Thursday, December 23, 2010

Common Questions (and Answers) While UGA is Closed

UGA will be closed from late afternoon on December 24 through January 3, and as such, we will not be available to answer many questions. Like many of you, I will also be unavailable at times during the break, so here are a few common questions and answers to hold you over during the time we are closed. Please be patient with me if you post any comments!

Deadlines and Materials
I have had several questions about when application materials need to be in, what happens if they are not in, etc. UGA Admissions works hard to complete a student's file, and we will work with students if things come in a little late. For paper documents, our deadlines are postmark deadlines, and we will keep the online school forms open after the deadline. This does not mean that a student should do things after the deadline though! Make sure you speak with your counselor and teacher early about getting in materials, and give them time to do their work! And if you choose to apply on the deadline, please understand that we will take you application, but you are setting yourself up to possibly have problems by not giving yourself any leeway with required materials. Do yourself a favor and take care of things before the deadline!

Mailed materials
My estimate is that from a person mailing out documents to it showing up in the system takes at least 6-8 business days, give or take (if your application is already in the system). If a counselor or teacher sent documents off on a Monday let's say, then 8 business days means Wednesday of the following week. Please also remember that UGA will be closed down from late afternoon on Friday, 12/24, until the morning of Jan. 4, so be patient with us during that span, as we will not be in the office or updating the myStatus page during that gap. Please remember that our deadlines are postmarked deadlines, so there is no reason to send something FedEx, UPS rush, two day postal delivery, etc., and at times these special deliveries can slow things down as they get held up due to non-delivery on weekends, routing things a non-traditional way, etc. Stick with online delivery (still the best by far!) or standard post office mailing.

January SAT exam
The last test score date UGA will be able to use is the Jan. 22 SAT. The Feb. ACT is too late, especially since it takes longer for ACT to get the scores back than SAT (which usually gets us scores in under three weeks).

First Semester Grades
Applicants are not required to send in first semester grades, but we do like to see them when reviewing a student’s file, so I would suggest having an updated transcript sent in to UGA. We will be accepting first semester grades through Feb. 1, but I would suggest having your school send them in as soon as possible after they are ready. Accepted EA applicants do not need to send in first semester grades unless requested to by Honors or the Foundation Fellows/Ramsey Scholarship Program.

Scholarships:
UGA will be making scholarship decisions (along with out-of-state waivers) from mid-December through mid-April as we review files and finish receiving applications. In December, we will have awarded a small number of scholarships, but we are a long way from completing the process.

Honors:
Honors needs time to review the admitted students, so please be patient with them during their review of admitted students. Only Honors would know when they will be releasing decisions, the criteria they use for review, etc.

68 comments:

  1. All: An additional suggestion for submitting materials is to make sure your teacher and/or counselor has the correct name, birthdate, and if needed, SSN for when they complete their information. We have a number of applicants that have the same name (for instance, we have more Chelsea Smith's than I though possible), so when we have thousands of papers arriving in January, you want to make sure we can tell which Chelsea Smith the letter goes to. And remember, please, please give your teachers and counselors advanced warning to send out materials, and do not wait until the deadline if as all possible!

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  2. Do you anticipate having any more scholarship offers going out prior to Jan. 14, or will any remaining offers wait until after RD applicants have beeen reviewed? Jan. 14th is the deadline my son has for accepting a scholarship offer from another college, but it would be helpful to know if he might receive an offer from UGA before deciding. Thanks!

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  3. Anon: I do not know any specifics on exact dates of scholarship decisions, as it depends on the review process. If your son has not applied Early Decision to the other college, I would suggest that you look at the other college's scholarship and enrollment information, as May 1 is the deadline for committing to a college. As well, they may allow him to either delay the decision, or accept the scholarship and then later change his mind about attendance.

