College Essay Organizer's Protocol with Respect to the Common App (CA4)


With the significant changes to the Common App (CA4), we have received many inquiries regarding how College Essay Organizer will operate this year. After much research via the Common App and the colleges directly, we're glad to tell you that we'll be as proactive for you as ever this season -- and even more valuable! Below are three key points we wanted to highlight:
  • We won't wait until August 1. We will continue to update essay questions before the August 1 launch of the Common App. Last year, through our special protocol, we updated 286 schools (many of them Common App schools) prior to August 1 and we expect to be just as aggressive this season.
  • We'll give you all the essay questions for different programs and departments in one easy place. As we understand it, the Common App supplement will require students to select their majors/interests in order to first view those essay questions. This would make it incredibly time-consuming and cumbersome for you to locate questions on your own for all of your students with all their different majors/interests, so you can instead rely on us to do it for you. We will list all of these particular essay questions under each college; you can then simply remove any questions that are not relevant to a given student (or the student can do so on his or her own). Several of you have noted your skepticism regarding whether the Common App will indeed have all of the program- and major-specific essay questions; after all, a few colleges last season claimed to have all such questions listed on their supplements but were in fact missing several questions. College Essay Organizer had each and every one.
  • We've got all the scholarship essay questions the Common App doesn't. As usual the Common App will not list the hundreds of scholarship essay questions for the colleges -- no change there. So, as always, we'll have them for you. College Essay Organizer had more than 1,000 scholarship essay questions last season, and that number will continue to grow.


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Tips on Living with a Roommate

Communicate early to avoid problems later.

Now that the college application process is over, students are shifting their focus to what lies ahead, and the thought of having a roommate in the fall is causing some anxiety. After all, no one wants to be stuck living with someone they hate. This article includes some great tips on how to handle even the toughest roommate situation. Here are a few highlights:

  • Communication is key. Make sure to find out each other's pet peeves from the beginning so that you can be sensitive to them before they blow up into larger issues.
  • Work out problems when they're small. We all know how quickly small misunderstandings can snowball, so make sure to discuss them early on.
  • Respect each other's belongings. Don't assume that your roommate won't mind if you borrow something. Be sure to ask first and set clear guidelines.
  • Remember the Golden Rule. Be sure to treat your roommate the way you would like to be treated. No matter how things turn out, at least you'll know that you acted the right way.


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Tips on Selecting Classes for the Fall

The earlier you start planning for the college application process, the easier it will be when you finally apply.

Now that the end of the school year is near, high school students are selecting their classes for the fall. With this process comes questions surrounding the best way to impress admissions officers down the road. The New York Times Choice blog has posted some great tips to consider when making your class selections. Questions that are addressed by Jeff Rickey, the vice president and dean of admissions and financial aid at St. Lawrence University, include:

  • How important is a student's transcript when applying to colleges?
  • What do admissions officers look for when reviewing a student's transcript?
  • Is it a good idea to take challenging classes in subjects of little interest to the student?
  • What is the best way to balance extracurricular activities and classes?
  • Is it better to take Advanced Placement classes or classes at a local college?
  • Is it better to have an A in an honor's class or a B in an Advanced Placement class?

To see the answers, click here.



Final Checklist for Seniors

You're almost there!

Congratulations on making it this far! You're almost done with high school and college is right around the corner, but you're not there yet. The New York Times Choice blog has provided a checklist here with some important points to remember:

  • While it's easy to give in to spring fever, it's important to continue to prepare yourself for the demands that lie ahead. Being disciplined now will definitely pay off later, and a significant drop in academic performance could jeopardize your spot at the college you plan to attend in the fall.
  • If you've made your decision on which college to attend, be happy knowing that you've done your research and made the best decision possible.
  • Let other colleges know that you will not be accepting their offers so they can move to their wait-lists as necessary.
  • If you are still on a wait-list, let the college know that you are still interested or take yourself off.
  • Stay on top of college communications. You'll be receiving lots of forms that need to be filled out, so be sure to return them promptly.
  • Now that you've made it through the application process, make sure to share the lessons you've learned with your younger friends, including any valuable technology you used (like College Essay Organizer) that helped you along the way.
  • Plan your summer so that you're sure to have another great experience before college.