Author Archives: Jenny Hwang

Accepted, Deferred, or Denied: Understand Early Admissions Results

If you submitted your college application early back in October or November, late December and early January is usually a very exciting time for you as you are starting to hear back your early admissions results.

 

Not sure when will you know your early decision or early action results? Check out Class of 2027 Early Decision / Early Action Notification Dates.

 

There are three possible results that can happen: accepted, deferred, or denied. In this article, Insight’s Head of College Admissions Counseling Purvi Mody shares what each admissions decision can mean for you and what you can do!

 

(More of an audio learner? Check out Purvi’s YouTube video here.)

 

Accepted!

Congratulations! You may have one or several colleges to attend in Fall 2023. Whether or not you have to accept the school’s offer depends on the early admissions plan you chose when you applied. If you applied for early decision (ED), it is binding and means you are bound to attend that university. In other words, now that you are accepted in the ED round, you can celebrate! You are done. Don’t forget to withdraw all your other college applications, turn down any other offers, and get your new college swags!

 

Binding or nonbinding? Early Decision vs. Early Action – Which to Choose?

 

If you are accepted into your dream schools, congratulations! That is amazing news, and you have accomplished a huge feat. This does NOT mean you can just party all the way till Fall. What this means is that now you can enjoy your senior year of high school. Spend time with your friends and family (especially if you are going far to college). Make the most of it while keeping up your academics.

 

Why can’t you just take things easy? First, you don’t want colleges to rescind your offers. Your grades will have to drop significantly for colleges to take back the offers, but the chance is never zero. The other reason (possibly the more important one) is that you are going to be a college student in a few months. Odds are that you are going to a college filled with brilliant, smart cookies like yourself. You want to keep up the rigor, the stamina, and the work ethic, so that when you start college, you are already used to the pace. If you start to take things too easy now, then you will have to work extra hard to level back up when you start college.

 

Keep working hard and finish your senior year strong! The beautiful thing is that now you are studying just for yourself. I hope you are always working hard for yourself, but admittedly, I know that college admissions are always in the back of our minds. Now, with your early acceptance, you are truly 100% doing this for yourself. So please keep up your rigor and continue to work hard for you!

 

Deferred

Whether you chose early decision, early action, or restrictive/single-choice early action, if you are deferred from the early admissions round, all that means is the colleges want to view your application in the context of their regular applicant pool. It is not a rejection. The college admissions office still finds you interesting and your college application compelling. In some cases, the admissions office wants more information before they can make a decision.

 

If you are deferred, continue to work on other college applications and apply during the regular decision deadlines. If you applied ED but were deferred and then later accepted in the regular round, you are no longer bound by the ED agreement. In short, if you are deferred and then accepted, you don’t have to attend that school. You are free to choose other colleges that offer a better financial package or a more appealing program.

 

What if you REALLY REALLY want to go to this college but got deferred; what should you do? Remember, you submitted your application back in October or early November. Now you have accomplished new things, such as your first semester’s grades, new activity achievements, or new responsibilities. Many colleges will allow you to submit an update or a letter of continued interest (LoCI). Some universities will have very specific forms that you need to fill out while others treat LoCI as optional. Be sure to check each school’s requirements carefully, so you continue to make a good impression.

 

Keep in mind that you are now competing with applicants in the regular round, and they will have at least six more weeks’ worth of information that they are submitting. You want to make sure you’re doing the same in your letter of continued interest. The information you want to include in your letter of continued interest could be

 1. academic performance (without restating info from your mid-year report)
 2. extracurricular activities (without repeating what is already on your application)
 3. new hobbies or responsibilities
 4. and any new achievements or awards

 

Finally, a few more key notes on the letter of continued interest:

 1. Keep it short and succinct. Ideally, your LoCI should not exceed one page.
 2. Check the university’s policy. Will they accept a LoCI? What should the format be? Follow those policies closely!
 3. Spend some time working on it, just like you would on your college essays.
 4. Send in ONLY ONE thorough update. Do not repeat information that is already in your mid-year report or college applications.
 5. Make sure you send it at an appropriate time. Usually, this is mid-January, though different colleges have different specifications.

 

Read more on Writing A Letter of Continued Interest

Denied

If you are denied in the early round, that college application is completed for this year. The college does not want any additional information, and you cannot appeal that decision. You also can no longer apply for the same college this admissions cycle.