    Most colleges are a member of NACAC, the National Association for College Admission Counseling, which has standards that need to be kept by the colleges (and it has areas for HS counselors and students as well). One part of the Principals of Good Practice is as follows:

    "work with their institutions’ senior administrative officers to ensure that financial
    aid and scholarship offers and housing options are not used to manipulate commitments prior to May 1."
    http://www.nacacnet.org/AboutNACAC/Policies/Documents/SPGP.pdf, page 4.

    I would suggest speaking with the other college's admission representative for his area about possible options.

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  4. I saw somewhere that UGA recalculates a student's core GPA for admission. Does this mean that their submission is more dependent on the core GPA, especially if it is better than the all-inclusive GPA, or does it depend on both?

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  5. Anon: UGA recalculates a freshman applicant's GPA based on the core area grades they receive and that show up on a transcript. As such, we do not look at a student's overall GPA on a high school transcript, as it does not reflect what we are looking for in the academic review. There are so many different GPA scales out there, from 100 point, 4 point, 6 point, 12 point, and even schools without grades, that UGA needs to have a common method for reviewing a students grades, and therefor a common form of a GPA.

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  6. For those who have received the Charter Scholarship, does that mean they will also get an auto-admit (or an invite) to the Honors Program?
    Thanks and Merry Christmas!

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  7. Liz: As I have said both above and in other posts, the Honors Program make the Honors decisions, not admissions. Scholarship review and Honors review are two different things, done by two different offices, so I would not want to guess about an Honors decision.

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  8. For those wondering about the timing of Honors letters: My son got an invitation to apply to the Honors program today, so I imagine many kids got an "auto-admit" letter as well. Merry Christmas!

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  9. mom, congrats on that. What are his stats, for those of us still hoping and waiting for a letter.

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  10. Hi! I am trying to calculate what my GPA that UGA would use is, and I am a little confused. From what I understand, UGA uses the core classes for their calculation and not electives. However, almost all of my elective classes have been "academic electives" such as Business Law, Psychology, Mythology, etc. Would UGA use those classes for their calculation as well?

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  11. To Anon from Mom: 2180 SAT / 3.75 GPA Good luck!

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  12. so to send in out mid-year grade reports, all we have to do is ask the school is send in another official transcript?

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  13. Mom: Congratulations to your son.

    Anon I: Please remember, this is not a site for comparisons of test scores, grades, etc. if possible.

    Larissa: On the application, where the self-reported grades section is located, lists the courses that we do or do not use for the GPA. For the most part, academic electives are considered core academics by UGA (Psych. is a social science class, Mtyhology is an English class), but we do not use business classes.

    Mom: see above.

    Anon II: Yes, you would send in another transcript with the first semester grades on it to get us Fall term grades. We do not have a first semester grade report form any more.

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  14. Happy holidays Mr. Graves!
    I know that you have posted this before, but I am unable to find the post after searching. I was wondering what the average test scores and GPA's were of deferred students. Thank you so much and enjoy your break!

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  15. UGA hopeful: I am out of the office all week, so I do not have access to any specific data. Deferred students were generally very strong, with a GPA average over a 3.60 average (and averaged about 4 AP/IB courses and a strong schedule of Honors/Gifted classes as well). The SAT and ACT scores were very good as well, but I do not have specifics in my memory or at my home.

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  16. Happy holidays!
    I was just auto-admitted to the UGA honors program, and was wondering what percentage of EA applicants are auto-admitted? I heard it is about 2%.
    Thank you so much!

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  17. Happy Holidays!
    I was wondering, does the Honors program gives an Invitation to apply to everyone who got accepted early, or just a select percentage? Thanks.

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  18. Emma and Anon: As I have said before (and above), Honors makes decisions for Honors, so I would not want to guess about their decisions or methods. I would suggest contacting Honors in January if you have specific questions.

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  19. Hello,
    I have set up my UGA MyId account but can't access the email account. Are there problems with the system?? Thanks so much!

    GOOOO DAWGS! Good luck in the Liberty Bowl!

