The Regular Decision Deadline

Class of 2020

Early Decision 1 is long past (and congratulations again to all of our ED1 admits!).

Early Decision 2 just happened last week – for the next two weeks, we’ll be reading those applications to get a quick decision out to our ED2 students.

All told that’s a lot of applications in already. We’re well on our way to building the Class of 2020, but we in the grand scheme we’re only now starting to reach the largest part of the application season. What’s next? Regular Decision!

As you might guess with a name like that, the Regular Decision application deadline is the standard application deadline for schools making use of the Common Application. Whitman is one of those lucky schools, meaning that come January 15th we’ll see the vast majority of our applications come in. In the days following we’ll begin the process of reading those applications, and will aim to have our decisions to our applicants by the end of March. That’s a pretty decent stretch of time, so here are some things to know about Regular Decision to keep you informed while you wait!


1) Unlike Early Decision 1 and 2, Regular Decision is not binding.

Whereas the two Early Decision rounds have the tradeoff of higher admission percentages coupled with a binding nature, Regular Decision is just that – regular. If you’re the kind of student who needs to see the entire range of schools you’ve been admitted to before making a final choice, Regular Decision is the deadline for you!

2) As with Early Decision, every Regular Decision application is read at least twice, first by your area officer.

At Whitman, we want to keep the application process personal. This means that every application which comes in is read at least twice, and the first read is carried out by the officer designated to represent your area. Every application therefore gets the full context and care we can give it, and every student has a fair shot at having their voice heard. Curious who your area officer is? Find out by following this link!

3) Once you have our decision, you won’t have to give us your answer until May 1st.

As part of the Regular Decision stipulations put forward by the Common Application, May 1st is the final deadline for all schools utilizing the Common Application. This means that depending on when we are able to send our final decisions, you will have at the very least one month and maybe more to gather all of your decisions, lay out your information, consider your criteria one more time, and make your choice! Speaking of info…

4) The Financial Aid process is the same for Regular Decision as for both early deadlines.

Is Financial Aid part of your decision criteria? No worries! We consider all applicants need based on the same criteria regardless of deadline, so you haven’t lost out on any chances for aid if you choose to apply to the Regular Decision deadline. In order to be considered for Need-Based Aid, you will need to fill out a CSS Profile and the FAFSA (see our post next week for more info!). Looking for Merit Aid? We’ve got you covered! Every student is in the running for our merit scholarships from the moment they submit their Common Application.

5) You will know your Financial Aid package at the same time as your admission decision.

In the spirit of keeping Regular Decision all about choice and open information, we send each student’s Financial Aid information at the same time as we send our final decision. The information will all be updated simultaneously in your student portal, and will also come later in the snail mail paper packet we send out to every applicant.


That’s all for now! Stay tuned til next week for a more in depth look at Financial Aid deadlines. In the meantime, good luck to all the students finishing their applications! Have any questions? Find your area officer and shoot them an email, or simply get in touch with us at!

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