Round yourself out with a few secondary activities. When you're choosing which activities to write about, focus on those that help, how to write about extracurriculars on your college application, Get Free Guides to Boost Your SAT/ACT Score, , even for a competitive school like Harvard, if you currently have no extracurriculars and don’t know what to do, see our guide. During your last years of high school, make sure that you show. The summer before her freshman year, she went with her family on vacation to Malaysia, where she was enchanted by the beautiful shawls local artisans made. For example, if you have participated in several different volunteer activities, you can lump them together as one.The same thing goes for students who have played several different instruments and don’t have room to list them individually. On returning home, she decided to take some classes at the local community college in business and web development and then launched a non-profit company that allows people to purchase these kinds of goods directly from the artisans abroad. For example, the University of California system guarantees admission to one of its campuses to all students who are in the top 9% of California high school students. A Comprehensive Guide. Check out our list of extracurricular activities if you need inspiration for an activity to choose. However, if that’s all you’re going to have, it had better be. She realized that many of the artists who produce these pieces were being underpaid for their work. While the ordering of Common App Activities does require some attention, it causes far more worry than it should. Since the new Common App (CA4) came out on August 1, I can't tell you how many questions I have received about it from my own students and also from The Huffington Post readers. This 1 tip is exactly 149 characters long. Furthermore, you will be automatically eliminating yourself from the running for loads of merit- and activity-based scholarships, which are often dependent on your extracurricular activities. 1. Furthermore, you will be automatically eliminating yourself from the running for loads of merit- and activity-based scholarships, which are often dependent on your extracurricular activities. Camps could include language immersion camps, specific subject camps (such as journalism, psychology, law, medicine), intensive sport camps, and more. About the Ask the Dean Column. The 5 Strategies You Must Be Using to Improve 4+ ACT Points, How to Get a Perfect 36 ACT, by a Perfect Scorer. If you think about it with that criteria, do you really have more than ten activities? On returning home, she decided to take some classes at the local community college in business and web development and then launched a non-profit company that allows people to purchase these kinds of goods directly from the artisans abroad. I think the most important thing to keep in mind here is how the user will control your app with the "back" button. What’s the ideal amount of activities you’ll need in order to impress admissions officers? The Work/Activities section of the AMCAS is your opportunity to highlight your experiences and what makes you unique. 80+ Extracurricular Activity Examples for the Common Application. So go with your gut when you make your initial list, and try not to rearrange it more than once! In these activities, you should be investing a significant amount of time every week. In fact, on this part of the application, you can make a good argument that less is more. "Family Responsibilities" on Common App. Here are a few tips for the activity section of the Common App. These activities show admissions officers many of the “intangibles” that they are looking for in their students. The colleges could ask the common app to increase the number of spaces for activities. There are 30 activity categories, ranging from “Academic” and “Athletic” to more specific types like “Debate/Speech” and “Social Justice.”. The restrictions mean you will need to be selective in reporting your activities, limiting you to the most important ones or those that are most meaningful to you. The important things colleges need to see in your extracurriculars, The ideal amount of extracurricular activities, The minimum amount of extracurriculars you can have, What to do if you have no extracurriculars, What to do if you have too many extracurriculars, Instead of seeing you jump around from activity to activity, colleges would far prefer to see you dedicate a significant amount of time over an extended period (a few years) to one particular activity. The key is to choose one or two activities that you will focus most of your time on. This means that you probably don’t have to mention the one time you worked backstage on the musical or the ten hours of community service you did freshman year and never thought about again until college applications rolled around. It’s time to seriously start looking at the application and what should and shouldn't be included under the activities section. Having constantly been in the midst of change, I understand the importance in having the right support through the rigorously competitive U.S. college admissions process. Applying through the Coalition Application, ApplyTexas, UC Application, or another application system? The activities that can be included are limited to ones that a student has done during their high school years (grade 9 through 12 for the US system, and years 10 through 13 for the UK system). I spend 24 hours/day for 10 days-- how should I write this?) Download it for free now: hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(360031, '688715d6-bf92-47d7-8526-4c53d1f5fe7d', {}); hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(360031, '03a85984-6dfd-4a19-93c8-5f46091f5e2b', {}); Mary Ann holds a BA in Classics and Russian from the University of Notre Dame, and an MA from University College London. Is it possible to have too many extracurricular activities? There are only ten spaces for activities on the Common App. (Remember to never let your academics suffer at the expense of extracurriculars!). Why did the student choose to include this activity in the list? The Common App for transfer recommender system lets you complete and submit forms for all students who have invited you as a recommender. hbspt.cta.load(360031, '4efd5fbd-40d7-4b12-8674-6c4f312edd05', {}); Have