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  • Writer's pictureTatum Hutton

Early Decision and Early Action 2

The process of applying to college has become increasingly strategic for both students and colleges.  With students applying to more colleges and colleges receiving more applications than ever, there’s increased pressure on both sides.  Students want to know “Will the college accept me?”  Colleges want to know “Will the student enroll here?”  That’s where early deadline come in.  Applying early typically gives you a slight advantage in the application process and signals to the college (especially with Early Decision) that their school is at the top of your list.  

So, what’s up with Early Decision or Early Action 2? Early Decision 2 (ED2) and Early Action 2 (EA2) are the second round of early deadlines.  Perhaps things didn’t work out as you planned with your first round of early applications, or maybe you just weren’t ready to apply at the time of the first deadlines.  ED2 and EA2 give you a second chance at an early application. As with the first-round of these same application plans – you may only apply to one school as an Early Decision applicant, but you can apply to multiple schools as an Early Action applicant.  Should I apply with Early Decision 2 or Early Action 2?     ED2 and EA2 may give you a slight admission advantage just like you had with ED1 or EA1.  Schools tend to admit a higher percentage of students from their early pools as compared to the percent they admit from the regular decision pool.  If there is a school that is top on your list but you still haven’t applied, it may help to apply in the ED2 or EA2 round. But, remember!! If you apply as an Early Decision 2 applicant – you are committing yourself to attend that school if they admit you.  Meaning ED2 should be reserved ONLY if you are willing to enroll! 

But my Early Decision 1 application was accepted… Congratulations!  You are done with the admission process!  Your early decision admission is a binding offer meaning you committed to enrolling at that school when you applied ED1.  

What about my Early Action 1 applications…? You have likely received decisions from schools that you applied to in the first round of Early Action.  Admitted or denied, you can still submit applications to other schools if you like (EA1 is non-binding). 

What if I was denied as an ED1 or EA1 applicant – can I apply again in ED2 or EA2?  You can’t apply to the same school again – just one application per school.  And while it doesn’t feel good to get a “no” decision from a college, ED2 and EA2 give you an opportunity to set your sights on a new first choice school.  

Take Action If all these deadlines have your head spinning, be sure to talk to your advisor about your application strategy. 

Don’t forget –  Enter any admission decisions you’ve received in GuidedPath.

Update application details in GuidedPath if you have changed plans to apply ED2 or EA2.

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