Skip to Main Content »Top of page
Main Content

    You've submitted your application! What's next?

    We’re excited you’ve applied to Bowdoin. Now that you’ve submitted your application, you may have more questions about what comes next. Below are answers to our most frequently asked questions.

    Application Portal

    First, check your spam folder. The email comes from admissions@bowdoin.edu and has the subject line, “Application Received. Here’s what comes next.” 

    Be sure to check all the email addresses you may have. If you discover the email went to an email address that you do not wish to use for correspondence with Bowdoin, login to your Application Portal  and change it on the My Profile tab. 

    Also see the FAQ “When will I get access to my Application Portal.” 

    If you still can’t find your Application Portal login email, please contact us and provide your birthdate so we can verify your email address and send another email, if necessary. 

    Make sure you’re using the correct email address, which is the one we sent the email with subject line, “Application Received. Here’s what comes next.” If you’ve forgotten your password, use the “Forgot Your Password?” link on the Application Portal login page. If you’re still having difficulty, contact us. Please provide your birthdate and the email address you're trying to login with so that we can confirm your identity and send a password reset email. 

    The Bowdoin Application Portal is your own place to view the status of your application and more. For example:

    • View your application checklist (what’s been submitted and what’s still needed), including recommendations, transcripts, school report, ED agreement, English language testing, etc.
    • View your financial aid checklist (if you intend to apply for aid). Please note that QuestBridge Match applicants will not have this tab in their portal.
    • View your test-optional choice (whether you’re using your test scores or not)
    • View submitted scores (AP, SAT, ACT, English language proficiency scores)
    • Self-report your test scores
    • Submit the optional video response
    • View your preferred name, your address, and other contact information

    Your Bowdoin Application Portal is also the place where we’ll release your admission decision, so it’s important that you login before that time.

    Once you submit your application to Bowdoin through Common App or Coalition, you will receive an email from Bowdoin approximately 24-48 hours later with information and credentials to login to your Application Portal

    Application Materials

    Login to your Bowdoin Application Portal to find your current checklist of application materials. That will show you which materials have been received and which are still missing. If you or your counselor recently sent materials, note that it can take 3-5 business days for them to appear on your checklist. Please check back frequently. 

    We will send you email reminders if we are missing any of your application materials. It is not necessary for all materials to be submitted by the application deadline for you application to be reviewed, but please submit them as soon as possible.

    For application materials that are not being submitted automatically with your application, these options are available: 

    • Recommendations, transcripts, grades, and school reports must be submitted by a school official. They may be emailed to appmaterials@bowdoin.edu or uploaded directly to your application via Slate.org if your school is a member. 

    Quarter1/Trimester1 Transcripts 
    We understand that there may be a delay for Quarter 1/Trimester 1 transcripts due to COVID and altered school schedules. If your school is unable to provide an official Q1/Trimester 1 transcript we will accept progress reports or progress comments from teachers that are provided by a school official (i.e. counselor, etc). Please be in touch with the admissions officer assigned to your school region if you have any questions or concerns. 

    Midyear Transcripts 
    Mid-year grades are typically sent to us by school guidance offices in late-January through early-March. Please ask your counselor to submit the transcript when it becomes available. We will add it to your file when it is received.

    Application Deadlines:

    • Early Decision 1: November 15
    • Early Decision 2: January 5
    • Regular Decision: January 5
    • Transfer: March 1

    For more application materials and more, see our deadlines and requirements webpage.

    Recommendations

    Bowdoin requires three recommendations:
    1. A counselor recommendation 

    1. A teacher recommendation. This evaluation should be completed by a teacher who has taught applicant either junior or senior year in an academic core subject (English, math, lab sciences, social sciences, and foreign languages) that appears on their official high school transcript. 

    1. An “other” recommendation. The “other” recommendation may be a second teacher evaluation (who has taught the student in any subject area) or a recommendation from a clergy, coach, community-based organization counselor, employer, peer, or community member who can speak to the applicant's contributions to the wider community or share insights not otherwise captured in the application. 

    Whether you submit two teacher recommendations or one teacher and one other recommendation, the “other recommendation” will be marked as complete on your checklist. It does not matter to your application how they are categorized on your checklist. 

    The “other” recommendation provides an alternative to sending two teacher evaluations. However, you may still choose to submit two teacher recommendations if you prefer. Otherwise, your other recommendation may be from a clergy, coach, community-based organization counselor, employer, peer, or community member who can speak to the applicant's contributions to the wider community or share insights not otherwise captured in the application.

    Test Scores

    Yes, Bowdoin accepts self-reported test scores. We select students who will join a community in which they will live and work with integrity and fairness. As part of our application review, we may choose to verify the information provided on applications or supplemental materials. Inaccurate or fabricated information may lead to a range of actions, including revocation of an admission offer. 

    • You may self-report ACT and SAT test scores through your Bowdoin Application Portal on the Profile tab. 

    • You may have your scores submitted directly through the testing service to Bowdoin. 

    • You may have your counselor or school official submit your test scores through Slate.org or by emailing them to appmaterials@bowdoin.edu.

    Because Bowdoin is test optional (and has been for more than 50 years!), test scores are hidden on your application that is submitted to us, but you can still view them in your Application Portal. If you choose to have your test scores considered for your application, they will be made available to the Admissions Committee during the review process.

    First, login to you Bowdoin Application Portal and review your current choices. If you do wish to change your choice, email your new test preference choices to admissions@bowdoin.edu or complete our contact us form. Your test-optional choices cannot be changed after the application deadline.

