Tuesday, December 1, 2009

How Would You Change UGA's Application?


Since we still have a short window of time before EA decisions go out, and I cannot give you anything specific about this group (still looking at the complete applicant pool and making decision plans), I thought I would turn the tables on you. I will be silent (although exactly how can you be silent on a blog that you type?), and let you the reader take center stage. Most of you have now either submitted the application or reviewed it for use down the line. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to tell me what changes you would make to our application for the future.

This should not be about the admission process, but instead, the actual application (including recommendations, transcripts, test scores, etc.). What would you add/remove/alter? What do you love or hate? What would you like to see us ask applicants?

Please remember, it really helps if you do not use "anonymous" as your name for the posts, as it makes it hard to let you know who I am answering if everyone is anonymous. You can make up a name if needed!

Ready, Set, GO!

50 comments:

  1. The only thing I can think of is that I wish that the Early decision would select more instead of just the top 25%. If there were like two rounds of the current Regular Decision except one takes place in the fall I think it would be better for future years to come. I know there are probably many factors that you went through in determining how you got to the way you are and that it might be unreasonable to follow the suggestion, but im just mentioning what I personally felt.

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  2. Anonymous: Thank you for the input, although please remember, this is not about the EA procedure, but instead about the application. As well, I am not sure where the "top 25%" is coming from, but we do not have a specific limit on EA, and we are not just looking at the top 25% as a basis of the mid-ranges we give out, as those are a general view/guide of the group, but are not cut-points or anything similar to that.

    Again, though, if you have suggestions about the application, that would be great!

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  3. Hi. I wonder if it would make a difference if there was a place on the application for students to list the other schools they are applying to, or if UGA is first choice, etc.
    My daughter has classmates that applied EA UGA as a backup to their first choice schools - like UVA. UGA is her first, maybe second choice depending on how things go. So I can see how really strong candidates can take spots even if UGA is just a fall back. When my older daughter applied to colleges 3 years ago she listed other schools she applied to on most applications. I wonder if this would make a difference accepting kids that plan to enroll. I realize it is a numbers game. Just thinking.

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  4. The only struggle I had with the application was choosing my major. I have no idea right now what I plan to major in, and even though you all tell us it does not affect the outcome of our acceptance, it still made me nervous.

    I saw no option for undecided, but adding that to the list of majors would help.

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  5. Hi, I wanted to let you know that this blog has been a tremendous help to us! Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions! I guess the only thing that I would change is the waiting period. My daughter has been accepted at a couple of universities so far, but we are unable to commit until we know if she will get into UGA (Which of course is her first choice!) I know UGA receives thousands of applications, so maybe there really is no way to speed up the process. We'll just have to be patient and keep praying for an early Christmas present on December 11! Only 10 more days and counting!!!
    Thanks again,
    Beth

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  6. The Regular Decision application probably gets more personal, but the EA application was merely facts and numbers. I wish that there had been a greater opportunity to put more personal and creative info into it.

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  7. I hope the next blog entry would be on International Transfer students for Fall 2010. There's something very perplexing about one particular part of the form.. How do the credits get evaluated? Thank you. What's the e-mail add of the office of admission? Thanks again.

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  8. Anonymous: The email address of the Office of Admissions is adm-info@uga.edu. Our office then reviews the emails and routes them to the appropriate counselor. You should be specific about the problem and the form, and you should mention that you are an international transfer in the subject line.

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  9. I wish you could go back and look at your application after you have finished it.
    Any idea when I might expect my decision from UGA?

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  10. I think it would be nice if there was a part on the application where we could respond in writing on why we want to attend UGA, what we look forward to doing at UGA, and what we think we can get from going to UGA.

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  11. As an AP teacher who writes many letters of recommendation for students, I would cheer if UGA moved back the date for applications for regular admissions from Jan. 15th until at least Feb. 1st. I know you want the completed applications as soon as possible, but this process creates tremendous stress for teachers and students.

