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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Yes, We Really Read All the Files

It's always a head-scratcher when someone asks me whether admission officers really read all of the applications students submit. For admission officers (and for our families), there are two main times of year: reading season and not reading season. The "not reading season" is broken down into smaller bits (travel and yield seasons, for example), but reading season is the main event.

Thanksgiving Day, 2015


There are many different ways to organize your staff and the applications you have to read. Most admission offices split the files up by regions so the admission officers who know the area best can read the files from there. At UVA, we work in teams to make sure each file is read multiple times during the application season. How many times a file is read can vary, but the first two times the file is reviewed, the application is read in its entirety, front to back. There are no "minimum" GPAs or test scores used to reduce our reading load. We read everything.

My colleagues and I are in the last couple weeks of our travel season, when we visit high schools. When we get home, we'll be moving into reading season (though some already started with spring transfer applications earlier this month). We won't emerge until late March (at which point we'll move to reading fall transfers). 

Good luck to those who are putting the finishing touches on Early Action applications. We're looking forward to learning more about you!