January 17, 2014 by Admit It!
We Admit It! Reading season is in full swing. We know we’ve been talking mostly about receiving and processing applications of late but what happens once we do receive and complete an application? This blog answers that all important, what’s next question.
Once an application is completed it will be read at least twice from cover to cover. The first of those reads will be what we call a random read meaning the application will be read by someone other than the student’s regional dean. All complete applications are simply placed into file cabinet and pulled by our staff at random. It’s not done alphabetically or by completion date or by school, we just go to the drawer, grab our daily reading load, and go. We do these “random” reads so that each of us can get a more complete sense of the applicant pool and to familiarize ourselves with schools, states and countries outside of our region. This helps to make us more informed readers.
After that first read, the application will get its second read from the student’s regional dean. Each of us, for the most part, has geographic regions that we manage (regions are assigned based on where your school is located, not your home address). This ensures that all students from the same high school will have one of their reads come from the same dean. This allows us to give school and regional context to our application review.
After those two initial reads, some decisions become fairly clear based on the strengths or weaknesses of an individual applicant. There is often a third and final read for those applicants that appear incredibly strong. Oftentimes, the decision is less clear (because so many of our applicants present incredibly strong records). In those cases, the regional dean will elect to reserve the application for a Committee discussion in March. This process unfolds over a course of several months as we continue to read more and more applications and get a better sense of applicant pool.
While there are some complex ins and outs that come into the process outlined above, the purpose of this blog is to help our readers understand the thoroughness of our process. Each of us prides ourselves on the incredibly detailed and fair process that we implement in order to select our incoming class. Every application, regardless of SAT or GPA or any other component, goes through an identical process to ensure that we do in fact preserve a holistic review. We are incredibly proud of the work that we do and the time we take to review individual applications and craft a class. We know that, in general, the admission process is one shrouded in secrecy. We hope this sheds some light on how our process plays itself out during the proverbial reading season.
Wendy Livingston ’03, M.Ed. ‘09
Associate Dean of Admission