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  20. Kim: I do not believe there are any issues with the UGA email system, but there may be a slight delay between setting up your UGA myID and having access to the email system. If you cannot gain access by Tuesday, email the link off the UGA email page, as the University and staff will be back on Tuesday.

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  21. how are the essays reviewed? Are they read by one person?

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  22. Anon: When we look at an application in the holistic read process, we are not just looking at the essays. We look at everything in the file, from the transcript to the recommendations, the activities to the essays, etc. Generally, the file will be reviewed by at least two readers.

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  23. Lets say I do not have my counselor recommendation form in yet.But I have everything else in my file. Has UGA started reviewing the other components of my file already or would they wait until the recommendation is turned in and look at everything the same time?

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  24. Anon: UGA does not start reviewing your file until everything that is required (such as the counselor rec.) is in the file. I would suggest you speak with your counselor ASAP when you return to school to get it in to UGA.

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  25. Hello. Can you tell me what the reasoning is for UGA to set an application deadline for Fall transfer students April 1st (during their spring semester) and not the middle of May, when they've completed the semester? Are you purposely trying to keep the Fall semester incoming transfer population down? I would think most students would want to transfer at the end of an academic year but UGA makes this impossible. I just don't get it.

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  26. DGraves:

    I was wondering how does UGA calculate the AP classes? I have finished 3 AP classes and I have grades for them on my transcript, but I will be taking 4 more in my senior year. Does UGA take into account all 7 APs or only 3? My senior year AP classes are AP Environmental Science, AP Psychology, AP Literature, and AP MicroEconomics but the grades will not show until second semester and I don't want it to hurt my chances of getting into UGA.

    Thanks and Happy New Year! : )

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  27. I asked this on another section of your blog, but I don't remember where so I will ask it again. Do the teacher reccomedations have to follow UGAs format. My teacher is mailing her's in. Also, I am getting another reccomendation (not from a teacher), does that reccomendation have to follow a particular style as well?

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  28. Anon: We have a large number of transfer applicants, so we need time to review them, thus the earlier deadline. In addition, this does allow for us to manage the size of the transfer class.

    Kellie: We will look at all your AP courses in reviewing your rigor, but we can only look at grades that are actually completed. As for the recommendation, there is not a specific style needed.

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  29. I am kinda confused. So you will look at the 7 AP classes for rigor of curricurulum and the 3 AP classes I did for their grades?

    I just wanted the 7 AP classes counted for rigor.

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  30. Kellie: We will look at all of your courses taken, from 9th through 12th, for the rigor of your curriculum. We will then look at all core grades we receive on a transcript to see how you did in your courses.

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  31. Mr. Graves,

    For clarification purposes will my 4 AP courses that I am currently taking be counted towards rigor?

    Thanks so much for your responses on New Years Day.

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  32. Hi DGraves, I was wondering what the chances of someone with a 480 math score getting into UGA would be. It is a very weak math score, and I am worried for my daughter. She got deferred. Her Reading score was 670 and Writing was 610. Thanks for your help.

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  33. Kellie: Yes, all of our applicant's freshman through senior schedules (through their graduation) will be used in our review of their rigor, so yes, your remaining classes are reviewed as a part of the rigor of your coursework.

    Worried: I could not say what her chances are, even with these scores, as we look at a broad spectrum of things in the next review. As I have said before, the SAT scores are the last of the three academic factors reviewed, and in the next stage, we will be looking at everything within her file (from grades to activities, essays to recommendations, progress to rigor, etc.).

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  34. This probably isn't the most appropriate place to be asking this question, but I wasn't sure where else to do it.

    I was accepted early and have continuously tried to log into the uga mail. When I do so, it goes to a Windows Live page to change the password. Every time I try to change the password it says my password is incorrect.

    Who should I contact about this problem?

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  35. Anon: The help site for the UGA email system is http://wiki.eits.uga.edu/help/index.php/New_UGAMail, and this should give you some insight into any issues, and a contact email as well.

