What are your chances of acceptance?

Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
Duke University
Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

When Is the Common App Due?

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What’s Covered:


If you’re starting the college application process, you’ve probably heard of the Common App. The Common App is a simplified college application platform that allows students to apply to over 900 schools using a single application. While the Common App allows you to submit some universal information to all of your prospective schools, many schools will require additional information or supplemental materials unique to their individual admissions process. Whether one of the schools on your college list accepts the Common App or (more likely) all of them do, keep reading to learn about dates and deadlines for this important tool.


Types of College Application Timelines and Deadlines


The Common App itself does not have one final due date. Instead, there are multiple deadlines that vary depending on the school(s) you are applying to as well as the application timeline you pick. Some common application timelines include: 


Early Action: A non-binding early application deadline for a university. Applicants must apply early–typically by November 1 of senior year. Admissions decisions are released in the winter.


Restrictive Early Action: Restrictive early action is similar to Early Action in that it is still non-binding, however an applicant applying Restrictive Early Action is not allowed to apply early to multiple colleges or universities. Deadlines are also typically around November 1.


Early Decision: A binding early application option for applicants. If admitted, applicants must attend the university. Like Early Action, Early Decision deadlines commonly occur by November 1 of senior year with decisions following in mid-December


Regular Decision: The main application option for students. Regular decision deadlines typically occur at the end of December or early January. Regular decision applicants will typically receive an admissions decision by April 1.


Rolling Admissions: Rolling admissions programs allow students to apply at any time up until a certain date. Students who apply earlier have a greater chance of admission as applications are read on a first-come, first-served basis until the college has filled its incoming class. Decisions are typically released on a rolling basis. 


How to Find Each School’s Deadline


It’s important to know exactly when your application materials are due to each school on your college list. As earlier application deadlines often afford certain benefits, such as an earlier decision date or priority consideration for scholarships and grants, mapping out application deadlines is an important first step in your admissions process. You can locate each school’s application deadline schedule by following these steps: 


  1. Log into the Common App portal
  2. Go to the “My Colleges” tab 
  3. Under each school’s “College Information” you will see deadlines. 

Deadline Exceptions to Watch Out For


Merit Scholarship Consideration

Many schools require students to submit their applications early (typically December 1) if they would like to be considered for merit scholarships. For some schools, you don’t even need to submit additional information to be considered as long as you apply by this deadline. Schools with scholarship consideration deadlines include Purdue, University of Richmond, Vanderbilt University, Miami University, Michigan State University, and Indiana University.

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Special Program Consideration

Some universities encourage students to submit their applications early if they are interested in honors college or other special programs. For example, admissions officers encourage students to apply early at SUNY Buffalo if they would like to be considered for the Honors College. This is because those decisions are made on a rolling basis until the program is filled.


Schools Not on the Common App

It is important to note that schools that are not on the Common App may have earlier deadlines that differ from those on the Common App. For example, many of the University of California schools have an application deadline of November 30. Georgetown, another school that does not use the Common App, has a deadline of January 10.


Is Your Common App Essay Strong Enough? 


Now that you know when to submit your Common App, you might be wondering if your essays are impactful enough to get into the college of your choice? 


Writing compelling personal essays is important for a successful application as it adds voice to the transcripts, test scores and data that make up your profile. In fact, 25% of your admissions decision comes down to your essays. While grades and test scores count for 20% and 15% of your application respectively, top universities often attract applicant pools with equally fantastic grades and test scores, making essays an effective way to differentiate one student from another. 


Often, the best essays are ones that have been proofread by other readers, as a fresh set of eyes can tell you objectively whether your essay conveys a strong message and unique voice. Looking for some advice on your Common App essay? We’ve got you covered. Our Peer Essay tool pairs you with a fellow student to proofread your essay and provide thoughtful feedback. You can also improve your own editing skills by reading someone else’s essay. Best of all, this service is completely free!  


Short Bio
Juliette is a senior at Cornell University studying Industrial & Labor Relations. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, running, drinking coffee, and exploring different hiking trails in Ithaca.