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Currently viewing the category: "General Admissions News"
Last week, starting with the January 10 deadline, and this week are filled with the work that sets us up for the next two months. Here’s a quick update on where things stand, now that we have moved rapidly from awaiting applications to reviewing them. We still have a batch of applications that need to be checked for completeness, but we’re working through them steadily and we’ll receive a speed boost this week when all of our graduate assistants will have returned to campus after their winter break. In addition, we’re keeping up with emails, many of which have an attached transcript or other document. All of those pieces are being added to their applications. Please continue to be patient if you haven’t heard about your application, but know that we’re making good progress.
Meanwhile, the students on the Admissions Committee jumped into the (virtual) bin of completed applications last week and got a ton of reading done. The Admissions staff also did a big batch of reading and we’ll have our first MALD/MA Committee meeting of the winter on Friday. Liz and Dan are both at home reading today, and I’ll be reading tomorrow. This will be the pattern for another five or six weeks until all the applications have been read at least twice.
Meanwhile, we anticipate receiving another batch of applications for the late deadlines in February (MALD, MA) or by March 1 (LLM, MIB). Those applications will slide easily into the weekly work flow that will have been well established by then.
And an update on the PhD applications that were due by December 20. Those are all already moving through the reading and review process. They follow a much more serpentine path than the applications for master’s-level programs, but applicants can be sure that review is well under way. The PhD Admissions Committee will meet several times in February and March.
Last, while I’m talking about the applications due December 20, there are the MYFs. Those, too, are moving along. The applications are considered separately from the general MALD/MIB bunch, as they’re evaluated on a slightly different set of metrics, but they, too, will receive all the attention they deserve.
So that’s where things stand. I won’t provide a process update every week — the news would be increasingly dull as we move from January to February to March, doing roughly the same thing every week — but I know that applicants are always anxious to know where things stand, and now you know!
This week started with frosty cold temperatures that preserved last weekend’s snow. In the office, answering questions and processing applications was the primary activity. Only a few days later, the outdoor temperatures have risen, rain has washed away the snow, and I’m throwing myself into a pile of applications (virtual pile, that is — we read online) for the first time in this round of the process. Reading applications at home is a weekly adventure for the Admissions staff.
Warm weather outside makes me a happy reader inside. On an ordinary January reading day, way too much mental space is consumed by keeping myself warm. Today, it’s comfortable inside and I can focus only on the applications. That, and a cup of coffee, which is now ready. Back to reading!
Welcome to the other side of the January 10 deadline — the side where all the work shifts from applicants to Admissions staff. Nearly all the work, that is. If you haven’t already received an email saying your application is complete (and most of you who applied yesterday haven’t), then you’ll need to stay on top of this until you finally hear from us.
To that end, here are the instructions for tracking your application.
AFTER YOU SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION, your Application Status page will display the information you need to track your application.
To access your Application Status Page you can either click the “Start an Application” link on the Admissions website or save the application link. You will login with the email and password you used when you created your application.
How Do I Know If My Application is Incomplete or Complete?
Even after you have submitted all the required materials, your application will wait until a staff member has reviewed each document to check that it is correct and legible. Only then is the application considered complete and ready to be reviewed by the Admissions Committee. Your Application Status page displays the most up-to-date information on your application status. Please allow us up to 10 days after we receive your materials to update your record. It isn’t that checking each application takes a long time, but there are a great number to review and we want to get it right.
Your application will be marked as incomplete if we find that items are missing, your transcripts are difficult to read or not translated into English, or your application fee has not been received (with the exception of fee waivers). If we are missing materials or cannot read application documents, we (Fletcher Admissions) will contact you.
Fletcher Admissions will also send you a confirmation email when all of your application materials have been compiled and your application is ready to be reviewed by the Admissions Committee. Once your application is complete, there’s nothing more you need to do (except wait).
Please Note: Whether your application is processed first or last has no bearing on your admissions decision. But you do need to ensure that you have sent us all the needed materials.
When Will I Receive My Decision?
