Updated April 2023
When you think about college and the application cycle, it can seem like a long process. Luckily, times have changed, and now everything is more accessible.
Here at Gradehacker, the non-traditional adult student’s #1 resource, we have years of experience with all types of college students, including those who are about to begin their educational journey.
This is why in this article, we’ll share how to use the Common App for college applications and make your process simpler.
It doesn’t matter if you are a freshman applicant, an International student, a transfer student, or a non-traditional student who’s trying to find their way back to college; this app is meant to ease the application approach process for students of all kinds, so let’s see how it works!
What is the Common App?
The Common App is a free online application platform that allows students to submit every application for admission and complete the FAFSA for most higher education institutions in the U.S.
It connects with the college’s online systems, providing automatic processing and multiple listings to all students entering the application.
It is a very comprehensive resource for all students regardless of school size and degree program.
How Does The Common App Work?
The Common App can be downloaded as a mobile app on the App Store or Google Play It was created to overcome many of the limitations and inefficiencies of the usual college application process and facilitate the admission application.
With this platform, members have multiple colleges and universities across the US to send college credits, transfer applications, and do the document upload. And if at some point you need help, you can count on their student solutions center.
Colleges and universities use this app to manage their incoming students and keep students updated.
What You Need To Know To Fill Out The Common App
There are some simple steps that you can take before you apply and transfer your college credits.
1. Create a List of Universities And Colleges
Get information about every college you are interested in and want to apply to.
The Common App will give you access to virtual tour websites of colleges provided by them. That will help you know more about its academic offerings and majors, additional application materials, and the college application journey.
You can also create a list or application checklist and add different colleges you like to learn more about and what they can offer you.
If you still haven’t found the right college for you, here you have the best universities for non-traditional students!
2. Understand Each College Has Different Requirements
The Common App website also provides you with the application requirements of many colleges, including:
It’s very important to have an eye on each application requirement to ensure that the applications you send to each college can meet their deadline and satisfy their requirements. The Common App website also provides you with the application requirements of many colleges, including:
You need to keep in mind that all colleges have different requirements. Some universities may ask you to:
Or a combination of these.
It’s very important to have an eye on it to ensure that, in the process, you meet their deadline and satisfy their terms.
3. Ask For Letters of Recommendation
This is a very common requirement, and usually, colleges ask for one to three letters from different people.
Some universities may be a little picky and have specific requirements on the format, structure, content, or even from who they accept one.
With the Common App, this process becomes easier!
When you set up the names of the individuals you want to request a letter from, the app will send them an invitation to join.
They will then be guided to the corresponding form, and that’s where they will be able to upload their recommendation letter.
If you want to know more about this part of the process, we encourage you to check our blog about what you should do with your letter of recommendation, how to get one, and its process.
4. Submit Your Application
Once you have all your requirements, essays, and letters, you will be ready to submit your applications. Be sure to complete and send your application by the deadline set by each school.
What Are The Benefits Of Applying With The Common App?
The Common App has multiple benefits! What we found is that:
You can also use this app to reduce or eliminate certain types of fees you pay on the College Board’s SAT and PSAT/NMSQT tests, which many low-income families don’t have the resources for.
According to the last statistics published by Common App from 2019 to 2020, more than 5.6 million applications were submitted through their app, and Students applying to college in 2022-2023 will also have access to nearly 70 new colleges and universities.
We also strongly encourage all students to review the detailed information on colleges participating in the Common App. This research will help in your application.
For example, many colleges are committed to providing equal access for all students, including those who choose to apply for off-campus distance learning. This may include places that have a dual credit program or provide free tuition for low-income students.
This is a very supportive app that every student should know about, but luckily, there are many resources that can help you with college, and you can find more information in our video!
Are You Ready To Try The Common App?
The Common Application is a great opportunity to improve college access and ensure that all students have an equal opportunity to pursue a college education.
College requires time and effort, but it shouldn’t be difficult to access one. Luckily, things are becoming easier over time, and doors keep opening for you!
If you need help with the application process, be sure to book a meeting with us to see how we can guide you or see how you can finish your college program faster with our Entire Class Bundle or Degree Accelerator subscription.
We hope this blog helps you understand how to apply to colleges more easily. In case you want to continue learning, check our following articles: