This post will be particularly relevant to the class of 2017!
The Common Application (or Common App) has implemented a few important changes for this year.
First, Common App has created a smart-phone app called CommonApp onTrack. Common App onTrack features include college submission status view, reminders, and push notifications that help students keep track of their application progress and ahead of each college deadline. For more information, check out the youtube video below:
CommonApp Account Info Rollover
Applications from the 15-16 school year will roll over into the 16-17 school year. In the past, if a junior started their application in the spring or early summer, the data did not roll over beginning in August. THIS IS NO LONGER THE CASE. Rising seniors can now begin working on their Common App accounts NOW without fear that the data will be deleted in August. However, some info will not roll over. Please see the info below:
What information will carry over from one year to the next?
We will preserve the answers you provided to any questions that appear in the six sections of the “Common App” tab: Profile, Family, Education, Testing, Activities, and Writing.
What info will NOT carry over from one year to the next?
Click here for more info.
Despite many changes to the Common App this year, the essay prompts have not changed. We recommend that students using common app begin working on these essays early on in the summer. Save these in a word document or on your google drive account because if you put these in your common app account, they will not roll over in august (see above).
NOTE: Individual colleges may require or encourage supplementary essays that are specific to that particular college. That info will be available in the college's specific section of the application.
The essay demonstrates your ability to write clearly and concisely on a selected topic and helps you distinguish yourself in your own voice. What do you want the readers of your application to know about you apart from courses, grades, and test scores? Choose the option that best helps you answer that question and write an essay of no more than 650 words, using the prompt to inspire and structure your response. Remember: 650 words is your limit, not your goal. Use the full range if you need it, but don't feel obligated to do so. (The application won't accept a response shorter than 250 words.)
2016-2017 Essay Prompts
1. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
2. The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
3. Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
4. Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
5. Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.