Every year, millions of college applicants contend with billions (slight exaggeration) of questions about which schools to apply to and how to present the perfect applications. The question of when to apply hasn’t always felt pressing, but ignoring timing may be a big mistake this year.
Early Decision and Early Action represent the primary options available to students who want to signal a strong intent to attend if accepted. Early Action is a less binding but also less influential indicator of intent. Early Decision, on the other hand, is an agreement with teeth to attend the single college that accepted you. In exchange for flexibility–and perhaps leverage in financial aid negotiations–applicants gain potentially significant admissions advantages.
The power of enrolling Early Decision varies from school to school and year to year. To find out how beneficial ED was in last year’s cycle and what this year holds for applicants, I consulted Rebecca Stuart-Orlowski of Orlowski College Consulting to share notes on college admissions for the high school graduating class of 2023. One of the big questions we discussed was how strongly students should consider Early Decision for their top choice schools. Take a few minutes to find out the answer in the video above, and let us know in the comments if this valuable information changes the way you’re thinking of college admissions.