Decisions will be released toward the end of March. We will send a message to the email address you used on your application. March decision information will also include details about scholarship awards for students admitted in March or in December (Early Notification).
If you have further questions, please email us or call us at +1.617.627.3040.
Please use the email address that you included in your application on all email messages to the office. We try to respond to every message on the same day we receive it, but due to the large number of emails we receive, it can take several days for us to reply to you.
This part of the admissions process certainly requires some patience. Whether you’re waiting for confirmation your application is complete, or for the answer to a question, or for your decision to arrive in March, you can be sure we’re working as hard as we can to make everything go quickly and smoothly. It’s in the interest of the Admissions staff, as well as that of our applicants.
Well, we’re down to the final hours, my friends. Though hundreds of you have submitted the applications that already are keeping us busy, an even greater number have applications that, whether complete or not, have not been submitted. If you’re one of those down-to-the-wire people, holding until as close as possible to 11:59 p.m. EST (UTC-5) tonight, be sure to keep your eye on the clock.
Remember that, to meet the deadline, you need to submit all the parts of the application that you control. DO NOT hold your application for recommenders or for test scores. (On the other hand, do make sure your recommenders are well aware of the deadline.) If you are still waiting for an official transcript to arrive so that you can upload a copy, send us whatever you have now, and send the official version when you receive it.
Remember to proofread your essays and double check that you have answered all the questions. And then…click submit, take a deep breath, and settle in for a ten-week wait.
We’re all back in the office for the first time in 2017 and, aside from catching up on our own stuff, the order of the day is answering questions that have been arriving by email and phone. Cindy, one of our graduate assistants, is doing much of this work for us. Most of her answers (the part of the conversation that I can hear) amount to: Submit your application on time and you’ll be fine, so long as that test score, recommendation, or whatever, arrives shortly after the deadline. I expect the flow of these questions to continue through today and tomorrow.
Please remember that the deadline is tomorrow, January 10, at 11:59 p.m. EST (UTC -5).
The Admissions Office (along with the rest of Tufts University) is closed today. For your application question planning pleasure, please note that the office will be closed on these dates:
Friday, December 23 (today)
Monday, December 26
Friday, December 30
Monday, January 2
In addition, note that the staff will be meeting away from the office on Monday, January 9. We expect to have one of our graduate assistants available to answer last minute pre-deadline questions by phone or email.
Happy holidays to everyone!
Final exams officially end today, but students have been heading off for winter break since before last weekend. Curious about where folks are traveling? Our Coffee Hour list gives you a good indication. And also an invitation! If you will be in one of the cities on the list, you’re invited to join a Fletcher student or recent alum for conversation over your preferred hot beverage.
Details are still being finalized for some locations, but we hope you’ll plan on joining us if you can. Register from the website for coffee in any of these cities.
Tagged with: Coffee Hours
Like Oscar and Felix of The Odd Couple, the two programs with a deadline today are an unlikely pairing. Our youngest applicants — those who apply to the MALD or MIB programs through the Map Your Future pathway — and our academically most advanced applicants — those aiming for the PhD program — are in the final stages of application preparation, if they haven’t submitted their materials already. And just as the two programs are different, our reasons for assigning them this December 20 deadline have little in common.
PhD applications face a particularly long review process, involving not only the PhD Admissions Committee, but also potential faculty advisors. Every admitted PhD student needs to be assigned an advisor at the point of admission and it’s meant to be a relationship that continues throughout the student’s time at Fletcher. All this review takes time and we realized years ago that the process would go more smoothly if we started the clock ticking earlier, though PhD applicants are notified of the decision on their application at the same time as everyone else.
For Map Your Future applicants, our thinking was simply that we wanted to be able to offer a little extra time for pre-application communication/counseling and that’s easier to do in December than it is in January.
A quick check this morning showed me that we already have quite a few PhD and MYF applications ready to be reviewed, and many more in another phase of preparation. For those still adding the finishing flourishes to their applications, you have until 11:59 p.m. EST (UTC -5) tonight.
