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Should You Apply Early to Post-Secondary School or Not?


Lots of decisions await post-secondary school applicants. This includes which schools to choose and whether or not to apply early. In the most basic sense of the term, applying early means getting your application in well before the due date. More specifically, two options exist on the application forms. This gives prospective students the opportunity to apply early decision or early action. However, there’s a big difference between these two terms.

Early Decision Versus Early Action

If you’ve found the school of your dreams and it is your first choice in every way, then choose the apply early decision. Doing so comes with your commitment that you will attend that school if you are accepted, and you cannot apply early decision or early action to any other school.

If you check off the box indicating that you are applying early action, then you are saying that the school is one of your top choices. You do not have a commitment to attend.

What Are the Benefits of Applying Early Decision?

When you apply using early decision, you set yourself apart from students who are using the regular decision. It indicates that you have a strong desire to attend that particular school. If your academic standing, records, and other qualifications meet their standards, then you increase your chances of getting into the school. Plus, you receive a response earlier.

What Are the Benefits of Applying Early Action?

If you apply to a post-secondary school using early action, you receive a decision earlier than you would by applying regular decision. This gives you extra time to make your acceptance decision. If you receive a positive decision, an early action application can minimize the stress associated with applying to post-secondary school.

What Should You Be Aware of with Early Action Application?

Read the requirements when you choose early action on the application. The more selective schools (at the top tier) may restrict your ability to select the early action option at any other post-secondary school.

Are you looking for more? Check out How to Choose a University next!