Common App

How to Best Answer the New 650 Word Common Application Essay Prompt for Fall 2022

The 2021-22 Common Application includes a new 650 word personal statement prompt, one of seven choices:  Reflect on something that someone has done for you that has made you happy or thankful in a surprising way. How has this gratitude affected or motivated you? Bold emphasis added by CMC After analyzing the new prompt, a few tips for students to…

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Imagine

To Interview or Not That is The Question

Many private university admissions officers invite applicants to schedule an evaluative admissions interview before they apply. Typically, applicants need to complete interviews by December of any admissions cycle. However, students should check the deadlines for interviews on admissions websites. Admissions interviews are optional, meaning if a student cannot or does not schedule an interview, no penalties will be assessed nor…

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To Apply Early Or Not That Is The Question

“I’ll have a better chance of admission if I apply early, right?” is a popular question at this time of year, every year. Applicants, seeking any seeming advantage in the admissions process, believing the objective is winning a vaunted acceptance letter, can naively choose to apply during early admissions rounds.  Groomed since Pre-K, many current Gen Z’ers, like Millennials, many…

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For those applying to Yale for Fall 2022, Whether to Use the Coalition or Common Application Is Up to You

Fall 2022 Coalition Application applicants to Yale have the opportunity to submit a “Digital Upload”—an audio file, video, image, or document the student produced along with a short written description of the creation. However, Common Application applicants do not have a similar “Digital Upload” option.  Curious if the difference in the information submitted between the two applications may affect admissions…

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Common App

Discipline question on the Common App disappearing for Fall 2022 Admissions

First year college applicants using The Common Application will no longer be prompted to report any high school disciplinary infractions, starting with the Fall 2022 admissions cycle. Similarly, counselors will not be specifically prompted to report disciplinary actions in their letters of recommendation or School Report.  The Common Application CEO Jenny Rickard reasons: Requiring students to disclose disciplinary actions has…

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Possible Test-Optional Admissions Prejudice?

Before COVID, submitting SAT or ACT scores were a must for every college applicant. During COVID though, test-optional policies were widely and quickly implemented to preserve as much access to college admissions as possible since many test centers (which are schools) closed, so SAT’s and ACT’s couldn’t be administered.  While many laud the change in policy, others may now be…

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2021 Creative Marbles’ Educational Retainer Offerings Continued

As no two families are the same, we offer a diverse range of advising options for parents and students to retain our counsel, which were first introduced in the Elite and Selective Tiers. The following offerings in the Preparatory Tier backstop a families’ efforts with strategic, poignant guidance at timely intervals, utilizing the totality of experience as educators for the…

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Careful Consideration of College Selection to Compensate for Costs Incurred

To be ready to choose a college, I liberally estimate that a 17 year old high school senior has: Spent approximately 12,760 hours attending school since Pre-K,  Completed an estimated 2,376 hours of homework just during four years high school (assuming an average of three hours of homework on school days and six hours per weekend during the school year),…

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Introducing our Fall 2021 Educational Retainers: The Selective Tier

To assist the diversity of high school seniors and their families as they seek the greatest value in higher education, we offer a variety of retainers which are a culmination of our nearly twenty years of practice as educational consultants, as well as our understanding of the current trends in education.  Seeking higher education isn’t simply filling in boxes with…

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Changes to The Common Application Could Improve Access for Students

Dear Common Application CEO Jenny Rickard: In advising transfer students, I discovered several incongruencies which, although did not prevent a student from submitting his applications on time, created undue stress and confusion in the hours before the deadline expired.  I offer the following feedback for you and your colleagues to consider, as a means of continuous improvement to provide the…

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Introducing Creative Marbles 2021 Educational Retainers

To serve the diverse needs of families, each with their own distinctive higher educational plans, we offer a suite of retainers. After each college application season, seeking to continuously improve our services concomitant with our experience, we reflect, study and adjust where needed. Over the next week, I will present our 2021 Educational Retainers, seeking as always to meet the needs…

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Common Application Prompts to Change for Fall 2022 Admissions

A new 650 word Common Application (bolded in the list below) essay prompt is being added for Fall 2022 admissions, as a replacement for one prompt being “retired”.  Regardless of any prompt chosen, I recommend to avoid approaching the college essay as yet another school assignment, where students try to write and edit simultaneously, crafting one maybe two drafts and…

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CA State University

All California State Universities Are Test Blind for Fall 2022

The following is the emailed response from the California State University (CSU) Chancellor’s Office in relation to our Open Letter to California State University Chancellor Castro, asking for clarification about the CSU Fall 2022 testing policy. Of note: Dr. Grommo, CSU Systemwide Director of Enrollment Management Services, states that all 23 CSU campuses will enact test-blind admissions policies, not considering…

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CA State University

Open Letter to California State University Chancellor Castro

Dear Chancellor Castro: I respectfully seek clarification about the suspended requirement to submit SAT or ACT scores for Fall 2022 admissions, concerned that Fall 2022 applicants may wrongly assess their opportunities for admissions, thus potentially affecting their decision to submit a CSU application.  In preparing to advise clients about Fall 2022 admissions, I noted a discrepancy between the California State…

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College Recruitment Rebooted or Refined

On-going cancellations of the SAT and ACT administrations has interrupted the traditional college admissions recruitment cycle, which may eventually affect demand for college.  Rick Clark, Director of Undergraduate Admissions at Georgia Tech, writes:  The mass cancellations and ensuing test-optional landslide has severely limited a big part of how colleges solicit applications through what we call “search.”…However, this traditional source of…

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