    Change Your Application Round or Withdraw

    To change your application round, please email admissions@bowdoin.edu and let us know the new round you wish to apply to. Please let us know as soon as possible, some late round changes may not be possible

    You may withdraw your application through your Bowdoin Application Portal

    Bowdoin does not have an early action (non-binding) application round. We offer two early decision rounds, which encompass a binding agreement. Please read about early decision on our website to make sure that this choice is right for you.

    English Proficiency Testing

    We will waive the requirement for applicants who have been taught exclusively in English for four years of high school or secondary school. We will not waive the requirement based on a SAT Critical Reading score, SAT Subject Test result, or AP Exam result.

    You may request an EPT waiver after applying by completing the EPT Waiver Request form in your Application Portal. Waivers will not be granted until after we have received your application. Please note that processing your waiver request may take up to 14 days. 
    We require students whose first language is not English to submit EPT results. Please see our International Students page for more information about accepted tests and minimum scores.

    You may have your scores submitted directly from the testing agency. Or, you or your school counselor may email your test score report to appmaterials@bowdoin.edu. Score reports must show the student’s name. Please note that we cannot access or use a link to the TOEFL report. 


    Please see the International Students webpage for a list of tests we accept and required scores.

    Optional Video Response

    The video response offers you the opportunity to share a bit of insight into you and your experiences. You'll have two opportunities to complete it, and the second response may not be deleted.

    Respond just as you would answer a question from someone you’ve just met. We’re not critiquing your conversational skills. We’re not bothered by "ums" or "ahs", or the laundry on your bed, or the need to take a moment to think and redirect your answer. We care about what makes you excited, what you experience in your day-to-day life, and the way in which you would normally express yourself! 

    For more information, go to our Optional Video Response webpage. 

    Find answers to everything you need to know on the Optional Video Response webpage. 

    You must submit your application first before you can submit the video response. The link to submit a video response is in your Bowdoin Application Portal on your checklist. (Please note: if you submit your application before mid-October, you’ll need to wait until you have access to your Application Portal in mid-October before you can submit the video response.) 

    Decision Release

    Your application has been rolled over to the Regular Decision round. It will be reviewed again. Many applications with the defer decision are admitted in the Regular Decision round. If you wish to submit a letter of continued interest, you may email it to admissions@bowdoin.edu.

    Early Decision I decisions are released in mid-December 

    Early Decision II decisions are released by early February 

    Regular Decisions are released by mid-April 

    All admissions decisions are released into your Bowdoin Application Portal. We will send you an email a few days prior to decision release to let you know the exact date and time you will receive the decision in your Portal. 

    Financial Aid

    If submitting the CSS Profile will cause extreme financial hardship, international students may complete the International Student Financial Aid Application (ISFAA) rather than the CSS Profile. The best way to submit this document is to scan the file and send it via our secure File Upload. You may also send it to us by fax at 207-725-3864 or by regular mail to the address below. Please complete this document and submit it to us at your earliest convenience. Learn more on the Student Aid international students page
     
    We will waive the CSS Profile requirement when we receive your completed ISFAA.  

    Bowdoin College 
    Office of Student Aid 
    5300 College Station 
    Brunswick, Maine 04011 
    sao@bowdoin.edu  

    For all questions related to financial aid, please visit the Student Aid website or email sao@bowdoin.edu. Please also review your Financial Aid checklist in your Application Portal. Please note that QuestBridge Match applicants will not have this tab in their portal.

    All financial aid documents MUST be submitted through IDOC. The IDOC service allows you to submit your financial aid documents securely, confidentially, and electronically to the Bowdoin Student Aid Office.

    After completing the CSS Profile you will receive an email from the College Board giving you access to IDOC. You will be able to access IDOC directly or from the "next steps" heading of the College Board dashboard. The IDOC site also provides forms that are requested such as the Federal Verification Worksheet (in the “Learn or do more” section, select “Get Forms”) and the Non-Tax Filer Statement (click on the link after the tax document to access this form).

    Due to processing at IDOC and the Student Aid Office, please allow up to 1 week for your documents to appear in your checklist before contacting the Student Aid Office.

    Please email us at sao@bowdoin.edu with any questions.

    QuestBridge

    Yes. You may choose to submit the Common Application or the Coalition Application instead of using the QB application. You do not need to submit another application in addition to or in place of your QB app to apply to Bowdoin. If you choose to use your QB application, you will need to complete the Bowdoin supplement.

    If you are applying ED, please email your intention to apply ED 1 or 2 together with your QB ID number to  questbridge@bowdoin.edu. You will need to complete the Bowdoin supplement and the ED agreement, which will be available to you in your Application Portal.  

    If you are applying RD, please use the QB Regular Decision form, and QB will send us your application in December. You will need to complete the Bowdoin supplement, which will be found in your Application Portal.

    Indicate your intention to apply Regular Decision to Bowdoin to QB using the QB Regular Decision Form, and QB will forward us your application in December. If you are applying ED1 or ED2, send us your QB ID number and intended round. We will download your application and upload it into our system. You will need to complete the Bowdoin Supplement and the ED agreement, which you can find in your Application Portal as well as have your school counselor send your most recent transcript.

    You will not need to re-submit anything, but please do complete the Bowdoin Supplement found in your Application Portal and have a school official send us a transcript with your midyear grades when it becomes available.

    Please send any updated information to questbridge@bowdoin.edu, and we will add it to your file. Please also have your school counselor send us your most recent transcript.

    Please contact QuestBridge directly to let them know of your desire to withdraw from the Match Process.

    We will accept the transcript that will come with your QuestBridge application. You will also want to have your school counselor send your most recent transcript.