How many Universities should I apply to?

You may have your heart set on one particular university – perhaps your friends are going there, or the course curriculum sounds exciting, or the campus looks like a wonderful place to live for 4 years. You go through other Universities' pages but your focus is still fixated on your #1 choice.

In this situation, should you even bother applying to other Universities?

The old adage “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” is appropriate here. It’s critical during the time after your secondary school education finishes to have as many options as possible. And often, it’s not until you have a confirmed option that you take it seriously.

What is the best number of universities to apply to?

There’s no magic number really, but ideally 5-10 applications are good numbers to keep in mind. But not just any universities. It is important to spread out your applications based on your chance of acceptance.

Let’s say we have 5 applications. The first application should go to your ‘dream’ school. Your dream school is the university where you barely make the academic qualifications, but the university is your top choice based on factors that were important to you – university rankings, tuition cost, location, student diversity, etc.

The next 3 applications should go to ‘target’ schools. Target schools are universities which you meet or exceed the academic qualifications and therefore have a higher chance of acceptance than dream schools. If your dream school doesn’t rejects you, these are universities you would be perfectly happy going to instead.

The last application should go towards a ‘safety’ school. As the name implies, a safety school is a university in which you exceed academic requirements and generally speaking, the university has a high acceptance rate. While you may not find it a perfect fit, a safety school meets many of your personal requirements and therefore should be highly considered as a last option. At least you’ll still have decent alternatives to get your degree.

Tips for Multiple University Applications:

  • Using Excel or Word, make a list of your top choices and programs
  • Include information like application deadline, GPA and English requirements, Tuition fees, and other factors important to you.
  • Take a deep breath and wait for those offer letters to come rolling in!

You can save a lot of time and energy if you apply through MyUniZone, where you can use 1 universal application to apply to up to 5 universities for one fee. If there are additional documents needed by the university, they will reach out to you via e-mail to request them.