 

Sometimes a student may ask, “If I am denied in the early admissions round, can I apply to the same college in the regular deadline?” No. In one admission year, you can only apply to one time to a given school.

 

This is not the end of the world. This does not mean you are not hardworking or driven. It does not mean your college application was terrible. There are many, many great schools out there, and we hope that some of those colleges made it into your college list. In this case, you should focus on other colleges, polish your college essays, and perhaps submit additional college applications.

 

Concluding thoughts: 

Those are the three early admissions results and what you should do in each case. The determining factor is your early admissions option. If you apply early action or restrictive early action, the result is not binding. You can still consider other offers as they come in. Though, I will say this final piece of advice: if you are accepted early into a college you’re definitely going to attend, stop applying. Give other applicants the spot. Alleviate yourself from the stress and time. Focus on making the most of your senior year!

 

If you are a sophomore or a junior planning ahead, don’t wait! Early application requires careful strategizing and early planning. Contact us today and schedule a 1-hour personalized college planning session with our experienced college admissions counselor to see how you can maximize your admissions chance!

 

 


Written by Purvi Mody

This article was written by Insight’s Co-Founder and Head of Counseling Purvi Mody.

Since 1998, Purvi has dedicated her career to education and is exceedingly well-versed in the college admissions process. Her philosophy centers around helping kids identify and apply to the schools that are the best fit for them and then develop applications that emphasize their unique attributes and talents.

23 amazing years of Insight!

2022, another amazing year for Team Insight!

We have been so blessed to share so many milestones and journeys with Insight’s students and families over the past 23 years. In 2022, our office is fully in-person, and we couldn’t be happier to see everyone and hear laughter in the office! Below is a recap of all the fun we had.

 

We started the year with a wonderful team-building event at Top Golf. There were quite some hilarious missed swings. College Admissions Counselor Priya and Star Instructor Jennifer spent the majority of time teaching the rest of us Golf Techniques 101.

 

For the first time since 2020, we hosted our annual Truth behind College Admissions event in person. Thanks to all the team members who created the content, provided thoughtful feedback, and supported the actual event!

 

This year, we celebrated Senior College Admissions Counselor Jenny Bloom’s 10 years of Insight! Day in and day out, her dedication and commitment to her students are an inspiration to us all.

 

Team Insight took part in the 19th Bay Area Diwali Festival hosted by the Cupertino Chamber of Commerce on a beautiful sunny day. 

 

We also hosted our annual Summer Opportunities Fair, sharing local volunteering, internships, and research programs for high school students and their families! Even with the gloomy cloudy weather, more than 250 people showed up throughout the day, and we had the pleasure of meeting three new programs with great opportunities!

 

New team members joined us in 2022. We are happy to have Kevin joining our Counseling Team and Mary as a part of our Admin Team.

 

And through it all, we made sure to enjoy our team, collaborate, celebrate, and be silly.

 

From all of us at Team Insight – Happy Holidays! 

 

Top 3 College Admissions Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

Picture this. You are sitting in front of your computer, smiling as wide as you can. You hope the person at the other end of the video call can’t see you sweat. Your heart is pounding so hard that you can hear it through your headphones. Yes, this is it. This is your college admissions interview!

Continue reading

Insight Alma Mater: Penn State

For people who grew up in State College, Pennsylvania, applying to Penn State is a no-brainer. Like so many college towns, the university is the lifeblood of our little community. Businesses follow the beats of the semester, locals (affectionately known as “townies”) plan their weekends around avoiding game day traffic, and everyone, regardless of their enrollment status, owns something with a Nittany Lion on it. I was no different. When it came time to apply to colleges, despite my eagerness to leave my hometown, I begrudgingly added Penn State to my list.

 

Insight Alma Mater Penn State

A childhood photo of Melina playing in front of the Old Main

I had decided early on in my high school career that I had wanted to pursue a degree in music but wanted the flexibility to explore more contemporary styles in addition to a classical education. My college list reflected that. Back when recordings and pre-screenings were less ubiquitous, applying to a program meant committing to travel for an audition and preparing to stay the entire day for theory tests, sight-singing assessments, and interviews with faculty. As a result, my college list was small, but targeted, including only a handful of programs: University of Northern Texas, Westminster Choir College, Berklee College of Music, and Penn State (my safety). Armed with a fierce determination to leave Pennsylvania behind, I began working with my studio teacher to prepare and refine my repertoire ahead of auditions.