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  36. Why does it take UGA until late March/early April to make admission decisions but other SEC schools make their decisions in mid February or earlier? Just wondering...

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  37. Anon: Every college is different in how they make decisions, and as such how long it takes to make decisions. Some schools (both in the SEC and out) are able to make decisions based on fixed academic information, and thus can make quicker decisions. Others (both in the SEC and out) have to evaluate the overall applicant pool, read a large number of files, and then make a decisions, which takes longer. As you can guess, UGA is in the later group, and it is due to having more applicants than space for admission.

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  38. On the 19th of this month, I will have lived in Georgia for a full year. I hope to enroll in for the fall semester. My status check page says that I am considered out-of-state, and I was wondering if the UGA staff will automatically change my residency status for me.

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  39. Anon: After the 19th of this month, I would suggest you write a detailed email about your residency situation, along with dates and tax information, to admproc@uga.edu. We might also need other documents, but this is a start. This will allow us to more fully review your situation.

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  40. Hi! I am a US citizen studying in a local school in Hong Kong which does not follow the US grading system. Should I apply as an international student? I am also a little confused with the procedures submitting the counselor evaluation form. Do I need to hand it in as well?

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  41. Priscilla: Generally, an international student is someone who will need a student visa to attend UGA, so since you would not need one (being a US citizen), you would not need to complete any of the additional forms needed by an international student. The counselor evaluation form needs to be completed by your school counselor/advisor, and it then needs to be sent in to UGA. At times, due to the distance and time issues of mailing this form from an international location, we will accept it as a scanned pdf attached to an email, so your counselor can email it to admproc@uga.edu along with a transcript.

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  42. Well I lived in Georgia from the time I was born until I was almost 15, but we moved to Ohio. I stayed there for a year and a half and came back to Georgia on the 19th of last year and lived in an RV resort. I started school a few days later, so I shouldnt have a problem, right?

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  43. I just missed the early action decision and I ended up having to apply for regular decision. Everything was listed as received by the end of october, any idea of a date when i will receive an admissions decision?

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  44. Dgraves I hope you had a great holiday. I was just wondering what does UGA see in a applicant who has a B average, great recommendations, good extra curricular activities, and a strong essay, however he/she got a 24 on the ACT's?

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  45. Anon I: Residency is based on a number of things, from where a person lives to where they are claimed for tax purposes, etc. You would want to email a letter detailing your situation, including if you are claimed on your parent's tax return, and what state they claim to be a resident of as of their last tax filing.

    Anon II: As I have said before, we have a small group of RD and deferred EA students who, if they now meet EA requirements (the deferred students would have increased their academic standing through new SAT/ACT scores), would be admitted in late February. All other deferred EA or RD applicants will hear by late March.

    Anon III: I had a very good holiday, thank you! As I have said before, I cannot guess about a decision, but I would hope that your GPA would be on the rise, and that you have challenged yourself, as a B average (generally I would think of this as a 3.0) is very low within the range of admitted students over the years. But again, I could not guess about a decision.

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  46. Im not sure if this question has been asked (sorry if it has). But you say a small group of RD students if they meet EA requirements will be admitted in late February. Do you have any idea What the EA requirements are ?

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  47. This may be a completely stupid question, but I was deferred from EA and I was just wondering if there was any way I could make a housing deposit even though I have not been accepted? My fear is that come late March or early April the dorm building I want will be full.

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  48. Can I get my band director to write my teacher recommendation or do I have to have an academic teacher write it?

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  49. Anxious Student: As I have said before, there are no specific requirements, as it is a combination of core grades, rigor and test scores. I give a heads up when the Feb. decisions go out so you will have a heads up.

    Kimberly: Housing deposits are only accessible for accepted students, so it is not possible if you have not been admitted.

    Anon: We want an academic teacher rec, but you can get a second one from your band director.

