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Tagged: Demonstrated interest

Demonstrated interest: what’s it all about?

September 4th, 2018

Have you ever had to choose someone to help you with a project or become a member of your team, and found yourself leaning towards the person who shows more interest and dedication to the task?

Many colleges act the same way. 

Assessing a student’s “demonstrated interest” has become one of the best ways to gauge an applicant’s likelihood of enrolling if admitted.  We’ve discussed the importance of demonstrated interest in the past and we continue to encourage students to develop connections with admission counselors at colleges they’re considering seriously.  

Demonstrated interest comes in many forms and is not restricted to campus visits.  Web chats, information requests, even sending official test score reports can signal your interest to a college.

Many schools are looking for students to initiate contact with their admissions office.  Seniors can demonstrate interest in the coming weeks by meeting with visiting college admission representatives in their schools and at locally-held gatherings, or emailing the admissions office to find out if and when they will be in the area.  Juniors can do the same.

It’s important to note that not all colleges use demonstrated interest as a factor in admission decisions.  Colleges offering admission to only a single-digit proportion of applicants, for example, do not generally encourage such contact.  However, if a school strongly encourages campus visits or offers campus interviews, your level of interest will probably be taken into consideration.  As always, it is important to be genuine in your communication with admission staff and be yourself.  

Here’s a great article to tell you more.

Article referenced below published on May 21, 2018 by US News, written by Kelly Mae Ross

In addition to reviewing transcripts, essays and test scores, some college admissions officers look at whether prospective students have shown enthusiasm and curiosity about a school during the application process.

In the admissions world, this is what’s known as demonstrated interest.

In a 2017 report from the National Association for College Admission Counseling, 13.7 percent of colleges surveyed rated demonstrated interest as having considerable importance in freshman admissions decisions. Another 25.5 percent said it was of moderate importance.


Read more at US News >>

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More on demonstrated interest

October 30th, 2017

You may have heard the term “demonstrated interest” in reference to college admissions – we’ve probably discussed it – but are you still wondering what it means and how important it is during the admissions process?  

You’re demonstrating interest when you show a school that you’re willing to engage and there’s a true possibility you’ll choose to enroll.  It can come in the form of campus visits, interviews, attending college meetings at school, communication with admissions counselors, and interaction on colleges’ social media sites.  Your demonstrated interest can be of great value to an admissions office when comparing two similar candidates.  

Not all colleges consider demonstrated interest, though.  Schools with minuscule acceptance rates and sky-high yield rates (Ivies, MIT, Stanford, etc.) don’t need to pay attention to this as they know just about everyone wants to enroll.  Most public universities do not use demonstrated interest as a way to evaluate students, either.  However, the vast majority of private colleges do pay attention to students’ engagement with them.  

The article linked below from Inside Higher Ed raises an important social/economic equity issue tied to demonstrated interest.  While we want our students to demonstrate interest in each college on their list to the best of their ability, our hope is that more colleges will help subsidize campus visits for students with limited means to make the trip.  Face to face interaction with college representatives is highly effective, but if travel isn’t feasible, other means of engagement can also go a long way toward serious demonstration of interest.  

Article referenced below from Inside Higher Ed

“Demonstrated interest” is one of the admissions criteria used by many competitive colleges — even though it may not have anything to do with an applicant’s intelligence or character. The term refers to ways that an applicant shows he or she is serious about enrolling at a given college. An applicant who calls with questions about a particular program is more valued than one who doesn’t communicate beyond applying. An applicant who visits shows more demonstrated interest than one who doesn’t, and so forth. Many colleges factor in demonstrated interest to admissions and aid decisions, wanting to admit applicants who will enroll. The idea is to have better planning and to improve the yield, the percentage of admitted applicants who enroll.

A new research paper suggests that demonstrated interest has become another way wealthy students have an extra edge — and recommends that colleges consider policy changes as a result.

Read more at Inside Higher Ed >>

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The true meaning of demonstrated interest

October 3rd, 2016

In late September, I took part in the National Association for College Admission Counseling’s annual conference. There, I brushed shoulders with about 6500 close friends and colleagues from around the U.S. and around the world. Hot topics in the world of college admission counseling? Equity and access top the list, as well they should. Some are still trying to digest changes to the SAT; others are trying to wrap their arms around a new application format called the Coalition application (which I’m not yet recommending for use, as there are too many first-year hiccups possible).

Here’s something else that’s on college advisors’ minds: the concept of demonstrated interest. Shrop Ed advisees hear about this a lot, as we urge students to visit campuses, find genuine ways to connect with admission counselors, respond to email sent by colleges of interest, and write their applications with serious intent. There’s a new dimension being added to some colleges’ applications – a sort of visual resume online, called ZeeMee. More and more colleges are asking students for a link to their ZeeMee page, and construing lack of a ZeeMee link as tepid interest.

Sometimes it’s hard to understand what colleges mean by demonstrated interest. Today, we link to an article addressing this beautifully, written by W. Kent Barnds, Executive Vice President, Augustana College, and published on the Huffington Post site. (Barnds’s article doesn’t cover the ZeeMee phenomenon, however – perhaps we’ll focus a future blog post on that.)

Article below published on Huffington Post, August 4, 2016

Written by:  W. Kent Barnds

While reviewing publications from a colleague’s son’s college search, I noticed a handful of colleges referred to “demonstrated interest” in the visit section. I realized it’s likely that most students and families have no clue what that entails. If I didn’t work in college admissions, I know I’d be asking, What is demonstrated interest and how do I demonstrate it? And, does demonstrated interest make any difference at all? These questions deserve some explanation.

School counselors and policymakers tend to think demonstrated interest provides some students (those in the know or those who are affluent) with an advantage in the college search and selection process. There may be some truth to that, but I believe demonstrated interest has evolved well beyond activities like visiting campus or participating in an admissions interview. In fact, technology and engagement have probably made some of the traditional measures less relevant than they once were, which I think levels the playing field.

Read more at Huffington Post >>

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Alumni Interviews

December 1st, 2015

College interviews sometimes cause students to quake with nervousness, but that doesn’t have to be the case. Interviews rarely tip the scales for an admission decision; they more often confirm other information in an applicant’s file. Only now and then is an interview so strong or weak that it truly makes a difference. As with so many other things in life, preparation and understanding purpose and intent can be key to feeling prepared and confident.

Colleges with the most stringent competition for admission typically deploy alumni as interviewers, keeping them involved with the institution productively. Yale has very helpfully posted guidelines for alumni interview report-writing, giving us insight into what’s valued. We note two factors as especially important: intellectual depth and a clear understanding of the resources that the University presents. Please click through to the Yale link below and let us know what additional factors you note.

Let us know, too, if you find this link helpful. Good luck with interviews ahead!

Published by:  Yale University

Sample Interview Reports

We offer these samples of actual interview reports or excerpts to highlight the kinds of commentaries that help the admissions committee make careful, informed decisions. For contrast, we’ve included examples of write-ups that could have been more influential with the addition of supporting detail. This selection is not fully representative of the many effective reporting styles used by ASC volunteers, but we hope it serves illustrative purposes. We’ve changed names and other identifying characteristics.

Read more at Yale Univeristy >>

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