Common App


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Due to the ever-increasing competition in education, graduating or newly graduated high school students applying to colleges and universities are advised to apply to multiple institutes at once to secure their chances of obtaining a seat.

A smart way to take the hassle out of the university application process is to make use of single application platforms, such as Common App, that let you apply to many universities simultaneously.

What is Common App

Common Application, commonly known as ‘Common App’, is one of the integrated online application portals that lets students apply to more than 1000 colleges and universities at once. 

Founded in 1975, It connects students to higher education institutions all across the USA and 20 other countries. The platform helps both first-time applicants and transfer students apply to multiple colleges and universities at the same time.

How Does Common App Work

To start filling out your application on Common App, you will first have to create an account on the Common App website. Signing up will require you to input your personal details and answer a few questions, enabling the portal to show you the colleges or universities most relevant to your requirements. 

Once you’ve signed up, you can then get to the ‘My Colleges’ list present on the dashboard. Students can add up to 20 colleges to their list. After finalizing your list of colleges, you can then start filling out your applications.


If you are a prospective international student, you can also get the help of experienced student counsellors to fill out your Common Applications to your selected universities.

Sections to Fill Out on Common App

The common application, like most other application portals, requires students to fill out different sections as a part of the application. This includes:

  • Personal Details 
  • Academic History 
  • Standardised Test Scores
  • Extra Curricular Activities Details 
  • College Application Essay

Common App Essay

The Common App portal requires students to submit a primary writing sample called the Common App Essay. This essay is in some ways the equivalent of a personal statement required by most universities in the world. 

Your Common App essay will play a crucial part in your final selection thus it is recommended that you make use of all the most effective essay writing techniques. Some universities also require students to turn in supplemental essays in addition to the primary writing sample.

Common App Application Fee

The Common App platform is a not-for-profit entity, meaning the platform itself does not charge any fee. However, the different universities on the platform decide what they will charge for processing your application. 

The fee differs for local and international applicants. Some universities do not charge a fee at all. Students can also apply for an application fee waiver, based on the waiver eligibility criteria of different universities.

Common App Deadlines

The Common App deadline is different for different colleges and universities and will be displayed on your dashboard. A general deadline structure is as follows: 

Early Action Deadline 

November 1

Regular Decision Applications 

January 1 

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