You’ve been deferred. What does that mean?

Some of you may have been a little confused when you saw your admissions decision as “Deferred Until Final Review.” Hopefully this post will help you understand what it really means to be deferred.

If you are deferred, we just need some additional time to consider your application before making the final admissions decision. Since we have more than one application filing period, we do not know how many students will end up applying for admission by the final January 2nd deadline. Therefore, we cannot make a final admissions decision on some priority applicants. Again, the admissions review committee has everything that they need to make your final admissions decision. It is not necessary to send any additional information such as senior year grades or letters of recommendation. We do not consider these factors for admission.

Rest assured, you are still being considered for your original program of study. We also consider applicants for alternate avenues of admission to related academic programs based upon a student’s personal and professional interests. This also includes our Division of General Studies. Please keep in mind that in years past, well over 50% of deferred students have been admitted to Illinois in either their original program or an alternate program.

Final admissions decisions will be available online on Friday, February 17th at 4 p.m. Central Time. If you have any other questions about being deferred, please check out the Deferred FAQ.


Please note that comments close after 90 days.


December 16, 2011, 6:18 pm

usually how many percent are admitted and how many percent are deferred?



December 16, 2011, 6:44 pm

HI Jon. Is chemical engineering in the engineering department or college of liberal arts and sciences?



December 16, 2011, 6:49 pm

Thank you Jon for the breakdown.

If I have been deferred for a more difficult program (engineering), versus offered an invitation to general studies, does that mean even if I am eventually denied from the engineering program that I will be offered a spot in the Division of General Studies?



December 16, 2011, 7:57 pm

How many applicants were deferred?



December 17, 2011, 12:00 am

I have a question about the admition decision. It says I got accepted to an alternet program?? What does this mean? And how can I make it say accepted period. Thanks.



December 17, 2011, 11:04 am

With a deferred status, have applicants effectively lost their competitive advantage by applying in the priority period? If they are placed in the general pool, does their priority admission help or hurt an applicant’s admittance?



December 17, 2011, 12:43 pm

I was deferred from the College of Business yesterday, and I’m wondering how many people typically get deferred from this college and of those people how many of them get accepted to Illinois at all? Also I want to know if my deferred status from one college will have any bearing on my acceptance to another, for example the Division of General Studies? By that I mean, because I was deferred and more people will be applying to DGS will I have less of a chance of getting in to not only Business but also DGS because some of the spots are already taken by others even if they are less qualified than I am. Thanks in advance.


Sean McDonald

December 17, 2011, 1:26 pm

Thank you – this information is very helpful.



December 17, 2011, 2:12 pm

I have a 5.2 GPA, 31 ACT, and I’m in the top 5 percent of my class, I was deferred by the school of business and I don’t quite understand this decision. I also work part time, volunteer, and play sports. I’m just a little confused with why I was not automatically accepted. Any response would be great.


Kiley Saunders

December 18, 2011, 10:14 pm

Hi Jon,
I did not get deferred, but my application just states that it cannot tell me its status at this point in the process. I thought I had got my app in by early October, but I did experience some technological issues with the SRAR so that prevented me from making it by the priority deadline. Does this just mean I will have to wait until Feb. to find out my decision? Or could it possibly be posted sooner?



December 21, 2011, 4:43 pm


Approximately 50% of students are admitted and about 30% are deferred. Please keep in mind that even though a majority of our applicants tend to apply during the priority filing period, we do not know exactly how many more students will end up applying for admission prior to the regular deadline.



December 21, 2011, 4:45 pm


Chemical Engineering is housed within the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, along with the other chemical sciences such as Chemistry and Biochemistry.



December 21, 2011, 4:50 pm


If you have been deferred for a difficult program, you are still being considered for that program. You will also be considered for alternate avenues of admission if you are not admitted to your original program, but that does not mean you will automatically be admitted to the Division of General Studies.



December 21, 2011, 4:53 pm


Approximately 30% of students were deferred. Please keep in mind that over half of the deferred students each year are usually admitted to Illinois in either their original program or an alternate program.



December 21, 2011, 4:56 pm


“Admit – Alternate Choice” means that you have been admitted to the University of Illinois, but not to your original choice. If you accept the offer, it will show “accept.” Please refer to my other blog post if you have further questions.