    For example, when UGA releases information for early admissions, about half of my 30-40 students who applied will not be accepted through the early-admissions process. Then the students who are not accepted will complete the full application, write their essays, and ask for teacher recommendations. If these students find out on Dec. 11th (or that weekend), they then have only one week in my school system to ask for a recommendation before Christmas break.

    Since teachers are wrapping up the first semester that final week before the holidays and since we are preparing for the second semester during the opening week of January, we have limited time to write these important recommendations. SO, when do we write them? Most of us spend part of our holidays writing letters of recommendation. For those of us who do our absolute best to write letters that capture our students' greatest strengths, these letters take much more time than I think UGA officials may realize. If this year is like previous years, I will probably need to write 10 letters over the holidays, and that translates to almost 2 full days of my vacation.

    If the due date were moved back to the end of January, teachers, counselors, and students would cheer (and have restful holidays)!

    Thanks for your consideration.

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  12. The only issue I had with the EA application is that I attend Kennesaw State University right now as part of dual enrollment. I put in all the information the application wanted, and when I went back to Application Status Check, it says "P.I. Not found" and there's an x mark beside it. So I called and after finally getting through, I was somewhat rudely informed that my application was fine, thankyougoodbye. I understand answering the phones for the admissions department is a really miserable job, but I'm still really worried UGA didn't put the KSU transcript in with my admissions file...

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  13. Everyone: Thank you for the wonderful response, and please keep the suggestions coming. I will try to answer a few of your questions that also came in.

    Anon: Decisions for EA will be in mid-Dec., RD or deferred EA applicants who meet the EA criteria (deferred would need to improve academically) will hear in late Feb, and final decisions go out in late March.

    Mr. Parrott: Thank you for the thoughtful insight into a teacher's POV. While we cannot move the RD deadline, I can tell you that in general, supporting documents that come in 2-3 weeks after this deadline will still be used (but we need the deadline for the applications and for moving forward with file reading or else we could not get out decisions in March). As well, we now have made it so you can submit the Teacher Rec. online, so you do not have to deal with the postal service delays (see your school's head counselor for more info). As well, I am hoping that with a few changes next year, we might (and I stress might!) be able to send out EA decisions a little earlier.

    Anon 2: Sorry for the response about the KSU issue, but based upon my previous knowledge, it looks like the college code for KSU on your app was not quite correct. Send an email to admproc@uga.edu and let us know your name and the issue, and we can correct it easily. As well, a dual enrollment college transcript is not required (we put it on the status check so if you do mail it in, you can see it has been received).

    Again, thanks for the response, and keep up the good work!

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  14. Here are a few more notes about your replies, but please, keep on giving us suggestions!

    Anon: I am sorry you were not able to find the major of undecided. It is under the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, and you can go to our Information Change form, http://www.admissions.uga.edu/apps/infochange, and change your major to it if you want.

    Anon 2: Once you submit the application, there is then no way to go back and change to actual application (although some data can be changed in our student system using the Info. Change form above), since it is saved as a PDF. That is why, before you hit submit, you should probably go over the application, and it is also why we give you about 10-12 important items at the end of the app for you to double check for accuracy.

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  15. Is it possible to find hard copies or downloadable copies of the application (EA and RD parts)? In order to look online I have to start my daughters application and we won't need to do that until next year.

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  16. Ursula:

    You can find the printable pdf forms of our application at http://www.admissions.uga.edu/article/printable_forms.html , but remember that every year, the application might change slightly.

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  17. The one thing that I would add would be the addition of extracurricular activities. This would show how well the student does in addition to how active they are at their school. It's easy to get good grades and be ranked highly at their school if they aren't involved in anything. It's a little harder to get good grades while taking a challenging course load full of AP classes at the same time as being part of a sports team and band etc...

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  18. hey i was recently admitted to uga early, and i said that i would be taking ap macro econ next semester but some conflicts occured and i don't think i will be taking it anymore. is that alright?

