5 Reasons Why College Application Get Rejected and How to Avoid Them

While going through some forums I came across so many questions on the reasons why college applications sometimes get rejected, even with good grades.

Meanwhile, many other students, counsellors and guardians also asked important questions like;

  • Do college reject overqualified students?
  • Reasons why many learners are not accepted in University?
  • Why do universities reject good students?

As such, I couldn’t relent on putting together this information to properly address this questions and also suggest some helpful solutions to such problems.

Interestingly, I have found 6 solid reasons why college applications get rejected sometimes even with good grades and I have suggested some real time solutions that will help you avoid them and stand a better chance always.

Check out: 8 Ways To Increase Your College Acceptance Chances

6 Reasons why College Application gets Rejected?

Before I go into detailed explanation, here is a run down of the top 6 reasons why Colleges sometimes reject a student’s application;

  1. Multiple applications
  2. Weak application
  3. College-student Match
  4. Incomplete Application
  5. Weak Essay
  6. Poor GPA

Check out: Free and Accurate College Admissions Chance Calculator

Reason 1: Rejection Due To Multiple Application

One of the reasons why a college might reject your application is submitting more than one applications to the college in the same term.


Some students may feel that applying to a college more than once in the same term is a good strategy to increase their chances of getting into their aspired college; but the reverse is the case.

Generally, students are not allowed to apply to a college multiple times for the same term. Applying to a college more than once for the same term is wrong and may result to rejection.

Meanwhile, if a student feels like applying to a college more than once, the student must do that for different terms and must first of all find out if the college he or she is applying to permits such.

Recommended: 7 Tricks to Reapply to the College that Rejected and Get Accepted

Solutions: How to Avoid Multiple Application

In most cases, applying severally to a college for each its terms can increase acceptance. But in each application, make sure your add new stuffs like new test scores, achievement, fresh essay and add more positivity to your story and highlight them.

Check out: 6 Important Things To Do While Waiting For College Decision

Reason 2: Rejection Due to Weak Application

The number one reason why a college may reject your application is weak college application. A weak college application includes:

  • Poor Grades in college prep courses
  • Low test scores.
  • Poor Demonstrated interest.
  • Low grades in your courses
  • Poor Extracurricular commitment
  • Weak Letters of recommendation
  • Poor Essay

Solution: How To Avoid Weak Application

One of the best way to take care of weak college application is to have a counselor. A good counselor will likely guide you on what to do and what not to do when applying to a college.


Meanwhile, before applying or reapplying to a college, make sure you have obtained good grades, test scores, write an interesting essay, get good recommendation letters, get involved in more extracurricular activities, etc.

It is also advisable to consult your counselor at every stage of your application. Get guided always and make sure you work more on improving your profile.

Reason 3: Rejection as a Result of Imperfect Match

One important thing that colleges consider so much during evaluation is how well the applicant matches with the college.

There are many factors that a college uses to determine the match of the applicant with the college. In fact, all factors in college applications can be used to determine the applicant’s match with the college.

College Admissions are base on important criteria and only students who meet these criteria are considered perfect for Admission.

Some of the well known factors that are commonly used by colleges to determine the applicant’s match with the college are:

  • Background
  • Essay
  • Passion
  • Demonstrated interest in the college
  • Extracurricular activities
  • Commitment
  • Achievement
  • Letter of recommendation
  • Behavioral assessment

Solution: How to Correct Imperfect Match with a College

It is not advisable to apply to colleges that you know little or nothing about. The more you know about a college, the better you prepare your application to meet the admission standard.

Firstly, find out the kind of applicants that are accepted into the college and compare to your profile.


For prestigious schools: Perfect match for prestigious schools are brilliant and high-income students, students from prominent family, students from specific backgrounds, passionate and well-rounded students.

For other colleges, perfect match are students with good grades, achievement, extracurricular activities, passion and commitment.

Reason 4: Rejection Due to Incomplete Application

Incomplete application is one of the 6 outstanding reasons why a  college application gets rejected. In fact, incomplete application is enough reason for rejection.

What does it mean when an application is incomplete?

An incomplete college application is an application in which the college have not yet received all required documents needed for the processing of your admission.

Incomplete applications can be an application in which the applicant has not submitted any of transcript, recommendation letter, test score, grades, or fail to pay application fee or submit an application fee waiver or other application documents.

Solution: How to Correct Incomplete application

Do colleges look at incomplete applications?

Firstly, it is important to know that colleges do not look at or consider incomplete applications. At this point, the college may consider notifying the applicant about missing documents and if the applicant fails to submit them before the deadline, then such will be automatically rejected.

All you need to do at this point is to cross check the admission requirements listed on the application portal and check if you have uploaded all on the application portal


Reason 6: Rejection Due to Poor Essay

Essay are very important aspect of application. Colleges do not request for essays for no reason. In most colleges, admissions officers use essays to sort out the best applicants.

The reason for college application essay is to help the college admissions officers know you better. The essay allows you to express yourself and tell the college all they need to know about you.

With the essay, the admissions officers will be able to see more reality of you than what is seen in your Grades, test scores and letter of recommendation.

It is from your essay that the admissions officers will draw conclusion whether to forward your application to the admission committee or not.

Note: it is only applications that are selected by the admissions officers that will be forwarded to the admission committee for final evaluation.

Solution: How to Correct Poor College Application Essays

To make comprehensive discussion on this subject matter and to suggest good solutions, we have decided to make a separate page to explain how to write a good essay for college application.

Check out: How to Write an Attractive College Application Essay

Note: submitting a poor college application essay is the same thing as telling the admissions officers that the admission doesn’t mean much to you.


Reason 6: Low GPA

GPA is one of the core admission requirements for almost all colleges in the U.S. in fact, may colleges uses the GPA as a the No.1 criteria for selection.

For freshmen, the college will look at your high school GPA while for transfers, the college will look at your transfer GPA.

For some colleges, they accept both weighted and unweighted GPA while for some, they go with one. Colleges also give room for other qualifications to play a role in your admission chances.

Conclusion: Those are the 6 solid reasons why College application get rejected and how to resolve them very easily. I employ you to apply them to boost your admission chances.

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