 

I hadn’t seriously considered Penn State as a viable option when I submitted my application. It was local, it was convenient, and both of my parents worked there (and still do!) as professors. In short, it was boring. I changed my mind the day I set foot on campus for my audition.

 

Penn State was one of my first auditions, but it was the most memorable. As soon as I entered the School of Music, I was greeted by a flurry of student volunteers – familiar faces, as I had gone to high school with many of them myself. The audition room was no different. Instead of feeling nervous, I looked across the row of faculty panelists and found people I had grown up with. I had seen Dr. Spivey attend our school plays and choir concerts and Professor Jayne Glocke regularly sang in the church I attended every Sunday. I had seen Professors Trost and Kennedy perform in a beautiful trio with my then voice teacher, and Dr. Kiver had led an inspiring conducting workshop at my high school’s annual Maroon and Grey concert. When it came time for my interview and mock voice lesson, I immediately felt at ease. Even though I hadn’t attended yet, Penn State was already my community.

 

Starting with a comfortable audition is the best way to gear up towards the big one. But as each subsequent audition passed, I found myself coming back to reflect on that first experience. As the weeks went on, I felt a growing sense of anxiety waiting for my decision letter. So much so that even as other acceptances rolled in (including from schools I thought I was dead set on attending), I hardly felt ready to celebrate. By the time my letter from Penn State had finally arrived in the mail, my mind was made. The sense of community I felt from the Penn State School of Music ultimately drove my decision to attend.

 

Through my many conversations with faculty and alums, I got the sense that the music program operated as a tight-knit community. This could not have been truer. Looking back on my college experience, I have always felt supported not just by the voice faculty, but the entire School of Music. The professors are friendly, approachable, and most importantly, invested in student success – you can ask any one of them a question and receive thoughtful answers and feedback. Walking into my jury at the end of each semester (the end-of-semester performance exams), I always felt excited to share what I had been working on with the dedicated team of professors who had all helped me grow as a musician.

Penn State Music Major

Melina performing in Bach’s Lunch

 

Penn State is a large school, but the music department is quite small, which lends itself well to an individualized academic experience. While at Penn State, I had the opportunity conduct independent musicological research, participate in the graduate opera scenes program, premier new music, and even help found Penn State’s first vocal jazz ensemble, a feat that would not be possible without the enthusiasm and support of the faculty. Beyond that, I made life-long friends and gained valuable mentors through close contact with graduate students and upper classmen.

 

While I was very familiar with the University Park before attending – I was practically raised at Fenske Lab – I was delighted to re-discover the campus from a student’s perspective. There’s nothing quite like staying up late studying in the stacks at Patee, meeting up with friends at the Hub, or climbing the trees at Old Main. I was very grateful for the opportunity to explore and establish my independence in the community I had grown up in but had only recently begun to appreciate.

 

While I still might complain about the upsets during THON weekend and roll my eyes when tailgaters cause traffic jams downtown, I secretly (and maybe not so secretly) love it. From townie to Penn Stater to alum, Penn State is, and always will be, my home.

 


Written by Zach Pava

This article is written by Melina Matsoukas.

Melina works as an administrative assistant for #TeamInsight. Other than helping families and making sure everything runs smoothly, she also assists Insight’s Counseling Team in reviewing college applications during admissions season. 

Class of 2027: Early Decision / Early Action Notification Dates

For many of you, your college applications are almost completed (and there is light at the end of the tunnel, we promise). The next big item coming up is early admissions decisions!

 

The college admissions landscape continues to surprise us this year. The new, digital SAT will be implemented in Spring 2024, and some schools, such as MIT, terminate their test-optional admissions policy. With USC offering its first Early Action admissions option and CalTech moving to a new Restricted Early Action plan, notification dates for early admissions results seem more important than ever!

 

Insights on Early Decision & Early Action

For 23 years, Insight Education is committed to helping high school students and families to navigate the college admissions process, and that includes understanding your concerns and providing a tailored strategy for you. Here are the top 3 common questions surrounding ED/EA, and you can always reach out to your Insight Counselor or contact us to find out more!

