Freshman Requirements & Process

First-Year Common Application

Complete and submit the First-Year Common Application online at The Common Application.  

The First-Year Common Application asks about personal information such as:

  • Birthplace and date
  • Citizenship
  • Family background
  • Academic honors, extracurricular involvement and work experience

Keep in mind that when you apply to Stanford, you apply to the university as a whole, not to a particular department or school. While we encourage you to indicate prospective majors and career interests, these selections are informational only. Stanford does not make admission decisions based on major interest.

You will also have the opportunity to tell us about yourself by writing a thoughtful and insightful personal essay.

Stanford Questions

Access the Stanford Questions online at The Common Application. The Stanford Questions section, which includes the Stanford essay questions, is part of the First-Year Common Application and may be accessed in the "My Colleges" tab. As a result, there is no Writing Supplement Form for Stanford University.

  1. Go to, create an applicant account and add Stanford University to your "My Colleges" list.
  2. Access the Stanford Questions by clicking on "Stanford University" in your "My Colleges" list.

We view the Stanford Questions as your opportunity to tell us about yourself by describing some of your favorite personal activities and social interests and writing thoughtful and insightful short essays. These responses help us understand your individual experiences and insights.

No two applicants in our pool are the same, so we take great care to ensure we review your application within the context of your surroundings. The information you provide assists us in interpreting and evaluating your transcript, test scores, essays and evaluation letters.

Updated on August 31, 2015 3:23 AM