You Applied Early Decision and Got Deferred–What Can You Do?
College admissions officers like Early Decision. The more students they admit through Early Decision, the faster they fill their class. The odds favor the well-qualified students who apply Early Decision at many schools. But some are denied, others are placed in limbo and deferred.
If you applied Early Decision, and got deferred, what can you do?
- Contact the admissions office. It cannot hurt to ask about the reasoning behind their decision to defer. They might be waiting for mid-year senior grades before they can make a final decision. Every bit of improvement helps. Make the admissions office aware that their school is still your first choice.
- Reassess. Ask yourself: ia this school is really the first choice? Would you still commit, even if you do not receive enough financial aid to cover your costs? Have other schools become more attractive in light of your deferred status? The most successful college applicants create as many opportunities as they can.
- Take advantage of optional interviews. If the school offers you the opportunity to interview with the admissions offices, or local alumni , take it. This is a chance to add to your case for admission or, at the very least, to learn more about the school.
- Consider a later entry. Some schools, including Cornell, Duke, the University of Florida and the University of Georgia, offer the opportunity for first-year students to enter in January instead of September.
I have read comments from education writers and admissions experts that state that a deferred applicant’s chances of getting accepted are less than they were under Early Decision. I believe this to a point. If you were expecting merit-based or need-based aid or ranked in the lower half of the pool, your chances are probably not as great. If your grades and test scores were competitive, you needed no financial aid or had a “hook,” then you should not give up hope.
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