It’s no secret that the COVID19 pandemic has drastically affected many aspects of our lives. There has been no exception to this for students who have been or will be applying to colleges during this time. Every part of the admissions process has experienced some adjustments to an extent. There have been changes to application requirements, changes to the number of applicants, changes to the rate of acceptance and admissions, changes in waitlists, and more. Let’s take a closer look at some of these pandemic impacts and what it means for your college admissions goals. 

Changes in Application Requirements

In one of our recent blogs (read it HERE), we went over how some colleges are transitioning their application and admissions requirements to test blind or test optional approaches. While previously, a student’s academic achievement was exemplified by the presence of these test scores on every application, this shift in approach places far less weight on what the test scores say, and if there are any test scores at all. 

Since less of the admissions decision is dependent on the test scores, many colleges take what is known as a holistic review approach to applications. You can read more about this approach in another recent blog, but in simple terms, a holistic review means that many aspects of the student’s education, personal passions, and community involvement, will all be taken into consideration. 

Changes in Number of Applicants

Possibly a result of the change in application requirements, there has also been a drastic change in applicants, especially to extremely selective, prestigious colleges and universities. This is most likely due to the push towards making admissions entirely test-blind, which encourages students who may not have applied to certain schools, or turned in as many applications, if including test scores was a requirement. In some ways, this may be opening up additional opportunities where there may have been gatekeeping previously. Regardless of what specifically has sparked an increase of applications being turned in, however, this exemplifies the presence of ambition and the pursuit of further education, even in the midst of the pandemic. 

Changes in Acceptance Rates

With the rise in applications, there has been a slight increase in acceptances and admissions, however, this increase has not been significant enough to offset the application quantity. This means that, even though the applications have increased and the acceptances have potentially increased as well, the amount of admissions as a percentage of the applications received has actually decreased. This paints the picture that getting accepted to a college or university is more difficult than ever, however, that might not necessarily be the case at every educational institution. In some cases, students may even be more likely to be accepted into multiple schools this academic year. 

Changes in Waitlists

Up until now, most years, being waitlisted at a college did not seem very hopeful that you would gain acceptance to that particular university. There has always been little to no off-waitlist movement in the past. However, with the increase in applications, waitlists have become lengthier than ever, and there is expected to be more movement off the list in order to accommodate more students. This means that if you do happen to end up on a waitlist, there’s no need to lose all hope! While there are never any guarantees, it is slightly more likely that you can move off of it and gain an admissions offer this year than it has been in previous years. 

College Admissions Assistance

With all of the impacts that the pandemic has had on the college applications and admissions process, we understand there might be a lot of uncertainty surrounding furthered education. If you have additional questions, or would like assistance throughout your college admissions journey, connect with us today!