedule. If you notice them checking the time, it's not (necessarily) because they think you're boring.

Be thankful.

Send a thank-you note. If there's something about the interview that was helpful to you, let your interviewer know. If you connected with your interviewer over a book, common experience, or ban you’re both into, then mention it!

Otherwise, simply express your continued interest in the school and thank your interviewer for taking the time to meet with you.