What is College Demonstrated Interest?
Maryline Michel Kulewicz and Tracy Sullivan of College 101 Admissions Consultants
Many families often ask us what is “demonstrated interest” in the college application process. The best analogy that we have heard to explain demonstrated interest is that it is very similar to social media - colleges love getting the likes! When a student shows demonstrated interest, it enables the college admission counselors to identify students who are seriously interested in attending their school - and colleges love to admit students who are excited about their school. And, for the student it can also often result in higher merit scholarship awards. It is a key factor that looks beyond grades and test scores and it is very easy for the student to accomplish.
Here are a few ways for students to show demonstrated interest:
1. Register for an in-person college information session and college tour. It shows real commitment when you take the time to visit the campus, and it is also a helpful way to see if the college could possibly be the right fit for you.
2. If the college is too far from home, register for a virtual info session and tour. They are just as valuable in showing demonstrated interest to the college.
3. Colleges also offer various informative virtual events that focus on majors, academic programs, financial aid, and admission details to name a few. Make sure you register!
4. Sign-up to attend local college fairs at your high school or in your community. Introduce yourself and ask thoughtful questions. If you engage in a conversation with the representative, follow-up with a thank you email.
5. Contact your regional admission counselor with questions that are not easily answered on the college’s website. You want the conversation to be productive.
6. Plan ahead with questions that you want to ask on a tour, at a college fair, or before talking with a college admissions representative. FREE resource: email
[email protected] to receive some sample questions.
7. If the college offers optional interviews - sign up! .
8. Submit an online request form for information from the colleges you are interested in. Search the college name and the phrase “request for information.”
9. Open emails - colleges will often track which emails are opened, the links that are clicked on and the number of times they have been clicked, and the amount of time spent on the college website.
10. Connect on Social Media - following a college on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter is a form of demonstrated interest. It will also help you learn more about the college’s activities.
11. Be strategic when writing the college’s supplemental “Why Essay.” Colleges often rank this essay in importance above the personal statement. This is the ultimate love letter to the school. So do your homework and be very school specific.
12. Apply Early, if possible. It shows your top colleges that you are serious about attending.
13. Final tip - use the same email address throughout the college search process. It will be easier for the colleges to track!
There are several ways to determine how important demonstrated interest is in the application review process for a specific college. One way is through the college’s Common Data Set. Search the specific college name and the phrase “Common Data Set.” Locate section C7 in the Common Data Set and you will see the complete list of factors the college considers important when making admission decisions.
Remember that showing demonstrated interest in a college has a dual purpose - it not only shows your top colleges that you are seriously interested in them, but you will also learn valuable information about the college to help you determine if it is the right fit for you!
Good luck and enjoy the journey!
College 101 Admissions Consultants LLC.
Email: [email protected].
Phone: (508) 380-3845.
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