So the Common App is technically called, The Common Application Online. There is a paper version but UMass Amherst specifically uses the Common Application Online, we just call it, The Common App. And that's a way for students to submit the same information to multiple different colleges that they might be applying to.
Their extracurriculars list, their essay, the Common App will ask like five or six different options for essay topics that students can choose from. Or, typically you can choose your own so you can really write your Common App essay about anything that you want.
And then, your general demographic information. So, your parents' information, where you go to high school, what classes you're taking in your senior year and stuff like that. And that just kind of prevents students from having to type in the same exact information over and over, and over again if they're applying to many different schools. They can just fill it out once and send the Common App to a bunch of different schools.
So not all colleges and universities use the Common Application, but many of them do. UMass Amherst is actually Common App exclusive so you have to apply using the Common Application Online. Some schools might offer Common App or their own application. And some would just offer their own application specific to that school. But, here at UMass it's just the Common App. We know that admissions is very complicated already and we wanna try to streamline that process as much as possible for students.