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The Common Application for 2013-2014

Last Updated: May 24, 2013 11:34:00 AM

The Common Application for 2013-2014, with its new format, will be accessible on August 1, when it will launch for all CA schools.

Here are a few highlights:

  • A dashboard feature will create an overview of a student’s application status for all of the schools he chooses to apply to.
  • The My Colleges tab has been redesigned to be more intuitive for students.
  • There are now over 520 schools that use the CA.
  • The homepage has a completely new look to it.
  • There are more screens with fewer questions on each screen. The answers to specific questions will enable or disable other questions based upon pertinence to the applicant.
  • There will be a separate set of screens/questions for home schoolers
  • A student will be able to unlock an application, edit it, and send the new, edited version to another school, making as many changes as she desires to her original application. However…
  • The CA essays can only be edited three (3) times before essays are locked permanently into final, active versions
  • All such edits will be saved and accessible through the Dashboard feature.
  • A student can change test reporting from one edit to the next, so he can choose to show scores to one college but not to another
  • The activities section is mostly unchanged, with a 150 character limit for the “details and accomplishments” field.
  • What has been up to now the “short answer” essay has been moved to individual college pages if and only if a college has chosen to ask for that response. No longer a CA requirement.
  • There is a 250-650-word restriction for the main essay that will be strictly enforced. If a student cuts and pastes (no uploading of CA essay responses) less than, or more than, the prescribed word limits, an error message will appear. There is now a WORD COUNTER on screen above and below the essay fields!!
  • A student can paste more or less than the limit, but the error message will appear; colleges will see no more than 650 words regardless of what a student can see on the screen.
  • Colleges in their supplements have a choice of allowing uploaded documents, such as an additional essay or a resume, as opposed to cut-and-paste.
  • The essay fields will have bold, italics and underlining tools.
  • Some writing supplements will only appear for certain applicants (e.g. engineering, theater arts) when the applicant chooses those field of study. Thus, essay questions appear only if they're relevant to other information supplied by the applicant.
  • Currently, by clicking on the CA4 logo on the Common Application homepage, you can learn all about the new version of the application (referred to as "CA4"). 2 eLearning videos have been posted here, and more will become available.
  • Counselors, from the home page, will typically use the “Recommenders” tab.
  • No preview site for the new CA will be available before August 1.

Topics: Common Application


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