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  19. Anon: Good question. If an admitted student is now changing their senior year schedule, there are two steps. First, look at the classes, as our office will not care if you are only changing non-core classes (drop photography, adding sculpture.).

    If you are changing a core class, Admissions would want to know if two things have occurred; first, is it due to poor first semester grades, and second, is it a significant change in core classes? A student should email our office if either of these situations are true.

    In your case, this is a minor change, and thus we would not have any problem. I did communicate today with someone who was doing poorly in two AP classes and was dropping them for second semester, in which case we needed a detailed email before deciding what to do next.

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  20. I have been writing teacher recommendations for the past two days, and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the new page that allows me to submit recommendations online. The process is so much easier online and UGA's online process is much easier and faster than online submissions of the Common Application.

    Thank-you!

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  21. Ms. Parrott: Great to hear it, and I hope the semester ended well for you!

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  22. I am a deferred student who is intending to apply again for regular decision. I have noticed that on my residency information it shows the state as Outside US and Country as Rep of Korea. I am a permanent resident of the United States. Do I need to get this changed asap? will this affect the decision process because you guys might think I'm an international student.

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  23. John: First, you do not need to apply again, you just need to complete part II of the application and have a teacher send a recommendation. Second, if your are a permanent resident, you will need to send in a copy of your Alien Reg. card so we can review it for residency purposes. Lastly, you are waiting until the last minute to complete your application, so please do not wait too long to take care of everything.

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  24. Does anyone know if the essay portion of the app. is to be submitted online or by mail?
    Lee

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  25. Anon: Since I am a Senior Associate Director of Admissions at UGA, I think I might be the best one to answer this. I am assuming you ae talking about a deferred student, and we are okay with it being submitted either online or by using the pdf and mailing it in.

    I would suggest, though, that the student use the online part II, as when the student submits it online, it will go into the system and into their file by the next business day. If you send it by mail, it has to go through the postal service, through the UGA postal area, opened by our office (where it will be among thousands of envelopes containing admissions materials), then scanned and dropped into the student file. In other words, it is much quicker to do it online.

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  26. I will send in a copy of my alien reg. card. Do I need to send this in before 1/15/2009? I will do so asap.

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  27. John: While it does not need to be in by Jan. 15, I would suggest you send it in within the next 2 weeks so we can clear up the residency situation. Also make sure to look at the status check and make sure all other materials are here.

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  28. Hi - Could you plese let me know if I am able to change my semester enrollment from summer 2010 to Fall 2010. My D-group at church is going on a mission trip and the dates overlap with the July summer session. Thanks for your help! This blog is AWESOME!

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  29. Anon: Yes, we allow students to change from summer to fall and back. You would want to email admproc@uga.edu and make the request. I would suggest waiting about 2 weeks to make this request, as we are dealing with a ton of deadline materials right now.

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  30. I need to submit a teacher recommendation for a student who has been accepted into UGA and is now applying for the honors program. May I submit this recommendation online on the same page for teacher recommendations for admission into UGA? (I love the online process!)

    Thanks!

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  31. Ms. Parrott: I wish I could say yes, but the Honors program needs the recommendation sent to them, so it would be best to mail it to them instead of admissions. Sorry about that, but I am glad you like the online process!

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  32. im a senior and i just applied to UGA. im not taking calculus this year and im the only kid from my school who applied to uga who is not taking it. will that hurt me?? also ive taken 4 AP classes but no honors classes. will that hurt my chances.

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  33. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  34. same person. im taking ap biology, macroecon and us gov and pol i took ap us history last year . does that seem like variety or not?

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  35. Anon: I can not give you specifics about your exact situation, but what I can say is that UGA looks at what is offered at your HS, and what you have taken in the way of challenging courses. We also look at the scope of your classwork, so we are not just looking at the number of AP classes, but what overall classes did you take, which AP classes did you choose, etc. A student may be taking 4 AP classes, but if they are all in Soc. Studies, and all other core areas are at the lowest range, then we will look at that differently than a student taking 4 AP classes in a range of areas.

