With Early Decision, college applicants only have one shot to get it right. After all, applying Early Decision drastically improves an applicant’s odds of admission if you compare the Early Decision odds against the Regular Decision odds. It’s not even close. So we often wonder at Ivy Coach why so many students — not our students of course because we give them better advice than this — choose to apply to schools that they have absolutely no shot of ever getting into in their wildest dreams. In our years of experience, we find that many college applicants apply to extreme reach schools because they don’t want to ever have to wonder if they could have gotten into Harvard with their ridiculously low SAT score and B+ grades. That, in our opinion, is utterly idiotic. We at Ivy Coach can tell you how Dartmouth will rule on your candidacy just about every time out of ten.
Wasting the one card you have in highly selective college admissions so that you can sleep well knowing that you gave a school like Dartmouth your best shot is ridiculous. Great. You find out you didn’t get into Dartmouth and you have to apply to a host of other universities. Wouldn’t it have been quite a lot better if you applied to a reach school that you actually have a shot of getting into through Early Decision? Doesn’t that make good sense? It should if it doesn’t!
Don’t waste your Early card in college admissions. If you’re applying Early even though you don’t think you have a chance, you probably don’t have a chance. So don’t use up the one card in your back pocket. Use it on a school you actually have a shot at but would still be a bit of a stretch. Not an extreme stretch. Just a bit of a stretch. That’s the way to capitalize on what’s in your back pocket. It’s that simple!