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To apply for admission as a first-year or transfer student at Harvard, you will start with the Application. Fill out the Common Application, the Universal College Application, or the Coalition Application (choose one, we have no preference), followed by the supplement to help us get a better sense of who you are. Not sure where to start? We've gathered some helpful tips on how to fill out the main application and the Harvard supplement.
The Profile section is a place where you'll share detailed information about yourself, including contact information, demographics, and fee waiver request. It's always a good idea to review the information here and update any details, if necessary. Please note that none of the demographic questions in this section are required.
Common App Fee Waiver
The application fee covers a very small portion of the administrative costs of processing applications. However, if the fee presents a hardship for you or your family, it will be waived. Each applicant applying with a fee waiver should select an option for a need-based fee waiver. Do not let the application fee stand in the way of applying!
You or your guidance counselor may use one of the official forms, or your counselor—or you yourself—may simply write a short email asking us to waive your fee.
In the family section, you'll share information about your household, your parents, and any siblings. Most colleges collect this information for demographic purposes. Even if you're an adult or an emancipated minor, you'll need to fill out this section.
In the Education section is where you will share information about your current school or coursework, academic honors, and future education plans. Here are some tips on commonly asked questions.
The Testing section is where you'll enter your self-reported scores for any standardized tests that you've taken and wish to report to colleges. However, remember, if you are admitted and choose to enroll at Harvard, you'll be required to submit your official score reports. View more information on our standardized testing requirements on our Application Requirements page.
The activities section gives you the opportunity to tell schools more about who you are and activities you're involved with outside the classroom. You'll have the opportunity to list up to ten activities, but that doesn't mean you need to enter all ten.
The first section is the personal essay. Harvard requires the submission of the personal essay with your application. We also offer an opportunity to add an additional information.
We're interested in learning more about your academic, extracurricular, and personal interests. The Harvard-specific questions of this section are also required and help us understand how you expect to make the most of your time here.
While we know students might well change their minds once they are in college, it is helpful for us to get a sense of their current interests and those academic areas in which they have already spent time and effort.
We do not admit students into specific academic programs and we have no quotas or targets for academic fields.
Applicants use this space in a variety of ways: some students send us an essay that they wrote for another school that they thought turned out particularly well; others connect to one of our suggested prompts to add to the common personal statement already prepared. We encourage you to read over the prompts and respond to the one that most resonates with you.