any questions about this article or other topics? On your college applications, these activities will help round you out as a person and show aspects of your personality that may not be visible in your main activities. You can find information about the request, as well as the status of the form. Include whether they were paid or voluntary, Investing time during vacation shows extra dedication. Some lower-ranked schools completely base their admissions decisions off GPA and test scores. If it feels right/natural to fill all 10, then do so. One extreme is to put all these steps into different Activities. There are instructions for this on the side of the activities page but many students seem to be missing that instruction. However, if that’s all you’re going to have, it had better be one very impressive activity that shows your growth, leadership, and impact. Unless you have serious extenuating circumstances. It can seem like the Activities section of the Common App gives rise to the most questions, and for good reason. Additionally, there are several state schools that admit a percentage of students entirely based on the same criteria - ignoring extras such as your activities. When you create a new Activity, that puts it on the stack, and the user can always press "back" to pop it from the stack. Instead of having a long list of activities, it’s much more important to be able to show significant involvement in a few activities. Follow these pointers for crafting a rich and memorable Common App activities page. Instead, just focus on those that show growth, leadership, and dedication. If you aren't sure if your after-school activities count as extracurriculars, or if you currently have no extracurriculars and don’t know what to do, see our guide. The Common Application activities section asks for: Students are limited to including 10 activities, and they are supposed to rank them according to their importance to the student. But is one really the minimum amount of activities you can have? Check out our top-rated graduate blogs here: © PrepScholar 2013-2018. For the Common App, you have 5 slots for honors and awards, and 10 slots for your extracurricular activities. How do you make the most of them? Please describe this activity, including what you accomplished and any recognition you received: 9 seniors are chosen as leaders of the junior retreat. Ask questions; get answers. Zoe: I just did last night. College Admissions, Unless you have serious extenuating circumstances, most colleges will look at a complete lack of extracurricular activities with disapproval. Any other activity that the student believes important in communicating who they are to the university, If the student has a passion for woodworking at home, this should be included even if this is a personal endeavour that was taken independent from an official club. Additionally, something of this magnitude would take up pretty much all of your time and not leave a lot of room for other activities. Here are some tips with accompanying college activities list examples. Thanks for your time and your awesome blog." We meet weekly to critique each other’s speeches and learn to mediate small group discussion. Here is Pt. I put down so many activities … SAT® is a registered trademark of the College Entrance Examination BoardTM. Progression-related teaching materials, and insight from the Unifrog platform, emailed to you once a month. I put 1.5) Details: Helped with a new church in Consuelo, taught English classes to the Spanish-speaking children, worked on the construction of their new school Thanks in advance. However, most students will only have a couple activities that they have really dedicated themselves to. You only have 150 characters to describe each activity that you’ve pursued throughout high school. However, you may not want to go down these paths if you can at all avoid it. It can be incredibly difficult to sum up every extracurricular you've done within this limited space, but there are 4 things you can focus on to make your Common App activities list descriptions impressive. Abbreviations (NHS instead of National Honor Society) should be used to save character space. However, most students will only have a couple activities that they have really dedicated themselves to. Here are a few questions that each description could choose to answer: Position/Leadership description and organization name: Editor, The Daily (school newspaper). But What If … 2 of my WHAT I PUT ON MY COMMON APP video, and I focus on the top 10 activities that Common App makes you list on your application. Please describe this activity, including what you accomplished and any recognition you received: Run weekly meetings, brainstorm ideas, assign and revise 10 articles/week, collaborate with printer to distribute 500 copies to students and faculty. What if you have more than that? DO list your most impressive and relevant activities near the … Keep in mind that colleges will care less about, you have done it. Description: Informational Video About Common Mistakes on The Activity Sheet. Why is this a bad idea? How many extracurricular activities do you need for college applications? Learn How to Properly Fill Out Your College Application. Many students who have participated in activities throughout high school are shocked to look at the Common App and realize there are ten spaces to fill out. It is important to note that most accepted students to elite colleges fill in 8-10 activities on the Common Application. This shows your willingness to make a commitment and your. If you have stuff that is almost identical, you can group it together. Common and Coalition Application. As an example, let me tell you about a student I knew at college. The Requests page shows all the students who have invited you as a recommender. Listing more is totally fine, too. So I'm an eagle scout and I'm wondering if I should just say that I'm an eagle scout on the activities section with like a brief description of what that entailed, or should I make a few different activities having to do with boy scouts like all the community service and backpacking? After all, the common app is run by the colleges. ... Common App, Supplemental Essays. Through the local community or through a school/global club, Include whether the student had a leadership