Is it hypocritical for schools to request feedback when an applicant withdraws?

Apr 13, 2019
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I've noticed both through personal experience and from threads on here that many schools will ask for feedback when an accepted applicant withdraws. This seems totally reasonable except for the fact that many of these same schools provide zero feedback to the applicants that they rejected. Am I overlooking some key distinction here or is this hypocritical on their part?

Just curious for insight, not trying to start a flame war. Thanks.
 

candbgirl

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Why would it be hypocritical? You don’t have to reply. It’s just to see if you have any useful info to make the experience at / with the school better. Residency programs frequently ask non matched students why they didn't rank the program higher. It’s not a big deal.
 
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Dec 20, 2018
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Medical Student (Accepted)
I've noticed both through personal experience and from threads on here that many schools will ask for feedback when an accepted applicant withdraws. This seems totally reasonable except for the fact that many of these same schools provide zero feedback to the applicants that they rejected. Am I overlooking some key distinction here or is this hypocritical on their part?

Just curious for insight, not trying to start a flame war. Thanks.
Feedback usually just means what school are you going to instead right? In that case, it’s a lot less intensive to type out a one or two word reply than for the school to provide application feedback to all rejected applicants.
 
Apr 23, 2018
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Both parties (applicant and institution) have the freedom to accept or reject the other's request for feedback, so I disagree on the notion that this is hypocritical.
 

Osminog

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I've received several of these survey requests, and I don't plan on filling them out. After forcing me to spend a fortune on primary and secondary application fees, travel expenses, hotel stays, etc., medical schools expect me to take time out of my day to help out their marketing directors? Ha, not gonna happen.
 

sb247

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I've noticed both through personal experience and from threads on here that many schools will ask for feedback when an accepted applicant withdraws. This seems totally reasonable except for the fact that many of these same schools provide zero feedback to the applicants that they rejected. Am I overlooking some key distinction here or is this hypocritical on their part?

Just curious for insight, not trying to start a flame war. Thanks.
This is your chance to turn them down again. There is a huge power dynamic shift with a school once you get an acceptance elsewhere
 
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Aug 6, 2018
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its really up to you. some schools do give feedback after you have been rejected normally for people who were granted II that cycle. i got feedback from one school and it helped me a lot. i went form 1 II to 8 II and 5A this cycle as a reapplicant
 

Crayola227

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This is better phrased as a question, if you ask "is it one-sided for schools to ask for feedback from accepted applicants that go elsewhere, without offering it to applicants they rejected?" I could see the point there.

But, like, of course they do. They are acting in their own interest while trying to exert the least amount of effort needed. This is basically life in a nutshell. They need the feedback more than they benefit giving it to rejectees. Effort with very little gain in the latter case. So is it any wonder they ask and don't offer?

While I would think it in poor form that they wouldn't at least provide some feedback upon request, I can see where there are potential hurdles that could make the difficult to impossible to do well (complexity of the admissions process, the particular pool of applicants one was being measured against, confidentiality in some of this, liability, time, etc).

So, I would say, possibly one-sided and maybe fair or unfair. Hypocritical doesn't fit. Maybe the feedback here would be, need to improve verbal score on the MCAT?
 
Apr 13, 2019
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Pre-Medical
Why would it be hypocritical? You don’t have to reply. It’s just to see if you have any useful info to make the experience at / with the school better. Residency programs frequently ask non matched students why they didn't rank the program higher. It’s not a big deal.
I agree it's not a big deal, but lots of things that aren't a big deal are still hypocritical.

Both the school and the student can ASK for feedback. Doesn't mean either will get it. So, not hypocritical to me.
So, I would say, possibly one-sided and maybe fair or unfair. Hypocritical doesn't fit. Maybe the feedback here would be, need to improve verbal score on the MCAT?
I'm still not convinced. Imagine we're both eating ice cream. I ask for some of your ice cream and you say "no, this is my ice cream. you're on your own." Then you turn around and ask for some of my ice cream, or the ice cream of someone else. I'd say you're a hypocrite. Sure you always CAN ask but if you're denying to others the same thing that you're asking for,then that seems like hypocrisy to me. I guess you could argue that a school offering feedback and an applicant offering feedback are not equal though.

Another way to look at it. How do you think ADCOM's would take it if after interviewing I send an email saying "if you decide to reject me, please provide reason(s) in your response email." It just doesn't sit well with me...
 
Jun 7, 2018
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Reply "I'll give you feedback if you promise to give feedback to 10 rejected applicants."

I mean, they won't get back, but it's a real power move, and arguably charitable
 
Feb 14, 2019
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I think it makes sense. Providing feedback to thousands of rejected candidates would open up a whole mess of issues and would take forever. You giving them feedback takes max 5 mins because you dont have to do it thousands of times.
 
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Apr 13, 2019
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I think it makes sense. Providing feedback to thousands of rejected candidates would open up a whole mess of issues and would take forever. You giving them feedback takes max 5 mins because you dont have to do it thousands of times.
Even just post interview feedback would be a good start, and then it would not be for thousands of applicants. Even when considering the total applicant pool you have to consider that ~40% of the applicant pool (for some schools much higher, others lower), will get acceptances elsewhere, so you can safely assume they will not be asking for feedback. Of the rest, I don't know the statistics, but I imagine a large percentage will not bother to ask. Additionally, feedback can be as simple as taking a few seconds to jot a few notes on the application in a separate "feedback section" during ADCOM review, such as low gpa, low clinical hours, etc. This info can then be later released to the applicant by the admissions secretaries if requested post-rejection. Obviously a 1 on 1 advising session would be preferable, but I understand that could be difficult to provide to all applicants.

I think one of the reasons many schools don't provide feedback is if they implement yield protection. How are they going to explain why they rejected an overly-qualified applicant?