Jun 19

How Do Colleges Evaluate Applications?

“The University of Pennsylvania started using a new approach to the first review of applications in 2013. It’s called the ‘committee-based’ system and it is designed to make it possible to review in a new way the massive numbers of applications that competitive colleges receive (at Penn the total is about 40,000)….

In the last two years, Bucknell, Case Western Reserve and Emory Universities and Swarthmore College have all gone to committee-based admissions, and all report that they are pleased with the system. At Bucknell, the process of reviewing applications finished a week earlier this year than in past years….

Context is important to colleges. DaSilva said that Penn wants to be sure it is evaluating both academic and non-academic accomplishments based on what opportunities were available to an applicant. So Penn wants to know if the high school offers every Advanced Placement or honors course possible, or none — and all information about the applicant’s high school is displayed during the review. A team will handle all of the applicants from a given high school at the same time, so that the context is clear throughout.”  To read more about how it works, click here.


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