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lewelma

'expressing interest' in a university

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I'm moving to the other thread as my questions are actually way broader than this:

 

Can someone please explain this to me.  I am hearing the idea bandied about, I don't really understand it.  What exactly is ds supposed to do to show interest?  Why do universities consider it important?  Does he have to tour the campus?  (we do live in NZ so this would be a big pain in the neck) Does he have to interview? How important is all this to acceptance? 

 

Ruth in NZ

Edited by lewelma

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Universities want to increase yield, i.e. they want to make sure that the accepted students are actually going to attend.

Ways to show interest: requesting materials, attending events and tour (which is not possible for you due to location), requesting interview (which may be possible if there are alumni of the institution in NZ; the interviews are not conducted by the school itself).

Also, they track whether students log into their portal account that is created once they apply.

Whether demonstrated interest is even taken into account depends on the school. Some schools list that it is a contributing factor; others don't care.

Edited by regentrude
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Ds had one school on his list that made it clear that demonstrated interest was important.  He applied early action and got a deferral that basically said they wanted to accept him but he had to show interest.  He then got waitlisted in the spring with the same explanation.  This school wanted him to visit but I think he could have called and arranged a skype interview and that would have worked.  I think that was the other option they encouraged.

 

Ds literally showed no interest beyond the application.  He just wasn't that interested, lol.  While ds had good stats for this school I think they were correct in assuming he probably would not attend.  

 

I think it is understandable if you can't visit but you can call and ask for interviews, request more info, send thank you notes, etc. 

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Thanks guys, that helps.  

 

When you say request materials, do universities actually send out printed materials still?

 

Logging into account: are you saying that every week you should just pull it up and stare at it?  Starting when?  Now?

 

Thank-you notes?  For what exactly? 

 

When do you request an interview? is that before or after you turn in the application. Who would you ask?

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Thanks guys, that helps.  

 

When you say request materials, do universities actually send out printed materials still?

 

Logging into account: are you saying that every week you should just pull it up and stare at it?  Starting when?  Now?

 

Thank-you notes?  For what exactly? 

 

When do you request an interview? is that before or after you turn in the application. Who would you ask?

 

Oh yes, universities send printed materials. My DD received 40lbs of college mail (we actually weighted it).

 

They will post info to the account; log in occasionally to check if there is new info, or messages. Starting after the account has been created, which happens when the application is submitted.

 

Thank you notes to interviewers or people who spend time to meet with you are a nice touch. 

 

Schools have a process set up for requesting an interview- after the application has been submitted and a file created for the student.

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My ds sent thank you notes after phone and in person interviews as well as after visits if he did anything more than the standard group tour.

 

He won an award after applications had been submitted and he used that as an excuse to touch base with his admissions reps and let them know. He also had multiple transcripts he sent so he ended up calling admissions to make sure they had them and his application was complete.  He requested info about and applied to honors programs.  He had quite a bit of contact with the handful of schools he was most interested in.  

 

He had one school that sent lots of surveys.  How did the application process go? How was your visit? Rate your admissions rep! I reminded him to answer every piece of email like that he got and sometimes we had parent surveys to answer too.  The school that did this was one that gauged interest and he did get a nice scholarship, perhaps nicer than his stats might have dictated.  I think they knew he really wanted to go there.  (He ended up going someplace else but this was his first choice until the end and he showed lots of interest).

 

And yes to the printed mail.  Lots of it!

 

 

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So DS has already created an account at MIT because the admissions person told him to.  DS got an informal recommendation from a VIP in the math community, so I assumed that they wanted to record it somewhere.  But does that mean that ds needs to be checking the account every week or something?

 

In general, I think you guys are saying that the whole interest thing really picks up when you are actually working on applications.  That right now all we need to do is request information. Is there anything else we should do in the next 6 months?

 

I never would have thought about the surveys.  I'll make sure to tell them they are important. Thanks for that

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Some schools take the applicant's level of interest into account, and some don't care at all.

 

Look at Section C6 of the Common Data Set of each university (you can usually find the CDS with a quick google search). You'll see a table ranking the relative importance of various factors in the admissions process, one of which is "level of applicant's interest."

 

Example: MIT's 2016 CDS

Here "level of applicant's interest" is ranked as "not considered."

They do conduct interviews, but they are scheduled after beginning an online application in the fall of senior year. And the interview is not assessing whether the student wants to attend, but rather other factors.

The application for kids entering Fall 2018 won't open till late summer. There's nothing to do concerning the application before that time.

 

Example: Harvard's 2016 CDS

Again, applicant's interest is "not considered."

 

My kids used the common application wherever it was accepted. MIT has its own online application and counselor forms (cannot use common app there). He will have to fill that one out separately, as well as whoever writes his recommendations and counselor forms.

 

I don't know the answer to your question about who should fill out the guidance counselor reports in your son's case, but my guess would be that you do if he's classified as a homeschooler.  I'd give the admissions offices a call and ask them. Both of those schools are very familiar with international students.

 

 

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I've moved this reply to the other thread, so I don't have to explain myself twice. 

 

Thanks Kathy!

 

I'll go check out your link!

 

We've been in touch with MIT admissions, and they were really like 'do what every you think best to represent your student.' Which makes it kind of hard on me, because I don't have a clue!

 

*I* classify him as a homeschooler but technically NZ's Ministry of Education does not because ds is in the correspondence school.  Because NZ has an exam based high school diploma, ds knocked out the exams in 1.5 years while doing a bunch of other courses concurrently.  So DS took the equivalent of 5 AP exams, and now has his high school diploma.  The NZ system does not count any of his university classes (he had to take the high school level linear algebra exam because they would not count his A+ in a second year linear algebra course at the local university), nor will they count his post secondary diploma in music, nor any of his AoPS classes in both math and programming.  Nor of course his homeschooled classes in Mandarin, philosophy, econ, current events, or history.  

 

What I don't want to happen is for him (or me) to get in trouble for calling him one thing when the ministry calls him something else.  Is this a problem?  Also, this is part of what confuses me about who writes the school report?  The school or me? 

Edited by lewelma

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Oh, dear.  Now I have two threads going on. If it is ok with you I'll copy our replies to the other thread and close this one!

 

meet you guys over there.... :auto:

Edited by lewelma

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