Early Decision 2

From http://www.examiner.com/article/colleges-with-early-decision-2-what-does-it-mean-and-how-will-it-affect-you

Colleges with early decision 2: What does it mean and how will it affect you?

December 17, 20127:33 PM MST

Here’s how it works:

1) Most schools invite students to submit either the Regular Decision application or the Early Decision 2 application on the same day.

2) Many savvy applicants most likely applied to schools Early Decision 1 and those who received a rejection use the second round as a back-up.

3) In order the push the odds in their favor, students rejected during first round Early Decision at one school will apply Early Decision 2 at their second choice college. On the other hand, some students simply missed deadlines for Early Decision 1 or had no desire to participate. This group in its entirety now competes for the spots remaning at colleges.

4) Whether the Regular Decision and Early Decision 2 applications share the same deadline or spread about a week apart, the admissions staff tackles the Early Decision 2 pile first. Their goal: accept as many qualified applicants as possible because the EARLY DECISION 2 STUDENTS COMMIT TO ATTENDING THE COLLEGE. This greatly impacts their yields. The more « sure thing » students that colleges can admit the better.

5) With an unknown number of available spots in the class (most likely the number of spaces equal the number of over-qualified candidates who applied to the school as a back-up or safety), the admissions staff then turns to the Regular Decision stack of applications. Strategically speaking, it’s safe to assert that most students do not want to lumped into this large group contending for even fewer spots than what was available to them before the college admissions process even started.

Know the Facts

Ultimately each student must make the decisions that best serve his/her needs. No on should feel pressure to commit to a college simply so that they can gain admission. After all, whenever a students attends a college for which they have no interest it inevitably leads to disaster. However, know the facts and how the process works when making decisions over the next few weeks. It could change the course of a student’s college path.


Bates College

Bennington College

Bowdoin College

Brandeis University

Bryant University

Bryn Mawr College

Bucknell University

Carleton College

Carnegie Mellon University

Champlain College

Claremont McKenna College

Colby College

Colgate University

College of the Atlantic

College of Wooster

Colorado College

Connecticut College

Cornell College (IA)

Davidson College

Denison University

Dickinson College

Drew University

Elmira College

Emory University

Franklin and Marshall College

George Washington University

Gettysburg College

Goucher College

Grinnell College

Hamilton College

Hampshire College

Harvey Mudd College

Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Juniata College

Kenyon College

Lafayette College

Lehigh University

List College, The Jewish Theological Seminary

Macalester College

Middlebury College

Mount Holyoke College

New York University

Oberlin College

Occidental College

Pomona College

Reed College

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rhodes College

Rollins College

Saint Olaf College

Sarah Lawrence College

Scripps College

Sewanee The University of the South

Skidmore College

Smith College

St. Lawrence University

St. Mary’s College of Maryland

Stevens Institute of Technology

Swarthmore College

The George Washington University

Trinity College

Tufts University

Union College

University of Puget Sound

University of Richmond

University of Rochester

Vanderbilt University

Vassar College

Washington and Lee University

Wesleyan University

Wheaton College

Whitman College

When to take SATs and ACTS? What if EA is deferred?

From Peter van Buskirk’s blog

Dear Peter,
I just learned that I was deferred (Early Action) at my first choice school. What kind of email should I write to the university’s rep to show that I am still extremely interested?

Dear Eric,
Sorry to hear about the deferral. At least you are still in the running. It is important that you communicate your continued interest—brief and to the point—to the institution’s regional recruiter for your region. Don’t try to contest the decision or ask for an explanation. Just plan to let your performance over the next two months do the talking.


Dear Peter,
Do you recommend any particular timing for taking the SAT’s in the junior year? My son is considering taking them in January, then again in the spring or next fall. What about the ACT?

Dear Dennis,
I suggest that Juniors plan to take the SAT/ACT once in the early months of the year and once in the fall. If a third testing is desired, it might fit best in the late spring. If your son wants to sample the ACT, I suggest he do it as soon as possible. That way, if he chooses to pursue an ACT sequence instead of one with the SAT, he’ll have time to prepare accordingly.

Restrictive Early Action at Boston – Clarification






I hope that your senior year has begun well and that you are making progress with your college applications.  Thank you for your interest in Boston College.


Recently, it has come to my attention that there is confusion surrounding Boston College’s Restrictive Early Action program.  This is because REA is defined differently by the colleges that practice it.

Restrictive Early Action at Boston College permits students to apply to other colleges under Early Action or Regular Decision programs.  REA applicants to Boston College may not apply to a binding Early Decision program, since that student could not consider an REA offer of admission from Boston College if admitted to the Early Decision program.  Click here to learn more about our Restrictive Early Action policy.


I hope this policy is clear.  Please feel welcome to call our office (1-800-360-2522) if we can be of further assistance.  Best wishes to you and your family.




