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The Common Application

What is the Common Application (commonly known as The Common App)?


The Common App is an college application used by over 900 colleges and universities. It makes the process of applying to college easier for students if they can use a single application to apply to multiple colleges and universities.

The Common App has additional features to help students learn about the college search process. They have online tools and videos to help students understand and accurately fill out their application, and students are encouraged to take advantage of all helpful resources.

The Common App goes "live" each August 1 and students can open their account and begin filling out their application at that time. There are two main parts you fill out: a set of common questions and each college’s own specific questions. There are seven essay prompts - a student answers ONE of those prompts. Colleges may require additional essays (known as "supplemental" essays - and they are at least as important as the main Common App essay).


Final deadlines to submit applications vary by college and students can find that information within their Common App account (understanding that deadlines also depend on whether a student is applying Early Action, Early Decision or Regular Decision).

Here are some helpful Common App links:

To begin your Common Application Journey:

Common App Essay Prompts:

Common App YouTube Channel with tutorials:

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