Do Students Regret Applying Early Decision to Colleges?


Avery Hawkinson

Students are potentially faced with doubt after submitting a binding, Early Decision application.

As BSM seniors finished up their college search, they were faced with many tough decisions including whether to apply for Early Decision 1 or 2, Early Action, or Regular Decision. For those who were given the option and applied Early Decision 1 or 2, a commonly asked question is, do they regret it?

Early Decision (ED) is a binding contract that requires students to attend the university to which they applied if they’re accepted. Students chose to apply ED for a plethora of reasons including it’s their dream school, it has a good location, and family members have attended the university. “I chose to [apply] ED to SMU because I always wanted to go to college in the south, and both of my older sisters go to SMU too so it was a win-win. I am able [to be] in Texas and be close to my family,” senior Chase Field said.

I applied Early Decison to TCU because it is definitely a dream school for me. I love everything about the school and I knew that’s where I wanted to go,

— Robby Hoyt

Many seniors from this year and in the past have applied ED to increase their chances of getting into the school. However this year there’s a trend of students applying ED solely because it is their dream school. “I applied ED to TCU because it is definitely a dream school for me. I love everything about the school and I knew that’s where I wanted to go,” senior Robby Hoyt said.

On the contrary, a few students applied to extremely prestigious schools and the ability to apply ED gave them a leg up in the process. “I knew if I got in [to Northwestern University] I would go and I thought applying ED would better my chances of getting accepted,” senior Mia Rooney said.

Although ED seems like the perfect option for some students, it may not be for others. After all, it is a binding decision which leaves room for regret after applying. “I think it would have been more beneficial for me to just apply Regular Decision because ED is just a bunch of super good candidates showing how much they love a certain school, it’s hard to stand out in a crowd that already stands out. I also rushed into the ED cycle, I saw other people doing it and started freaking out that I needed to – I wish I would’ve just taken my time with my application and figured out if I truly wanted to spend my next four years at that particular college,” senior Lilia Johnson said in an email interview.