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Applying to 1st round or 2nd round

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Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 26 Apr 2013, 07:00
Hello,
I am planning to apply to top 20 mba programs this year. My profile is GPA about 3.0 not great, 710 Gmat score on mock, 29 years old. Would it be better for me to apply to the 2nd round rather than the 1st as I am not the 1st tier applicant due to relatively low GPA or generally the earlier the better? I would appreciate your advice. Thanks.
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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 26 Apr 2013, 10:00
project2013 wrote:
Hello,
I am planning to apply to top 20 mba programs this year. My profile is GPA about 3.0 not great, 710 Gmat score on mock, 29 years old. Would it be better for me to apply to the 2nd round rather than the 1st as I am not the 1st tier applicant due to relatively low GPA or generally the earlier the better? I would appreciate your advice. Thanks.


The first round isn't necessary the "top-tier" round. In fact, the second round is often a bit more competitive just because more people typically apply. But, generally, there isn't a big difference for either the first or second round--as long as you apply before the third (or the last round, if it's different), your chances should be about the same. If you already know where you want to apply, I think you should be able to bust out your applications for Round 1. Trust me, it'll be really nice if you have an acceptance before the holidays :)

Also, your GPA may not be fantastic, but it's also not terrible. Since you're an older candidate, the adcoms will probably focus more on your work experience than your grades. I think you should be fine as long as you put together strong applications. That said, make sure to use the optional essay to (briefly) discuss the reason for any low grades, if you have a good one (e.g. illness, death in the family, etc.). If you had a low GMAT quant score and/or low grades in quant-related courses, this might be a good time to consider a summer math course.
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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 29 Apr 2013, 01:55
Hello IB 2015,
Thank you for your response. I would work hard to compile my application to the first round. However I have just started and may choose to apply next year. The summer holiday sounds like a dream plan for me right now. As you say, I'm already quite old. Would being 29 rather than 30 years old makes a big difference?
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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2013, 03:43
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project2013 wrote:
Hello IB 2015,
Thank you for your response. I would work hard to compile my application to the first round. However I have just started and may choose to apply next year. The summer holiday sounds like a dream plan for me right now. As you say, I'm already quite old. Would being 29 rather than 30 years old makes a big difference?


One year won't make a difference. But do try and get those apps in R1. It will leave you a lot more options as you move forward.
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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2013, 09:00
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Hi there,

A good way to look at your application strategy is to prioritize and segment your target schools. Move your priority schools across segments to Round 1 which leaves you with the time and resources to complete them well. Once Round 1 apps are out you can begin prepping Round 2. If you get great news from Round 1, you can stop your Round 2 efforts.

Definitely apply before the last round though! :)

Good luck!

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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2013, 13:30
If you've got the time I'd recommend applying rd 1 for as many of your target schools as possible. Rd 1 is probably slightly less competitive, all of the seats are open, all of the scholarship money is available. And you have the benefit of getting your decisions back sooner rather than dragging the process out forever. If I were doing it over I'd have done that. I'm in April and still not completely sure where I'll be going as I'm still waiting to hear back from one school, and I had to pay a deposit to another school already.
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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 01 May 2013, 06:24
I recommend that you apply in the first round to your target schools if at all possible.

The rounds don't refer to the quality of the candidates. Rounds are established to enable the admissions committee to most effectively manage the admissions process.

Applying in the first round can also indicate a more serious interest on the part of the candidate, and that a candidate has prepared in advance for the first deadline.

Furthermore, if you visit the campuses in the fall, you'll be visiting as an "applicant," not as a "prospect." You'll be viewed through a different lens, and it's likely that you, yourself, will have a different perspective on campus as an applicant.

Good luck!
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Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round [#permalink] New post 05 May 2013, 05:22
Thank you all for the responses. I should be able to come up with a strategy depending on my Gmat score.
Re: Applying to 1st round or 2nd round   [#permalink] 05 May 2013, 05:22
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