Study in the U.S.A: Application Deadlines for Top Universities

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    Shahid Baig

    Content Curator

    Timing plays a very important role in the application process for a university or college in USA. A good application takes months to complete. When does an applicant start preparing and when to submit everything, depends on the application deadlines to study in the U.S.A.

    The application deadline for different universities might differ but every university in USA offers 4 types of application deadline options. These are the following:

    • Regular decision
    • Early action
    • Early decision
    • Rolling Admissions

    Under each of the above deadline options, a student can apply for fall, spring or summer semester. Most of the deadlines for fall and summer semester are same whereas spring semester deadlines are mostly not available in the early decision option. It isn’t necessary that each university in USA offers all the 4 options. Number of deadlines offered also differ from university to university.

    Study in the U.S.A: Regular Decision Application Deadlines

    Regular decision Application is the most preferred application deadline among the students. These deadlines usually fall in the beginning of January.

    The most common Regular decision deadline is January 1 and January 15. University of California is an exception to this general phenomena. UC regular decision deadlines fall a bit early on November 30. These can differ slightly depending upon different courses and universities in the U.S.A.

    Most applicants apply in early January and get confirmation about the admission in March or April. One advantage of regular decision application is that a student can apply in as many university as he/she wants.

    Regular Decision Application Deadlines for Top Universities in the U.S.A

    While applying to a University in USA, it is always recommended to submit the application a bit early before the deadline. Usually, Admission officers review all the applications together after the application deadline. However, submitting the application will not overcome any deficiency but it can surely be an indication of you being on top of your game and very much organized

    University Fall/Summer Application
    American University January 15
    Georgetown University January 10
    Boston University January 2
    Yale university January 2
    Princeton University January 1
    Brown University January 1
    Caltech University January 3
    Villanova January 15
    Columbia University January 1
    Harvard University January 1
    University of Pennsylvania January 5
    Tufts University January 1
    Duke University January 2
    Cornell University January 2
    UNC Chapel Hill January 15
    UMass Dartmouth March 1
    Wellesley January 15
    University of Notre Dame January 1
    Stanford University January 2
    Johns Hopkins University January 2

    There are a few universities that whose Regular decision Application deadlines fall in February, march, April, May, June, July and even September. These universities have been listed below. 

    University Fall/Summer Application Deadline
    Abilene Christian University February 15
    University of British Columbia February 2
    Meredith College February 15
    Massachusetts College of Art and Design February 1
    Catholic University of America February 15
    Boston Baptist College March 15
    University of North Carolina at Greensboro March 1
    New Jersey Institute of Technology March 1
    Appalachian State University March 15
    University of Minnesota, Morris March 15
    Berea College April 30
    Georgia College and State University April 1
    Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College April 15
    Johns Hopkins University: Peabody Conservatory of Music April 1
    University of the Virgin Islands April 30
    American University ,Cairo May 15
    Bayamon Central University May 6
    College of Saint Rose May 1
    Texas State University May 1
    University of Nevada ,Reno May 31
    Art Academy of Cincinnati June 30
    University of Alaska Anchorage June 15
    University of West Georgia June 1
    Virginia Union University June 30
    University of the District of Columbia June 6
    Alabama State University July 31
    California Institute of Integral Studies July 22
    Louisiana Tech University July 31
    Manhattan Christian College July 1
    University of Texas, Dallas July 1
    Alfred University August 1
    Cleveland State University August 15
    Georgetown College August 1
    Western Kentucky University August 1
    York College August 31

    Study in the U.S.A: Early Action Deadlines

    Early action deadlines push the application timeline early by a few months. The most common early action deadlines offered by universities and colleges are November 1 and November 15. Students are recommended to go through the application process to study in the U.S.A carefully before applying for the course. 

    Under early action application, a student is either accepted, rejected or deferred. When a student is deferred, it means that his/her application will be revaluated in the regular applicant pool. The results are notified in December.

    There are certain schools that have a restrictive early action application policy that prevents an applicant from applying to more than one school. A few of these schools are

    • Harvard University
    • Princeton University
    • Yale University
    • Stanford University
    • University of Notre Dame

    Early Action Deadlines for the Top Universities in the U.S.A

    Although early action application already bring the deadlines early, still it is always advisable to not wait for the deadline date to submit the application.

    University Fall/Summer Application Deadline
    American University November 15
    Boston University November 1
    Johns Hopkins University November 1
    UNC Chapel Hill October 15
    Princeton University November 1
    University of Michigan November 1
    Caltech November 1
    MIT November 1
    Stanford University November 1
    Villanova November 1
    University of Chicago November 1
    Harvard University November 1
    Georgetown University November 1
    University of Notre Dame November 1
    University of Virginia November 1
    Yale University November 1

    Study in the U.S.A – Early Decision Application Deadlines

    A major difference between early action and early decision application is that early decision applications are binding. When a student opts early decision application, he/she is expected to sign a contract with the school that they would take admission in the school if selected.

    This contract puts a compulsion on students to attend the school if selected. This option is mostly selected by students who are very much sure about their choice. The students opting ED are expected to commit before exploring the financial aid opportunities of the school. The applicant must not depend on scholarships to finance his/her studies if opting ED.

    Early decision application deadlines are of 2 types- ED I and ED II. ED I deadlines usually coincide with early action deadlines whereas ED II deadlines fall in January. Results are notified in February for both ED I and ED II.

    Early Decision Deadlines of Popular Universities in the U.S.A

    University ED I ED II
    Colby University November 15 January 1
    Villanova November 1 N/A
    Columbia University November 1 N/A
    Vanderbilt November 1 January 1
    UMass Dartmouth November 1 N/A
    Duke November 1 N/A
    Bowdoin University November 15  January 1
    Wellesley November 1 January 1
    Brandeis University November 1 January 1
    American University November 15 January 15
    Brown University November 1 N/A
    Cornell University November 1 N/A
    Emory University November 1 January 1
    Johns Hopkins November 1 N/A
    Wesleyan University November 15 January 1
    New York University November 1 January 1
    Northwestern University November 1 N/A
    Tufts University November 1 January 1
    University of Pennsylvania November 1 N/A
    Pomona November 1 January 1
    Smith November 15 January 1
    University of Chicago November 1 January 2
    Boston University November 1 January 3

    Study in the U.S.A.: Spring Semester Application Deadlines

    Spring semester deadlines are mostly available in Regular application option. Most of universities’ deadlines for spring semester admission fall in October or November. But it is advisable to send in the complete application package to the university by the end of August. Sending in the application a month or two before the deadline indicates a sense of eagerness to join the university which has a positive impact on admission officers.

    Spring Semester Deadlines of Popular Universities in the U.S.A

    University Application Deadlines
    American University October 1
    Boston University November 1
    Columbia University November 1
    UMass Dartmouth January 1
    Duke University October 1
    New York University September 15
    Tufts University October 15
    Wesleyan University November 1
    University of Pennsylvania December 1