Common app essay changes
Consider the intention behind a college essay.
The admissions committee wants to learn more about you, like who you really are and what makes you tick. Keep this idea central as you prepare for college essays. At CollegeVine, we know that a solid response to a college essay question addresses these Core Four questions:. Summer is a great time to start these because you probably have fewer commitments and more time to write freely.
This is why you are starting early, and starting over at this point is no skin off your back. Try a few approaches and when one of them seems to click, run with it. Our Essay Specialist Program pairs you 1-on-1 with your very own expert essay consultant who will work with you on your essays through every phase of the process: brainstorming, drafting, editing, and putting together a final draft.
Or, for students who just need an extra set of discerning eyes, consider our Rapid Essay Review through which a team of essay consultants will be able to provide comprehensive revisions, edits, and comments and have your essay returned to you via email within a time frame that you specify. For more help at every step along the path to college applications, consider the benefits of the CollegeVine Applications program , which exists to help you optimize your application, ensuring that you are supported through every step of this process. Get Essay Help.
Calculate Your Chances. Want more college admissions tips? We'll send you information to help you throughout the college admissions process. Loved the article? Share it! Short bio. Kate Koch-Sundquist is a graduate of Pomona College where she studied sociology, psychology, and writing before going on to receive an M. After a few forays into living abroad and afloat sometimes at the same time , she now makes her home north of Boston where she works as a content writer and, with her husband, raises two young sons who both inspire her and challenge her on a daily basis.
Other articles by Kate. Does Every Student Need College?
Five Alternatives to College. August 27, 5 min read Applying to College , College Lists. August 26, 9 min read Financial Aid , Scholarships. August 14, 5 min read Clubs and Organizations , Extracurricular Activities. Who handed it to you? Who did you discuss it with afterward? How often have you reread that meaningful book or article? Is there a problem that comes up over the dinner table with your family regularly?
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How do you think about solving it as a family, or individually? Tell the story of one of those dinners. What makes you angry or furious about the world? Tell the story of a time you saw something—visually—that provoked that anger or frustration. Describe images and your reactions.
Can I edit or change my commonapp essay after submitting it for early action?
Prompt 5. They say a piece of short fiction is about a moment after which nothing will be the same again. Have you lived through one of those moments?
What was it? Tell the story of the day that happened. Prompt 6. What do you get up to? Set the scene: what rooms are you in in your house, or are you in your house at all? Where do you go? What do you bring with you? What activities have you self-started—that is, what have you done without ever being told to?
Tell the story of the first day you started doing that thing. What do your friends come to you seeking help with? Tell the story of a time when you think you did a great job of helping another person.
Now, to make sure you stay humble, tell the story of when that person helped you. Freewriting is one of the fun parts, so the more you can do it, the better. There are a number of ways to approach freewriting, and all of them are meant to keep you limber, loose, and free. Work in these for the summer. No need to get precious—no fancy Moleskins here, and no laptops or tablets unless you are physically unable to write by hand. Writing which is different from a tapping-on-a-keyboard-kind-of-story.
For one thing, there is no delete button, making the experience more lifelike right away. What are you going to write about during those six minutes? Instead, what might come out as she writes by hand is… I remember the rush the first time I stood up at a mock trial tournament. But why did I love playing this role of attorney? Was it the theater? The chance to finally argue without getting in trouble at the dinner table? Write in big letters and double-space. Let your hand roam free. Allowing your writing to breathe away from you can prevent you from committing one of the cardinal sins of personal statement-writing—but also all writing!
Respect your process and let these things sit.
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And if you spend your summer warming up and training for the main event, you can start rereading your body of freewriting by the end of July. In an ideal world, you can start writing and planning for your college essays the summer before your senior year. But many students have prior commitments that make following a six-month June-December timeline difficult. Six months - June to December ideal if you are applying early action or early decision anywhere :.
Week two of August: Complete second draft here is where the major revision work comes in. Weeks three-four of August: Complete third and fourth drafts. Beginning of September: Seek feedback, if you have not already, from a trusted admissions counselor, English teacher, or other advisor. Now you have October to complete your secondary essays.
First two weeks of August: Brainstorm and work with prompts.
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First week of September: Complete first draft of Common App personal statement. Week two of September: Complete second draft here is where the major revision work comes in. Weeks three-four of September: Complete third and fourth drafts. Beginning of October: Seek feedback, if you have not already, from a trusted admissions counselor, English teacher, or other advisor.
Now you have the second two weeks of October to complete your secondary essays for anywhere you are applying early with a November due date, and the rest of November to complete any remaining secondary essays for schools with December and January due dates most regular decision deadlines. One month - October to November for regular decision schools :. Third week of October: Complete first draft of Common App personal statement. Last week of October: Complete second draft here is where the major revision work comes in.
First two weeks of November: Complete third and fourth drafts.
Mid-November, before Thanksgiving break: Seek feedback, if you have not already, from a trusted admissions counselor, English teacher, or other advisor. Now you have December to complete any remaining secondary essays for schools with December and January due dates most regular decision deadlines. Mega crunch time - Starting in November in case you get started on your application really late and are down to less than one month, use the following timeline :. Thank you! Your guide is on its way.
In the meantime, please let us know how we can help you crack the the college admissions code. You can also learn more about our 1-on-1 college admissions support here. What notes should your essay hit? Here are some characteristics that a good Common App Essay topic contains:.