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Early decision plans are binding — a student who is accepted as an ED applicant must attend the college

Early Decision Plan Description:

  • Apply early (usually in November) to first-choice college.

  • Receive an admission decision from the college well in advance of the usual notification date (usually by December).

  • Agree to attend the college if accepted and offered a financial aid package that is considered adequate by the family.

  • Withdraw all other applications if accepted by ED.

  • Apply to only one college early decision.

  • Apply to other colleges under regular admission plans.

Who should apply Early Decision:​

  • A student who has researched many colleges and knows that this one college is the right fit academically, socially and financially.

  • A student who will not need to compare the financial aid awards of multiple colleges.

  • A student who does not have any reservation around withdrawing all other applications (if accepted ED) and ok with not knowing whether he/she would be admitted or granted merit aid at other schools

Comparison chart of ED-vs. RD-Acceptance Rates was compiled by two Independent College Counselors, Jeff Levy and Jennie Kent

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