Colleges Agree to Allow Increased Competition for Applicants

An agreement between college counselors and the Justice Department should free up colleges to woo early-decision applicants with financial aid.

In a proposed agreement announced this month to answer Justice Department antitrust accusations, the National Association for College Admission Counseling said it would allow its member college and university counselors to recruit students even after they have committed to another school and would permit members to encourage students to transfer after they have already enrolled.

Colleges and universities have been heavily criticized for encouraging potential students to enter into agreements, particularly for early admissions, with the understanding that an accepted applicant could not then turn to another school. That understanding, which was not legally binding but was widely followed, prevented universities from competing for applicants by offering more enticing financial aid packages. read more

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