What is Early Decision?

Early Decision (ED) is an application option that allows you to share your excitement about Emerson by telling us that, if admitted, you commit to enrolling in the fall term.

You can apply for Early Decision by choosing the ED round in the Common or Emerson Application and submitting an ED agreement signed by a parent or guardian and your counselor.

Why apply to ED?

Your ED application is the strongest way to indicate your interest and passion for Emerson. Your enthusiasm is important to Admission professionals, and an ED application shows us you are serious about Emerson. 

Complete the college application process by November 1 for ED I or December 1 for ED II, so you can enjoy the remainder of your senior year with less stress.

The admission rate of ED applicants is typically higher than other application rounds. Why? It comes down to mutual enthusiasm. We want to bring students to Emerson who are excited about being part of this community. Those students tend to be highly involved on campus, furthering the vitality and culture of our community. 

Facts about Early Decision at Emerson

  • Emerson introduced Early Decision, this year, allowing students to indicate their strong desire to attend Emerson, if admitted. Students who are interested in receiving an admission decision earlier, but are not sure that they are able to commit to Emerson can still apply through our non-binding Early Action process.
  • Typically, students who apply as Early Decision candidates are more likely to gain admission.
  • We look for the same qualities and characteristics in an ED student as we would in a non-ED student when evaluating an application.
  • You are welcome to submit applications to other colleges (though you may not apply Early Decision to more than one school). If you are admitted to Emerson, you are expected to withdraw your applications to all other colleges.

What about Financial Aid for ED applicants?

The financial aid process, from the evaluation of need to awarding of aid, is the same for Early Decision, Early Action, and Regular Decision.

Our financial aid office will work with you to make sure the information you provide is complete and accurate.

If you apply for financial aid and the offer is not feasible for your family, the first step is to communicate with us to discuss your options. You will be released from the ED agreement if the financial aid package doesn’t meet your family’s expectations. 

I’m still trying to decide if ED is the right decision for me. What are a few ways I can get more information about Emerson?

  • Think about what information is critical as you need to make this important decision. It usually falls into three categories - academic program, community and shared values.
  • You can learn more about academics at Emerson by exploring our majors and minors, learn more from our faculty though recorded program webinars, or hear from our students about their academic experiences.
  • Emerson’s vibrant student life artists and communicators from every background who thrive together and give voice to bold ideas. With more than 100+ student organizations, co-curricular organizations like WERS, student-run events like the EVVY awards show, and our setting in Boston, your college experience will be shaped by the campus and local community. Learn more by speaking with a current student.
  • Be daring. Have attitude. Be expressive. Get involved. Stand for something. Our shared values connect Emersonians together and drive the creativity and passion at the core of our community. Imagine how four years at Emerson might help you to find your voice and help move the world forward. Become a creative force.

What are my next steps?

  • Discuss your intention to apply Early Decision with your family and counselor.
  • Select Early Decision as your application option in the Common Application or Emerson Application.
  • Submit your application by November 1 for Early Decision I or December 1 for Early Decision II 
  • Early Decision I applicants who complete their application by November 1 and submit the rest of their required materials by November 18, will be prioritized and receive a decision by mid-December. 
  • Early Decision II applicants who complete their application by December 1st and submit the rest of their required materials by January 5, will receive a decision by February 1.
  • Submit the Early Decision Agreement through the Common Application or the Emerson Admission Portal after completing your application. Your parent or guardian and counselor will also sign the agreement form.
  • If you intend to apply for financial aid, submit your FAFSA and CSS Profile by the November Early Decision deadline.

How can I get more guidance on whether Early Decision is right for me?

Our Admission staff would be happy to talk with you, your family, and your counselor about applying Early Decision. You can email admission [at] emerson.edu to be connected with your admission counselor. 

Also connect with your family and college counselor: people who know you very well and can help you think about whether applying ED at Emerson is a good match for what you’re looking for in college and the right choice for you.

If you’d like to speak with Emersonians, we’ll put you in touch. Current students can talk with you about their experience and help you think through your decision. To connect with current students about your choice to consider applying Early Decision at Emerson (or anything else!), you can schedule a virtual meeting with a current student.