December 21, 2011, 5:03 pm


Applicants who were deferred during the priority filing period do not necessarily lose competitive advantage. Completing the application during the priority filing period may still give you an advantage if space is limited in a specific program.



December 21, 2011, 5:13 pm


The College of Business tends to have a VERY competitive pool of applicants each year. The committee usually ends up deferring several applicants to ensure they have room for all of the qualified applicants. Again, you are still being considered for the College of Business, and will be considered for alternate avenues of admission if not admissible to your original program.



December 21, 2011, 5:17 pm


Again, the College of Business is extremely competitive because of the applicant pool and space constraints. The committee needs to ensure that they have enough room for all of the qualified applicants.



December 21, 2011, 5:18 pm


Since you had some issues with the SRAR, it could be that it was not submitted in time to consider you for the priority filing period. Please contact the Undergraduate Admissions office so that a counselor can look into it for you.



December 26, 2011, 12:24 pm

I would like to ask the following questions.

First, my new (OCT) ACT score was sent on Nov 10 (requested on Nov 08). I wonder if updated test scores are considered during the priority review process, despite such a delayed report.

Second, if they are not, are they
going to be taken into consideration when you review douments of deferred applicants?

Thank you very much in advance



December 26, 2011, 11:50 pm

Can you tell me the difference between getting deferred and being on the wait list? How does one get on the wait list?



December 28, 2011, 1:44 am

I had a question about being deferred. I realized that the college I applied to may not be what I exactly want to do. Do I need to tell them to change my college to division of general studies?



January 3, 2012, 12:44 pm


If your file was complete otherwise and your November scores were higher, they should have been considered. If you are deferred, the higher scores will also be taken into consideration when we evaluate your application again. Please contact our office directly to ensure your higher scores are on file.



January 3, 2012, 6:19 pm


First of all, you can only be “deferred” if your application status was complete for the priority filing period. This means that we need more time to review your application before reaching a final admissions decision.

If you have a complete application for the regular filing period, you will not receive a “deferred” decision in February. However, you can possibly receive a “Wait List” decision in February. This means that your academic credentials meet admission requirements, but we cannot admit you at this time do to space limitations. Some majors have Wait Lists, and others do not. It will also depend on the applicant pool.



January 3, 2012, 6:25 pm


Not necessarily. Since you will be considered for your original program, including majors related to your stated preference and the Division of General Studies, there is no need to change your major.



January 31, 2012, 4:32 pm

Hi, I’m planning on applying to UIUC for fall ’12 as a transfer student to the College of Applied Health Science for Recreation, Sport and Tourism, but I’m very hesitant and afraid. What worries me is that last fall semester I received a 2.4GPA. However this was due to the fact of loosing two close family members near and after midterms and I let my grades slip. Is there any way that would be considered in determining on if Im accepted or not? I wrote a good essay for ISU and got accepted, but I really want to go to the U of I…



February 2, 2012, 12:45 pm


Each major at Illinois requires specific coursework to be completed for transfer eligibility. For detailed information regarding transfer coursework, GPA, and other requirements, please go to and click on the College of Applied Health Sciences. You will find your desired program on page 5.

If for some reason you do meet the basic requirements, including GPA, you can include an additional optional essay to explain your extenuating circumstances. Everything else will be up to the review committee.



February 5, 2012, 9:58 pm

Does the Division of General Studies have a wait list? How many applicants get wait listed? Also, does a deferred applicant have a higher chance of being admitted into the school compared to another that did not apply for the priority deadline?


bubble shooter

February 6, 2012, 8:33 pm

This posting has been saved like a favorite :), I like your blog!



February 10, 2012, 4:43 pm


The Division of General Studies is indeed an academic community that could potentially have a wait list. The amount of students placed on it would vary, based on the applicant pool of course. Hopefully, specifics will be available soon after final decisions are posted. It is possible that completing the application during the Priority Filing Period may give you an advantage when space is limited.



February 17, 2012, 5:29 pm

I applied early and was deferred until Feb 17 Now I am on the wait list. Is this common? Should I start looking elsewhere? If I accept, what is next?



March 8, 2012, 11:52 am


Indeed, it is possible to receive a Wait List decision after being deferred. Hopefully, the Wait List email you received explained in detail what the decision means. If not, you can check out the Wait List FAQ’s. You are encouraged to make other plans in case you are not selected from the Wait List. However, you must first “accept” your Wait List offer if you would like to be considered for admission from the Wait List.