college counselor

by Elyse Krantz, former admissions officer at Barnard College

At the start of this year’s application season, we released a series of articles on what to expect with the 2014-2015 Common Application. In response, we received many great Common App questions from our readers and thought it might be helpful to share the most frequently asked questions to help you put the finishing touches on your applications.

4 Common App FAQs

Q: Can a recommendation from one teacher be sent to multiple schools on my list?

A: Each teacher can write one letter of recommendation for you, and this same letter gets sent to all of the schools to which you have assigned him/her on the “Recommenders and FERPA” section of the Common Application. If you decide to apply to more schools later on in the process, your teacher’s letter will be sent automatically to those schools as well, as long as you have assigned him/her as the recommender for those new institutions.

Q: If I report my SAT/ACT scores on the Common App, do I still have to send the official scores through College Board and the ACT?

A: Yes! After requesting that your official score reports be sent out, it can take 3-5 weeks for colleges to receive them.  Be sure to submit your SAT/ACT requests early so that your scores get mailed well before application deadlines.

Q: Will it reflect poorly on my application if I don’t self-report test scores via the Common App?

A: Not at all! Feel free to leave the test section blank on the Common App. Most colleges will only use official test scores sent by the testing agencies and will not focus on your self-reported scores on the application.

Q: If I submitted the Common App to one school for Early Decision/Early Application, how to I make changes to my application before I send it to my regular decision schools? Do I need to create a separate version?

A: There’s no need to start from scratch. Once you submit the application to your ED/EA school, you’ll be able to edit any section of the application before you submit to the other schools on your list. Just be aware that you are only allowed to make changes to your main essay a total of two times before the Common App “locks” you into your third and final version of the essay.

I hope this answers some of the questions you may have.  Please check the comments section of our Common App posts for more Q&A with our experts. If you don’t see the answer to a question you have, please feel free to post yours in the comments, and one of our college admissions experts will respond as soon as possible. Best of luck!

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Written by Elyse Krantz
Elyse Krantz is a member of College Coach’s team of college admissions consultants. Elyse received her BA in linguistics from Dartmouth College and her MA from Teachers College, Columbia University. Prior to joining College Coach, Elyse worked as an admissions officer at Barnard College and Bennington College. Visit our website to learn more about Elyse Krantz.