Common Application

The Glossary: the basics

The Glossary: the basics

I want to go over the basic terminology necessary to understand college applications. So many of us—college consultants, high school counselors, teachers, parents, university admissions departments—take it for granted that our students are completely aware of all the terms and lingo, even though the terms are rarely actually taught. If you’re trying to be a first-generation college student, came to this country recently and are new to the system, and/or go to a high school that doesn’t emphasize college preparedness, then some (or a lot) if this may be understandably new.

Summer's almost over

Summer's almost over

Depending on how your school calendar works, you probably have somewhere between two and six weeks of summer left. If your house is anything like mine, you're beginning to run out of planned activities and good ideas. So I thought I'd give some suggestions to smart and ambitious high school students for wrapping up the summer.

The new Common Application essay prompts

The new Common Application essay prompts

The Common Application has released the essay prompts for the 2017-2018 year. You can find the official announcement on their official site here.

Two of them are exactly the same as last year--the one about your "background, identity, interest, or talent," and the one about "the problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve"--and the other three from the previous year got some tweaks and revisions but are basically the same.

What's really interesting, though, are two new and additional prompts, bringing the number of prompts up to seven.