position such as captain or received an award, Theater, musicals, acting classes, singing, band, dancing, and what role the student had in the production. ACT Writing: 15 Tips to Raise Your Essay Score, How to Get Into Harvard and the Ivy League, Is the ACT easier than the SAT? One of the biggest mistakes I see on the common application is the order of activities. If you have more than ten activities, you do not need to list all of them. You are given 50 characters for the title/position of your extracurricular activity, and 150 characters for that activity's description/your responsibilities. Ethan Sawyer. Your activities should be listed in order of importance to you, starting with the most important and moving down to the least important. Be as concise as possible - if you can use fewer words, do. In your freshman year, try out a lot of different activities to see what you're the most passionate about. If that’s the case, then you should list them all. Did you do something to improve a club or organization you belonged to? You are given 100 characters to describe your honors. Choose your registration type. There is no set answer. When you're choosing which activities to write about, focus on those that help tell the story of who you are. Study these extracurricular activities examples and samples that you can learn from when writing your activities list for the common application. Parents and students often ask us for our most valuable Common Application essay tips, so our savvy team of advisors compiled a list of simple, effective tricks to use as guidelines while you navigate the tricky waters of college essay writing. Flattery like that will get you everywhere, Ana. Here’s what Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins University has to say about their approach: “The admissions committee conducts a holistic review of every applicant based on his or her accomplishments, goals, and fit with our community. Students should work to make sure their extracurricular list is diverse. For each student, the activities section of the Common App should answer the question “What do you choose to invest your time in?”, What to include in each Activity’s description. Choose the activities that you are most passionate about, have helped you mature and develop skills, have allowed you to make a lasting impact, and that you have spent the most time doing. Use every inch to demonstrate your impact beyond the classroom. You only get 150 characters on the activities list for the Common Application. But what if you have the opposite issue? This kind of activity shows initiative, leadership, dedication, maturity, and passion – which are each qualities that admissions officers are looking for. I am an incoming student at Johns Hopkins University. Adcoms are super busy and will appreciate you not asking them to read the same information twice. How Many Activities Should You List on the Common App? You can enter up to 15 experiences (work, extracurricular activities, awards, honors, publications, etc. This could include things like founding a club, increasing participation in an activity, or leading a project like a fundraiser. Will you get rejected from a school if you don’t have the right amount? Extracurriculars. If you only have one activity of this magnitude, you should run with it and not worry about the blank spaces on your application. DO make the most of your 150 characters. This description is concise (listing is efficient with words), contains good detail (using numbers is helpful), and uses active verbs, Position/Leadership description and organization name: Retreat Leader. In sophomore year and beyond, start whittling down your activities so that you're left with the ones you can really make an impact in. . If you have some spare time and could post an example Common App activities form with a few different activities, it would be extremely helpful to me and many other confused seniors! whether you intend on participating in a similar activity in college. This often isn’t enough room to do your Spike justice. The exception is typically a student who has stellar achievement in at least one activity. On your college applications, these activities will help round you out as a person and show aspects of your personality that may not be visible in your main activities. In general, between 5 and 10 hours per week for each main activity is a good benchmark, depending on how many activities you are involved in and how much time you devote to other responsibilities. Ideally, the activity descriptions should build the student’s profile as a well-rounded individual and should tell the story of the student’s personal interests and ambitions. If that’s the case, then you should list them all. I’ll repeat: It is okay to not fill up the whole list, especially if you're including activities that you can’t show to be significant. Categories : The UC application asks that students enter up to 5 activities in each of the following categories: Coursework other than A-G, Educational Prep Programs, Volunteer & Community Service, Work Experience, Awards & Honors, and Extracurricular Activities The College Entrance Examination BoardTM does not endorse, nor is it affiliated in any way with the owner or any content of this site. These activities can be almost anything – clubs in your school or community, sports, art, hobbies, or community service. If you have no activities, it's a good idea to check your state school system and see if it has a similar plan. Get the latest articles and test prep tips! During your last years of high school, make sure that you show growth or development in these activities and try to take on a leadership role, or at least lead some initiatives. Therefore, students with no extracurriculars will not be competitive at most schools. How many are too many? You will also need to show that you have been significantly involved in the activity all throughout high school. Model United Nations, international or national youth political conferences, math competitions, sports conferences…. She has years of tutoring experience and is also passionate about travel and learning languages. What if you don’t have any at all? In the 2020-21 version of the activities list, Common App now provides 50 characters for the position you hold in an activity and 100 characters to list the organization