In this blog, we will discuss Early Decision 2 and Rolling Admissions and the options you have to choose from when applying to a school.

During college admissions season, there are a lot of options to choose from when you apply to a school. Over 500 colleges and universities offer Early Action (EA) or Early Decision (ED) options, with some offering both. Early Action plans are non-binding. Students receive an early response to their application but don’t have to commit to the college until the normal reply date of May 1. In addition to hearing from colleges more quickly, applying EA typically includes fewer application restrictions.

Early Decision applications, on the other hand, are binding. Students accepted as ED applicants must attend the college they applied to. This option is most suited for students who are completely certain of which school they want to attend. Applying with ED shows the school you are committed, which can boost chances of acceptance.

A newer way to apply that is gaining popularity is called Early Decision 2 (ED2). Applying this way allows students to wait until later in the admissions cycle to commit to a particular school. This is unlike typical Early Decision, which requires schools to be chosen much earlier in the year- around October or November. ED2 allows students to wait until January. Admissions decisions are usually made in early or mid-February, so students can expect to hear back about their decision soon after committing.

So why should you apply with ED2? Students may enjoy taking advantage of the later deadline for increased flexibility during the application process. ED2 applicants have more time to improve their standardized test scores, solidify their college preferences, and assess their financial need. In addition, students applying with ED2 can submit their senior year grades if they feel it will contribute positively to their application. ED1 applicants are usually evaluated on their academic performance through junior year only.

Another form of application that is crucial to be familiar with is Rolling Admissions. Like ED2, this is an option for those wanting a more flexible application process. Certain colleges use Rolling Admissions as the primary way they run their admissions process. Under Rolling Admissions, schools review applications as they are submitted, and continue to admit students until all of their first-year spots are filled. For prepared students, this option can be highly advantageous as this is a first-come-first-served style of applying. When there are more spaces to fill at a university, the selection process can be less scrupulous, so being aware of application deadlines for these schools is crucial. Other advantages of Rolling Admissions are quick turnaround times. Students can sometimes hear from their colleges in as little as 4-6 weeks, which can be a huge stress reliever and help you narrow down your choices.

Also, these admissions are non-binding, and students have until the school’s deadline to decide whether they will attend. Contact your Cultivate Coach today if you have questions about which application style is best for you!