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Submitting The Application: Organize Your Deadlines

Your best bet is to have your application arrive in the MIDDLE of the application season.

Applying too soon can work against you, as the very strongest applicants typically apply early (so your competition will be particularly tough), and the committee is just getting started (so their judgments may be less consistent). Applying too late is particularly treacherous, because so many seats have already been filled and the applicant pool is at its largest.

Consider sending in your application in the middle of the admissions period. By then, the committee has a good sense of what the year’s applicant pool is like and has hit its stride in making consistent evaluations. And there will be many spots available.

The same guidelines apply whether a school uses admissions cycles or a rolling cycle. Either way:

The best time to apply is when you can put in the time necessary to prepare your best application.

Get an 18-month calendar, and jot down all of the requirements of the b-school process. Write in not just the deadlines themselves, but reminders (two weeks in advance!) of each deadline. Include:

  • Exam registration deadlines
  • Transcript deadlines
  • Recommendation letter deadlines
  • Recommendation letter reminders
  • Application deadlines
  • Financial aid forms
Financial aid tasks involve a wide variety of deadlines that you need to control.

These include federal and state programs, as well as those of individual business schools and independent aid sources.

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