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Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 12/06/2011

Admissions 101: Is early decision here to stay?

It's early decision anxiety time. A student walks on the University of Chicago campus which offers early action, but not early decision. (Tim Boyle - Bloomberg)
A decade ago I wrote many stories and columns about the early decision form of college admissions: the applicant promises to attend a college if she is accepted early, before Christmas. Many college admissions people thought this gave an unfair advantage to wealthier students. They were better able to understand the rules. They were more attractive as future generous alums. They did not need to wait to see if other schools gave them bigger financial aid packages.

We don't hear those complaints much any more. The system has worked for many people. (All three of my children took advantage of it.) It gives colleges more control over their admission process. Do you see any unresolved problems? Should we accept early decision as an established practice, like use of the Common Ap, or are there flaws we are overlooking?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Related story:

Guest post: A more relaxed approach to Early Decision

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