What’s the Hold Up? The Real Application Processing Timeline

We all love instant gratification. However, the processing applications takes time and involves a lot of waiting around. Here is a peek at the real timeline for how long it takes from the moment you click submit on the Common Application to when NYU receives and processes your application.

Before Submitting Application

Before you submit your application to NYU you will first create your Common Application account. Next, you’ll begin working on the different sections of the Common Application. You will add NYU as a college you plan to apply to via the Common Application. The following day, we will receive some basic information about you (if you choose to allow colleges to get your information when you create your account). We will send you information about applying to NYU and many opportunities we offer.

The Day You Click Submit

You submit your NYU application and application fee on the Common Application website. Then, you receive a confirmation email from Common Application within one business day.

Day 1 After Submitting

The Common Application will send your application information to NYU. Once we receive your information we begin processing your application. We load your application into our databases. Within one business day, we send you an NYU application acknowledgment email. That’s technically Day 2 after submitting, for those that are keeping track.

Day 2 - 10 After Submitting

Our NYU database with generate your unique NYU IDs (net ID and University ID). We share these IDs with you along with instructions for how to set up your NYU account and access your application status page. This email is different from the applicant acknowledgment email I referenced above.

Additionally, the Common Application starts to send any school forms submitted on your behalf so far (up to the day before). There is always a delay of one day. Therefore, every day following, Common Application will send NYU any school forms submitted the prior day on your behalf. We will process these and other supporting materials you send as we receive them.

Prior to Decision Release

You will be able to access your application status page to view whether or not your application is complete and provide us with additional information. Learn more about your application status page in another of my articles. Additionally, you will apply for Financial Aid.

For the remainder of the application processing period leading up to decision release our operations team will continue to work to complete application files. We will continually process documents received via the Common Application, email, postal mail, through our online portals, and directly from testing agencies. As applications complete, our staff will review and begin to make decisions.

Decision Release

Finally, we will send you an email when your decision is ready to view.

You will log in to your application status page to view your decision. If you are admitted, you will reply to our admission offer and take the next steps on your NYU journey.

visual representation of steps covered in article

This timeline is in business days (so weekends don’t count) and represents an ideal situation.

You will experience a longer timeline if you submit on the application deadline because our systems take longer to process the high volume. Roughly, about half of our applications are submitted within a day or two of the deadline, so you can imagine the backlog that can create. Additionally, sometimes technical issues arise and this increases the processing time.

The processing time for each application is part of why it is so important for applicants to our artistic programs to apply early. One month before the deadline is what we recommend, but don’t panic if you’ve already “missed” the window. By submitting early, you’ll be able to submit portfolios and schedule auditions by the deadline using your NYU IDs sent in the application acknowledgment email.