Rolling Vs. Rounds: Timing Your MBA Application

The timing of MBA applications is something that almost every MBA candidate thinks about. At Rotman, we operate with both rolling, and rounds of admission. This post will explain each and share a bit more insight into the question of when to apply.

Rolling admissions means that completed applications are evaluated on an ongoing basis in the order that they are received. So essentially, the sooner you apply the sooner you will have a decision. On average, rolling applications receive a decision within 6-8 weeks.

Admission rounds operate much the same way in that we begin reviewing completed applications as soon as they are submitted. However, because most of us are at least somewhat deadline driven, application rounds can help motivate you to complete your application and also give you a set date by which you can expect a decision.

  • Round 1: October 16, 2017 (Decision by December 15, 2017)
  • Round 2: January 8, 2018 (Decision by March 2, 2018)
  • Round 3: February 26, 2018 (Decision by April 20, 2018)
  • Round 4: April 16, 2018 (Decision by May 25, 2018)
  • Round 5: May 21, 2018 (Decision by June 22, 2018)

Usually, when someone asks about the timing of applications they are also interested in the relationship between application date and scholarships. Because our scholarships are entirely merit-based, your best opportunity to earn a scholarship is by submitting your strongest possible application. Of course, it can also be noted that scholarships are finite and competitive in nature, so you don’t want to wait and to submit at 12 midnight on the final deadline.

There are other advantages to applying early that many candidates do not consider. For international students, in particular, we encourage applications before the Round 3 deadline because study permit applications take time and planning for a significant life move does too. And, for everyone considering applying it’s important to know that we begin connecting the admitted class right away. So, there are lots of networking opportunities and social events leading up to the start of the program. One specific example at Rotman is our annual Rotman Problem Solving Challenge (RPSC) that takes place in the month of May. RPSC is an exclusive opportunity for admitted students to experience Rotman’s approach to problem-solving through a live decision-making challenge. We also award over $300,000 in scholarship awards over the course of the challenge.

So, when is the best time to apply? It depends. Focus on submitting your strongest application and as soon as you feel prepared to do just that – go ahead and submit right away because there are some advantages to applying early!

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