 

Q: What do I need to do between now and the decision time?

A: Check your portal regularly! Set up a weekly reminder and commit to checking your email and college portal. Some schools may require you to send in your progress report for the current school year.

 

Q: What does my result mean? Can I do anything if I am deferred?

A: To understand your result, check out our article “Accepted, Deferred, or Denied: Understand Early Admissions Results.” If you are deferred from your dream school, don’t worry! You’re not out of the race yet. The school wants to compare you to their regular applicant pool OR they simply need more details from you. To learn more about that, visit The Importance of Writing A Letter of Continued Interest  

 

Q: What do I do about ED II if my ED I decision won’t come back until January?

A: You can still apply to ED II. When ED I notifies your acceptance, you can withdraw your application from ED II school.

 

Q: What do I do if my current progress report is not as good?

A: If you are improving but your progress report doesn’t show it, ask your school counselor to make a note on your progress report before you send it to your ED school.

 

 

2022-2023 College Admissions Season –
Early Decision / Early Action Notification Date for Class of 2027

Here are early admissions decision notification dates for the upcoming Class of 2027. Please check back regularly for updated dates and times as we gather the most updated information – especially for those without specific dates and times or those labeled “TBD.”

Last Updated: January 9, 2023

School

Early Decision I Notification Date

Early Action Notification Date

Early Decision II Notification Date

Early Action II Notification Date

American University December 16   February 15  
Amherst College December 9 @ 6:21pm ET      
Babson College December 14  December 16 Mid-February  
Barnard College December 14 @6:30pm ET      
Bates College December 20   February 15  
Baylor University December 5  January 15 March 1  
Bentley University Late December   Early February  
Boston College December 6   February 15  
Boston University December 13   February 15  
Bowdoin College December 9   Mid-February  
Brandeis University December 15   February 1  
Brown University December 20 @ 7pm ET      
Bryn Mawr College December 16 @ 5pm ET   ED2: TBA  
Bucknell University December 14   Mid-February  
Cal Tech   December 10 @ 8:06am PT    
Carleton College December 15      
Carnegie Mellon University

December 10 after 9 am ET

  February 1  
Case Western University December 5 December 21 Beginning January 9  
Chapman University December 16 Late December, rolling through early February    
Clark University Late December Mid-January Early February  
Claremont McKenna College December 15   February 15  
Clemson University   December 1    
Colby University On and before December 15   On and before February 15  
Colgate University Mid-December   Mid-February  
Columbia University December 15 @ 7pm ET      
Cooper Union

Late December

     
Cornell University

December 15 @ 7pm ET

     
Dartmouth College December 16 @ 3pm ET      
Davidson College December 15 @ 9pm ET   February 1  
Drexel University Mid-December Mid-December    
Duke University December 17 @ 2pm ET      
Elon University December 1  December 20    
Emerson College Mid-December Mid-December Early February  
Emory University December 15 after 6pm ET   February 15  
Fordham University December 20  December 20    
George Mason University   December 15    
George Washington University December 15   Late-February  
Georgetown University   December 15    
Georgia Tech  

 December 9 (for Georgia students)

  Late January (for Non-Georgia students)
Hamilton College December 15   February 15  
Harvard University    REA: December 15 at 7pm ET    
Harvey Mudd December 15   February 15  
Haverford College December 10   Early February  
Hofstra University  

December 15

   January 15
Indiana University Bloomington    January 15    
Johns Hopkins University December 16   February 17  
Lafayette College December 15 @ 4pm ET   February 15  
Lehigh University December 9   Mid-February  
MIT    December 17 @ 12:17pm ET    
Middlebury College Mid-December   Mid-February  
Mount Holyoke College Late December   Late January  
New York University (NYU) December 15   February 15  
Northeastern University December 8 February 1 March 1  
Northwestern University December 16      
Oberlin College December 15   February 1  
Occidental College December 15   February 20  
The Ohio State University   Late January     
University of Oregon  

November 8 

(some Insight students already heard the great news)

   
Pennsylvania State University (Penn State)  

November 15

(some Insight students already heard the great news)

