College Waitlists: Everything You Need to Know
When a college application isn’t rejected but not accepted either, it is placed on the waiting list. Unfortunately, students are often left in limbo when they’re placed on the list. Many aren’t sure whether to apply to other colleges or hope for the best. It is, however, important to understand what it means to be placed on the waiting list so that you can make an informed decision.
How the Waiting List Works
Universities and colleges want full classrooms for every subject; however, they can only estimate the number of students that’ll enroll based on the volume of applications received. So, school admission officers will send out acceptance letters to those guaranteed a place. However, the school creates a waiting list so that if their enrollment numbers are lower than their original estimate, they can move some students from the waitlist.
What Options Do You Have?
You have several options to consider when you are placed on a college waiting list, those include:
- Declining the Spot
You’ve likely applied to several universities. If you’ve been accepted elsewhere, it’s best to decline the spot on the list. It’s best to inform the school of your decision; they will remove your name from the list which allows other students to enroll. It’s good manners too.
- Be Patient
You can choose to remain on the list if that is your preferred school. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee you’ll be accepted. You need to be patient and wait for the outcome. If you are worried your application won’t be successful, you could look elsewhere to see what options are available.
- Improve Your Chances of Getting Moved Off the List
There are no guarantees of admission, even when you’ve been on the waiting list for a considerable period. Of course, there are things you can do to get moved up the list or even accepted. For example, you could write a letter to the college and show your renewed interest to study there.
Is There a Chance of Being Moved Off the Waiting List?
Students get dejected when they look at the waitlist acceptance rates; however, every school is different. Some acceptance rates are better than others; some fluctuate, so while it might look hopeless, there could be a light at the end of the tunnel. You have every chance of being moved off the waiting list. If enrollment numbers are low, you have a greater chance too.
College waiting lists are incredibly frustrating but look at it in practical terms. You haven’t been accepted by the school – however – you weren’t rejected either. It’s annoying because you’re in limbo; don’t lose faith though, you could still be taken off the waitlist. Of course, you need to actively push your case and look at other options too. For instance, research and apply to other schools you’re interested in attending.
It’s smart to keep your options open, even if you’re accepted by the school.