November is a big month in the admissions world. If you have been hearing more chatter about college applications, you are not imagining things. This is the month when things heat up and deadlines loom large. If you have a student that would like to get an answer, or perhaps answers from colleges and not have to wait until the spring, there are several choices.
Early Decision I-This is a binding agreement that if the school accepts you, you will attend. You can only apply to one school on this plan. These applications are usually due on November 1st.
Early Decision II-This is a second round of early applications where a student can submit a binding application in January and receive an answer in February. (Colgate has upped the ED ante and added extra option where a candidate can convert their regular decision application to a binding agreement by March 1 and get an earlier answer)
Early Action-A student can apply to as many Early Action colleges as they wish. Colleges will notify applicants if they have been accepted between November and January. The applicant has until May 1st to submit a deposit to the college of their choice.
Restrictive Early Action-This plan allows a student to submit an early application that is not a binding commitment but the school does not permit you to apply if you have submitted an Early Decision application a different institution.
Single Choice Early Action-This is a non-binding application and schools that use this plan do not permit you to submit either an Early Decision application or Early Action application, except under special circumstances.
All of these plans get reduced to an alphabet soup of abbreviations, EDI, EDII, EA, REA, SCEA etc. You get the picture. If you want to learn more about Early Decision, I put a link to an article in one of my favorite blogs from Lynn O’Shaughnessy. She is a guru that helps families learn the best way to afford college. Enjoy!