While it can start in the fall or spring in most US schools, it can begin in the fall or spring. In the US, the vast majority of students begin in the fall and the application process is set for fall admissions. Most American schools don't allow you to start in winter, since there isn't really a winter semester in most places. Starting college in the spring semester is another option.
The second semester means a fresh start for all students. They start new classes and can also change roommates or move to new dorms. Even if your student reaches the middle of the academic year, they won't be alone facing new experiences. The best time for you to start college depends on your personal circumstances.
Fall offers the biggest perks, but spring is a great option for those who need a little more time to adjust to college life. At Towson and Salisbury Universities, students conditionally admitted for spring can live in college dorms and take classes taught by community college faculty on campus during the fall semester. Depending on the school and program, certain courses may not offer open enrollment for the second semester. Freshmen admitted to the spring semester at UM have average high school SAT and GPA scores that, while relatively high, are lower than those in the fall class, according to UM data.
For example, Northeastern Boston University enrolls these students immediately, but directs them to spend their fall semester in a designated overseas program. Whether you're a spring admissions or transfer student, you probably have questions about starting college mid-year. At the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Assistant Vice Rector for Admissions and Guidance Dale Bittinger said that some students who are denied admission in the fall are encouraged to attend a semester of classes at a four-year community or university, although there is no formal transition program like in Towson or Salisbury. Graduation rates for freshmen are counted in federal and state statistics only for full-time students starting in the fall semester, and Hudgins said that since many Coppin students need remedial classes, this may slow them down.
When the fall semester began at Towson University last year, Erin Garnes settled in one of the dorms and enrolled in clubs and other school activities. At UM, spring admissions can opt for a fall program where they live off campus and take a full semester of classes during off-peak hours. The idea of starting college after almost everyone else has already been there for a semester is unsettling for many students. For this reason, students who apply for the fall semester are sometimes accepted for the spring semester.
Then, in January, universities usually offer orientation programs in the middle of the year, just as they do for fall semester arrivals. Everyone is familiar with the traditional academic calendar. School starts in autumn and ends in summer.