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Apply earlier (avoid the last six weeks before the deadline)?


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"Apply earlier (avoid the last six weeks before the deadline)"; A website gives this advice to those applying to grad schools.

 

Does it matter? I'm from India, and to be honest, my application will reach them in the last week before the deadline. And for colleges having the December 1 deadline, my GRE and TOEFL scores will reach them around 22 December.

 

I emailed schools and asked, they said that's fine as long as the transcripts get to them before the Dec 1 deadline and the scores get to them before Jan 1. I am guessing somewhere around mid January, they will start application review process.

 

What I want to ask is that does sending in late applications hurt my chances of getting in? Does it give a bad impression? Why does the website suggest to apply early?

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"Apply earlier (avoid the last six weeks before the deadline)"; A website gives this advice to those applying to grad schools.

 

Does it matter? I'm from India, and to be honest, my application will reach them in the last week before the deadline. And for colleges having the December 1 deadline, my GRE and TOEFL scores will reach them around 22 December.

 

I emailed schools and asked, they said that's fine as long as the transcripts get to them before the Dec 1 deadline and the scores get to them before Jan 1. I am guessing somewhere around mid January, they will start application review process.

 

What I want to ask is that does sending in late applications hurt my chances of getting in? Does it give a bad impression? Why does the website suggest to apply early?

If the program says it's fine, then it's fine.

 

As for applying early, who knows why the website says to do it. Personally, I think it's a good idea in part because it means that you have the damn thing done and don't have to worry about running into technical issues at the last minute. It also means you can verify with the program in question that everything is in order prior to any official deadlines. But, as long as you get them what they need by the deadline given, you're not going to be at a disadvantage.

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I think doing it earlier is good for a few reasons, none of which include a higher likelihood of acceptance:

 

1. Technical glitches -- I started filling in the basic information on my applications about a month ago, and have encountered glitches on two different applications. I immediately contacted the programs who quickly fixed the glitches. Can you imagine if I discovered this hours before the application was due? I literally shudder to think of it.

 

2. Stress levels -- knowing the application is in and done, that you aren't rushing to complete things at the last minute, will make you feel less stressed...at least until you realize your waiting period for admissions decisions has begun.

 

3. Last minute surprises -- I started filling out basic information on one of my applications, and imagine my surprise when I came across several hidden essays built into the application. Had I waited til the last minute, that would have induced extreme panic. Instead, I'm just slightly peeved that applications have secret essays waiting to surprise unsuspecting applicants. S'all good, though.

 

Anyway, I'm sure many, many people wait til the day before application deadlines to submit (and who can blame them? That extra week or two or three is super useful in polishing materials), but I'm opting to submit a bit early because I'm neurotic.

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What's stressing me out is the waiting game. Not the acceptance waiting game, but the waiting game to see if schools received all of my application and supplemental materials (transcripts, test scores, letters of rec). My professors who wrote letters for me can be flaky-- they're making me use Interfolio to send out their letters, and one of the guys still hasn't written his yet! It's driving me nuts. Not to mention that each school has different requirements, so keeping on top of that is rather stressful...

 

At this point I've done about all I can though. All I can do is keep checking to see if schools get all the required materials and that my prof's are also on top of their obligations.

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My professors who wrote letters for me can be flaky-- they're making me use Interfolio to send out their letters, and one of the guys still hasn't written his yet! It's driving me nuts. Not to mention that each school has different requirements, so keeping on top of that is rather stressful...

 

That's the worst part because I have the same problem. What is in my hand, I have done on time. But depending on 3 other people for something so important, is a nerve wrecking experience. Yes professor, please take your time. It's only my life on the line here.

 

I have never experienced such stress in life.  :wacko:  :unsure:

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That's the worst part because I have the same problem. What is in my hand, I have done on time. But depending on 3 other people for something so important, is a nerve wrecking experience. Yes professor, please take your time. It's only my life on the line here.

 

I have never experienced such stress in life.  :wacko:  :unsure:

In their world, they still have about a month before it's needed. From experience is definitely is stressful, but gentle reminders can help. Just keep in mind that they are very busy and are likely more concerned with their grant application or getting that damn exam graded then they are submitting a recommendation that's due in three or four weeks.

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Oh I totally understand the busy life, which is why I hate to bother them. It's conflicting.

 

Part of the stress comes from 2 prof's general lack of response / communication. One of them posts on Facebook all day, yet doesn't read his emails and can't set aside 10 minutes to submit his letter to 2 programs....

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