   
Pomona College December 15 @ 5pm PT   February 15  
Princeton University   Single Choice Early Action (SCEA) Decision Notification:
December 15
at 7pm ET
   
Purdue University   January 15    
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute December 10  January 28  January 14  
Rice University December 14 after 5pm CT      
Rutgers University   January 31    
Santa Clara University Late December Late December Mid-February  
Stanford University    REA: December 16 @ 4pm PT    
Suffolk University   Late December    
Swarthmore College December 13 at 7pm ET      
Syracuse University  Late December rolling through January

 

   
Temple University  

November 18

(Some Insight students already heard the good news)

Mid-February  
Trinity College  December 15   Mid-February  
Tufts University December 13 at 7pm ET   Mid-February  
Tulane University December 1 at 4pm CT January 15 January 31  
University of Chicago December 21 December 21 Mid-February  
University of Georgia   November 18 at 4pm ET    
University of Illinois at Chicago   December 1    
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)   January 27    
University of Massachusettes   Late January    
University of Miami December 9 Late January Late February  
University of Michigan   Late January    
University of Minnesota  

November 7

(Including engineering. Some Insight students already heard the good news!)

   February 15
University of North Carolina (UNC)   January 31    
University of Notre Dame  

Restrictive Early Action decisions released in December 16 @ 6:42pm ET

   
University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) December 15 @ 7pm ET      
University of Richmond December 9 January 25 February 15  
University of Rochester Mid-December   Early-February  
University of San Francisco Mid-December Late January    
University of South California (USC)    January 20    
University of South Carolina   December 14    
University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin)   February 1    
University of Wisconsin-Madison   On or before January 31    
University of Vermont December 20 December 20    
University of Virginia December 13 at 5pm ET February 15    
Vanderbilt University December 14 @ 5:30pm CT      
Villanova University December 14 @ 5pm ET January 20 February 15  
Virginia Tech December 9 at 5pm ET Late February    
Washington & Lee University December 16 @ 8pm ET   Late January  
Washington University in St. Louis (Wustl) December 13   February 17  
Wellesley College December 10   Mid-February  
Wesleyan University December 10   Mid-February  
William & Mary December 9   Early February  
Williams College December 9      
Worcester Polytechnic Institute December 13 January 15 February 15 March 1
Yale University   Single choice early action decisions will be available in December 15 after 5pm ET    

 

 

Summer Opportunities Fair 2022

Thank you for your interest in Insight’s Summer Opportunities Fair on November 5, 2022! We hoped you had a great time meeting the participating volunteering, research, and internship programs. We want to share a few snapshots to capture the day’s festivities and the list of participating programs (listed in alphabetical order).

Wondering what you should do for the summer? Need help with your summer program essays and application process? Contact us and schedule a meeting with our counselors today! 

 

Bay Area Community HealthInsight Education Summer Fair 2022 Bay Area Community Health

Bay Area Community Health was formed in 2020 off the strength of southern Alameda County’s Tri-City Health Center and Santa Clara County’s Foothill Community Health Center. Formed during the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, Bay Area Community Health (BACH) brings more than 70 years of combined service to an area that stretches from Union City to Gilroy. BACH serves more than 100,000 people, who rely on high-quality healthcare services, regardless of their immigration status, ethnicity, disabilities, or ability to pay.

 

 

 

 

Lumiere Research Scholar Program

Insight Education Summer Fair 2022 Lumiere ResearchThe Lumiere Research Scholar Program is a selective research program for top high school students. As a Lumiere scholar, students work 1-1 with top researchers from universities like Harvard, Stanford, and Oxford. Founded by a Rhodes Scholar and Harvard College classmates, the program guides students in the creation of an independent, 20-page research paper over the course of 10 weeks. 

 

 

 

 

 

Our City ForestInsight Education Summer Fair 2022 Our City Forest

Our City Forest (OCF) is an urban forestry non-profit located in the heart of San Jose. OCF’s mission is to create a green and healthy Silicon Valley by engaging community members in the appreciation, protection, growth, and maintenance of our urban forest. Volunteer opportunities range from helping out at the Community Nursery and Training Center with various tree and shrub-care activities, to joining at the new Education Center at Martial Cottle Park to help expand the arboretum. OCF also hosts community tree planting events in which volunteers can help plant trees at various locations throughout Santa Clara County! These events are typically held on Saturdays. 

