Types of College Applications

There are different application forms, depending on the colleges you apply to. Most colleges accept electronic applications but some may allow paper submission.

Know what application forms you will use.

Common Application

  • Online application system in which the student's information is entered once and can be sent to multiple colleges

  • More than 500 colleges across the country participate

  • Colleges using this system may also require completion of college-specific supplemental forms


  • Apply to colleges and universities within the State University of New York (SUNY) system


  • Apply to colleges and universities within the City University of New York (CUNY) system

College's Own Applications

  • Some colleges have their own applications for admission published on their websites

Educational Opportunity Programs

You can still go to college if your grades are not as high as some colleges may require. Educational Opportunity Programs may be available to you at SUNY and CUNY as well as independent colleges if you meet certain academic and income guidelines.  Apply for these programs at the same time you apply to the college. Learn more.

The Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP)

CSTEP increases the number of historically underrepresented and economically disadvantaged students pursuing careers leading to professional licensure or professions in mathematics, science, technology and health-related fields.  There are 51 CSTEP Programs housed at institutions of higher education and/or professional schools across New York State.  Learn more.