Common Application answers questions about "Account Rollover"

There seems to be some confusion with the Common App this week.  They opened applications for the 2016-2017 application process.  The Common App stated last fall that all current 2015-2016 applications in the system would automatically rollover.  Everyone assumed that the now "account rollover" plan would be similar in that accounts already created would carry over from on year to the next.  

As many students across the nation rushed to begin creating accounts and get a jump start on the process, the questions began to come in.  

In the recognition that the opening early of the application was causing undue stress on the younger students, the Common App issued an advisory designed to clarify the whole situation. According to the Common App, the "Account rollover is intended to be a learning tool, not a means of completing college applications prior to senior year.

In addition, the Common App created a series of presentations called the Common App Ready, which covers elements of the applications. In a nutshell, they are trying to clearly communicate that the opening of the applications to high school juniors is meant to give them an overview and to help them get familiar with the application. The process is not intended to provide stress or urgency to younger students.

The overall intent of opening the application earlier is to help educators, parents and students begin to explore and understand the application.

Here are a few more of the details:

How will Account Rollover work?

After the 2016-2017 Common App launches on August 1, you’ll be able to sign in using the same credentials as your 2015-2016 Common App. Upon that first sign in, we’ll ask if you would like to roll over your account from 2015-2016. If you answer yes, we’ll take you through a few quick steps to confirm the following:

* Your role (current applicant, other student, counselor, parent, etc.)

* Your current high school

* Your communication opt-in selection

* Your acceptance of our Privacy Policy

* Your previous My Colleges list

Once we have that information, we will migrate responses from your 2015-2016 account into your 2016-2017 Common App, and you’ll be ready to get started on your application.

What information will carry over from one year to the next?

We will preserve the answers you provided to any questions that appear in the six sections of the “Common App” tab: Profile, Family, Education, Testing, Activities, and Writing.

Is there any information that will not carry over?

Yes. The following information will not carry over:

* Any information you may have entered for college-specific Questions and Writing Supplements

* Your Release Authorization and FERPA selection

* Any Recommender invitations, assignments, and forms

* PDFs of Common Applications and Writing Supplements submitted the prior year

* Responses to any questions that have been removed since the prior year

* Responses to any questions that may have a different format or different response options from the prior year (For 2016-2017, this will include the Testing section given changes in score reporting. We’ll provide more information on this topic later in the spring.)

Can a First-Year application from the previous year be rolled over into a Transfer application?

Not in this first year of Account Rollover. Because First-Year and Transfer accounts are distinct within the Common App system, we do not currently have a way to roll one over into the other.

Will Recommender accounts carry over?

The process is slightly different, but yes, Recommender accounts will carry over as well. Upon receiving the first invitation for 2016-2017, Recommenders will be able to sign in using the same credentials as 2015-2016. Once signed in, they will find their Profile information populated with responses from the previous year. As stated above, however, Recommender invitations, assignments, and forms will not carry over.

How will Account Rollover impact schools using Naviance eDocs?

For students, the impact is limited to matching. Completing the Release Authorization and FERPA selection within the Common Application will remain a prerequisite for matching accounts. Since those responses will not carry over from one year to the next, students will need to complete the Common App rollover process and then complete the Release Authorization and FERPA selection before they are able to match their Common App and Naviance accounts.

Since the profile information for eDocs Recommenders resides within Naviance, Account Rollover will have no impact on Recommender data. However, Recommender invitations, assignments, and forms will not carry over.

How many years can a student roll over an account? For example, if a 9th grader creates an account, will that account still be active when the student is a senior?

Account Rollover will be an annual process for all users, without consideration to grade level or user type (counselor, parent, etc.). So yes, in theory, a student who creates a Common App account as a 9th grader and goes through the rollover process each year would be able to carry that account through to senior year. 

Our goal is to make this as seamless a transition as possible, and we realize that additional questions may come about as this process unfolds. We encourage you to reach out to our Solutions Center as those questions arise.

Sherri GrafComment