The Common Application, which is accepted by over 500 colleges and universities, has been plagued by serious problems since a new version was unveiled in August. Those problems include: logging in, making a payment, previewing your application, and uploading your essay. While some problems have been fixed, the list of "Known Issues and Progress Updates" is growing. And yesterday, the system either crashed or slowed to a snail's pace, just as early action and early decision deadlines approached.
In response, many schools are changing their deadlines, so it's important for students to check for updates as they continue to work on their applications. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Georgia Tech, and Duke University, for example, have extended their deadlines. Other schools are allowing students to apply using the Universal College Application, whose membership is growing as the Common App woes continue.
DC College Admissions Examiner Nancy Griesemer summed up the situation well here: "It’s hard not to be frustrated by the ongoing software problems experienced by college applicants forced to use the slightly buggy and somewhat unpredictable “new” Common Application. And it’s annoying to have colleges, students, recommenders, and counselors used as “beta” testers for software that should have been largely ready to go before being introduced to the market."