Early Notification applicants will know by now that we have released decisions on all of the complete EN applications.
To those who were admitted, congratulations! Learning in December that you have been admitted is a great opportunity to plan for your graduate studies. Members of the Admissions staff will be reaching out to you and you’ll have plenty of opportunity to ask your questions. Working with you throughout the early spring is a welcome reminder for the staff that the applications we’re toiling over represent future students!
But today I’m really writing for those who weren’t admitted. To those who were denied admission, please let me say that we’re sorry to make these decisions, but we hope it will help you craft your strategy on where to apply in January. Later in the spring, you will also be welcome to request feedback on your application.
This post is really for those applicants whose applications were deferred for review in the spring, a good news/bad news situation. The bad news is the lack of happy admissions news, but the good news is that you still have the opportunity to try to bring about happy news in March. Our Admissions Committee will gladly review an update to your application! But what makes a useful addition? Here’s a list of updates that we particularly value:
- An updated transcript that reflects grades received since you submitted your application;
- New standardized exam (GRE, GMAT, TOEFL, IELTS) score reports;
- A revised résumé that includes information on a new job position;
- An additional recommendation that sheds light on an aspect of your background you weren’t able to illuminate in other parts of the application.
Before I go on, I’ll emphasize that no one is required to submit an update. Not at all! But you are invited to submit one, and why would you turn down this opportunity?
What type of optional update is best for you? Well, let’s start with the parts of your application that you know are weakest. Are those aspects something you can improve on? For example, did you decide it would be better not to mention the causes of your weak undergraduate semester? I’d encourage you to explain it, particularly if it pulled down your overall GPA. Did you indicate that your language skills are not strong enough to pass our proficiency exam? Send us information on your plan for achieving proficiency before the end of the summer. Did you mistype your years of employment at a certain job, making it look like you were there for two months, rather than four years and two months? You can make that correction now. And, if your GRE/GMAT scores were significantly lower than you expected, you may want to take the test again. (Note here that I’m not telling you to take the standardized exam again. I’m suggesting that you consider if you could have done better and, if so, that you make that decision for yourself.)
Another suggestion: If, upon reflection, your essay didn’t state your goals as clearly as you would have liked, send us a clarifying email! We won’t substitute it for your personal statement, but it will certainly be reviewed. This could be particularly helpful if you’ve taken steps to learn more about your ultimate career goal.
Possible additions to your application need not be limited to what I’ve listed above. The key question to ask yourself is: Does this actually add anything? If the information is already included in your application, then there’s there’s not much value in sending it again. (An additional academic recommendation will add little to an application that already includes two.) On the other hand, a professional recommendation will add a lot to an application that only includes academic recommendations. Think it through before you flood us with info, but don’t hesitate to send us something that will give your application a happy bump.
Whether you were offered admission this week, or you were told we’ll reconsider your application in the spring, we look forward to hearing from you and to working with you during the coming months. Please be sure to contact us with your questions.
Tagged with: Early Notification
Though there’s a lot of overlap in the work done by each member of the Admissions team, we also have the projects that belong primarily to one or the other of us. For me, in addition to writing/editing the blog, that would include coordinating the Admissions Committee for the MALD and MA programs. The responsibilities start with hiring the students who sit on the committee (along with Dan this year) and continue through gathering feedback at the end of the process. Along the way, everyone plays a role. For example, Theresa ensures we’re fed and caffeinated (important!), Lucas “drives” the computer from which we see the application under discussion on the screen (and provides the behind-the-scenes details we need), and today, Liz is making it possible for one committee member to phone in. My most important role this morning was to pick up the cookies that will go with the coffee.
Bringing together a group of students, staff, and faculty is both easy and difficult. We all do our jobs, naturally. But what we want is for students to feel comfortable expressing their views to professors who may be teaching them on other days, and for the professors to value the students’ unique perspective on the community. A little conversation over coffee and lunch goes a long way toward bringing us together as more than a group of individuals. And now I’m off, cookies at the ready, for our first committee meeting of 2016-17.
Tagged with: Admissions Committee
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