Which Round?

Round 1 or Round 2 – that is the question…
There is definitely a frenzy around trying to submit applications in round 1. So much so that you might wonder what the other rounds are for. If everyone needs to submit applications in round 1, who exactly is being admitted in round 2? The answer: a lot of people are admitted in round 2, and if your application is not ready this October, you should not be afraid to slide to round 2.

All things being equal, round 1 may be a bit of a smarter strategy. At the beginning of round 1, all of the seats in the class are available. At the beginning of round 2, a bunch of seats have already been given away, and you are also competing with those on the waitlist. But then of course, there are those who say that all of the top candidates are applying in round 1 – and you are up against the toughest competition. So then, maybe it is best to apply round 2. Hmmm…this is confusing…

The truth is that the admissions committees know what they are looking for. They have become pretty good at estimating numbers, and evaluating and accepting applicants that fit their criteria. The best strategy is not to play the game of which round, but to submit your application as soon as, but not until, it is ready. Earlier today, I spoke with a client who believes she can raise her GMAT from 650 to 700, but it will mean waiting until round 2 to submit applications. My advice? Go for the 700 in round 2. Always make sure all aspects of your application are the strongest they can possibly be, and then submit. Never sacrifice quality just to get in to round 1.

And with all of that said…I would never recommend round 3. But that is a topic for another day.

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