 

 

 

PilotCity

Insight Education Summer Fair 2022 PilotCity Student InternshipsPilotCity runs programs where students “build projects to win internships” with our employers – serving as an engine for innovation in cities with the people from there. Students enrolled in the program explore employer projects, choose a project, and then are guided through a series of unlockable activities & deliverables to complete to then auto-apply, interview & win offers for internships. Upon hire, interns further advance their project, assigned tasks, and the objective of the employers.

 

 

 

 

Pioneer Academics Insight Education Summer Fair 2022 Pioneer Student Scholar Research Program

The Pioneer Research Program is a virtual research institute for outstanding high school students worldwide. It offers STEM, social sciences, and humanities disciplines. Widely respected for its high standards in admissions selectivity and academic rigor, it is the only US online college credit-bearing research program for high school students. In Pioneer’s rigorous academic system, students work one-on-one with university professors in advanced study and research of a topic of their interest, culminating in a full-length research paper. To learn more about Pioneer Academic’s Information Sessions, please click here.

 

 

Polygence

Insight Education Summer Fair 2022 Polygence Student Research ProgramPolygence is an online research academy connecting high achieving students with expert mentors to pursue personalized research projects and publish research papers. Polygence offers project-based research mentorship in academic disciplines across STEM, the humanities, social sciences, and fine arts. Polygence students submit their projects to high school science fairs, research journals, and conferences with guidance from expert mentors. Mentors hold PhDs, MDs, JDs, MAs, and MFAs in a variety of disciplines from neuroscience and computer science to fashion design and architecture.

 

 

 

Rosetta Institute of Biomedical ResearchInsight Education Summer Fair 2022 Rosetta Institute of Biomedical Research Program

Rosetta Institute provides advanced classes for high achieving high school and middle school students interested in pursuing a career in medicine or related fields, such as biomedical research, drug development, pharmacy, or nursing. They offer a variety of workshops related to molecular medicine – Molecular Biology, Medicinal Chemistry, Medical Bioinformatics, Introduction to Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Covid-19: Biology/Immunity/Medicine, Cancer Research, Immunology Research, and Biomedical Research – that are taught by PhD-level instructors with years of research and teaching experience. 

 

 

 

Youngzine: Summer Climate Fellowship Program

Insight Education Summer Fair 2022 Youngzine Climage Change Volunteer Student Fellowship ProgramYoungzine teaches children about our environment and the changing climate. Its mission is to empower youth to action. Youngzine’s Climate Fellowship provides an opportunity for high school students to help combat climate change and contribute to a more sustainable future. During a three-week program, students will have the chance to learn about climate change issue, interact with climate experts, and develop a climate or sustainability-related project. Throughout the year, Youngzine offers training and opportunities for high school writers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more: Top 6 Summer Activities for High School Students

 

Extracurricular and summer activities are important in building a powerful narrative in your College Application. It is also important to help build your character, skillset, network and values! Not sure what summer or extracurricular activities you should do?  Contact us and schedule a meeting with our counselors today! 

Your Best Insights to Early Admission Options

Over the past few years, all of us at Team Insight are noticing more and more families want to know if early admission option can increase their chance of acceptance. While early admissions may have a higher acceptance rate, it’s important to understand your options and weigh the restrictions before you send in your application!

 

Most of you probably know about early actions (EA) and early decisions (ED). If you are uncertain, you can learn more about them in our article “Early Decision vs. Early Action.” In addition to early decisions and early actions, we will also explain restrictive early actions (REA) and single-choice early actions (SCEA) and provide insights on Early Decision 2 (ED2).

 

Early Decision 1 (EDI or ED1)

If you look at any of the admissions statistics, you may be shocked at how high the acceptance rates are compared to regular decisions. Before you jump in and apply ED, note there is a catch. Early decision is binding. You can apply ED to only ONE college, and if you are accepted, you must withdraw all your applications to other universities. Essentially, when you apply ED to a school, you are signing a contract telling this school, “You’re my number one choice, and I will absolutely attend if I am accepted.”

 

Should you do that for your dream school? The answer is “it depends.” ED doesn’t mean less competitive; it may even be more competitive because it is a self-selecting process. Everyone who applies ED to UPenn is highly qualified, not to mention they are well-motivated to plan and start their application process early. If you are confident that you can finalize a high-quality college application by the typical November ED deadline, ED may be an option for you.

