Dear Estelle. What’s your opinion of early decision? Is it a game or an important strategy for getting into a highly selective college or university? Is it a good method for gaining entrance into a school that ordinarily would only be a “reach” school for some students? Early decision time is quickly approaching and I’m wondering how important it is to find an “ED school.” Nate, student, Cherry Creek High School
Great questions that require answers now! Right? Early decision time is here for the Ivies and some other highly selective collegesl Your question is especially appropriate as students mull over what to do. Should they select a college for ED knowing that statistically there is somewhat of an advantage to doing this? Or should they wait for regular decision time and have adequate opportunity to consider which school is the “right fit?” Most important, a college visit is an absolute must before applying to any school ED. ED acceptance is binding . Suppose you apply to a school ED, are accepted to that school, visit this winter, and discover it’s not a good fit for you. Difficult situation. Yes, ED provides a good opportunity, if you’re accepted, to get the college application completed way ahead of time. On the other hand, giving yourself a little more time allows you to perfect your list and truly feel confident you’ve made the right choices. Remember, the best schools are those that value you for your accomplishments and your potential for success in college.
*Just an added note. If you will be requiring need-based aid, be sure to get an estimate of the type of aid your ED college will be able to offer to you prior to applying.