5 months ago
Admissions Advice

Can I submit applications through ED and unrestricted EA at the same time?

I know that ED is binding, but is it possible for me to ED to one school and apply through unrestricted EA to other schools. If I am accepted ED, can I just withdraw my applications through EA without any issues?

@unior5 months ago

I have the same doubt. I actually looked up one of the ED agreement forms of a school. You have to sign an agreement that you aren't going to apply to another school with a binding application. Since EA is non-binding, you should technically be able to apply ED to one school and EA to other schools (as long as it's not SCREA). But that's something I'm inferring after reading the document. I hope an expert of this website answers the question.

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Accepted Answer
5 months ago

No, you can not do this because applying ED legally implies that at the time you submit your application you are only applying to this singular school. If you intentionally ignore this requisite rule and apply to another school(s), you are breaking your agreement with the ED school.

Although applying EA allows you to apply to other schools (and EA schools tell you what you are allowed to do), ED schools are restrictive. The caveat is that SCREA schools like Harvard, Stanford, and Yale are single choice schools so if you apply to them, you are permitted to apply to other schools during the RD cycle and in some cases, they still allow you to apply to State Colleges. They just do not want you to apply to other competitors.

Any time you do things outside of the rules, you face the possibility of getting rescinded from both ED and EA schools. One thing that is clear to me is that information you disclose through your FAFSA, CSS or Collegeboard or Act.org may not be 100% secure. What if the school you are applying to ED gets your FAFSA and CSS profile and can see that you have authorized them to send your FAFSA and CSS profile to UVA, Yale, Colorado College, and others that are EA schools. Will they put 2 and 2 together. Will they make a couple of phone calls? Or is it possible that they can see if the other school accessed the CSS profile? I don't know what colleges have access to on their end but you don't want to be black-listed or a persona non grata in the college admissions process.

I've actually watched videos of applicants who did what you said. But I wonder if the youtube viewing audience tipped off the admissions office at the schools they got into to inform them of the ruse.

Again, it's your call but it would be a risk I wouldn't take and I think that everyone responding to your inquiry would answer it the same way.


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