 

The other consideration is financial aid. Once again, when you apply early decision, you are signaling to the college that you will attend no matter what. This means colleges are less likely to offer you scholarships or financial aid. Therefore, if you are counting on financial help, then early decision may not be the right option.

 

Read more: Think it Through: Early Decision

 

Early Decision 2 (EDII or ED 2)

This is a relatively new admissions option, and not all colleges offer this. You follow the same rule as ED1. For many schools, ED2 deadline is slightly before or the same as regular decision. Why would you choose the ED2 option then? The main reason you’d apply ED2 is that you were deferred or rejected from your ED1 college.

 

Like ED1, your ED2 school is a college that you are excited to attend. Although early decision 2 admissions rate is not as high as early decision 1 acceptance rate, it can still provide you with a boost because of the binding policy.

 

A word of caution for ED2: some universities (for example, Santa Clara University) offer both early action and early decision 2. You cannot switch from early action to early decision 2. That’s why ED2 options need to be factored in early during the admissions process rather than treated like a backup option. If you are not sure which of your top-choice colleges offer ED2 or how to use it to your advantage, reach out to your Insight Counselor!

 

Have quesitons about applying early? Talk to one of our Counselors today!

 

Early Action (EA)

The deadlines for early action are typically November 1st or November 15th. For some schools and majors, you may need to submit your application as early as mid-October. When you apply EA, you can apply to as many schools as you want. A word of caution, some colleges offer EA programs, but the admissions process is closer to restricted early action, which we will get to in the next section.

 

What’s the benefit of submitting your applications early? In addition to getting a big to-do item checked off before your high school finals, you also hear about the admissions results earlier. You may find out in December or January whether you get to attend your top-choice school, and who wouldn’t like that as a Christmas present?

 

The other advantage is you have time on your side to strategize (or relax) since you won’t have to commit to a college until May 1st. This gives you time to apply to more schools, compare financial aid options, and visit more campuses. Since early action is non-binding, you can choose what you like the most.

 

Restrictive or Single-Choice Early Action (REA or SCEA)

This is where things get a bit more complicated. Whether you see restrictive early action or single-choice early action, please note that REA and SCEA are interchangeable. Ultimately, it’s up to the admissions office’s restrictions, so always remember to read the college admissions website carefully. When in doubt, talk to your Insight Counselor!

 

There are two different types of restrictive early action, and we will explain both with examples. The first type of REA limits perspective students from applying ED to any universities, nor can they apply EA to any private colleges. The colleges that adopt this type of REA are Stanford, Harvard, Princeton, CalTech, and Yale (on Yale’s admissions site, this is known as the single-choice early action). This means if you are applying early to Princeton, you cannot apply EA to USC, but you can still apply EA to University of Michigan.

 

USC now words their early action deadline differently, so you may still be able to apply to restrictive early action to some of the examples listed above. Wonder how this might work? Schedule a personalized college admission strategy session with an Insight counselor today! 

 

The second type of REA does not limit the type (private or public) of EA schools you can apply to. Georgetown is a good example. On the admissions page, Georgetown classifies its program as early action, but their description of their EA program outlines the restriction. If you apply early to Georgetown, you can still apply EA to both USC and UMich, but you cannot apply to any early decision programs.

 

While it may be confusing on what you can or cannot apply, the restrictions end at the early admissions round. Both REA and SCEA are non-binding. Thus, you can still apply to other schools during regular decision deadlines, and you can enroll in the college that you like the most.

 

Final Insights

While you may use early admissions to increase your chance in getting into your dream schools, it’s still important to have a strong college application that tells a powerful personal narrative. Ultimately, it’s up to you. How thoughtful you are in putting together your college list. Have you talked to your parents about financial aid? Did you send your application to your Insight Counselor for review yet? Are you following up with teachers who can be strong recommenders? Have you been working on your college essays? Are you scheduling time every week to focus on your application and essays? These are all actions you can take to ensure you have the best chance of maximizing your college admissions acceptance rate. If you need help or additional clarification, don’t hesitate to email us at info@insight-education.net and let our team of experienced college admissions counselors help you!