or club's name. The 5 Strategies You Must Be Using to Improve 160+ SAT Points, How to Get a Perfect 1600, by a Perfect Scorer, Free Complete Official SAT Practice Tests. While you will almost certainly be eligible for some schools without extracurriculars, they may not necessarily be the schools you were hoping for. Along with a personal essay, supplemental essays, Letters of Recommendation from the student’s counselor, and possibly multiple letters from the student’s teachers, the Common App’s ‘Activities’ section is an example of US universities wanting to get to know each prospective student ‘in the round’. You have only one shot to put together a winning application. Creating a first year Common App account is easy and should only take a few minutes. How to put boy scouts on the common app? Ideally, you should have at least 2-3 activities demonstrating significant involvement, but it’s okay to include a few other less significant activities. In order to understand what people were asking, I went through the application process myself. 150 characters, not words! What SAT Target Score Should You Be Aiming For? Some students are genuinely invested in several activities. The Goldilocks “just right” number of activities is 5 or 6. The Goldilocks “just right” number of activities is. Some students are genuinely invested in several activities. The Common App is a valuable application tool but there's a lot to it – find out how to use it, key deadlines, essay prompts and more in our guide here. Although the description is strong in that the student is demonstrating that they were part of a select few leaders, the description name could have provided more detail on what type of retreat the student was leading, and what leadership role the student had as a leader. The short answer to this question is yes; you can get away with having no extracurricular activities. Universities hope that someday their students will go on to be leaders on a larger scale in the community, and these activities are a good way for them to gauge if you have the interest and ability to do that. The description name is detailed and leads to there being no need to repeat the words “newspaper” or  “editor” in the description. This ties in with the previous idea. Therefore, you should avoid repeating information that is readily available in your Common App Essay, your Activities section, or elsewhere in your Common Application. This is a good amount because it's achievable for most students without being overwhelming. Did you leave something better than you found it? You won’t be spending as much time on these, so they should be things that you can have fun with and not have to stress about. © Unifrog 2021 | Company number: 08231699 | VAT number: 160 4858 06 | uC, | Company number: 08231699 | VAT number: 160 4858 06 | uC, Get on the ladder: business and management, Study in Canada: how to ace your letter of intent, Q&As with international students in Switzerland. And … Admissions officers like to see students take control in their activities and show off their leadership skills. A student with no activities often ends up looking lazy, unmotivated, and afraid to leave his or her comfort zone. Keep in mind that colleges will care less about what you have done and more about why and how you have done it. Some students rehash their activities and achievements without adding the personal flavor, perspective and substance that admissions officers look for. This will look different for every student. When colleges see students who have 10 or more activities, they will likely assume that you either padded your resume, or that you only showed up to your activities instead of making a real effort to be significantly involved. What really impresses colleges are activities where your student has dedicated him or herself and demonstrated a commitment to persist and work hard. Weeks Spent per Year: (Again, confusing. the ‘type’ (such as community service, cultural, debate/speech, sports, etc…), the ‘position/leadership description and organization name’ (50 characters), a description of the activity and your accomplishments (150 characters), the grades (year groups) of participation, the timing of your participation (during school year, during school break, all year). You should also consider not filling up the list. What ACT target score should you be aiming for? Use the Common App to showcase what you consider to be your best activities. In these activities, you should be investing a significant amount of time every week. See how other students and parents are navigating high school, college, and the college admissions process. The Common App has space for students to list ten activities, but you should not feel obligated to fill out all ten. I have always been part of the international community and have attended French and American schools in the United Kingdom, London and the United Arab Emirates, Dubai. Though 5 – 6 is the most ideal amount, that’s not to say that some students don’t do well with fewer activities – sometimes significantly fewer! Our new student and parent forum, at ExpertHub.PrepScholar.com, allow you to interact with your peers and the PrepScholar staff. How Many Extracurricular Activities Do You Need? Did you streamline a process or innovate how your activity is done? You don’t need to fill all 10 (some colleges with their own apps allow only 5). You will also need to show that you have been significantly involved in the activity. Transcription: Jim: Have you filled out your activity sheet yet for the common application? If you are applying to college for the first time you'll select the … Would it be worth it to put down on the Activities section that I babysit my siblings during the school year or would it be meaningless to mention it? Choose the activities that you are most passionate about, have helped you mature and develop skills, have allowed you to make a lasting impact, and that you have spent the most time doing. Each required item is requested for a reason and contributes to our evaluation.”. There are three main things that colleges are looking for in your activities: Now that you understand what colleges are hoping to glean about you through your activities let’s see just how many of them you need in order to show off these qualities. 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