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ASU adds convenience by joining Common Application

More than 750 universities are part of system that saves time, makes fee waivers easier

students sitting around table
January 24, 2018

Arizona State University is becoming even more accessible by joining The Common Application, an online system used by more than 750 colleges and universities in the United States and around the world to manage the admissions process.

The Common Application saves time for potential students because they can apply to several universities at once. It can also save money for those who qualify, by streamlining the fee-waiver process.

Matt Lopez, executive director of admission services at ASU, said the university decided to join the program as a convenience for applicants and because The Common Application is popular among international students.

“Especially with our access mission, we decided to give students options to apply to us and to not force them to do it one singular way,” he said.

The Common Application went live for ASU last week, and high school students can use it now for fall 2018 admittance.

“Right now, it’s only for first-time freshmen,” Lopez said. “(But) The Common Application is working with pilot institutions, including ASU, to create a similar application experience for transfer students.”

ASU will keep its traditional application. Arizona high school students who apply only to ASU would pay a $50 fee for ASU’s own application, while out-of-stateBoth the ASU and Common Application charge $85 to international students. students pay $70. Due to differences in the application, ASU will charge both in-state and out-of-state high schoolers the same fee of $70 to use The Common App.

If a high school students wants to apply to both ASU and the University of Arizona, about 70 percent of the questions on both institutions’ applications are identical, and using The Common Application would save a lot of time, Lopez said.

The Common App also makes it easier for students who qualify financially for a waiver of their application fee. The ASU application requires a separate form, which must be verified by a high school counselor, to eliminate the fee. The Common Application asks a series of questions that can waive the fee while the student is filling out the form.

“The application fee should never prevent a student from applying to ASU,” Lopez said. “The Common App doesn’t change that philosophy, and it’s making it easier to actually get it, which goes with our mission.”

Lopez said ASU has no preference on which application is used, and once the university receives an applicant’s information, the process doesn’t differentiate where it came from.

The Common Application is a not-for-profit member organization that was launched in 1975. In 2016-17, more than 1 million students submitted applications through the platform. Last year, the Common Application’s need-based fee-waiver process saved students more than $55 million in application fees, the group reported.

For details on applying to ASU, click here. To learn more about The Common Application, click here.

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