As a student pursuing an undergraduate degree, if you have decided to study your Master’s program overseas, the excitement of preparing for the process leads to one common question: When should you apply?
The best response to this question would be this: APPLY EARLY!
The criticality of this answer lies in the fact that an early applicant has the advantages of time, stress-free process, and in some cases, (better) chances of getting admitted into his/her dream college/university.
In an ideal scenario, generally, students opt for the most common application time period, i.e. in the December or January of their final year at school/college. This being the typical application period, there are chances that you may end up being one among the tens of thousands of applicants for the upcoming intake. Having said that, an early applicant is someone who submits his/her college application in the month of November, way before the start of the regular admission process. Those candidates, with impressive test scores and consistent academic track record, are likely to opt for this early application process. Notably, most universities/colleges also take note of this commitment and perseverance in students and encourage them to apply early, leading to positive outcomes in terms of securing an admission.
If a student has applied early, he/she is likely to gain advantages in two ways: early decision and early action. In brief, the early decision option is binding on a student: if accepted, then he/she must attend the college. This is an ideal option for students with a strong preference for one specific dream college over others. On the other hand, early action is non-binding: students get time to reconsider/analyze their choice and accept the offer (till the regular response date of May 1).
Considering these aspects, it is recommended to opt for one of these choices if you have:
An Indian student applying for an international MS program has to go through a complex process, unlike how it would have been, had he applied to one offered in India. It would not be exaggerating to say that the application process varies vastly across countries/colleges/specializations. Additionally, the preparation of application documents such as statement of purpose, resume, letters of recommendations, and essays (in some cases) is time-consuming. Considering these complexities, understanding clearly about the process and following a systematic action plan is important if you have planned to apply early.
From your end starting the application process early helps in devoting more time in perfecting the application documents such as essays and statement of purpose. These are crucial for you in order to secure admission and by thoroughly revising and reworking on the drafts through multiple iterations; you can bring the best out of your profile in these documents.
If you are aiming at applying early, you will get sufficient time to conduct in-depth research about your dream college(s) and shortlist the ones closely following your requirements. It also enables you to explore the details about infrastructure, faculty members, scholarships, and accommodation facilities at the chosen colleges. It is important to note that such details are critical in the process of decision making to choose the most suitable college, which would otherwise not be possible if you are applying in the regular admission cycle.
The application process is detailed and demanding, in terms of time and efforts, as discussed earlier. So, the advantage of getting more time will only positively contribute to the aspect of completing the application process in a stress-free manner without having to rush with every procedure involved in it.
By spending quality time, you can keenly review the application thoroughly and also avoid mistakes that you are likely to commit in the process.
If you are not keen on applying early, you must be mentally prepared for the taxing application process in the regular admissions cycle which will also witness a large volume of students, rushing alongside you, to complete it before the deadlines. There is a high possibility that this rush might lead to server downtime issues and technical glitches on the university website. To completely avoid this, it is absolutely essential to start early.
The biggest advantage of applying early is that many universities are in favor of this option and encourage students to do so. When you apply early, your application gets into the earliest pool of a small number of applicants that gives the admissions committee sufficient time to review it in detail. The level of competitiveness in the deadline application pool is also relatively higher than that of the early application pool.
If you are seeking expert guidance in this process, please connect with our admissions team to start early. We will work with you and guide you in securing admission into the university of your dreams.
We would love to see you spread some love by sharing this article, as it may help many who are looking to study abroad. If you have decided to move abroad you need to work on your entrance exam and conquer it, a good test prep institute like Manya-The Princeton review can definitely help.