ApplyTexas vs. the Common Application

To better help prepare you for the upcoming admissions season, we’ve put together a quick guide on ApplyTexas and the CommonApp, noting the differences between the two and what exactly you’ll need to apply.

What is the difference between ApplyTexas and CommonApp?

Though Texas might not be its own country (yet), it does have its own separate application system

Though Texas might not be its own country (yet), it does have its own separate application system

The one main difference between the two applications is which schools use them. Of course, this is a huge difference, but apart from this, the sets of applications are pretty similar in terms of required documents. One catch is that since ApplyTexas is a different system than CommonApp, if you plan on applying to both Texas schools and other schools, you’ll have to submit both an ApplyTexas and a CommonApp application, along with letters of recommendation, test scores, and transcripts to both.

Which schools use ApplyTexas?

Most schools located in Texas, public or private, use ApplyTexas, but Rice University is a notable exception, as it uses the CommonApp.

Abilene Christian University Angelo State University Austin College
Baylor University Concordia University Dallas Baptist University
Houston baptist University Huston-Tillotson University Lamar University
LeTourneau University McMurry University Midwestern State University
Our Lady of the Lake University Prairie View A&M University Sam Houston State University
Schreiner University Southern Methodist University Southwestern Universty
St. Edward’s University Stephen F. Austin University Sul Ross State University
Tarleton State University Texas A&M University (all campuses) Texas Christian University
Texas Lutheran University Texas Southern University Texas State University
Texas Tech University Trinity University University of the Incarnate Word
University of Dallas University of Houston (all campuses) University of North Texas
University of St. Thomas University of Texas (all campuses) West Texas A&M University

Which schools use CommonApp?

Most schools that don’t use ApplyTexas (or its California counterpart) use the CommonApp. The one notable exception to this is MIT, which uses its own proprietary system to apply, though don’t worry, their system is as sleek as their renown would suggest. Thankfully, CommonApp is pretty sleek and streamlined, so filling out their application is not too much of a hassle.

What do I need to get before starting my CommonApp or ApplyTexas applications?

Make sure you have these materials prepared, or at least get moving on those!

Make sure you have these materials prepared, or at least get moving on those!

Strictly speaking, once the 2016-2017 CommonApp and ApplyTexas applications open, you don’t need anything to start, but getting this information ready can help speed up your application-filling process:

  1. A copy of your high school transcript
  2. Your standardized test scores
  3. Your extracurricular activities
  4. A personal statement
  5. Letters of recommendation.

If you haven’t already, look towards getting these five bulletpoints in order so you can quickly and efficiently fill out your applications!

Should my personal statement be tailored to a specific school?

NO! The general personal statement or essay on ApplyTexas or CommonApp will be sent to EVERY school you apply to! Most schools, however, have a supplemental application which has questions and essays that will be submitted only to them. Use these supplemental essays to express your love for a school, not the general essay!

But wait, I’m still confused!

If you’re still mystified about the college admissions process or would like some additional help with essays, check out our College Admissions Workshops! We go into even more detail on what the application process is like, how to fill out your applications, and even help you revise your personal statement so you can have the best shot at getting into the Ivy League schools!

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