Paper or online?

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Discus: College Admissions: 2002 - 2003 Archive: August 2003 Archive: Paper or online?
By Sable (Sable) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 12:09 am: Edit

Is it better, do you think, to submit an electronic application or a paper, hardcopy, mail-in application? A penny for your thoughts.

By Guest003 (Guest003) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 12:14 am: Edit

Always go for the electronic application because you get a confirmation message right after you submit. Your application also gets processed faster because its automatically entered into the database of the institution you applied to.

By Ariesathena (Ariesathena) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 01:24 am: Edit

Paper... you can check for errors, make sure the right essay is going with it, request that it be signed for when you mail it, and send in nifty things like cover letters and photos.

Never done the electronic, probably will not... but if your handwriting is terrible, if you aren't organized, or if you're just a computer person, go for it.

By Ickyfoo (Ickyfoo) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 01:35 am: Edit

i say paper, but that's just me

By Serene (Serene) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 03:02 am: Edit

Paper. you can attach whatever you want.

By Rashmi (Rashmi) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 07:18 am: Edit

Many colleges let you apply for free online but charge some money when you send in a paper if you're cheap like me......apply online.

By O71394658 (O71394658) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 09:10 am: Edit

I would probably go with paper if you plan on attaching stuff (cover letters, photos, supplemental materials).

By Morgantruce (Morgantruce) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 09:47 am: Edit

The online application is best suited for the applicant who prefers concise answers and doesn't have much in the way of special circumstances or extra things that she/he wishes to include.

If you're the kind of student who is planning to do a lot more than just checking boxes and filling in the blank spaces with a few words, online applications are going to be a somewhat of a hassle.

There are good online forms and bad online forms--you will not know which you are dealing with until you have several hours invested. For example, many online forms allow you to "save" a page---but if you want to edit anything on that page afterwards, you will have to re-enter ALL the information on that page! Suddenly you start thinking that the paper application isn't so bad when compared to that fiasco.

True computer geeks will naturally gravitate towards the online application--easily spending twice the time of a paper application, but feeling technological superiority over their old fashioned friends. The truth is: if you're really handy with a computer and know how to print/cut/paste, you can do a faster better job with the paper application--and the college might just notice that you have some special skills too!

There is also the possibility of what I call the "hybrid" application---where you do the application online, but then print it out, and before mailing it, have the opportunity to print/cut/paste or otherwise modify it. This method works well---a "best of both worlds" approach.

By O71394658 (O71394658) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 12:40 pm: Edit

Yeah. Downloadable apps. are the way to go.

By Thenarrator (Thenarrator) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 12:50 pm: Edit

I may be mistaken, but can't u apply online and then send supplimental materials? Your reports from school, recommendations, and all the other stuff u don't fill out is mailed to them separatly anyways; y not supplimental materials....

By O71394658 (O71394658) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 01:03 pm: Edit

Yeah, you probably could. But it just has more flavor if its included all in one package.

By Morgantruce (Morgantruce) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 01:08 pm: Edit

Yes. There are many ways to skin a cat. (what a horrible expression!) There are some people that think there is only one way to apply to a college. Other people can think of dozens. Opinions and methods vary greatly. Be nice to your cat!

By Marthpodi (Marthpodi) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 03:15 pm: Edit

Online -- I am a computer person, so it works for me. Also, its easier to keep track of everything and many schools prefer it.

By Clickspring (Clickspring) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 06:43 pm: Edit

Paper because you can add anything you want and there aren't character limits to your responces.

By Tiger1986 (Tiger1986) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 06:47 pm: Edit

I have a question. How do the admissions committee read the applications. Do they read it from the computer screen or on paper?

By Grapeful (Grapeful) on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 07:30 pm: Edit

most likely the adcom prints it out. but that's just my guess.

By Folk_Hero (Folk_Hero) on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 08:17 pm: Edit

So then if you download it and then print it out at home on nice paper because you procrastinated and didn't order a paper app... that's fine too?

By Grapeful (Grapeful) on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 08:46 pm: Edit

Folk hero, I would think that's fine. Otherwise, why would the school offer a downloadble version if they wanted you to use one from them? Plus, w/ the downloadble version, you can type w/o having to use a type writer.

By Serene (Serene) on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 08:51 pm: Edit

virtually no difference between the copy they sent and the one you download and print.. well... the copy they sent will have a torn straightedge. =)

By Folk_Hero (Folk_Hero) on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 08:54 pm: Edit


By Nealp (Nealp) on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 10:22 pm: Edit

online! w/ supplement later if necesary. some of the apps have an extra upload page where you can upload whatever extra information you wish.

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