The Common Application is used for both first year freshman and transfer applications with 488 member institutions. Since the 1998-99 year, applicants have been applying online, foregoing the aggravation many college bound students endured from previous years- typing each complete app and editing with what was considered a miracle then, white out.

Here are some handy tips to help you navigate the online site:
Register at
Save your username and password. IMPORTANT!
Go to My Colleges and select colleges (one by one) on your college list.
(Non member colleges won’t show up; they’ll have their own application or use other types of services, e.g Universal Application)
Complete Future Plans, (unique to each college).
Complete Applicant, Demographics, Family, Education, Academics and Activities sections.
Complete Writing section; short essay (1000 character limit), main essay (250-500 word range recommendation), additional info (optional).
Submit the Common Application separately for each college.
Complete Supplements (unique to each college; 2/3 colleges require a supplement).
Submit the Supplements separately for each college.
Create additional Common App versions, as needed.
Check to make sure documents have been downloaded by colleges.

Read more on navigating the Common Application in the September Newsletter,

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