Are College Applications Due on the Deadline or Before?

So you ask, are college applications due on the deadline or are they due before the deadline? The simple answer is that your applications are not technically due until 11:59PM on the date of the deadline that is posted on the applications.

The question you really should be asking is “When should I submit my applications, by the deadline or prior?”

As I have stated in many of my blogs, the early bird has the best opportunity to get the worm. This means that you shouldn’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today, so take your college application process seriously and give it its due time and attention.

Don’t stress over deadlines. Submit your applications way before those deadlines draw near.

In reality, I don’t pay attention to deadlines, which many of you may say is insane, but I don’t. That doesn’t mean I don’t know what the deadlines are, but with the students that we work with in enough time, we start working with them on their essays and applications right after the end of their junior year of high school. The goal is to have all of their work done prior to then, even before heading back to school in the fall.

Why is this? Well, it’s two fold. One is that when you head back to school in the fall, you are busy! You have your schoolwork and also your extracurricular activities. Your plate becomes very full. We find that once a student heads back to school their college work slows down to a sloth’s pace and sometimes gets put on the back burner. To alleviate that problematic situation, we want our students to complete all of their application and essay work prior to the first day of school and submit their applications. It definitely can be a challenge, depending on the number of supplemental essays that a student needs to write, but if we all put in the effort we can make it happen.

So how does this all fit in with “are applications due on the deadline or before?”

Well, it depends whose deadline you are speaking of. For the majority of our students, pretty much close to 90% of them, they have submitted at least one of their applications, and for most, many more, prior to the end of August. And I would say close to 40% – 50% are completely submitted to all of their schools. That is because we implement a deadline for our students to get everything completed by the end of August so they are able to submit their applications. The college’s application deadline may be November 1 for early action or early decision, but we look to assist our students to submit their applications WAY before then! And as far as the regular decision deadlines, unless we get someone so late in the process, that deadline doesn’t even come into the equation. Submitting by the regular decision deadline is so far in the future, our students submit their applications WAY before then.

What is the bottom line when it comes to college application deadlines

I’ll say it again. Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today. Start on those applications right after your junior year in high school ends and work through the summer to get all of your college application work done. Submit your applications before you head back to school and you will feel great that you did so when you walk into school that first day and your friends are pulling their hair out thinking about the work they need to do for their college applications. You can sit back and begin to enjoy your senior year.

oking for help with the college search and application process? eW e elp students and families through the entire college planning journey – from search, applications and essays to interview prep, financial aid consultation and final school selection.

Contact us at or by phone, 845.551.6946. We work with students through Zoom, over the phone and by email.