Jump to content

When should I submit my application?


Recommended Posts

Hi All,


New here and I had a questions. I'm currently in a Masters program and want to transfer to a PhD program (not offered by my current school). 


My current GPA is 3.575. I am taking a class in the Fall and if I can get an A (extremely plausible, I believe) I will bring my GPA up to 3.66. Undergrad GPA was not good (3.03). I could theoretically be ready to start applying within a month, depending on how quickly I can get letters of recommendation together. Even though application deadlines are not until January for the school I want to apply to, I have heard that applying early is beneficial and I am looking for any edge I can get. My question is, is applying early with a lower GPA better than applying later with a higher GPA? Bearing in mind that 1) the GPA difference isn't that great (less than .1 points) and 2) I will definitely be applying by the actual deadline regardless.


What do you all think?


Thanks for the feedback! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This might depend on the field and school, but if the programs you are applying to don't have rolling admissions or e.g. a fellowship deadline that you need to submit early for, there is no real advantage to applying early. Applications are only looked at after the deadline, regardless of when you submitted them. It is theoretically possible (though perhaps technically not so easy) that someone might look at the application website early and you'll catch their eye if you submit early, but I think this is unlikely and not a good reason to submit a less polished application with a worse GPA. This is not like undergraduate admissions. I'd submit the strongest application possible by the deadline and not worry about anything else.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The biggest advantage I can think of for applying early (assuming there isn't a case like being able to get a early jump on fellowships) would be that after you click submit you have time to talk to the admin assistant of the program and make sure that everything made it there in the proper format. I know I had one program where even though I paid the application fee it wasn't processed by their system correctly and the money got sent to the wrong people. Until I emailed them the program had assumed I hadn't paid. Once we found out what happened I was able to show the receipt and everything was fixed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...

Important Information

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. See our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use