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How early should you send your application


gurumaster8899
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Definitely no decision before the deadline, unless the university has rolling admissions. But most Phd programs do not. Actually, I don't think I'd recommend sending your application a month or more before the deadline...send it early to make sure your school gets everything and you don't panic, but if you sent it in too early 1) people may wonder if you rushed the application (i've heard of this happening before, although i wonder how true it is..) 2) you might make silly mistakes that you would have caught otherwise- after having put your application down for a few weeks and then revisiting it. 3) you just might have your most brilliant idea after submitting it early. And while that may be true for anything, even after submitting it on the deadline, at least then you'll know you did all you could

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Some places (very few, I'll admit) offer an incentive for turning the application in early--I believe that Duke did this last year ($20 off the application fee if turned in by a certain point), although I'm not sure if they're going to this year. Aside from this, if you're planning on applying to University of Washington, I'd advise trying to turn it in around early October or so, as I've heard of interview offers being extended as early as November.

For everywhere else, though, I'd probably say late October to early November. You have everything in the system, you can check/double check everything, and you get it in before the crush of applications that undoubtedly comes just before the deadlines. Plus you budget yourself time in case you find that last school that's a perfect fit at the last second.

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Some of the programs encourage students to apply early despite having a deadline......does it mean people can actually get a decision before the deadline??

For one program I submitted my application 3 months early and heard back with everyone else. For another I submitted my application 4.5 months early and did not hear back until after everyone else had.

So no, not a chance in most cases, unless they specifically say that they will. For example, some programs have several application deadline cut off dates, and will send out responses in waves according to that.

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agree w/other posts.

Don't submit too early, mainly because you might want to add new ideas/information closer to the deadline, as you get more familiar with the application process. Also don't expect to get an earlier decision if you do decide to submit early. I've heard it speculated that some admissions officers like to get an early start by occasionally sifting through the new apps for anything that stands out. It's easier to shine when there are less apps in the pile to distract the readers. However, other committees might only convene some time after the deadline and go through all the apps together, and then you could be waaay towards the bottom of the pile. You can never know.

My advice is to submit enough time in advance so you're not stressed towards the deadline. If you beat the inevitable deluge of submissions right before the deadline you'll find a more attentive staff at most schools, who will be likelier to help you (=let you know your app is complete) and you'll have time to correct any mistakes or resend any materials that have gone missing. Do it for your peace of mind, not in order to get an early decision.

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I always send at the deadline. And I mean at the deadline, never more than 3 days before (which is how long it takes priority mail to arrive). I did overnight several application materials and upload things online something like 45 min before midnight (in that time zone). LOL. But I like to do things at the last minute.

Did it affect admissions? Probably not. I applied to a school on Dec 30/31 (no mail on Jan 1!), and heard back before the end of Jan. Another with a deadline of Jan 15 (again, I sent in the stuff no more than 3 days in advance) I heard from before Feb 1. Both of those admissions gave me decisions earlier than the general applicant pool because they were nominating me for university-wide fellowship competitions.

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Despite what others may say I was one of the people that sent in my application in August and had all the pieces of my application sent by September. It was great because at some of the schools they needed me to resend things again (because they lost it) so I had plenty of time to catch up. Also, one of my schools ended up accepting me in October even though their website didn't mention rolling admission.

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  • 2 weeks later...

i don't know what people are thinking when they send stuff right around the deadline. you need to give yourself at least a one month cushion in case anything gets lost in the mail or lost at the university. it's not uncommon at all for that to happen.

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i don't know what people are thinking when they send stuff right around the deadline. you need to give yourself at least a one month cushion in case anything gets lost in the mail or lost at the university. it's not uncommon at all for that to happen.

Speaking of this, I looked at Duke's info for this year. They updated, and--as long as it's submitted by November 1st--you get a $10 discount off the application fee.

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Aside from this, if you're planning on applying to University of Washington, I'd advise trying to turn it in around early October or so, as I've heard of interview offers being extended as early as November.

UDub also tends to lose applications. They lost mine twice when I applied. I guess I should have taken the hint. =)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Do you think this is too early to submit applications for fall 2010 admission? I have several of my online applications finished but am just waiting to hit the submit button. I have to send in a portfolio and won't have that for probably another month, and I plan to request all of my transcripts within the next week or two. I want to get my applications in early though since several of them automatically email my references the information they need to submit my letters of recommendation.

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Do you think this is too early to submit applications for fall 2010 admission? I have several of my online applications finished but am just waiting to hit the submit button. I have to send in a portfolio and won't have that for probably another month, and I plan to request all of my transcripts within the next week or two. I want to get my applications in early though since several of them automatically email my references the information they need to submit my letters of recommendation.

If you are sending the rest of the application materials soon, send the application. You want them to receive that before they receive the other parts, since many use the application as a way to "open your file". I personally submitted my applications around this time last year.

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If you are sending the rest of the application materials soon, send the application. You want them to receive that before they receive the other parts, since many use the application as a way to "open your file". I personally submitted my applications around this time last year.

Haha, Rob, we're not all superstars like you, getting our apps done ten months early :)

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i don't know what people are thinking when they send stuff right around the deadline. you need to give yourself at least a one month cushion in case anything gets lost in the mail or lost at the university. it's not uncommon at all for that to happen.

Things get lost, sure. But that doesn't mean you won't get the chance to resend whatever goes missing. I'm one of those people that always applied at the deadline and I was able to resend materials with no problems for admissions consideration.

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