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If you plan to apply to college, you may wonder if early decision is really worth it. However, before taking another step, you need to understand the difference in early action and early decision fully. 

Early action is non-binding, and you are not required to say “yes,” but early decision is binding. You must say “yes,” and withdraw any other applications you have submitted. 

While this is true, there are still some reasons that make early decision a smart option for some college applicants. Keep reading to learn what these reasons are. 

The Top Reasons Early Decision Makes Sense 

Some of the top reasons that early decision may make sense for your college application process can be found here. 

Fewer Applicants in the Early Round 

There are fewer applicants during the early admissions round. In some situations, there are eight to 10 times fewer applicants during this stage. This means your teacher recommendations, essays, application, and other materials are looked over more carefully by actual admissions officers, rather than outside readers. 

It Is the Right Time for “Academic Superstars”

Along with there being fewer applicants during this early admission process, athletes and legacies who may be on the lower side of things academically usually do not apply at this time. If you are strong academically, it means you can outshine other applicants during this phase. 

To put it simply, the regular application round is more competitive, with most of the top students in the nation waiting until this time to apply. The earlier round is weaker overall because of the legacies, recruited athletes, and the “reach” applicants

The College Sees They Were Your First Pick

When you apply early decision, it lets the college know that you selected that school first – before any other. It also shows you love the school and are willing to make a commitment right then. This means that if a student is “on the fence” for acceptance, some admissions officers will move forward and accept the student during early admissions but not in the regular application round. 

Deferred Considerations 

If you are deferred in an earlier round, it means you likely would have been rejected during the regular round. This means you lose nothing. Also, as a deferred student, you have the chance to send updates with new scores, awards, grades, and more. Also, approximately five to 15% of deferred applicants (all depending on the school) will wind up being accepted in the regular round. The most significant benefit is that the school is aware they are your first choice, which was shown during the early decision application. 

Does Early Decision Make Sense for You?

Deciding to submit your application for early decision is a big step. If you are still unsure if it is the right step for you, consider working with a consultant. Someone with experience handling and helping with college admissions can ensure you make the right decision for your education and your future.