back to questions

REA vs EA at Multiple Colleges

, [edited]

Hi, I have a bit of a dilemma.

So I am wondering whether it is more beneficial for me to apply REA at a school I have only a 20% chance at, or to apply Early Action to a mix of reach, target, safety.

My options:


- Stanford (20-24% chance)

However, I cannot apply early to other colleges.

Early Action:

- Northeastern (66-71% chance)

- Santa Clara University (93-95% chance)

- CalTech (24-30% chance)

I don't have dream schools, as I feel these are detrimental to my mental health, but my top choices are SLO and UC Berkeley, both of which only have regular decision. I feel like getting at least one acceptance letter before February would be beneficial to my mental health, but I feel like I'm missing out on a chance at Stanford if I don't apply REA.


1 answer

answered on[edited]
Accepted answer

Hey I think we answered this before but to be honest it comes down between Caltech and Stanford for me. SCU you will almost certainly get into regular decision and Northeastern you have a very good chance at, so you’ll probably also get in regular decision. IMO Caltech and Stanford are of near equal prestige and difficulty, and since you have similar chances of getting in i would pick the one you want to go to more/feel more comfortable at.

My honest recommendation, however, is that if you can you should apply early to a school you have 30-50% at, so you are most likely to be accepted early. 24% even when doubled to 48% aren’t that high chances so it’s a really risky game. If you’re up for the gamble then go for it! just keep in mind that even with EA/ED you might not be strong enough to be accepted the early round. Might be safer to pick a school that you’re likely to get into early that is still prestigious and good for you.

I am aware that you’re nonbinary also so i am not sure how your gender plays into it (or that it’s disproportionally skewing your chances on CV) but assuming that your chances are based mostly on your academic profile, you really can do anything. Not sure if your gender will play until how you’re viewed/evaluated by colleges very much (i’m cis afab) but JUST going off of what you’ve said and ur other questions I honestly recommend applying go a school in the middle ground of that easier than Stanford/Caltech but harder than NE. This is just my advice and i hope it helps you make an informed decision

Edit: you seem to really want to attend stanford and would have FOMO so i’m leaning more towards you applying early to Stanford

I tried with my sex as well... my chance for Stanford/CalTech goes to the 15-20 area and NEU goes down to 56-61%. SCU is still a safety.
Really the only schools with that 30-50 range are Harvey Mudd (I can't afford it), and UC Berkeley/USC (neither has early action/decision).
Hmm... I would do the multiple schools. 15% is really tough for early and imo not a good choice since it’s a big gamble. Best of luck
I ended up doing rolling admissions at 2 schools, EA at 2 schools (including REA at Stanford): I got into Pitt and CO Mines through Rolling and rejected from Stanford :)... Georgia Tech takes a while longer