Skip To Main Content

Common Application

Visit the website of the college you are applying to and look at their application requirements. Some colleges, like the University of Michigan Ann Arbor, require you to use the Common App. Others may give you a choice: either apply directly through their website or use the Common App. If you have both options, here is how to decide which system to use:

If you are applying to several colleges that use the Common App, it is more convenient to use the Common App because you get to fill one application that goes to all the colleges.

If you are applying to only one college that gives you the option to use the Common App or to apply directly, it might be easier and faster to just apply directly to the website.

If you choose to use the Common App, go to and create an account for free. You need to connect your Common App account to your Naviance account.This is a video with instructions for Common App Registration and Account Matching with Naviance : 

More than 40 years ago, a small group of colleges and universities got together to reimagine the college application process. One application, 15 forward-thinking institutions. What began as an experiment to simplify the admissions process has evolved into a global college access movement.

Today, The Common Application (Common App) is a non-profit membership organization representing nearly 900 diverse institutions of higher education.We connect applicants and those who support them to a wide array of public and private colleges and universities across all 50 U.S. states, and 20 countries.

Each year, more than one million students - a third of whom are first generation - apply to college, research financial aid and scholarships, and connect to college counseling resources through Common App. But the path to higher education has changed. While everyone can go to college, not everyone does. In order to help all students reach their goals, we’re dedicated to:

  • Lowering the logistical and systemic barriers to college access
  • Supporting those who support students
  • Serving a diverse group of students and institutions
  • Leveraging data and insight to inform our member institutions
  • We do this by making the application simple, the process logical, and the experience joyful. Together, we’re forging a direct path to higher education for all students.