Here are some FAQs for deferred students…
Is it all over for me? Should I still be hanging around reading the blogs?
At MIT, a deferral isn’t just a “polite rejection.” Your application will once again be considered by the committee during regular action. You are at no advantage or disadvantage versus the regular action applications. We will admit the best applications we can during regular action, regardless of when the application was submitted. (A little historical data: over the past six years, the average number of deferred students later admitted has been a bit under 300 — but who knows what it will be this year)
What should I do now? Should I send in extra materials?
The only thing we ask that you do is complete the Midyear Report, which will be available on MyMIT in February. On the Midyear Report, you will provide us with your updated grades (your semester grades are very important, so keep working hard!) as well as a text box for any other updates you’d like to provide (new awards, changes to your activities, etc.). We will accept updates in other formats, including mail and email, but the Admissions Committee will primarily look to the Midyear Report for your updates.
Should I send in a whole new version of my application, or all new essays?
No. You do not need to “improve” your application, or redo/edit/modify part or all of your application. You were deferred because your application was already strong enough to make you a contender in the Regular Action round. Let your application stand.
What about extra essays, recommendations, etc?
You may send along anything that you feel would be helpful to the committee. We do not expect or require any of these things. Simply sending in additional materials does not by itself increase your chances of admission.
If you do decide that sending in materials beyond the Midyear Report is appropriate for you — all materials sent in before decisions are released will be seen in some fashion by admissions officers. However, those received before mid-February are most likely to be seen in Admissions Committee.
What about new test scores?
If you are taking additional tests in December or January, you can include MIT as a score recipient and we will consider any new scores.
Can I call admissions to find out The Reason why I was deferred?
If you call in, we will not be able to tell you “the reason” why you were deferred, or “what needs to be improved,” simply because things are much more complex than just one reason why you were deferred. Usually, when I take a call from a deferred applicant, there’s nothing that I see to be lacking or needing improvement — most of our deferred students submitted very strong applications, the kinds of applications any school (including MIT) would love to have in their student body. Honestly.
I hope this is helpful! Best wishes to everyone.