12 September 2006

Harvard is ending Early Action

My PhD alma mater, Harvard University, today announced it is ending its early action program, which allowed students to find out by December 15 if they were admitted, rejected, or deferred to ther egular applicant pool. (Students then had until May 1 to accept admission at Harvard.)

Interim President Derek Bok says that early action hurt minority, international, and disadvantaged students, and it contributed to the increasing pressures college applicants face.

It seems like a good idea to me. I'm sure that first-generation college students, especially those from disavantaged backgrounds, have less access to the high-powered counseling and assistance that many early applicants have. And, anything that reduces the pressure high school seniors face is a good thing.

I wonder if other colleges and universities will follow Harvard's lead on this?


At Wednesday, September 13, 2006 8:42:00 AM, Blogger Kevin said...

Hey Rebecca, -- I am in the trenches teaching at a private school in Virginia and can't tell you how pleased I am to hear this. I started receiving emails from students in mid-summer requesting recommendation letters for early decision. It creates a great deal of stress and reinforces in the students the idea that a high school education is purely instrumental to getting into the college of choice. I hope other colleges and universities follow this decision.

At Wednesday, September 13, 2006 5:25:00 PM, Blogger Rebecca said...

I'm pretty psyched about it too, frankly. I suspect that where Harvard leads, others will follow. There's really no reason for ED, when you think about it, except the convenience of the college involved. The stress it creates and the disadvantages it reinforces are two major, and I think fatal, drawbacks.

At Friday, September 15, 2006 11:28:00 PM, Anonymous Mike said...

It would certainly be good to see this policy become standard - perhaps this will set a trend along the lines of the Bates/Bowdoin optional SAT policy.

Good to see you up and running again - and I do like the new blog title. It does, however, sound a bit, ummmm, predatory 8-).

Now regale us with a few anecdotes from you first week weeks in the teaching trenches.


At Saturday, September 16, 2006 2:04:00 PM, Blogger Rebecca said...

My students are wonderful and awesome! This means I haven't handed out any grades.

Historianess actually has a reason behind it; shortly to post about that.

At Friday, January 19, 2007 3:17:00 PM, Anonymous aries said...

hi rebeca,
I would be so happy if you check which univrsities is folowing harvard up to day?
I would appreciate your help
I am in during of my apply process and would appreciate any other help through this


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