Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A Few First Year Applicant FAQ's

It’s fall semester, and questions are beginning to flood in about UGA’s First Year admission process.  Here are answers to some of our more frequently asked ones.

  • I plan to apply Early Action.  What is the last ACT/SAT exam date you will accept for Early Action (EA)?  We will only be able to use SAT/ACT scores for tests taken by the October 15 EA deadline.  For us to receive your scores in time, you must designate UGA as an automatic recipient when you register for the exam.
  • Do I have to complete the essays if I am applying for Fall 2014 as a First Year student?  It depends.  Are you applying for Regular Decision, whose deadline is January 15 compared to EA’s October 15 deadline?  If so, you will complete four short essays for the 2014 application.  EA applicants who do not meet EA criteria and who are then deferred to the Regular Decision process will complete the essays.  Click here to see this year’s essay topics.  Regular Decision also requires a teacher recommendation and allows you to submit your first term senior grades. 
  • When can I apply?  There is early, and then there is late.  The 2014 First Year application first becomes available at the beginning of September.   Please know that, while there is a HUGE penalty for missing our application and document deadlines, we give no admission benefit or prize for being among the first to submit the application.  Take your time.  (Just don’t wait until the week before the deadline when most mistakes are made!) If you submit your application on our September 3 opening date, we still cannot begin to review your completed file and scores until October along with all other Early Action applicants.  All EA decisions will be released in late November or early December.  The file completion deadlines for EA and RD will be one week after the application deadlines.
  • How long does it take to fill out the application?  Most students say it takes longer than they thought it would, so be encouraged by the fact that you don’t have to complete the application in one sitting.  Once you create your UGA “ApplicantID”, you can save your work and come back later to complete the application and make any corrections.  Warning: Once you agree to the UGA Honor Code and choose "submit" at the bottom of that final page, you cannot return to make changes or corrections to your application.
  • What will I need when I sit at my computer to I apply?  Great question!  We suggest you put four documents in your UGA folder:  (1) SSN card, (2) resume, (3) copy of your latest HS transcript, and (4) fee payment information. You absolutely must give us your correct Social Security Number (please proofread it). We ask you to list your honors, activities, leadership, and work experiences which you may have already collected for a resume.  You need to accurately report the college prep curriculum you’re taking and the grades you've earned.  And finally, to complete the application you must give us payment information, ideally for a credit card.    
  • Should I apply Early Action or Regular Decision?  We can’t tell you which decision plan is right for you.  That decision should be made by you with the help of your family and high school counselor.  Read our Regular Decision vs. Early Action page here.

We hope this FAQ helps.  Plan to regularly review our Blog for admissions news and updates or to search for answers to other questions that you cannot readily find in our First Year Student pages.  And Go Dawgs!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Admissions Myths and Urban Legends

Whether we are giving information sessions, visiting high schools, attending college fairs, or meeting with prospective students and families, we are often asked questions about how to apply to and get admitted to UGA.  At times we hear misconceptions and rumors about the admissions process.  We want to make sure that students and parents have the correct information about the University and admissions.  In an effort to dispel common myths, we have compiled a list of the Top 10 UGA Admissions Urban Legends.  Here are a few of the common myths we hear:

"UGA admits a quota of students per year from my high school, county, zip code or state."
The most competitive applicants are admitted regardless of high school, county, zip code or state. There are no quotas assigned to these, or any other, characteristics.

"UGA has different admissions standards for out-of-state applicants."
Admissions standards are exactly the same for out-of-state applicants as they are for in-state applicants. UGA does not have a cap on the number of out-of-state students that can be admitted.

"If I apply Early Action, it will demonstrate to UGA that I really want to go there. Even if I am deferred admission, this will be an advantage in the Regular Decision process."
Applicants deferred from Early Action to Regular Decision do not have any advantages/disadvantages over those who apply Regular Decision. All applicants seeking admission to UGA are offered an equal opportunity for admission regardless of the decision plan.

Read our entire list of Admissions Urban Legends and view a video from Nancy McDuff, our Associate Vice President for Admissions and Enrollment Management here.

Go Dawgs!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Meet UGA Near You

Fall travel is quickly approaching!  During this time of year admissions counselors leave their desks and offices behind and head out on the road for college fairs, college nights, high school visits, counselor programs and other recruitment events.  This means you may be seeing UGA admissions staff on the road!  Be sure to check our Meet UGA Near You page for a list of events we will be attending this fall.  This page is updated weekly so check back regularly as we continue to plan travel and add events.

Georgia students, if you are attending a PROBE  fair you can register  your information online ahead of time!  When you register online, you will be able to print out a bar code to take with you to the fair.  College representatives will be able to simply scan your bar code to capture your information.  This will prevent you from having to fill out a different information card for each college you speak to.

While you're looking through travel schedules, consider looking up who the admissions counselor is for your school and sending a quick a message.   Whether it's just to say hello or to suggest places we visit while in your area, we love to hear from prospective students!

Go Dawgs!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Are you ready to apply?

Especially if you have an older sibling who’s been through this before or maybe your parent happens to be a school counselor, your first question for August 1 might be, are there any changes to UGA freshman admission this year?

Our simple answer is, not really.  Your research will show that we have earned the roles of an internationally esteemed flagship state research university, the oldest in the United States.   Lots of students want to start college in the exciting warmth of Athens.  Over the past two decades we have realized unprecedented increases in the diversity and academic profile of our freshman classes.   UGA admission has become remarkably competitive.  So applying to UGA is—and you deserve—a relatively complex process that will fairly reveal to us your potential for academic success and for contributions to our campus in comparison with an expected 20,000+ other applicants.

One change is that we’re opening our Application for 2014 First-Year students after Labor Day, September 3, instead of late August as in the recent past.  The reason is a bit of caution on our part while we are in the midst of a multi-year switch to a massive Banner student information system version called “Connect UGA”.  It is replacing a legacy system finally showing its age.   Our goal for the change is that you shouldn't notice.

Two other 2014 changes are in the essay topics we require for Regular Decision and a prohibition for applying for Summer, 2014 admission. This year, Summer students will have to gain Fall admission first, then in April request a change to Summer.

The rest of our process is essentially unchanged.   As you’ll see on our First Year Application website, we will still have two routes, Early Action (EA) and Regular Decision (RD). The 2013-14 deadlines for applying—Oct. 15 for EA and January 15 for RD—are unchanged, as is your responsibility for getting us all necessary test scores and supporting documents by our posted deadlines.  All admission decisions will be made before April 1 and accepted students must make their nonrefundable enrollment commitment deposit by May 1.

Please understand that because of the necessary complexity of our 2014 admission process and rolling out the new Connect UGA SIS, deadlines really are deadlines. That part of the UGA freshman application process—for better or worse as older siblings, parents and counselors can testify—has definitely not changed.

And finally, check this Blog regularly to hear the latest hints, suggestions, and updates both large and small on what we hope will be a “Connect UGA” year for all of us.

Go Dawgs!