How to apply to Stanford University?
1) Start very early. If you are leaving the preparation to a mere one year in advance, you are doing it wrong. Most admitted candidates will spend a minimum of two years working on their overall profile and the application. It is not uncommon for successful admitted candidates to start 3 or even 4 years in advance which means starting at the age of just 14.
2) Register and complete the SAT Reasoning (or the ACT) and SAT Subject Tests. If you are applying from a country where English is not an official language, you may also have to sit TOEFL - the English language exam. Both SAT exams are not straightforward and take time to master. A perfect score helps but won't get you in on its own. Remember that if you are doing the SAT, you should always include the optional written component. Similarly, while Stanford only asks for 2 SAT Subject Tests, many admitted candidates will have completed 3 or even more.
3) Register and complete the CommonApp. This is a centralised portal through which you can apply to all of your US university choices, including Stanford. CommonApp requires you to complete a number of essays and it is best to start early. Essay questions are released each year on the 1st of August. The deadline for Restrictive Early Action is 1st November (15th October if you are submitting an Arts Portfolio).
4) Once you have applied, be sure to continue communicating with the Admissions' Office and to provide them with regular updates.
Jeremy, a current student at Stanford says: "Stanford is a hectic place. You are always busy and you keep bumping into incredibly smart, motivated people. I love it here!"
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