2022-2023 Common App Essay Prompts

As you begin your college application process, you may decide to apply through the Common Application. The Common Application (also known as the “Common App”) is an advanced college application platform that allows you to apply to multiple colleges at once. The Common App has seven essay prompts for you to choose from.

Some things to keep in mind:

  • Some of these topics are broad, allowing a chance for you to showcase your creativity and share a memorable story. This is a chance to make an impression without overloading the details. This is an opportunity to showcase your writing skills!
  • Think about your passions, skills and hobbies when writing your essays. This is a chance to show off how amazing you really are!
  • Some colleges will publish essay examples on their website, so feel free to use those as inspiration! This will help get a feel for the ways each college celebrates and exemplifies good work. PRO TIP: DON’T PLAGIARIZE.
  • Always ask for someone to proofread your content. Be sure to look out for grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, and tone of voice to ensure you’re conveying the right message.

Below is the full set of essay prompts for 2022-2023.

  • Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
  • The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
  • Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome?
  • Reflect on something that someone has done for you that has made you happy or thankful in a surprising way. How has this gratitude affected or motivated you?
  • Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.
  • Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more?
  • Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you’ve already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design.

Don’t forget to stay true to who you are and bring the best version of yourself into these essays! We’re cheering you on!