It Takes a Team to Read Your Application

I first heard about it from one of the panelists in my Inside the Admissions Office program in October. And then I saw the information published in The Daily Pennsylvanian just hours ago. There is a new wave in how colleges read applications, and it was pioneered at the University of Pennsylvania.

It’s called reading by teams, and as the article notes, it is catching on at other schools, such as Swarthmore College. The approach is a more efficient way to review applications, say admissions deans.

This is how it works at Penn: A team of two are the first readers, and rather than reading one after the other, they read together, discuss the application and come to a consensus. The team refers the application to the admission officer responsible for the geographic region in which the applicant lives, although that step can be skipped for an exceptional applicant. Then the application goes to a selection committee.

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