Business School Deadlines: Submitting Your Applications...on Time!
You'd be surprised by how many people fail to submit their business school applications on time. Schools often accept applicants in multiple rounds, staggered across deadlines. The earliest deadlines for Round 1 are in early October and subsequent deadlines for Round 2 and 3 extend to January and beyond. While some schools might review late applications, it's a bad idea to start on the wrong foot. Best practice calls for submitting your applications a couple weeks in advance of deadlines, so that if anything is missing, you have time to make amends.
So why do so many people fail to submit everything on time? A few reasons. Chief among them is the fact that GMAT / GRE scores take 2-4 weeks to reach schools. That comes as a surprise to many people, and self-reporting your score is not always an option. Another reason is the time it takes mail to travel. Some schools require hard copies of applications and other material such as your undergraduate transcripts. Add to this the time it takes for your undergraduate school to send out the transcript and all of a sudden you've missed your deadlines.
The key is to plan, plan, plan! Below is a timeline of how you might plan your calendar if your first application was due on October 1. It assumes that you're aiming for a high GMAT / GRE score and that you need to write your application essays from scratch. If you've already taken care of some of these steps, you'll need less time. Don't neglect to identify all business school deadlines and work your way back to plan what you need to accomplish by what date.
Business School Application Timeline for Typical Round 1*
* Assumes business school deadlines around October 1.