    We try and get an understanding of how you challenged yourself, and that plays a part in the review process. I am guessing your curriculum is strong, but not the strongest possible, and we will look at it that way as a part of the overall review.

    I hope this helps!

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  36. same one more time. does uga still do a waiting list because I've heard stories from my older sis about people being wait listed. wat is that all about??

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  37. Anon: It looks like you are challenging yourself within the science and soc. science areas. I am guessing you can look at the other core areas (English, math, f. language) to determine for yourself if you are challenging yourself overall.

    I would not be able to judge what your rigor of curriculum is over this site, and it is not really the best method to discuss your situation. Again, it looks like you are challenging yourself, but I am guessing that if you look at others at your school and in your community, you will probably see some students who are challenging themselves both more and less than you. That is my best guess with limited knowledge.

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  38. one last question the most important. is it ok to sent more than one teacher recommendation? because i sent 4 from a variety of classes i had taken. (f.language, science, 2 s.studies)

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  39. Anon: Yes, for the last 5 years or so, UGA has had a wait-list. This is put into place in case, after the May 1 deadline for students to say where they will be attending college, the numbers show that we have a little more space in the class than we thought. We have a wait-list to let these students know that if we do end up having a few more spaces, they would be the first ones we would contact to offer admission for these last spaces. We can never predict exactly how many students will say yes to our offer of admission, so we want to leave some wiggle room at the end of the process.

    As far as teacher recommendations, 4 is a little excessive, but it will not hurt you. It may not help you, though, as we asked for one, and after the first one (or two), they start to run together. My suggestion for future applicants is to stick to the suggested numbers, both so you do not have to run around getting three extra rec's, and so they do not have to fill out more than is necessary.

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  40. i thank you for the important info. its just that uga is my dream school and pulled out the stops for my application. all this college application stuff has been nerve racking. ill be kinda crushed if i dont get in. great blog. thanks

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  41. I accidentally selected the summer enrollement rather than fall in my undergraduate application. How amy I change this? If it's possible to change.

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  42. Anon: Contact our office at admproc@uga.edu and request to be changed to fall term.

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  43. I have recently applied online and still need to submit an official transcript. The problem is the it is saying I need one from Valdosta State but I have never applied there. If I submit a transcript from the college I am currently attending, will the fact that I don't have one from Valdosta hinder my application?

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  44. Anon: I am guessing that the college code must have either been listed incorrectly or was translated incorrectly when you applied, so just send an email to admproc@uga.edu and give us your information and the change that needs to be made. Then we will have the right college and will be waiting on the correct materials.

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  45. If I want to be undecided for my major, what college do i choose?

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  46. Ami: I would suggest you select Arts and Sciences and then select undecided.

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  47. Hello there,

    I am apply for early decision application.
    Is it best to submit the application part # 1 --ONLINE or send in a paper application?
    I was thinking sending a paper application along with the counselor evaluation form and transcript is better... since everything will be together.

    Please let me know what UGA prefers so things do not get lost.

    Please let me know asap. Thank you.

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  48. Hello there again,

    I am taking my SAT again on Oct 9th. I also plan on submitting my application for early action decision by Oct. 15th.

    Will my test scores for Oct 9th also be considered in the early action application process or only for the SAT test scores thus far (prior to Oct 9th test date)?

    I would love to know. Thank you.

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  49. UGA lover ml: Since UGA only accepts an online application this year (no paper applications accepted!), you will need to apply online. As well, I would suggest you speak with your counselor about submitting the school evaluation online.

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  50. Anon: First, you can submit your application prior to when you take the SAT. Second, if you requested your Oct. scores to be sent to UGA when you signed up for the test, then we will be able to use them for EA.

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