The new trend in college admissions is the submission of a YouTube video as a replacement to the standard written essay. As college admissions become increasingly more competitive at an exponential rate, students have turned to YouTube to create a more individual and unique college “essay.” Not only does a YouTube video allow a student to showcase his or her talents, it also allows a student to show his or her creativity and individuality (all great things for college admissions).
Before you get too excited and run out and make a video, very few schools are currently accepting this as an alternative to the written essay. At this time only four schools allow the submission of a YouTube video with your application: Tufts, George Mason, William and Mary, and St. Mary’s College of Maryland. If any of those schools spark your interest for reasons other than the new YouTube video policy, then perhaps consider the video as an option.
This new policy definitely marks a change in the way colleges have viewed admissions and more schools may be popping up soon with new YouTube admissions policies. If you decide to take that route with the available schools, do your research and plan ahead. Make sure you make a video that truly showcases your talents, creativity, and individualism. While a YouTube video can be a great way to stand out from the rest of the applicants, it can also hurt your chances of acceptance if you submit a joke video that does not present you as a serious candidate.
According to an article in Newsweek, only 5-10% of applicants are using the YouTube video application at the schools that permit it. Although these numbers are low, and the acceptance rate of those that choose this option is even lower, this marks a great change in the college admissions process: no longer do you have to write an essay about your hero and somehow find a way to be unique in the process. The college admissions process is all about standing out from the rest of the applicants, and this just may be the new way to achieve that.