bloomtwo blog

Common App vs. Coalition App

March 20, 2019

The Common Application and the Coalition Application are college application platforms run by non-profit organizations. Each platform allows students to apply to multiple schools by filling out a single application. Here is a brief breakdown of their differences:

Common Application Coalition Application
  • The oldest and by far the most popular platform
  • 700+ member colleges
  • Teachers and counselors are generally more familiar with it
  • Started in 2015 to improve the application process, particularly for underrepresented populations
  • 140 member colleges, all of which graduate students with low-to-no debt
  • The Locker feature allows students to collect and organize materials throughout their high school years, so they are ready once college application season arrives

Both platforms are free to use, but students still have to pay application fees for each school to which they apply. (Almost all schools have fee waivers available.)

Some schools that do not use either app:
MIT (they have custom software for almost everything)
University of California schools
Georgetown University

So, how do you decide which platform to use? Ultimately, it depends on where you want to apply and whether you want to utilize the Locker feature in the Coalition Application.