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University of Illinois offers online application

Published: Monday, Sept. 9, 2013 5:30 a.m. CST

URBANA – The University of Illinois’ flagship campus has launched its new online application early.

The application was supposed to debut Sept. 1, but The News-Gazette in Champaign reported Sunday that it went live ahead of schedule on Aug. 28. Applicants still have to provide all of the same information, but now it’s on the Internet.

University admissions director Stacey Kostell said the school created the online application to offer a better “user experience.” The school hopes it will improve recruitment and increase the percentage of students who accept University of Illinois admissions offers, she said.

“It’ll still take some time for students to fill out,” Kostell said, but “we spent quite a bit of time making sure that it’s more user-friendly.”

The process includes a portal called “My Illini,” a short profile students fill out as the first step to apply. The portal will save students’ information for when they log in next.

The school can use the portal to contact applicants.

“We see that as one of the bonuses of having this application. We already have a relationship with students,” Kostell said.

The online application includes a section where students fill in their own high school courses and grades, called the “Self-Reported Academic Record.” This is the third year the school is using that system. The school only requires officials transcripts from students who decide to enroll.

Kostell said just a handful of student have been caught lying about their grades each year.

Urbana High School senior Michael Chen applied to the university using the online application and filled out his own grades too.

“It took me about 5 to 10 minutes to finish that part. It’s pretty simple, and convenient,” said Chen, who wants to major in pre-med biology.

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Information from: The News-Gazette, http://www.news-gazette.com

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