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so we're here with Sean Logan Sean one of the big decisions that students face is when to actually apply for college can you kind of walk me through how to think about that decision sure so there are basically three different you know types of applying that students will do one type of it is in early programs a second is rolling admission and the third is just regular admission great and what are sort of what do we shove those mean what are the differences so in the early process there's there's typically three different programs that students want may want to take advantage of there's early decision okay restrictive early action okay and there's also just regular early action great and can you explain what each of those are so the nice thing is that they generally all use about the same timeframe so generally the the the time frame is applications due sometime in early November typically November 1 and you generally will you generally will find out the decision sometime in the middle of December usually around December 15th but then there are you know differences between the different programs so within early decision that is considered a binding process so if you apply to the school by November 1st and you're admitted by December 15 the expectation is you're going to attend that school with restrictive early action and an early action they are both programs that allows students to apply to them be admitted but then you know still make decisions on other school so you're not obligated to attend the difference between the two programs is restrictive early action there are just a handful of schools and this in this category but you can only apply to them and other public schools early you can apply to how many ever you want Regular Decision but only that school and public institutions early action programs allow you to apply to as many other schools as you want to there's no restrictions great and so let me make sure I understand so an early decision if I apply there and I get in I'm committed yep and I'm supposed to go with both of the early action programs I'm not committed and so the and so it's just a way to kind of figure out early if I'm in the only difference between restrictive versus non restrictive is the restrictive I'm not supposed to apply to other private schools early mmm-hmm whereas in the non restrictive early actress or the standard early action I can apply to anywhere else early pretty much yep great makes a lot of sense so Sean you mentioned rolling can you tell me a little bit more about how that works sure so rolling programs are used mostly by sort of non selective or selective schools and generally within a say a four week or five week period they'll typically if you would get all your material in by that by a certain you know by a date four weeks later they will typically have a decision for you and again that's good for the school in terms of them starting to create their class and for you as a student it may be certainly a school that you're interested in but it allows you to get information earlier like yes I'm admitted I already can kind of put that in my yes category and maybe tail the rest of my list based off of that admission great so it sounds like rolling is a sort of a great way to get potentially an acceptance early on in the process I didn't know you're going to college yep awesome and then the final thing you mentioned was Regular Decision I take it that's sort of the standard way that people have applied to college in the past right and again the the timeframe varies a little bit but most regular decisions usually are sometime in January that the application is due into february somewhere in there and then generally you will find out by mid-march if you've been admitted or not and again the great majority of kids that apply to college will use a regular system you may have heard you know you hear a lot about the early processes at these really really selective schools but the great majority of kids actually use the Regular Decision process great well that actually kind of brings me to my next question which is who should be applying you know early versus rolling versus regular and so let's actually start with early and and specifically early decision know which students should be applying early decision so since it's a binding decision you're making you really have to do a good job of really doing your research and doing your homework and really knowing at that school that your choosing is your top choice so again it's about making sure you go through the research process maybe visiting if I'm not visiting making sure you're on the web and really doing your homework especially as a low-income student you also want to check all of these schools every school by law has a financial aid calculator on their webs and that can also help you figure out what your financial aid package may look like because obviously you don't want to get into a binding situation of the financial aid that you don't think that will work for your family so you also want to do your homework and make sure you know that the financial aid looks like it'll work for your family so if all of that lines up and you think it's your you know it's your first choice then you know that that's a that's a great reason to go ahead and try your luck applying early so why exactly what I do that rather than waiting for the Regular Decision well you have a better chance potentially so a lot of these schools in early decision process take a higher percentage of kids and again it may be an opportunity just for you to say this is a school I want I want them to know right upfront and if you get in you're done by December 15th you're not waiting until March and you can sort of enjoy the rest of your senior year without wearing about the college piece so that you know there is a bit of a in some areas that's a strategic advantage to do something early I will also say in the last three or four years there still tends to be a lot of money left for students in the early process as you get into the regular rounds sometimes there's not quite as much financial aid left so in some ways you know you may actually have an opportunity to get a little bit more money you know in an early process great so let's actually move on to some of the other early options you mentioned your restrictive early action early action in general given that they're not binding so this the school won't know if you're going to be accepted going there or not when they accept you who should be applying early action again I think it's you know an opportunity for students on the student side to say hey these are schools that I know I'm interested in if you can give if you could find out some information by the December saying yes I'm admitted to these two but no I didn't get into these two it might help you in terms of how you other schools you may want to apply to your early action school maybe your very top choice school and again if you get in by December 15th you may be thrilled and be done with the process it also for kids who are first-generation or low-income kids where financial aid is a big issue it also doesn't lock you in so you have the opportunity to get into that school see what the package is but then apply Regular Decision and see maybe if you get other you know packages that are that are better from other schools great and what about rolling and I think we talked about this a little bit just to make sure that I'm clear who who should definitely be applying you know rolling admissions or should at least be considering a rolling admissions school so a lot of schools that used the rolling process not all but a lot you know it's an opportunity for you to get you in from information and an application in early they know you have some interest because you've you've done it's a and you know September October November and again there may be a little bit more money left than if you wait to the very end of the process they may be running low on money for financial aid so you know there may be an opportunity for you to to really have you know have some money available to you the other things about all early programs both rolling in early early action early decision programs is you know they're not going to get a chance to look a lot of your senior year work so you better be really happy with your freshman sophomore and junior year work and have all your testing done that's necessary by those deadlines because if you don't then you may want to wait until you get all of that in place and then apply Regular Decision okay so it sounds like both early and rolling it's really for students who are feel good about their freshman through junior year work yep who don't feel like they need for a semester senior year to sort of show an improvement correct let me make sure I get that down and what about Regular Decision who are the people who should definitely just wait for Regular Decision and put some of these earlier rolling options aside I mean I again I think it's if there's in your research process if you're not far along in it you need a lot more time you know before you know after November first to really do all your research you know you're not going to be ready to really make a good application to an early decision or an early action or rolling school you really need to have done your research and know a little bit about that school to be able to sort of talk in essays and all that sort of thing so you need to have your you need to have your work done to really be a good early applicant if not regular is a much better place for you to be in this process you know again an in general you know if you really want to compare financial aid packages across a wide variety of schools you know applying regular gives you again there's no binding there's no you know thing that's going to be holding me down you know and again even though that may not happen in early action you may not really find any schools that have early action programs that you're really excited about so it may just be worth waiting until Regular Decision as well okay great and let me just make sure I've got it all clear so with early decision I apply it's binding whatever they give me I'm and maybe that are there any circumstances where I could get out of that so there is a circumstance where again if it's for financial aid reasons so say that you did a calculator it looked like you're gonna get a good package but in actuality there were some things that happened in the financial package will not work for your family schools will typically let you out of that decision but generally then you're out of their pool as well okay so you know those extenuating circumstances aside I'm committed with an early decision correction yeah I get the answer early yeah and there may be it may increase my chance of getting into a particular school a little bit potential potentially potentially there's early action options where I'm not committed right but I do get the information early yeah and again for schools that kind of give financial aid on a can run out of financial aid later on in the season this might give you access to that financial aid earlier on special attention I kept school by school but potentially right rolling admissions they're kind of letting you in as you're applying for two five five we turn around again the earlier you kind of get that in the better you get the answer early and you also may have access to additional financial aid right potentially yeah and then Regular Decision is for folks who want to compare several offers yeah or maybe just a little farther behind in their process yeah and want to make sure that they kind of have everything set before they apply right okay great thank you so much