Application Deadlines for US colleges and universities

In this section we talk about the application deadlines for US universities and colleges.

In the US, most colleges / universities apply either semester or quarter system. The application deadlines are different for each college / university and are different for each system:

Semester

Quarter

Words of Caution

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Semester System

Fall semester

The period from mid August to December is called as the Fall semester. This is the main semester of the year. Most of the students are admitted in the Fall semester. Likewise, most of the scholarships are also offered in the Fall semester. The Fall semester consists of 16 to 18 weeks.

If you plan to apply for the Fall semester, you should send your completed application packet to the Admissions Office of the University by the end of March of that year. Some Universities have April or May or even June deadlines. However, we advise you that in any case send your application package by the end of March. This will make sure that you are one of the early applicants and your application for admission as well as scholarship will be considered before others.

Spring semester

The period from January to mid May is called as the Spring semester. The Spring semester consists of 16 to 18 weeks.

If you plan to apply for the Spring semester, you should send your completed application packet to the Admissions Office of the University by the end of August of the year before. Some Universities have September or October deadlines. Again, if you want to get a head start for admission and scholarship consideration, you should send your application packet by the end of August.

Summer semester

The period from mid May to mid August is called as the Summer semester. The Summer quarter consists of 10 to 12 weeks. Normally, Summer semester is divided into sessions, such as Summer session I, Summer session II, etc. Each session is made up of 5 to 6 weeks.

Some Universities do NOT give admission for the Summer semester. However, you are advised to check with individual Universities as admission policies are different for each University.

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Quarter System

Fall Quarter

The period from late September to December is called as the Fall semester. This is the main semester of the year. Most of the students are admitted in the Fall semester. Likewise, most of the scholarships are also offered in the Fall semester. The Fall semester consists of 12 to 13 weeks.

If you plan to apply for the Fall quarter, you should send your completed application packet to the Admissions Office of the University by the end of June of that year. Some Universities have July or August deadlines. However, we advise you that in any case send your application package by the end of June. This will make sure that you are one of the early applicants and your application for admission as well as scholarship will be considered before others.

Winter Quarter

The period from January to late March is called as the Winter quarter. The Winter quarter consists of 12 to 13 weeks.

If you plan to apply for the Winter semester, you should send your completed application packet to the Admissions Office of the University by the begining of October of the year before. Some Universities have November or December deadlines. Again, if you want to get a head start for admission and scholarship consideration, you should send your application packet by the begining of October.

Spring Quarter

The period from April to late June is called as the Spring quarter. The Spring quarter consists of 12 to 13 weeks.

If you plan to apply for the Spring quarter, you should send your completed application packet to the Admissions Office of the University by the begining of January of that year. Some Universities have February or March deadlines. Again, if you want to get a head start for admission and scholarship consideration, you should send your application packet by the begining of January.

Summer Quarter

The period from July to late August is called as the Summer quarter. The Summer quarter consists of 8 to 10 weeks. Normally, Summer quarter is divided into sessions, such as Summer session I, Summer session II, etc. Each session is made up of about 5 weeks.

Some Universities do NOT give admission for the Summer semester. However, you are advised to check with individual Universities as admission policies are different for each University.

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Words of Caution

  • Generally, in the US, each college / university sets its own admission policy, including application deadlines. In most cases, the college / university will NOT accept your application if it is submitted after the set deadline. In that case, they will notify you if you want your application to be considered for the next semester.

  • It is always better to submit your application long before the deadline, especially if you are applying for a scholarship / assistantship because most colleges / universities consider your scholarships / assistantship applications on a first come first serve basis.

  • Remember to give enough time for your TOEFL and GRE/GMAT/SAT scores to reach the college / university. Some colleges / universities will still accept your TOEFL and GRE/GMAT/SAT scores even if the scores reach the admission office after the application deadline, as long as they already receive your application form before the deadline. However, that is not always the case, please contact the admission office if this problem occurs to you.

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