Common Application

“Alison worked with my son to edit his main Common App essay, as well as supplemental essays specific to a school.  She was very thorough in her evaluation and suggestions for how he could improve and adjust what he had written.  I highly recommend Alison for any writing assistance your student may have.”

2016 Yelp Review from parent of Common App applicant

What is the Common App?

The Common Application is used by over 700 private colleges.  It offers five essay prompt questions.  Students select one and write a single 650-word essay on that topic.  This essay is submitted with the application to every private college on the student’s list.

Many schools require their own supplemental essays in addition to the Common App essay.  Lengths for these range from 150 to 350 to 650 word responses on a variety of topics relating to the student’s interests and reasons for applying.

The Common App is available August 1st and deadlines for college can range from December through February.



Private Tutoring

Need help crafting a personal story for the UC Personal Insight Questions or a private college Common Application essay?  It’s as easy as one, two, three!

If you haven’t started yet, go to step one.  If you already have a draft, go to step two.  If you don’t know where to begin, let’s talk.

Step One: Planning Meeting

For students who need ideas and inspiration.  Find out what admissions officers are looking for, discover which UC question or Common App prompt best fits your background, and learn how to turn your personal experience into great stories!

Step Two: Initial Draft Review

For students who completed a draft at school or with a college counselor (rate reduced for students who worked with me to complete step one above).  Email me your draft and get detailed feedback in just a few days.

Step Three: Follow-Up Draft Review

For students who worked with me to complete step two above.  Email me your revised draft for feedback on your progress.  The process is the same as above and may be repeated as many times as needed.


Summer Workshops

If you are applying to college this fall, here is a chance to get your essay done!

Workshops are the perfect choice for high school and transfer students who are looking for an affordable alternative to private college essay tutoring or for those who would rather work in a group, instead of one-on-one.

Each summer, I partner with a variety of city recreation and community services departments to provide morning and evening workshop choices.  Registration is available to residents through the host city and, in some cases, to students outside the area through a co-sponsoring city.  Here is the Summer 2017 Schedule:

Evening Workshop ​

​Tuesdays, 6 to 8 p.m. (August 1, 8, 15, and 22)

Cypress Community Center, 5700 Orange Avenue, Cypress​

Register through the City of Cypress & the City of Long Beach

Morning Workshops

Monday to Thursday, 8 to 10 a.m. (August 7-10 or August 14 to 17)

Los Alamitos Community Center, 10911 Oak Street, Los Alamitos

Register through the City of Los Alamitos & the City of Seal Beach