John L. Mahoney

Director of Undergraduate Admission

Boston College






Phone: (800) 360-2522

Fax (617) 552-0798


Early Action and Early Decision – Advice

October College Planning Tips From Peter Van Buskirk:

Making Sense of ED/EA Options

Applying Early Decision (ED) and Early Action (EA) are increasingly popular options for college applicants. The following is a breakdown of what you need to know before you apply ED or EA.

1. Early Decision (ED): What Is It?

Early Decision is an application opportunity offered by many of the nation’s selective institutions that provides the promise of early feedback (an admission decision) in exchange for the student’s commitment to enroll if accepted. A student may only be active as an ED candidate at one college. If admitted ED, a student is expected to withdraw all other Regular Decision applications that might have been active and enroll at the ED school.

ED: Inside the Numbers

Think selectivity. Think rankings. “Admitting one to enroll one,” allows a college to use ED to leverage as many high yield students into its entering classes as possible. By contrast, many schools must admit 3-5 students in Regular Decision to enroll one, a lower yielding proposition. What you are looking at, then, is fundamental enrollment management. For every ED enrollment it achieves, a college can reduce its number of Regular Decision offers by as many as five-fold thereby improving selectivity and becoming more attractive in the college ranking process.

Possible ED Outcomes

Colleges will consider one of three outcomes when students apply ED: acceptance, deferral and denial. If accepted, the student is expected to enroll. When deferred or denied, however, the student is released from that commitment and effectively becomes a “free agent” who can pursue other options—including ED at another school. Deferred candidates will be considered again within the context of the Regular Decision review process.

Who Benefits?

Whereas it has been a long-held notion that ED was reserved for only the very best candidates, it is now the case that “reasonably competitive” candidates can also benefit from the ED option as colleges seek to build their enrollments with “high yielding” students. In addition, ED will be an attractive option at many schools for the following:

  • Students who do not require financial assistance
  • Athletic recruits
  • Legacy candidates

2. Early Action (EA): What Is It?

Early Action also affords students the opportunity to submit credentials to some highly selective colleges in return for notification ahead of the Regular Decision process. The big difference: students who choose this option are not presumed to be declaring a first-choice interest in the colleges to which they apply EA. As a result, they are not committed to enroll if admitted and may, in some cases, apply EA to multiple schools. That said, a handful of institutions offer EA as a restrictive, “single choice” option that prohibits students from applying EA to any other school. Be sure to read the fine print regarding each institution’s EA program.

EA Inside the Numbers
If you are still thinking selectivity and rankings, you are right on the mark! While EA candidates do not enroll at the same rate as admitted ED candidates (presumably 100%), they are still likely to enroll at a much higher rate than students who apply Regular Decision. Colleges know this because they track their yields on EA offers from year to year. They tend not to bend their academic standards for EA candidates. Rather, they are banking on the opportunity to realize higher conversion rates among high profile admitted students by making strong, positive connections with them early in the process.

Possible EA Outcomes
Much like the case with ED, EA outcomes include acceptance, deferral and denial. The only difference is that acceptance does not involve a commitment to enroll.

Who Benefits?
Unlike ED, EA really doesn’t improve one’s chances of admission. Why? Institutions are reluctant to commit places in the class to strong, but not superior students without first being able to compare them with the larger pool of candidates. EA does, however, provide peace of mind for those who use it early in the process.

3. Tips for Potential ED/EA Applicants

  • Read the fine print for each institutional offering and understand your commitments before initiating an early application of any sort.
  • Rather than looking for an “ED school,” focus on finding colleges that fit you well as you arrive at your short list of schools. If one of them becomes your absolute first choice, then ED should be a considered option.
  • Do not apply ED unless you are dead certain of your commitment to enroll if accepted.
  • Do not apply ED if you have not visited the campus first! Ideally, your visit will have included an overnight stay that enabled you to also attend classes and experience the campus culture.
  • Resist the temptation to act on impulse. The feelings you have for a college now might change greatly over time leaving you committed to a place that is no longer where you want to be. Give yourself at least a month to reflect on your intended application before applying ED.
  • Remember the ED Round II option. Many schools will give you the opportunity to “convert” your Regular Decision application during a second round of ED in January. The conditions are the same as with ED Round I, but you might be better prepared to make a commitment later in the year.
  • Resolve all $$ questions and concerns before applying ED. Once you are admitted, there can be no contingencies. Ask the school’s financial aid office to provide an “early estimate” of your expected family contribution (EFC) before you submit your ED application. Apply ED only if you are completely satisfied with the information you receive regarding your EFC.
  • Sprint to the finish! Even though you might hold an EA or ED acceptance letter, it is likely to be conditional on your completion of the senior at the same level of achievement that earned you the offer of admission. More than a few colleges are known to rescind offers of admission when final transcripts show performances that drop measurably after offers of admission are secured.