New Common Application Prompts for 2017-18

new common application prompts

New Common Application Prompts for 2017-18:

TOPIC OF CHOICE IS BACK!!

 

Great news for you college-bound juniors who are just starting to think about your college application essays.

If you need to write your personal statement essay for The Common Application, they just made it a lot easier.

Instead of having to pick one topic from their list of suggested 5 prompts, you can now write about ANYTHING YOU WANT.

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ApplyTexas: Help for Essay Topic C

URGENT! ApplyTexas changed their essay prompts in 2016-17. 

Click HERE for the current essay prompts!

 

ApplyTexas

Photo Via Texas Lutheran University

(THIS POST IS OUTDATED!) 

How to Link Your Life Goals to Current and Future Activities

In the previous post, I wrote about ideas on how to answer Topics A and B in the ApplyTexas college application.

Students who want to apply to most public colleges and universities and some private colleges in Texas must use the ApplyTexas application.

Depending on the school(s) in Texas that you are applying to, there’s a good chance you will need to answer any combination of Topics A, B or C. (more…)

ApplyTexas: Essay Help for Topics A and B

URGENT! ApplyTexas changed their essay prompts in 2016-17. 

Click HERE for the current essay prompts!

ApplyTexas

(THIS POST IS OUTDATED!)

All public universities, and some private and 2-year colleges, in Texas do not use the Common Application. Instead, they have their own consolidated system called ApplyTexas.

If you are applying to any of the schools that use ApplyTexas, you need to figure out what essays they require (if any), and then which specific prompts. (more…)

Hot Strategies for All Five of the New Common Application Prompts

College Application Essays

Which Prompt Will You Pick?

 

UPDATE: Most of this information is still helpful and relevant. However, please see the changes in the NEW Common Application Prompts for 2015-16

If you are ready to brainstorm ideas for your Common Application essays, here’s a great place to start. I’ve written posts on each of the 5 new prompts–including how to focus your answer, to find unique angles and twists,  to structure your essay, to tell a story with an anecdote, and topics to avoid, on and on.

Here are the new prompts for the 2013 Common Application essays
(click each prompt to find my post on how to respond to it!):

 

  1. Some students have a background or story or interest or talent that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
  2. The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn?
  3. Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
  4. Describe a problem you’ve solved or a problem you’d like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma-anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
  5. Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

Check out my posts on how to answer the two prompts for the University of California essays.

If you find these helpful, but still need more help in the actual writing of your narrative-style essay, consider buying a copy of my new book: Escape Essay Hell! You can order off my blog here or it’s now also available on Amazon via Kindle. luck!

The Beauty of Failure: How to Answer Prompt 2 of The Common Application

College Application Essays: Tell a Story to Answer Prompt 2

When Messing Up is a Good Thing

 

I almost like Prompt #2 as much as Prompt #1 of the new essay questions for The Common Application: The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn.

This essay prompt is music to my storytelling ears!

Why? Because first it literally asks you to tell a story (“recount an incident or time”) in your essay, which I think creates the most engaging and meaningful essays!

And secondly, it wants you to tell a story about a time you “failed.”

I know you might think the last thing you want to tell your college about is a time you screwed up, but it’s actually perfect.

I’ve talked many times in this blog how problems make the best stories.

Well, a failure is a type of problem, and a terrific one at that.

Problems (including failures) are naturally interesting to read about—who doesn’t love a juicy problem?

It’s much more fun to read about things that go wrong than when they go smoothly.

Think about the news, or your favorite movie or T.V. show! (more…)