Home Student & Career Tips Deferral of Admission: Things You Need To Know

Deferral of Admission: Things You Need To Know

This article contains information about things you need to know about University Admission Deferral in 2021.

Admission Deferral

Some years back, getting admission into the University after secondary/high school was every student’s desire. Infact, many students dreaded the idea of staying home after graduation.

I was one of such student’s too, but life happened and I wasn’t able to secure admission in almost 2 years. It was really a tough period having to watch some of my peers go to the University.

This is just to make you understand the fact that back then, deferral wasn’t so common. It was a less appreciated option.

Currently, maybe due to exposure or will I say turn of events in the world, a lot of things are beginning to change; people are starting to know better. Students are no longer eager to transit immediately from high school to college as they were then. Some are willing to have their admissions deferred for a given period of time.

So, you have worked hard throughout high school, eventually made good grades and all of these paid off just in time and you were so lucky to get admission to study in your dream Institution. Somehow, it turns out to be that going to college almost immediately isn’t the next big plan for you.

That really isn’t something to be worried about. You could defer the admission for at least one year, while you take time to discover yourself more.

Good thing is, many institutions have become more open to this option unlike before.

Admission deferral is actually a beautiful thing. Many students are advised to do this to enable them explore and gain more experience away from the school environment for a certain period, usually one year. This break between high school and college is what is referred to as a gap year.

A lot of students yearn for this, but because they do not understand what admission deferment is all about and the processes involved, they wave off the idea.

Thus, this article is basically dedicated to this course. I will be sharing important things you need to know about admission deferral and the processes involved.

Things You Should Know About Deferring Admissions

Deferment option allows you to join the institution a semester or year late

Therefore, it is pertinent to understand the things involved in admission deferral. Hence, here are things you should know to be able to make an informed decision.

1. Reasons for Deferral

First of all, before you move for deferment, you ought to have considered the decision and must have a valid reason to opt for admission deferment Some of the acceptable reasons include illness, visa delays, humanitarian service, etc.

Most times, these admissions are from International Universities. Hence, lack of funds is not accepted as a reason. This is because, at the time of admission, you are required to submit a bank statement with details of available funds and if after providing this and your reason for deferral becomes, “lack of finance”, it becomes very suspicious.

Another valid reason could be taking a gap year for any reason you deem fit. Whatever reason you are given, always remember you will be required to submit documents to validate your reason for deferment. This will determine whether or not your request will be granted by the admissions team.

2. The Deadline and Additional Fees For Deferral

Different Institutions have a specific date in which the deferment applications should be received. This is usually three to five weeks before classes. Therefore, ensure that your application is delivered before the deadline. Some schools charge a deferment fee while some do not. However, some institutions do have a stipulated deferral fee.

3. Deferment Duration

Although the duration of deferment varies from Institution to Institution, most Institutions only allow for a period of one year. Anything longer than this duration of time is at the discretion of the University.

4. The Validity of Your Test Scores

For every admission to an international Institution, certain tests/exams are written for eligibility purposes. Common examples are TOEFL and IELTS. The validity of test scores is an important factor to consider when requesting deferred admission.

Language tests like the above mentioned, are valid for 2 years. Some may be 4 years. So, if you must apply for a deferred admission, ensure it elapses while your test scores are still valid.

5. Terms & Conditions for Deferring Admission

For some Universities, submitting a request for deferral is enough to guarantee the approval, but for most Universities, that is not all.

There are certain terms and conditions you must meet up with. Hence, you are advised to take time to read these terms.

When applying for deferment, the Institution needs to be sure you will definitely resume with them. Therefore, you need to convince the Admissions office that you will join the Institution afterwards. This is why most schools require you first pay the acceptance fee before requesting for a deferment.

6. Deferment Approval

Meeting up with the terms and conditions is not a guarantee that your request will be approved. One major reason your request may not be approved is late submission.

Deferral requests might not be accepted for some courses like medicine. With these in mind, if you wish to request a deferment of admission, here are ways to go about it:

How to Defer Your University Offer

Generally, the process remains the same.

Firstly, you must apply and get accepted by a university before putting in a request to defer your entry for a year. Secondly, you then get in contact with the university’s board of admissions for a deferred admission request form. After that, you are required to send a letter or email to the school’s director of admissions, stating your reason for deferment.

The admissions committee will evaluate the letter and either grant / deny your request. Your reason and time of submission will determine the outcome.


In recent times, deferring your college admission for a year has become very easy. More students opt for this more than ever before.

However, some institutions do not offer this opportunity to international applicants. On the other hand, some institutions made it open to all, as long as you’re able to apply within the specified deadline.

Lastly, bear these in mind;

  • Terms and conditions for deferred admissions vary from one location to another as well as from institution to institution.
  • Not all institutions offer the option to defer admissions. So, ensure you do proper research if you wish to defer your admission to avoid applying for admission in schools without this option.
  • You are not allowed to request for deferral at one institution and apply for admission at another institution.
  • You must have a cogent reason to ask for deferment. This determines to a large extent whether or not your request will be approved.

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