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  50. So I have noticed that UGA offers the Coca Cola First Generation Scholarship. I was admitted to UGA but I am trying to decide between UGA and another college. I am the first person in my family to go to college, and I was wondering if I can still apply for financial aid (which I'm assuming applies me for that scholarship) without turning in my deposit that says I am going to UGA. Thanks

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  51. Anon: You have until May 1 to let us know if you are attending UGA, so you have plenty of time to apply for financial aid, hear about any merit scholarships, etc.

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  52. My teacher submitted a recommendation form on Jan 12 but my status says UGA hasn't received it yet. How long should it take? Thanks!

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  53. Anon: Remember, we work off of business days (so weekends, holidays and snow days do not count), and we have only had two partial business days since 1/12. Be patient as we match up items, and I am guessing you should see it on your myStatus by mid-week.

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  54. DGraves:
    From reading this blog I see that a few merit scholarships and auto-admits to the honors college have been given to students accepted under EA-do you know if there are more awards being given out to EA applicants or will more scholarship decisions be made after the regular decisions are made?

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  55. Kelly: I cannot speak about Honors, but there will be scholarship offers made at different points in time between January and April. I do not have any specific dates at all, but there will be scholarships offered during these times.

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  56. will there be august orientation dates for fall 2011? since we are planning to travel abroad on june 2nd and come back july 28th. will there be limited openings for classes that late?

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  57. Mita: We generally have a late orientation session that is in August, and there will be classes available.

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  58. I know that there are a ton of UGA applications to go through, and I am usually a very patient person, but I'm getting more and more anxious the closer we get to April. Typically how long does it take to get accepted or denied to UGA?

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  59. Anon: For freshman applicants, we will have decisions out by late March. They do not trickle out like some colleges that have "rolling" decisions, but will come out at one time.

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  60. What about tranfer students?

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  61. Anon: The Admissions Timelines tab gives you more details on both freshman and transfer admission dates. Generally, summer transfers will hear a decision from about mid-Feb. to early March, and fall transfers will hear from about early March through early May. I would also suggest you review some of my transfer posts.

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  62. Why is it taking so long for UGA to accept me or defer me? I applied early January, and have friends who applied around the same time who have already been accepted. I do not understand why it has taken almost two months and there is still no response.

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  63. Matt: Can you be more specific? Are you a freshman applicant or a transfer? Did you apply for summer or fall? If you are a transfer, where have you attended? Is your file complete, and if so when did you complete it? Did you read the Admissions Timelines page that I suggested above?

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  64. Sorry, I am currently a Freshman applicant. Is it a bad thing if they send the letter late?

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  65. Oh yeah, it was for the fall 2011 semester, and my status says everything is complete.

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  66. Matt: What letter are you talking about? When you ask a question, I need you to be specific. Again, have you reviewed the Admissions Timeline page? Is your file complete? Have you reviewed some of the other posts where I mention the three decision dates?

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  67. I am talking about the Letter of Acceptance/Denial. Everything that is needed for admission is in. It is late February, so it is to my knowledge that the decision should be made soon. My friends who have applied have already been accepted. So is it a bad thing if I have not been informed of where I stand yet?

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  68. Matt: When I suggest you review certain things, it really does help if you review them. As I have written in the Admissions Timelines section;

    * Mid December - EA Decisions released
    * Late February - Admit letters for RD or deferred EA applicants meeting EA admit criteria
    * Late March - Final Decisions for all remaining freshman applicants

    For the December and February decisions, the focus is on the academic areas of a student, including grades, the rigor of a student's curriculum and SAT/ACT scores. For March, we are going through a detailed file reading process that looks at everything in the file.

    As I wrote in my most recent post;

    Do not panic if you have not been admitted in this wave, as we still have a number of files to read and numerous of decisions to make. Final decisions will be made by roughly the end of March, so try to be patient as we finish up the process over the next month or so.

    So you have nothing to worry about at this time, as we are still in the file reading stage of the process, and it takes a while. You will hear a decision in late March, and that is normal. Just be patient!

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