 

 


Written by Purvi Mody

This article was created from an interview with Insight’s Co-Founder and Head of Counseling Purvi Mody.

Since 1998, Purvi has dedicated her career to education and is exceedingly well versed in the college admissions process. Her philosophy centers around helping kids identify and apply to the schools that are the best fit for them and then develop applications that emphasize their unique attributes and talents.

Top 10 College Essay Mistakes to Avoid

It’s application season! Whether you’ve been working on your college essay drafts all summer or just finished slaying your first draft, you want to double-check your personal statement or personal insight questions (PIQs) response. In this article, Insight Counselor Zach summarizes the top 10 most common college essay mistakes that you definitely want to avoid!

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Key Insights to the UC App Updates in 2022-2023

The University of California (UC) application portal has been open for 2022-2023 admissions since August 1. As Insight Counselor Jenny guided our seniors step-by-step through filling out their UC apps, she discovered some important updates to the UC applications that you wouldn’t want to miss!

 

Key Insight #1: UC Berkeley Major Choices Update

In the past, UC Berkeley only allows applicants to select one major. In the 2022-2023 admissions season, you can indicate your alternate major choices on all UC campuses. This is in an effort to standardize the University of California system’s application process.

 

However, UCB will only review your alternate major as space permits. What does that mean? It means your second major choice for UC Berkeley may not be reviewed. In short, nothing has changed in the review process. If you want to study Computer Science (CS) and not Electrical Engineering/Computer Science (EECS), then you should be honest in that preference in your application. Keep in mind that CS at UCB is a pre-major, and if accepted, you will enroll in the College of Letters and Science (L&S) as undeclared. On the other hand, those admitted to EECS will spend their 4 years in the engineering program.

 

Not sure what you should do to maximize your chances? Interested in other competitive majors? Let our College Admissions expert do a 360-review of your profile and help you plan the path to your dream school!

 

Key Insight #2: UC Approved Courses in You Academic Section

This is a massive improvement! In the past, UC applicants had to visit the UC A-G Course website and check how the UC admissions office categorizes their high school classes. Now, once you enter your high school in the UC application, you should be able to find the classes offered in your high school in the academic section.

 

While this is true for many high schools across the United States, there are of course exceptions. If you cannot find your school or coursework on the UC A-G Course website, then follow your transcripts as closely as you can. Avoid any unclear abbreviations. Most importantly, make sure you satisfy the UC subject requirement.

 

Did you know? At Insight, each college application is thoroughly reviewed by multiple counselors. We don’t just check your academic records, activities, and essays. Our team carefully examines your personal information and your major choices to make sure your application is complete!

Key Insight #3: UCSD’s New Eighth College

For those who are applying to UCSD, you should know to rank the colleges you want to be at. These are usually not related to your major (though it can be), but the community you want to be a part of. At Insight, our counselors guide their seniors to carefully rank these colleges to maximize the overlapping of required coursework and personal interests. This year, San Diego has a new college – the Eighth College.

 

The Eighth College’s theme is “engagement and community.” The Eighth students will be taking more writing-intensive courses which focus on community, critical engagement, and structural racism.

 

This begs the question: will you be more likely to get accepted into UCSD this year if you rank the Eighth College as number one? Sadly, no. You will only be placed in one of the UCSD colleges AFTER you are accepted. We know we say this a lot at Insight; it is important to be true to yourself and be authentic on your application. Rank the colleges where you can see yourself thriving in the next four years!

 

Concluding Thoughts:

The UC made many changes in the past couple of years, and the historically low acceptance rates of some UC campuses may be daunting. If you are a high school senior right now, take a deep breath and understand this: while you cannot change your past, you have the power to do your best in the present. Focus on what is important right now. Fill out the UC application carefully and accurately. Continue to do your best in your classes. Brainstorm and revise those Personal Insight Questions and personal statements. And should you need any guidance on major choices, college essays, or comprehensive application review, all of us at Team Insight are happy to help you!

 

What a Co-op University Offers and Why it is Appealing

Do you know what’s a co-op university? What is unique about co-op? Can you name a few colleges that offer this? Let our College Admissions Counselor Kevin (previously an academic advisor at Northeastern) tell you all about cooperative universities and why you may want to add a few of them to your college list! Continue reading