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Can someone explain the application process to a gap year student? watch

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    Hi all,

    So I finished school back in Summer 2014 and I am on a gap year.
    I took a gap year as I wasn't entirely sure which uni I'd like to attend (nor what I would study) but I have now come to a decision to apply to US colleges.

    However, since it is already May, is it too late to start prepping for SATs and such?

    I saw that for most colleges the deadline for ED is the 2nd of Nov - if that's the case, when would be the best time for me to take the SATs? Keeping in mind I will also be taking two SAT II Subject tests alongside SAT I.

    And this may sound ridiculously ignorant, but when do US colleges commence? If I apply in November 2015, will I be starting college from sometime around March 2016 or September like the UK?

    Oh and since I am a gap year student, what reports do I submit in place of the 'mid year reports'? the full report?

    I have no clue about the admissions process, and the lack of information on college websites are really confusing me I would appreciate any help!

    thank you!
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    You would have to check the College Board's website (everything SAT) about international test dates. If you want to apply for early decision (dates vary for each uni), you would just need to take all your tests in time before then and of course check to see if you can get all the tests done within your time frame. However, the November test date is generally the last date to take the SAT if you want to apply for the following school year. Though it sounds like you will have a lot to do, I think it can be done. You're just going to be busy all the way up to the last exam. Things you will need to do include: register for the exams (the sooner the better. Spots will fill so don't wait too long.), study for the SAT I and II, request transcripts from your secondary schools plus get records of your UK exams, possibly get recommendation letters, and then work on the personal statement for the application. *I would go back to check the website of the universities you are interested in and get in contact with an international student advisor there about what specific requirements they have.*

    Universities in the US begin Fall quarter either in August or September.

    If you are on a gap year, you would still apply as a first year student because you haven't attended uni elsewhere yet since secondary school. So, yes, you would submit your complete reports as opposed to those students who are still in school so they are only able to submit their half reports.

    Good luck
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    (Original post by apple32)
    You would have to check the College Board's website (everything SAT) about international test dates. If you want to apply for early decision (dates vary for each uni), you would just need to take all your tests in time before then and of course check to see if you can get all the tests done within your time frame. However, the November test date is generally the last date to take the SAT if you want to apply for the following school year. Though it sounds like you will have a lot to do, I think it can be done. You're just going to be busy all the way up to the last exam. Things you will need to do include: register for the exams (the sooner the better. Spots will fill so don't wait too long.), study for the SAT I and II, request transcripts from your secondary schools plus get records of your UK exams, possibly get recommendation letters, and then work on the personal statement for the application. *I would go back to check the website of the universities you are interested in and get in contact with an international student advisor there about what specific requirements they have.*

    Universities in the US begin Fall quarter either in August or September.

    If you are on a gap year, you would still apply as a first year student because you haven't attended uni elsewhere yet since secondary school. So, yes, you would submit your complete reports as opposed to those students who are still in school so they are only able to submit their half reports.

    Good luck
    thank you, this has been of massive help. I really appreciate it!

    What exactly do you mean 'request transcripts'? what does a transcript entail?
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    (Original post by stardust4321)
    thank you, this has been of massive help. I really appreciate it!

    What exactly do you mean 'request transcripts'? what does a transcript entail?
    Hehe. Sorry. A transcript is what you would consider a full report. Since you are finished with secondary school, your transcripts would include all the classes you have ever taken in secondary school, your grades, the date when you completed your studies, etc.

    You will have to provide a list of all your classes and your grades on the application first. Once you accept a spot at a university, they will request your official transcripts. In the US, the official transcripts are printed on paper that has a watermark or school seal on it. It is then enclosed in a sealed envelope. The seal may be a school administrator's signature or stamp on the back. Unofficial transcripts are just printed on regular paper, no watermarks, no seals. It will also say "unofficial transcript" somewhere.

    To request your transcripts, I mean once you receive an admissions letter and accept your placement with the university, you would need to contact your secondary school to have your transcripts prepared for you so that you can submit it to the university or so that your school can submit it to the university for you. Check with the university to see how they would like to receive it. It should be stated on their admissions page under international student guideline.
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    Now is a perfectly good time to start prepping for SATs. If you wish to apply early for 2016 entry you'll need to have your tests taken by the November date. Although the deadline for ED applications tends to be November 1, the vast majority of places accept test results from the November SAT if you send the scores straight off. (This is important because you won't be able to know your scores before you send them to the school.) You are not permitted to take the SAT IIs "alongside" the SAT so you will have to book two separate testing times. If you're confident in your subjects I see no reason not to take one in June, except for maybe the registration date has passed. Otherwise I would book all three winter dates - SAT I in October, SAT II in November, and register for the re-sit of either one just in case you're not pleased with a result. Bestt case scenario is you don't even have to show up for that last one.

    Classes begin late August/early September. Some institutions allow January entry, but it's not the norm.

    If you're feeling puzzled, www.fulbright.org.uk is an essential resource for international students out of the UK. It looks like they have an information session in a few days, if you can make it down I cannot recommend it enough. US university application is a logistical nightmare aside from everything else, and there are quite a few useful how-to guides on that website.
 
 
 
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