Peabody is the building, Jack is the dog, and I'm Dean J (she/her, btw).

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Tuesday, September 10, 2019

The Biggest Factor in the Decision to Apply Early or Regular at UVA

I've previously written about how the strength of the applicant pool isn't conveyed in the statistics that are published for Early Action and Regular Decision (we have no stats about Early Decision...at least ones that are from the last decade). A lot of people want to use admission rates or testing data to determine when they'll submit their application, but they aren't considering what I think should be the biggest factor in that decision.

The Mid-Year Report

Let me explain. For some students, the mid-year report will be a huge boost to their application. Senior year is traditionally when you'd be taking on the most advanced coursework of your high school career. Showing excellent grades at the midpoint of the year could be hugely beneficial to some students.

Instead of thinking about admission rates when deciding between early and regular, think about what your application will look like in the fall and what it might look like in the winter. Find your final report card from each year of high school and line them up (or get an unofficial copy of your transcript, if that's an easy task at your school). Does your program build nicely across your core subjects? Are your grades consistent? If you can answer "yes" to those questions and you have time to put together a solid application, one of the early options might be for you. If there's a dip in your grades or you haven't had an opportunity to take advanced courses (whatever your school offers) until senior year, the regular round might make more since since your mid-year report will be part of the review.

Submit when you can present your strongest application to UVA. For some students, one more semester of work on the transcript will put them in that position.