Are You Ready For Some Updates?

Posted by Admissions_Daniel

With more than half of January already gone, I thought I’d take a short break from reviewing applications and update the blog. I am going to quickly touch on a few frequently asked questions this time of year and also provide a road map for future Hopkins Insider blog posts over the next two months. But before that, the priority for this update entry is to provide some details on this year’s freshman applicant pool. Once again our communication specialist, Shelly Placek, worked with Dean of Admissions John Latting to produce the following official press release:

Press Release
Office of Undergraduate Admissions
Johns Hopkins University
January 20, 2011

Thursday, January 20, 2011—For the ninth consecutive year, the Johns Hopkins University Office of Undergraduate Admissions has received a record number of applications for undergraduate admission.

As of January 18, 2011, 19,201 applications for the Class of 2015 had been received, representing an increase of 742 applications, or 4 percent, from last year’s pool.

A snapshot of this year’s applicants:

  • Increased percentage of applications from the South (up 14 percent), New England (up 11 percent), and the West (up 11 percent)
  • Areas of academic interest of applicants
    • Social sciences are up 6 percent
    • Engineering is up 4 percent
    • Natural sciences are up 4 percent
    • Top five countries (other than US) represented: China, Republic of Korea, Canada, India, Singapore

The Admissions Committee is currently in the process of reading applicant files and decisions will be mailed by April 1. Earlier in December, 518 students were offered admission under the Early Decision Plan.

With 19,000-plus applications to review, my colleagues and I will have very little free time between now and the end of March. Before I get back to my applications for the day, I wanted to remind our Regular Decision applicants of the answers to the two most frequently asked questions post-admissions deadline:

Batches of mailed application files to be scanned.
Batches of mailed application files to be scanned.
Over 13,000 batches have already been scanned.
Over 13,000 batches have already been scanned.

Is my application complete? Do you have all my stuff? Can I check my status online?
We understand that you all are anxious to make sure every last piece of your application has been received and processed correctly, but we must request that you be patient. Our Operations staff is working diligently every day (with a lot of overtime as well) to process the volume of application materials we receive around the deadline day. If you e-mail or call us at this time of year, we are not able to confirm whether application files are complete or to identity which individual items have been received.

The process is as follows: once your application is downloaded and processed, you will be sent an e-mail acknowledgment. This indicates that your application file has been started (not necessarily that it is complete). Please remember, with thousands of applications to process, this e-mail acknowledgment is not automatic and may take a few weeks to be sent. In early February, once we have processed all received application materials, we will e-mail students whose applications remain incomplete. Those students will be given an opportunity to provide us with any missing items before we complete the evaluation of their applications. Rest assured that application files are checked carefully, multiple times, for completeness.

Do note, unlike many schools, Johns Hopkins does not have an online system for checking application status. We do things the old-fashioned way. You will not receive a log-in and password where you can track your application materials. We do confirm applications and have an extensive process for making sure missing materials are collected.

And the mail keeps streaming in.
And the mail keeps streaming in.

Can I add items to my application even though the deadline has passed? How can I correct a mistake in my application?
Yes, we will still accept application updates and we do have a process for error corrections. It is simple. To provide an update or error correction, you must compose a cover letter and submit these materials by fax (410-516-6025) or mail to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. In the cover letter, you should include your full name, birth date, and school name so that we can merge this new information with your application folder. Also, all updates should be sent in by February 1. Finally, DO NOT SEND UPDATES VIA E-MAIL, as we do not process application materials received through e-mail.

The Remnants I
The Remnants I
The Remnants II
The Remnants II

And let me answer one last question before I return to looking over transcripts, essays, recommendations, etc.: What can we expect from the Hopkins Insider blog over the next couple of months?

I hope by the end of the week to post a blog I have been working on for the past few months. I have been asked often why I stopped posting responses on College Confidential and if I will ever return. At the end of the week I plan to answer those questions and post my entry “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of College Confidential.”

Starting next week, we will continue an annual winter tradition for the Hopkins Insider blog. Over the last few years during the waiting phase (post RD deadline, pre-RD decision release) we have posted a series of blog entries that introduce the members of the Johns Hopkins Undergraduate Admissions Committee. (If you click on the Admissions Staff Profiles category on the left-side menu you see these entries.) This winter we will be taking a bit of a different approach. Shannon and I with the help of the amazing Shelly Placek again, compiled a list of 10 questions and had each of the members of the Admissions Counseling team respond. We hope that the collective responses to these questions will provide applicants a chance find out a little bit more about the people who actually are reading the applications.

Stay tuned.

3 thoughts on “Are You Ready For Some Updates?

  1. Hi, just out of curiosity,how much time, in total, is spent on one app? If there are about 10 counselors, and ~18000 apps for RD, then each of you will have to process (from review to making a decision) about 1800 apps in 3 months (Jan-Mar), say in about 90 days of continuous app reviews. That is about 20 apps/day/counselor. I am wondering how you are able to decide in about an hour/app, how good the student is for JHU. This must come from experience.

  2. @dev: Some of your assumptions are incorrect. There are 13 full-time admissions counseling staff members as well as an additional 10 admissions readers. Between the middle of December through the first week of January all ~18,000 RD files will be thoroughly evaluated these 23 evaluators. On average an application file review takes between 10-20 minutes at this first read stafe. On average a counselor can review 30-40 files a day. From the start of March through the release of decisions at the end of the March, the 13 members of the counseling staff are in committee during multiple additional rounds of review. Don’t worry … our staff is quite professional and quite experienced.

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