the coalition application

The Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success will be releasing its application platform any day now, so it’s more essential than ever for applicants to understand this new submission option. If you want a more basic introduction, including what the Coalition is and why it exists, begin by reading the first two posts in this series:

As of this writing, the Coalition has yet to release its application, but there are still important updates you should be aware of:

  1. We now know of one school* exclusively using the Coalition Application in the 2016-17 application cycle: the University of Florida. If you navigate to Florida’s website, however, you won’t see an official announcement or further information about its decisions to go Coalition exclusive. Why this is, we can’t be entirely sure; however, it’s safe to assume that the college has chosen to hold off on updating its website until the Coalition’s application platform goes live.
  2. While the application still hasn’t been released (we expect this to happen by the end of July), the Coalition has made enormous strides in the development of the other two essential tools in their platform. As a reminder, the Coalition “platform” is a three-pronged set of tools: a “collaboration space” for students to work on application pieces with mentors, a virtual “locker” to privately and securely store documents, and the application itself. It is these first two tools (the platform and locker) that are now live. Students can create their Coalition accounts, start to fill out their profile information, access both the collaboration space and virtual locker, and use them to their full extent. One very exciting feature of the new platform is that the Coalition Application form will eventually auto-fill with information from your account profile. So, if you take the time to fill out all those fields now, you’re saving yourself time in the future!
  3. The Coalition has also done a phenomenal job of creating and updating their “Resources” section in the past few months. This portion of their website is not accessible without an account, but it contains such valuable information (and it’s so easy to create a Coalition account), that I would encourage students to create an account just to check these resources out, even if they don’t plan on using the other parts of the platform!
  4. Though not an update since our last post, please remember that the Coalition Application’s essay prompts are live. Before you start your Coalition essay, be sure to read our run-down of how their five prompts compare to those of the Common Application. If you’re applying to even one school that takes the Coalition Application, it will be worth the time and energy to strategize now about which prompt you are going to answer—can you find an overlap you’re comfortable with?

As the Coalition continues to roll out updates, we’ll continue to update you, so be sure to check back in with us regularly!

* The original version of this post stated that the University of Maryland and the University of Washington would be using the Coalition Application for the 2016-17 application cycle, but both colleges have decided to delay their implementation of the Coalition Application until the 2017-18 cycle.

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Written by Abigail Anderson
Abigail Anderson is a member of College Coach’s team of college admissions experts. Abigail received her bachelor’s in sociology from Colby College. Prior to joining College Coach, Abigail worked as a senior admissions officer at Reed College and Emma Willard School.