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

There are fifteen years of posts here. The search box works well, but please consider the age of the posts when you find them. The college admission process changes over time!

You are welcome to use the comment section anonymously.

Welcome to the blog and thanks for reading!

Monday, January 28, 2019

Unofficial #UVA23 Early Action Statistics

The Office of Institutional Assessment is the source of all official statistics about UVA. They take a census to determine the final statistics for the class. You can see official admission data in the data digest part of their website. Obviously, what happened in past years isn't going to predict the future, but some people have fun playing around with the Tableau on their site.

Here are some unofficial numbers about the early action process. These numbers were up to date on Friday. If you are a reporter, please contact the Media Relations team in the Office of University Communications for current, official information and all of your reporterly needs. :)

Early Action Applications

Total number of Early Action applications: 25,098 (21,573 last year)
Total number of VA apps: 7,019
Total number of OOS apps: 18,079
We use completed applications in our statistics.

Early Action Offers

Overall offers: 6,550
Total VA offers: 3,051 (43.4% offer rate)
Total OOS offers: 3,499 (19% offer rate)
Enrollment Goal: ~3,750
Schools admit more students than the enrollment goal with yield in mind. Yield is how many students accept an offer of admission. Virginia residents yield at a higher rate than OOS students.

Early Action Defers

Overall defers: ~7000 as of last Friday
Applicants are withdrawing, so this number is likely much lower today and will continue to do go down.

Early Action Testing/Rank (offers only)

Middle 50% SAT score: 1350-1500 (VA) 1450-1540 (OOS)
Middle 50% ACT composite: 30-34 (VA) 33-35 (OOS)
We use scores from each section in our review, but the reports on averages generate totals. We do not use the essay or writing scores.

A couple notes:

1. I do not have additional statistics. We are already immersed in the Regular Decision review process and I have to read files!

2. Welcome packets should be leaving our office this week.

3. The Echols, Rodman, and College Science Scholars program invitations will be in welcome packets. Another round of invites will go out after the RD process concludes. Echols and Rodman also allow self-nomination after the first semester.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Let's Talk about #UVA23 Early Action: The Offer of Admission

Admitted students can use this entry to talk. I imagine you might also want to join the UVA Class of 2023 Facebook group to chat with your future classmates.

I'll have post about admission statistics and Days on the Lawn (our admitted student open houses) in the coming days.

You have until May 1st to decide whether you'll be joining us at UVA. You can accept your offer and pay the enrollment deposit through the student portal. The date you deposit will not impact your housing or course registration. Orientation registration will open on April 1st and Housing opens their system on May 1. If you decide to go elsewhere at some point in the coming weeks, I hope you'll decline the offer via your portal.

Congratulations! We are so lucky to have you considering UVA!

Let's Talk about #UVA23 Early Action: The Defer

Deferred students can use this post to talk.

Your application hasn't finished it's journey yet.

Your file will be reviewed again as part of the Regular Decision pool. At this point, you should simply upload your midyear grades through your student portal once they are ready.

We know the wait is tough, but we think your mid-year grades could help your case. Hang in there! You should see the link to the defer FAQ page in your letter, which answers the most common questions.

Jack hopes you can find a peaceful place to wait.

Let's Talk About #UVA23 Early Action: The Deny

Denied students can use this entry to talk.

I know this is hard to handle and some of you might not have gotten a disappointing admission decision yet. I hope you all can look at your options and get excited about your other schools. If your immediate reaction is "I'll transfer", don't let that plan keep you from getting involved in campus life at the school you choose. I think many students come to think of their next choice as "home" and can't imagine leaving it after a little while. Give yourself time to explore your options.

Some students inquire about being moved to the defer group. We do not have an appeal process.

Please be polite and respectful of others when posting.

BTW, if you signed yourself up to read the blog by email and don't want the messages anymore, there's an unsubscribe link at the bottom of the page. 

Early Action Decisions for #UVA Class of 2023 Are Posted

About 30 minutes ago, Early Action results got posted to the student portal.

The release is always exciting, but some of you aren't going to get the decision you wanted. I hope you'll focus on the college options you still have instead of the ones you don't at the end of the day. I hope those of you who get offers will celebrate your success, but also be gracious around those who might not have gotten good news.

I will post blog entries where you can talk about the different decisions momentarily. I'll be back to work through any questions that are asked in the comments tomorrow.  I trust you to be respectful of others in the comments.  Please don't post personal information in the comments (contact info, statistics, etc.). As I discuss often on social media, school-specific statistics like GPA are subjective these days and don't represent the applicant accurately. What's more, there have been times when enough information about an applicant has been shared that their classmates could identify them.

There is no lag time in our office, so we are now reading Regular Decision applications. Please understand if my responses to questions are a little delayed. 

A lot of people on Grounds will be watching #UVA23 on social media so they can welcome our newest Wahoos to the UVA community. We love seeing your reactions when we check that hashtag! Keep an eye on the UVA Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Facebook accounts. There might be some nice messages!

THANK YOU to all of you who have read and commented on the blog and chatted via social media so far this season.

