What Materials Can You Submit After Applying to College?
This article was written based on the information and opinions presented by Shravya Kakulamarri in a CollegeVine livestream. You can watch the full livestream for more info.
- Supplemental Materials Timeline
- Updated Resumes
- Letters of Recommendation
- Art Supplements
- Research Abstracts
After months of hard work, you’ve submitted your college applications. You may think all you have left to do is sit back and wait, but you have the opportunity to send supplemental materials to the schools where you’ve applied, which in some cases can increase your chances of admission. In this post, we’ll discuss what additional materials you can submit after applying to college.
Supplemental Materials Timeline
Many schools will give you the option to submit additional information after you’ve applied, such as an updated resume or an additional letter of recommendation. You can usually send in this kind of information as late as mid-February or March. This means you can inform the colleges on your list of any developments or accomplishments that hadn’t happened yet when your original application was due in November or December.
It’s important to note that this applies to additional materials only. If there’s a required component of your application that you didn’t submit on time, such as an essay or letter of recommendation, you shouldn’t just send it to the school late and hope it works out. The best way to proceed is to contact the school’s office of undergraduate admissions as soon as possible to see if they’ll accept a late submission.
Assuming you’ve already submitted all the required parts of your application, there are several materials you can submit post-deadline, one of which is a resume. Many students opt to send updated resumes to their schools of choice, especially if they’re looking to showcase a recent development since they submitted their application.
For example, if you’re a captain of your school’s mock trial team and you win the state competition in late February, you might consider sending your top-choice schools an updated resume that reflects that accomplishment. This shows that you’ve remained engaged, you’re still an active member of the team, and you’ve accomplished something prestigious as well.
You may be tempted to send in a resume if your full list of accomplishments and extracurriculars didn’t fit into your original application due to a lack of space. But keep in mind that admissions committees limit the number of extracurriculars for a reason. They want you to prioritize and focus on those that are most important to you.
Letters of Recommendation
You can also send in an additional letter of recommendation, from someone other than a teacher or counselor, as a supplement to your application. Keep in mind that if you choose to ask for another recommendation, the person writing it should be able to speak in detail about an accomplishment or aspect of your personality that isn’t otherwise reflected in your application.
Your boss from your off-campus job or the director of a nonprofit where you volunteer are strong examples of people you could ask for an additional recommendation. Remember to keep this limited to one additional letter.
You can also send your school choices art supplements if you have substantially added to your portfolio or accomplishments. If you’re involved in the arts in some way, or if you’re planning to pursue the arts as a career, this is a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate your continued interest and growth.
The same guidance applies here as with other supplemental materials, so you should only send in an art supplement if you feel it can add to your application substantially and demonstrate high proficiency in the field.
Finally, if you’ve conducted research during your high school career, you can send a research abstract as a supplement to your college applications. This is especially valuable if you’re planning on majoring in the same subject in which you conducted your research or are applying to a research-heavy major.