Ahead of Higher Ed: Prospective students experience application complications

There are a lot of inopportune moments to have technical difficulties, and trying to fill out your college application the day before it’s due is probably one of the worst.

In anticipation of Tuesday’s deadline, hundreds of college-eager high school seniors were filling out the Common App, an application used by more than 500 universities for their admissions according to Inside Higher Ed, only to encounter missing parts of essays, unloaded submit buttons, login difficulties or, worse yet, the spinning wheel of death.

Prospective students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Georgia Institute of Technology, where the technical problems occurred because of a system relaunch in August, were allowed an extra week to complete their applications.

For years, the Common App held a monopoly of shared applications that provide a popular convenience to college applicants, but in 2007, the Universal College Application emerged. This application experienced a growth in its first two years but then declined heavily during the next four. UH and other Texas universities use Apply Texas. Some experts believe that there should be more competition between application providers.

“Colleges [and] high school counselors have sort of accepted this idea that we should rely on one system. And I think that’s really dangerous,” said Christiana Quinn, founder of College Admission Advisors. “I think that we do need more competitors in the marketplace and less of a monopoly.”


Texas university hires Higher One

Texas Woman’s University announced that the school will implement several assets of the Higher One Payments Solution this year in order to provide the student body with more payment flexibility.

Among the new services are electronic billing, online payments, online storefronts and payment plans.

“When we looked at the possibility of transitioning to Higher One for acceptance of online payments, there was a strong sense of trust, based on our long-term relationship with Higher One, that they could deliver what they promised,” said Kelly McCullar, associate vice president-finance, controller and treasury for TWU, in the report. “It made sense for us to increase the breadth of our relationship with Higher One and utilize resources from a single entity to streamline our processes.”

UH and TWU are two of the 1,600 campuses that Higher One supports.

Leave a Comment