Regardless of what your portal says, you are going to attend a great school. You're going to learn from amazing, inspirational professors, administrators, and peers. You're going to meet people with whom you will stay friends for the rest of your lives. You're going to pull all-nighters studying. You're going to pull all-nighters not studying. You're going to have great successes and you're going to fail miserably at some things. What's going to make or break those experiences is your openness to learning from them, not your location when they happen.

Remember that your decision is not a statement about your value. Most of our applicants are qualified. They are perfectly capable of doing the work at UVA. Our first-year class just isn't large enough to accommodate everyone.

Best wishes to those who won't be back to the blog after this (if you're reading this by email, you can unsubscribe yourself at the bottom of the email). To the rest, I hope you'll continue to comment and stay in touch.

It's a big night and I'll be thinking about you all. Good luck!

Thursday, January 24, 2019

The #UVA Class of 2023 Facebook Group (students only)

I've had a hands-off approach to Facebook over the years, except when I see companies trying to be part of groups that should be left to students. It seems it's happening again. Thanks to some students on Reddit, I found out that an adult created dozens (hundreds?) of Facebook groups and GroupMe chats for applicants to colleges all over the country. Regardless of why an adult is doing this, I don't like it and want to share a new group with you.

Here's a link to a students-only Facebook group for the Class of 2023:
Click the logo to go to the Class of 2023 Facebook group!


Who Is in the Facebook Group?

Obviously, the group will be for students who hope they'll be members of the Class of 2023 at this point. Membership will evolve in the next few months as students make their college choices. After decisions come out, the students in these groups often create questionnaires to facilitate roommate matches. I'm told that the questionnaires the students create are more detailed than any being used by a housing office or roommate matching service. Student self-governance works again!

Who Is Moderating the Facebook Group?

There are a few current UVA students who keep an eye on the group. They are not paid to promote a business or product. They are students who know the ins and outs of UVA and have offered to field questions without an agenda. You'll notice that we don't really sell UVA. We present UVA to you and let you decide if the University has the things you need to be happy and challenged. Their answers to your questions will be honest and straightforward. I am not in the group.

What Happens to the Group in the Future?

When your class elects officers, the admins will hand the group over to your chosen leaders. This has been happening for about a decade and it works pretty well. For now, the admins are fine with answering questions, but they usually sit back and let you chat.  Nothing in these groups will be saved or connected to your applications.

Is Facebook Activity Used for Admission Purposes?

Nope. I have absolutely no interest in tracking you or looking at your profiles. 

Can Parents Join?

No. Every so often, I hear about a parent requesting to join the student group. Please let the students have their space to talk.

Why Does UVA Create the Group?

We didn't always create a Facebook group for the classes. I used to talk about how it was the students' domain (it was back when you had to have a .edu email address to get an account!) and groups should grow organically. I changed my mind in 2008 when a company started creating groups with school names on them. Content in the group we created won't include advertisements from third parties and your information won't be mined.

What About GroupMe?

 I fully support students using whatever channels they feel are most helpful. I am letting the admins of the class group decide whether they also want to set up a new GroupMe and keep an eye on it. They're UVA students, so I want to be respectful of their time.

Please just keep an eye on the admin/mod of groups you join and don't share too much information in groups that may include companies looking for data.

Remember that anyone can slap the word "official" on a group. That doesn't mean the admin is affiliated with UVA.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

A #UVA Early Action Non-Update Update

The questions about when Early Action decisions would be ready started coming in about a month ago, but the pace has definitely picked up in recent weeks. Every Q&A session I do on Instagram Stories (if you haven't joined in, I do them once or twice per week) is guaranteed to have at least a few submissions asking about our progress.

I compiled a little chart last year to show the date that early applicants saw their results online. Way back in 2006, we had Early Decision and only got 2,311 applications. We had a home-grown online app back when that was a little tedious to use and we printed every application out. It was a very different time!

We had a few years with just one deadline (Harvard, Princeton, and UVA made that move around the same time). I remember being convinced that people would applaud us for giving seniors their fall semesters back. I remember thinking that schools would follow our lead. No one followed and we got lots of complaints. In time, we gave in and added an Early Action process.

Unofficial numbers...official ones are here.

As you can see, the application numbers have increased dramatically over the years. Critics seem to think that a big increase is something we want (they also will say that the lack of a big increase is a sign of doom). They'll say our job is the drive up applications. We don't have that philosophy at in our office. One of my colleagues likes to joke that an increase of one application each year would be perfect. The critics are appeased, but we aren't burning the midnight oil to get the job done. 

Our workload is significant (so significant that the blog has fallen by the wayside this season) and we are well aware that other schools have been able to release their decisions. We aren't going to take shortcuts in our process, so we are going to keep working. 

Here's what you need to know if you applied Early Action to UVA:

1. Decisions will be posted by the end of the month.
2. All decisions are posted at once on your portal.
3. If we are able to post decisions before January 31st, I will post here and on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. We will also email all applicants the news.

Hang in there, everyone! We still have some work to do.