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NVM ... That Application is Just Too Annoying!

Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone 3013 replies1112 threadsCC Admissions Expert Senior Member
Recently a high school senior told me that he decided not to apply to a (formerly) front-runner college because he hated the essay options. “Not only did the application look like a big pain at a time when I was already burned out from doing other applications," he explained, “but also the essay prompts made me wonder if the college was really such a good fit for me after all, if this was what was important there.”

Over the eons, I’ve certainly heard tales of many students who eliminated once-loved colleges because the application seemed like too much work or was annoying in some other way.

How about YOU ... did you cut a college from your list because of the application itself?
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Replies to: NVM ... That Application is Just Too Annoying!

  • ntk131998ntk131998 320 replies37 threadsRegistered User Member
    Yes. I was considering applying to Florida State, but I eventually decided that I didn't want to write the exact same things I had just spent so many hours writing on the common app.

    On the other side of things, there were a few colleges I DID apply too because there was little to no work required at all (Washington College)
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  • SouthFloridaMom9SouthFloridaMom9 3416 replies30 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Not the exact circumstance but similar . . . our son never completed his app to a private STEM school because they wanted extensive documentation pertaining to his homeschooling.

    I can understand if a homeschooler has few "outside validated" grades, but our son will have 30+ dual enrollment credits, very solid ACT scores, etc. His standardized test scores are not tippy top, but they're good enough to qualify for merit scholarships at a multiple schools.

    I created a document for one of our schools that laid out all of his homeschooling courses, the basics for each course, etc.; we did not write a paper on our homeschooling philosophy et al.

    We just have application fatigue at this point.

    My son did not want to jump through the FSU hoops mentioned above, but Dad insisted.
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  • HRSMomHRSMom 4605 replies50 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited January 2016
    My S dropped 2 based on Common App fatigue. But one other he just thought the prompts were dumb. It was borderline, I don't think he would have had it been a favorite.

    Good for that senior tho! Vote with your feet. Sadly, the folks making the prompts probably don't represent the school much overall:(
    edited January 2016
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  • me29034me29034 1664 replies81 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    My D dropped two she was planning to apply to RD due to application fatigue. The supplemental essay prompts at both schools required some real thinking and she had reached the point where she didn't want to bother anymore. She had acceptances in hand from her EA apps and the motivation to keep going had left.
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  • marvin100marvin100 8558 replies1247 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I decided against applying to Deep Springs for this reason (many moons ago).
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 77702 replies678 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Lots of essays could be a way for colleges to screen applicants for a high enough level of interest without actually having to look for that when making admission decisions. The applicants who were willing to write the essays to apply have shown a higher level of interest than those who decided not to apply because of the essays.
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  • CCMThreeTimesCCMThreeTimes 281 replies26 threadsRegistered User Member
    edited January 2016
    I was surprised that my son *didn't* say nevermind to a few of the prompts. Write a letter to your future roommate? That seemed difficult to me, when you know you're really writing for admissions, yet you have to seem like you're writing to a roommate without seeming phony by throwing in what you think admissions wants to read. Yikes. Also, that prompt for University of Chicago that's completely in jibber jabber but asks the student to respond in regular English sentences had me flummoxed. Son tackled everything serenely though, and he seemed to enjoy the various challenges. I write for a living, but I'm glad my college essay days are far behind me.
    edited January 2016
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  • bfc2017bfc2017 110 replies5 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    My brother didn't end up dropping Wake Forest from his list completely, but he strongly considered it; he wondered if he really wanted to go to a school that asked you "To Tweet or Not to Tweet?" (Basically, "does tweeting make you vain?") We all thought it was a pretty stupid prompt. I guess Wake just wanted to see if he could take a strong stand.
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  • happymomof1happymomof1 29596 replies172 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    One nephew refused to apply to any place that required an essay. He applied to a home-state public U that guaranteed admission for students with his GPA and ACT score, and that was it. One and done.
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  • Anonymoose3Anonymoose3 791 replies54 threadsRegistered User Member
    I decided not to apply to the University of Chicago after reading their supplements. I looked at the prompts and was able to discern that the school not such a great fit for me.
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  • CCMThreeTimesCCMThreeTimes 281 replies26 threadsRegistered User Member
    That's what my son thought too, @anxiousenior1! He loved the quirkiness of the prompts and thought they reflected his personality so much better than prompts for other schools. His essay for UChicago ended up being his best by far.
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  • ErenYeagerErenYeager 528 replies9 threadsRegistered User Member
    Cornell.
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  • usualhopefulusualhopeful 1615 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Colgate. It wasn't a long prompt, but I felt like it was a really pretentious way of saying "How are you a good fit here?"
    I had already been on the fence anyway, however.
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