For most juniors and seniors in high school, applying to college is a major source of stress. Today, students apply to more schools than ever, which means more hours spent on applications and more money spent on application fees.
However, some people and organizations have tried to streamline this by creating applications that are accepted by many schools. The most well-know is the Common Application, but in more recent years, the Coalition Application has become more common, especially for minority students and others who are typically disadvantaged during the college admission process.
What Is the Coalition Application?
The Coalition Application is a college application that is accepted at more than 140 schools. The application was developed by the Coalition for College, an organization that aims to help more minority, low-income and first-generation college students access higher education, and get the financial assistance they need to make college a reality.
The coalition aims to do this by providing free online resources to help guide traditionally disadvantaged students through the college application process. The coalition’s website offers students a cloud-based space to store supporting documents for their application. The site also allows students to invite other people — like counselors or parents — to contribute to their application.
This online support is designed to help make completing the Coalition Application easier, so more disadvantaged college students try to get accepted into higher education.
Which Schools Accept the Coalition Application?
While more than 800 schools accept the Common App, the Coalition App is pickier about the schools that it allows to use its program. That’s because the Coalition for College only works with schools that provide resources to underserved populations.
Many competitive colleges and universities accept the Coalition App. All Ivy League colleges — Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University and Yale University – take the Coalition App. So do other top-tier universities, like Stanford and Johns Hopkins University. Many state schools also accept the Coalition Application.
Can You Use the Same Essay for the Common App and the Coalition App?
For many students, writing the essay is the most daunting part of the college application process. While it is possible to use the same essay for the Common Application and the Coalition Application, the two do have different — but similar — essay prompts.
The Common Application calls for an essay of between 250-650 words, while the Coalition Application recommends an essay length of 500-550 words.
What Are the Coalition App Essay Topics?
For the 2019-2020 application cycle, these are the Coalition Application essay prompts:
- Tell a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it.
- Describe a time when you made a meaningful contribution to others in which the greater good was your focus. Discuss the challenges and rewards of making your contribution.
- Has there been a time when you’ve had a long-cherished or accepted belief challenged? How did you respond? How did the challenge affect your beliefs?
- What is the hardest part of being a teenager now? What’s the best part? What advice would you give a younger sibling or friend (assuming they would listen to you)?
- Submit an essay on a topic of your choice.
The Common Application has similar prompts, and also offers students the option to submit an essay on the topic of their choice. Because of that, students can use the same essay for the Common Application and the Coalition Application if they choose.
Kelly Burch is a freelance journalist living in New Hampshire. Her educational work has appeared in The Washington Post, Parents magazine and more.