When Do College Decisions Come Out? The Admission’s Schedule

College student studying and writing some notes

It's the question every eager high school senior has. The question that makes you forget about almost everything else. When do college decisions come out?

When Do College Decisions Come Out?

Whether you're a high school senior or a college senior considering graduate school, you've probably asked this question. When do college decisions come out for the schools you applied to?

Did you get into your dream school, or will you have to settle for a backup option?

The college admissions process is both exciting and scary. You're about to embark on a new phase in your life. And you want to do that at a school that's right for you.

Unfortunately, there's no single date when you can expect to receive all of your admission decisions. Not all schools follow the same calendar. And even if they do, your results may come earlier or later based on when and how you applied.

Depending on your application, you might get your results before or after other applicants. That's because not all applications are the same.


Early decision

If you apply to your dream school and know for sure you will go there if you get in, you can apply as an Early Decision applicant. You apply to said school earlier than others, like in November.

When do college decisions come out for Early Decision? You can expect to receive your admission results a month or so later.

That can be great if you don't want to wait until regular results come out, but there's a problem. Early Decision applications usually require you to attend that school if you get in.

While that makes them the perfect choice for your dream school, it does mean you can't look at other financial aid offers from other schools you get into. You might also have to withdraw your application from other schools.

This also poses a problem if you're stuck between two or more schools. It's not wise to apply for Early Decision to multiple schools, because you could get into both and have to commit to both.

However, if you apply for Early Decision at one school, you may write off other, equally good schools.


Early action

If Early Decision stresses you out, consider Early Action. Early Action is similar to Early Decision, but you don't have to go to that school.

With Early Action, you also apply earlier than regular applicants, but it may take a bit longer to receive your admission decision. So, when do college decisions come out for Early Action?

These decisions usually come out in January or February, and you will have time to consider your options before you commit.

That's why Early Action can be a fantastic alternative for students who need financial aid or those who can't wait for their results. You'll know whether or not you get into a school earlier, but you won't have to attend that school.

Still, you should only apply for either status if you've done your research on colleges and know where you want to attend. Also, these applications typically don't have your senior year grades. Depending on how you did earlier in high school, it may or may not be wise to apply early.


Regular applicants

Whether you need more time to bring up your GPA or decide on where to apply, you can always wait for the regular round of applications. You won't apply as early, so you'll have more time to decide where you should or shouldn't apply.

However, you will have to wait until later in the spring to receive your admissions decisions. When do college decisions come out for regular applicants?

That will vary from school to school. But since May 1 is usually when you have to choose a college, you expect to receive your results before then.

With regular admissions, you can take the time you need to consider financial aid offers, which is useful if you can't afford college without help.


Rolling admissions

Finally, some schools don't have an admissions schedule, which means they take applications at any time of the year. This system is called rolling admissions.

If you apply to a school with rolling admissions, there's no set month, week, or day when you'll receive your results. When do college decisions come out for rolling admissions?

These decisions vary. Some community colleges or public schools may let you know within a few days or weeks. On the other hand, some decisions may take up to a couple of months.

The Waiting Game

No matter how you apply to college, you will have to wait for some amount of time to hear back on your results. That time spent waiting can be stressful, but there are some things you can do to make that time more productive.

After you apply, many schools will send you instructions on how to track your application status.


Know your status

Most schools should send you an email to verify that they received your application. If you don't get an email after you hit submit, you may have to wait up to a day. But if it's been longer than that, you may want to contact the school to check your status.

Some schools may even give you access to their student portal, and you can stay on top of your application status there.

While checking your status too often can make you more anxious, doing it occasionally can give you peace of mind.

You should also keep track of your academic records and submit any significant changes. Some schools may allow you to update your GPA or test scores online, or you may have to email someone.


When to accept

Once you hear back from all the schools you applied to, it's time to accept an offer. If you applied and were accepted through Early Decision, your choice has been made for you.

The same is usually true if you were accepted into a single school. However, you could also decide to apply to a school with rolling admissions or to take a gap year.

But for most prospective college students, now's the time to make your decision. Typically, you'll have until around May 1 to decide on a school.

Choosing Your University

If you got into multiple schools, you have to decide where you want to attend college. While you had to eagerly await on admission decisions, schools now have to wait on students to accept their offers. Now, schools will wonder when college decisions come out for their admitted students?

There are many things to consider when choosing where to spend the next few years of your life.

You should compare all of the schools, even the ones you aren't as interested in. Who knows, one of your safety schools may turn out to be your perfect match.

Stack of mail

Your future is yours

Welcome to College!

Woman feeling excited while watching something on her laptop

Image by Jerry Kimbrell from Pixabay

College admissions can be overwhelming, but they can also be exciting. You're about to finish high school and start down the path of adulthood. And it's pretty normal to wonder when do college decisions come out?

You may have to wait for weeks or even months to learn if you got into a school or not. But once you do learn where you got in, you can choose the perfect school for you.

Are you currently in college? When do college decisions come out for your university? Let us know in the comments!

Featured Image by Анастасия Гепп from Pixabay


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