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Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
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Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Timeline for drafting college essays?

Okay, so juniors, when are you planning to start writing your essays? How long are y'all giving yourselves to draft, revise, and finalize everything? Just trying to figure out if I'm behind schedule here or if I still have time before senior year craziness kicks in.

8 months ago

Starting early is certainly a wise strategy to ensure you have ample time for revisions and reflection on your essays. I advise students to begin brainstorming and drafting their essays during the summer before their senior year. This way, you can enter senior year with drafts in hand, ready for refining and peer counselor review.

You should aim to have a solid draft by the end of the summer. Keep in mind that the Common Application and most college applications don't open until August 1st, so you’ll have a clearer idea of the specific prompts then. Give yourself monthly goals to revise each essay, and work with teachers, counselors, or mentors who can offer valuable feedback. Ideally, aim to finalize main essays by the end of October, and supplementals by end of November or early December, depending on your application deadlines.

Remember, writing is an iterative process, and it’s important to leave time for multiple drafts. Last-minute essays rarely showcase your best work, and stress from rushing can affect other aspects of your application, like keeping grades up and participating in extracurriculars.

8 months ago

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