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Articles / Applying to College / When, Exactly, Are Application Deadlines?

Oct. 31, 2014

When, Exactly, Are Application Deadlines?

When, Exactly, Are Application Deadlines?

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Several of our Early Action applications are due November 1. By what time on that day does the application have to be submitted? Do you have until midnight, and if so, what time zone? Thanks!

The official deadline is midnight on the actual day that the application is due. So if the deadline is November 1, you have until nearly November 2 to submit the application.

BUT … the Common App is based in the Eastern Time zone, so a student in, say, California, who submits an application at 11 p.m. on November 1 will have a time stamp on that app that says Nov. 2 due to the time difference. However, colleges use YOUR local time zone, and not theirs, when determining if an application is tardy.

But, even so, I urge you to try to submit all applications at least several hours (and, better yet, days) before the official deadline. You can't predict last-minute technical snafus … and the panic they can cause.

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Written by

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone knows the competitive and often convoluted college admission process inside out: From the first time the topic of college comes up at the dinner table until the last duffel bag is unloaded on a dorm room floor. She is the co-author of Panicked Parents' Guide to College Admissions; The Transfer Student's Guide to Changing Colleges and The International Student's Guide to Going to College in America. Sally has appeared on NBC's Today program and has been quoted in countless publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, People and Seventeen. Sally has viewed the admissions world from many angles: As a Smith College admission counselor for 15 years, an independent college counselor serving students from a wide range of backgrounds and the author of College Confidential's "Ask the Dean" column. She also taught language arts, social studies, study skills and test preparation in 10 schools, including American international schools in London, Paris, Geneva, Athens and Tel Aviv. As senior advisor to College Confidential since 2002, Sally has helped hundreds of students and parents navigate the college admissions maze. In 2008, she co-founded College Karma, a private college consulting firm, with her College Confidential colleague Dave Berry, and she continues to serve as a College Confidential advisor. Sally and her husband, Chris Petrides, became first-time parents in 1997 at the ripe-old age of 45. So Sally was nearly an official senior citizen when her son Jack began the college selection process, and when she was finally able to practice what she had preached for more than three decades.

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