Applying to a college normally entails some uncertainty, however this 12 months’s candidates are addressing one other query. What ought to I do if my pandemic restricts my software to the college?


Many extracurricular actions, together with sports activities and golf equipment, couldn’t be continued through the pandemic. And many faculty districts throughout the nation had been conscious of the challenges posed by the pandemic and supplied the choice to forestall college students from receiving class grades.

With that alternative, some college students had been “passed” or “credited”, “failed” or “no credit” as a substitute of the particular grade on the transcript.

Even earlier than the beginning of the present admission cycle, faculty admissions officers are ready for these adjustments, mentioned David Hawkins, Chief Education and Policy Officer on the National College Admissions Counseling Association.

“Admissions officers have a clear understanding of the challenges these students faced as they gained their own experience,” says Hawkins. “They were trapped like the students.”

So what’s the college in search of now?

As the applying adjustments, so does what the admissions officer is in search of.

Transcripts full of “pass” or “credit” grades is not going to be counted towards you, the admissions officer says. Steve Robinson, Senior Associate Vice President of Registration on the University of Utah, states that the grades listed on the transcript shall be taken under consideration together with the courses you’re taking.

“I think many schools are considering the academic rigor of what students have tried,” says Robinson. “In rural high schools, there may not be many or no opportunities for (advanced placement), but I can say that the students have academically embraced everything the high school offers. There is a passing score. “

As the grading changed, so did the test requirements. Even before the pandemic, universities began to make the submission of standardized test scores such as ACT and SAT an option. Due to the difficulties posed by the pandemic, this practice has spread to more schools.

Outside the curriculum, it doesn’t look the same as it did before the pandemic. According to Hawkins, the way students spend their free time during a pandemic can be an alternative to extracurricular activities on applications, at least in the eyes of admissions officers.

Some applications, including the Common App (a standardized university application accepted by about 900 schools), can provide space for writing about pandemic experiences, such as the challenges faced and new skills.

“The other thing I’ve heard from admissions officers is that they’re happy and surprised, and in some cases, that students continue to be blocked while they’re blocked,” says Hawkins.

Your finest software demonstrates your strengths

A powerful software with the choice to full a specific essay or submit a check rating is the most effective indication of what you have got achieved.

If you have got obtained an ACT or SAT and obtained a rating that may aid you strengthen your software, please ship it to the college you are making use of for. But when you don’t get the rating you need to embody in your software, don’t embody it, says Christine Harper, Vice President and Chief Registration Officer for Student Success on the University of Kentucky.

“We use the ones that are most beneficial to our students,” says Harper. With among the purposes changing into non-obligatory, Harper provides that college students want to look again on all the pieces they’ve performed and current their finest model to the college.

Keri Risic, Interim Managing Director on the University of Minnesota, was compelled to reassess scholar expectations by pandemics as an entire, as highschool college students have totally different entry to regular actions.

Changes to these actions are not thought-about damaging, Risic provides. Admissions officers need to know if there’s something to share in your software that gives an outlook on how you have got skilled a pandemic.

Ultimately, college students might be tailor-made to stand out within the software pool, however the overwhelming message that admissions officers have to future college students is much less fear.

“The university has a complete understanding of its position, so students should be reassured in a way,” says Hawkins. “Give yourself grace.”


This article was contributed to The Associated Press by the non-public finance web site Nerd Wallet. Colin Beresford is a author for Nerd Wallet. Email: [email protected] Twitter: @colin_beresford.

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