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Is it true that the further away you live from a college, the more likely you are to get accepted (of course compared with others with the same GPA, activities, etc . who live closer)

Wondering if I should look at colleges with a further distance from my area #collegeacceptance #acceptancerate


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Maxwell’s Answer

Hey Julia,

In my experience applying for schools, I do not believe that true distance impacts your acceptance chances. That being said, frequency of applicants from your same high school/area may make competition more difficult. I would additionally like to preface my response by saying that your GPA, test scores, & extra-curricular activities have a far larger impact on your chances of acceptance at a specific institution.

At an average high-school, I believe it is common for the most applications to be sent to schools in close proximity to the high-school. Thus potentially making it slightly more competitive for someone from your high school to get into a school with a high number of closely-located applicants. Additionally, schools do have a targeted number of out-of-state folks they will accept at their school. If a small portion of out-of-state students are applying to a specific school that could also slightly reduce competitiveness.

Ultimately, how your GPA, test scores, & extra-curricular activities compare to a school's admission criteria is ultimately going to be the key determinant as to whether or not you are accepted at a school.

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Linda’s Answer

Hi Julia - In fact, it does matter if you are "local" or not when it comes to being accepted into a college. All colleges are looking for the right diversity mix. Of course, that is a mix of genders and races, but it is also a mix of students from different states and countries.

At one admissions' event I went to with my daughter, the school touted the fact that they had students representing 49 different states. They did not have anyone from South Dakota and if we knew anyone in South Dakota to tell them to apply because they would definitely get in. Now, that was said jokingly, but geographic diversity is definitely something schools are striving for.

Now - does that mean you want to apply to a school far from home? No necessarily. You need to figure out what is best for you.

When applying, you need to look at many things, not simply what state a college is in.

Good luck with your college search!

Linda recommends the following next steps:

Speak with your school counselor about what you want to major in and what colleges are best for that major
Go visit schools that are local and schools that are farther away. Do you feel comfortable being that far from home? Would you rather be closer to home?
Figure out the best fit for you. If you find a school you like and feel comfortable at, you will be successful there.

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Tracey’s Answer

Hi Julia,

Distance doesn't matter when it comes to applying to school. In my experience, it comes down to your grades, test scores and extra-curricular activities. If you are concerned about the chances of getting into school, an "in-state" state school may be slightly better to apply to than an "in-state" private school. Once you start considering out of state school it may get slightly more competitive because there is only a certain allotment for out of state slots.

Good luck.

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