08/02/2010 04:52 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Interviews Reemerge As Crucial Part Of Application Process

With tens of thousands of applicants at many institutions, colleges are more desperate than ever for any scrap of intel that might distinguish one straight-A student from another. As a new admission cycle begins this summer, colleges are finding there's nothing like an interview to bring out revelatory details.

Lucy King talked about the Concord-Carlisle Regional High School concert band. Another William and Mary visitor challenged his interviewer to pick a number from one to 1,000 and then calculated its square in his head. Someone else recounted his feats as a world-champion wooden-duck carver. Students have danced, done comedic impersonations and showed YouTube videos.

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