Changes in College Admissions

Some days, college admissions seems like its same old routine self. Other days, well, “the times they are a changin’.”

I came back from vacation to discover these changes in the world of college admissions:

* The ACT has given up on its new 1-36 scoring for the writing section of the test. In September, it will return to the old, familiar 2-12 scoring.

* The University of Maryland was going to accept only the Coalition application for students applying this year. Nope! That has been delayed one year, so students will continue to use Maryland’s own application for the 2016-2017 cycle.

This is a very big year of change for rising seniors, who have had to contend with the new and soon-to-be-abolished ACT writing section score, a Coalition application that will be used by some of its members but not others, a revised SAT, the addition of EDI and EDII programs at the University of Chicago, new application questions for the University of California system, a new joint degree between Harvard and Berklee College of Music (, and the FAFSA now asking families to report prior prior year taxes, to name a few.

But as my mom used to say, and as I have long told my now-grown children, change is a part of life. And for all you rising seniors and their families out there, don’t worry. It’s my job for making everything all come together, no matter how the system rolls. We manage to meet application deadlines in good stead and with solid essays that stand out, whether we start working on applications in July or September.

Copyright 2016. Betsy F. Woolf. All rights reserved.