Applying for college can be a stressful time. Usually, you will have to wait several months until you find out whether or not you were accepted. One way to cut down on the wait time is to apply under rolling admissions. Instead of waiting months, in most cases, you will hear back within a few weeks. So, what is rolling admission and why should you care about it?
What is Rolling Admission and How Does It Work?
Rolling admissions allows for a larger time period in which you can apply to college. It varies from school to school, but often rolling admissions windows last for 6 months, and in some cases even longer. Instead of waiting for a deadline for all applications to come in, colleges review applications and make a decision as they come in. This is why you hear back sooner under rolling admissions.
The good news is, even if you hear back from the college early, you usually have until the regular deadline to accept an offer of admission. In this respect, it has the benefits of early decision without the drawback of entering into a binding agreement.
Why Use Rolling Admissions?
Although in some cases it is advantageous, depending on your situation you may or may not want to apply using rolling admissions. If you have your heart set on one school, rolling admissions can be a great option if you apply early. Some colleges have priority deadlines for rolling admissions. That means, if you apply before the deadline, your chances of getting accepted are higher.
Whether or not the school has deadlines for rolling admissions, you are usually better off applying as early as you can. The earlier you apply, the more spots are available, and you will also hear back much sooner. This will give you more time to plan for the upcoming year.
You Can Also Use It to Apply Later
Rolling admissions can also be helpful if you decide you want to go to college after the regular deadlines have passed. In the springtime, schools have a pretty good idea of how many students will enroll the following fall, and sometimes more spots become available. Competition is usually relatively low in the spring as well because most students have already applied and made a decision. However, there is always the chance that the college is not accepting any more students for that year.
It may seem confusing, but if you use it to your advantage, you can increase your chances of getting accepted with rolling admissions. It won’t make up for slacking off for the last year in class or neglecting to fill out the application completely, but if you are just barely qualified for that college, rolling admissions can give you the bump you need to get accepted.
Remember, it is best to apply as early as possible to get the most out of rolling admissions. But, if you made a last-minute decision to go to college and missed the application deadlines, rolling admissions could be your ticket in.
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