What is Demonstrated Interest in College Admissions?

In this article, know all about demonstrated interest in college admissions-what is demonstrated interest, what is the importance of Demonstrated interest, ways to express demonstrated interest and colleges that consider demonstrated interest. Read to know more..

Updated by Tanisha Alex on 13th April 2020

First of all, what exactly is demonstrated interest? Demonstrated interest is basically the level of interest or enthusiasm you display in a college of your choosing. Demonstrated interest is simply a soft quality that colleges measure in order to help them narrow down their potential applicants. In fact, demonstrated interest has no relation to your grades or even your extracurriculars. Rather it is your actions or words that represent your interest in the college you wish to apply to. Demonstrated interest is the most efficient way you can show colleges that you are interested in their services. This could range from anything to be engaged in the application process or even attending webinars or interviews with alumni. 

Demonstrated interest is the most effective tool that colleges use to ensure that their candidates actually attend college once accepted. DI(demonstrated interest) is used to predict the yield or even the number of enthusiastic applicants. The topic of demonstrated interest can be viewed from the college point of view and from the applicant’s point of view. From the applicant’s point of view, it would be the perfect way to guarantee your admission. Because demonstrated interest would prove to the admissions board that you are truly and completely interested in the college. This increased interest would look very appealing and good to the admissions board thereby helping your chances. Furthermore demonstrated interest can be shown through face to face interviews or even essays, as it would help you be seen as much more than the resume you submitted. By showing increased interest you are seen as more than your application to the admissions board of your preferred college. 


What is the Importance of Demonstrated Interest? 

Although demonstrated interest is important and you would think that it would be the deciding factor for your admissions. But contrary to this opinion according to a survey conducted by the national association of college admissions counseling (NACAC), most colleges have a limited or non-existent interest in DI. The main reason behind the limited interest is that demonstrated interest would not promote equality in admissions. This can be explained by asking yourself how I can show my demonstrated interest in the college of my interest. The most efficient way to prove your enthusiasm would be to attend seminars and interviews at the campus itself, this would further require campus visits and transportation and stay at the campus. This would be rather expensive as not all candidates and applicants can afford to visit the campus so as to increase their chances of admissions. This is the main reason why most colleges don’t place much emphasis on demonstrated interest. Not all applicants can afford multiple visits to the campus for interviews or meetings with alumni.  

Although demonstrated interest would be incredibly beneficial to an applicant. How so? An applicant would have a clearer idea about the environment they would be joining and studying in.  by reviewing the requirements for the demonstrated interest they can recheck if this college is a good fit for them. 


Ways To Express Demonstrated Interest

There are a number of ways to express demonstrated interest especially when the college you are interested in places it as a priority. Given below are multiple ways to establish your interest in the college of your choice:

  • College visits: the best way to prove your dedication and enthusiasm is to actually schedule a physical visit to the campus you wish to enroll in. This would further prove that you are dedicated to your efforts toward securing a place in the college of your choice. This is very helpful for the admissions board as it helps them separate the applicants who truly wish to join as opposed to candidates who are here for namesake only. And if you are coming from a family that cannot afford to send you for a campus visit you may always enroll rin the diversity fly-in programs that would make you eligible for an all-expenses-paid trip. 

  • Collegiate fairs and events: another way to demonstrate your interest in the college is to attend its fairs and events. This would highly appeal to the admissions board as well as be beneficial to you. By attending collegiate fairs and events you will be able to get familiar with the campus and the students. This would allow you to make a calculated decision regarding your admission to the college of your choice. 

  • Online events and webinars: your attendance of online events and webinars would be noted and appreciated by the admissions board. Additionally, it would give you some much-needed perspective. It would help you discover what the college deems important and whether your interests are aligned.


Colleges That Consider Demonstrated Interest

As stated above according to the national association of college admissions(NACAC) very few colleges use demonstrated interest as a criterion for their admissions process. Some colleges consider demonstrated interest heavily. The reason behind this is because it helps differentiate between two similar applicants. If two individuals have the same SAT/PSAT score and similar resumes the individual that has taken an active interest in the college would be given preference. Demonstrated interest can be expressed in a number of ways like college visits, attend collegiate fairs and events or even express your interest in your essays. The following colleges take demonstrated interest very seriously:

  • American university

  • Hampshire university

  • Georgia college 

  • Dickinson university 

  • Ithaca college

  • Syracuse university

  • United states air force academy

  • United states naval academy 


In conclusion, demonstrated interest is not highly regarded by every college and even if it is there are a number of ways to showcase your increased interest in the college of your choice. Furthermore, if you come from a  family that cannot afford ways to ensure demonstrated interest there are a number of programs that would allow you to show your interest.