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What You Need to Know About the Application Deadline

One of the most important things about applying to college is, guess what, not to miss the deadline. We advise that you prepare well in advance and submit early those applications you've worked so hard on.
By GPA Admin

What You Need to Know About the Application Deadline

There is nothing more unfortunate that letting the date slip by and losing the chance of getting into a school of your dream. So manage the deadlines carefully.

We suggest you get a board for your room and write all the dates on it. Or print the list of deadlines in large, bold fonts and pin it on the wall. Do whatever you need to, as long as you keep an eye on those dates. Here is what you need to know about deadlines:

Most deadlines fall between January and March although they can be as early as November or as late as June.  The institutions have different deadlines they set.  However it is a good idea to submit your application as early as possible.  Some colleges may offer “rolling admissions” which means that they will continue to admit students until the freshman class is full. 

Read more about the application process here.

Application Deadlines - Early Decision, Early Action and Regular Decision 

Other more competitive universities will have “early admission” applications. There are two types of early admission deadlines and they are usually set for November and December.

"Early Decision" means a student may only apply to one school and that application is binding, which means that t if accepted on early decision, the student must attend that college. And because of this demonstrated commitment by the student, applicants are viewed more favorably in the application process than students applying by the regular process. "Early Action" is another type of early admission deadline, except it is not binding. Students applying Early Action receive an early response to their application but do not have to commit to the college until the normal reply date of May.

If a student is not accepted on early admission, then he or she is free and still has sufficient time to apply to other schools. This is why we advise that if there is a school you really want to get into, try to apply Early Decision.

Rolling Deadlines or Rolling Admissions

Some colleges offer rolling deadlines for applications.  For the most part this means that they do not have a hard deadline for receiving applications and instead continue to accept applications until the freshman class is filled.  Some colleges that do have a hard deadline may resort to a rolling deadline if they have not reached their target number of incoming freshmen by the time the original deadline has passed.  Typically, the application window for rolling deadlines is at least six months. For many schools that use rolling deadlines, they typically review applications as they come in and notify the applicants within 4-8 weeks.  Some may review all applications all at once and send out all notifications at the same time and then continue to review applications if they have not found all the students they are looking for. 

The advantages of rolling deadlines include:

  • Less stress and anxiety because you can take time in preparing applications
  • Applications are generally reviewed on a case-by-case basis upon receipt instead of in comparison with other students
  • Students can find out early if they have been admitted to a preferred school
  • Offers a safety if a student applied only to one school and didn’t get in
  • There is likely to be less competition if a student applies early in the window

The disadvantages of rolling deadlines include:

  • Students depending on rolling deadlines may miss deadlines for housing, scholarships and financial aid within that school; students must remember to check for these deadlines separately.
  • Students who apply later are likely to have fewer spots to compete for if spots have already been given to earlier applicants and colleges tend to look more favorably on students who apply early.
  • We advise that you apply as soon as you can and not wait until April or May.

Please refer to our guidelines on application timeline

 College Timeline for Students in Grade 9

 College Timeline for Students in Grade 10

 College Timeline for Students in Grade 11

 College Timeline for Students in Grade 12

Check out our school database for admission deadlines of any colleges you have in mind, including schools with rolling admission.

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