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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Pros and cons of applying to early decision universities?

Hey everyone! I'm trying to figure out my college application strategy and came across early decision. Can you guys help me understand the pros and cons of applying to early decision universities? Is it worth trying for my top-choice schools?

4 months ago

Absolutely! Early Decision (ED) can be a helpful strategy for some students, but it does have its pros and cons. Let's break it down:


1. Higher chance of acceptance: Applying ED can increase your chances of getting accepted to your top-choice school. On average, ED boosts your chances by about 1.6x or 60% at super selective schools, mainly because colleges know you're committed to attending and will help their yield rate.

2. Reduced stress: Since ED decisions are typically released in mid-December, an acceptance can mean the end of the college application process, reducing stress and allowing you to enjoy the rest of senior year.

3. Demonstrated interest: Applying ED signals to colleges that they're your top choice, which can be a factor in their decision-making process and might make your application stand out.


1. Binding commitment: ED is binding, meaning that if you're accepted, you're obligated to attend the school. This can limit your options and may pose challenges if your financial aid package doesn't meet your needs.

2. Limited financial aid comparison: Since you're committing to one school, you won't have opportunities to compare financial aid packages from other institutions. This could result in less-than-ideal financial aid.

3. Potentially less time for a strong application: If your application would benefit from improved senior year grades or additional extracurricular achievements, ED deadlines (usually in November) might not provide enough time to showcase that growth.

Ultimately, whether or not to apply ED depends on your specific situation. If you have a clear top choice and you're confident in your application, ED can be a significant advantage. However, if finances are a concern or you're less certain about your choices, Regular Decision or Early Action (the non-binding early option) might be more suitable options for you.

4 months ago

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