Online College Applications – Pros, Cons And Insider Tips

Applying to colleges or universities is an exciting milestone for many high school graduates; yet far too often, the application process itself becomes frustrating and intimidating.

Faced with a myriad of information via booklets, forms and well-meaning but often misguided parents and peers, things can become a bit overwhelming.

Thankfully, the days of huddling over a typewriter with whiteout in hand have been relegated to the past. The modern-day offices of higher education not only accept electronic applications, but also encourage them for their mutual convenience and ease of use.

Electronic College Applications are becoming increasingly popular with higher learning institutions and students alike because of their contribution to a better level of customer service.

Electronic applications give both student and faculty an easier method of tracking the status of applications and of determining financial aid status. This results in a more time efficient method by providing immediate confirmation of receipt of applications and real-time status of its progress.

By taking advantage of a streamlined electronic entrance application system, institutions are realizing a marked increase in labor savings, which may lead to becoming a determining factor in helping to offset the high cost of post-secondary education.

Although electronic college applications are hitting the main stream at a progressive rate, there is still a modicum of fear by some that electronic filing does not offer the security or personal touch of hard copy applications.

Most institutions are largely allaying these fears by their rollover to more technologically adept software that makes electronic applications safe and secure.

By offering dedicated as well as generic applications online, some institutions provide students with the option of using the same information for various applications.

In addition to paving the way for a more seamless entrance application process, alot of colleges and universities have waived application fees for those students who opt to use the electronic application method.

However, there still remains a bit of grey area regarding the electronic online application process. There have been reports of an increased error ratio on electronic applications when compared to traditional paper submissions.

Once again, many of the higher learning institutions are attempting to address this problem by streamlining their forms while offering how-to advice that students can readily understand and use more efficiently. Careful consideration is being given to utilizing software that reduces the chances of a student’s online application being lost in cyberspace.

The diligent approach to eliminating online application errors, while being of the utmost concern, is not the only drawback to the universal acceptance of the electronic application process. Students’ access to technology, their level of technological expertise and their cultural backgrounds may militate against the successful completion of online applications.

This too is being addressed at the entrance level with more and more institutions offering viable alternatives for students who may not be as familiar or comfortable with the internet as a valuable resource.

University and college Registrar offices always have staff available to offer advice and support to all incoming students. For those who prefer a hands-on approach when completing their college entrance applications, the option of filing their application manually is still encouraged.

If you decide to go the online application route, here are some crucial tips to guide you:

1)The essay that is attached to a college application is vital so don’t rush it. You will more than likely need to write several drafts before submitting it. It is also vital to use proper grammar when writing it.

2)Proofread your work carefully. Minor proofreading errors can make a poor impression on admission officers. Print out online applications and proofread it since it can be hard to spot errors on the computer screen

3)Contact the admissions department if you need to ask questions concerning your application. Don’t assume anything. This is your future we are talking about so there is really no such thing as a silly question.

4)Don’t submit the generic applications to a number of different colleges even though this option is available. Treat it like a job application in the sense that just as every company is different, so is every college. This will have a more positive impression on the admissions officers who want to know that you have taken the time to know their college.

5) Don’t wait until the 11th hour to submit your online application. Put some thought into what you are writing. Furthermore, an unexpected computer crash could derail a last minute application resulting in missing the deadline. It is better to give yourself adequate time to finish and submit the application.

6)Double check to make sure your college application was received. Many colleges will issue you a password so you can check the status of your online application realtime.

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