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Instructions, Advice, Strategy

Every year, Colorado College enrolls an academically accomplished student body that encompasses a wide variety of interests, talents, and backgrounds. Our holistic evaluation process considers your academic work, writing, letters of recommendation, test scores, extracurricular activities, and your unique talents and personal qualities.

Common Application

Make sure to fill out the forms carefully and completely. If necessary, feel free to list your responses on additional pages or a resume. Double-check that the submission goes through.

We encourage you to highlight significant awards, activities, and personal accomplishments. In our view, it is better to provide too much information than not enough. 

Additional information should be emailed to us at

Supplemental Essays

In addition to the regular essays on the Common Application (or QuestBridge Application), you will need to complete two brief supplemental essays as part of your application to Colorado College. Those questions are:

  • How did you learn about Colorado College and why do you wish to attend? (no more than 500 words)
  • The Block Plan at Colorado College has a tradition of innovation and flexibility. Please design your own three-and-a-half week course and describe what you would do. (no more than 500 words)


Because strong writing skills are so essential to academic success at CC, we read essays very carefully. You’ll write one major essay and a few complementary essays as part of the supplement to the Common Application. We believe essays are an important indicator of an applicant’s ability to think critically and write clearly and fluidly. The essays are also our chance to get to know you, the applicant, on a more personal level. It is our one chance to hear directly from you. Please take the time to think carefully about what you want us to know about you, and then write your essays in a way that reflects this information. There is nothing inherently better about a funny essay or a serious essay. Please stay true to yourself, write in your own voice, and write about topics that are relevant to you.


We look at your transcript(s) for information about your ability to excel in the classroom and thrive as a scholar on our campus. Your course grades, along with the rigor of your chosen academic program, give us insight into your academic preparedness for Colorado College.

A successful applicant almost always has excelled in a rigorous college preparatory program including honors, AP, or IB courses, if offered. Most students will have completed at least 20 solid academic courses by the time they graduate high school.


We require two teacher/professor recommendations in academic subject areas. Non-academic recommendations such as journalism, math team, or coaches do not count toward this requirement. Select these teachers/professors carefully; they should be people who know you well and can speak specifically about your academic contributions to their class and to the school as a whole. Plan ahead so that your recommenders have ample time to thoughtfully complete the forms and submit them to CC on time. Generally speaking, additional recommendations are not helpful. However, if you feel that your two recommendations cannot give us an accurate picture of who you are, feel free to send in an additional optional recommendation.

Extracurricular Interests

While there is no ideal extracurricular profile for a Colorado College applicant, we appreciate students who have cultivated non-academic pursuits that complement their classroom achievements. Generally speaking, we are looking for sustained commitment to a few interests (possibly achieving leadership positions within those activities) rather than sporadic participation in various pursuits each year. We also take into consideration exceptional accomplishment.


Colorado College offers interviews as part of the evaluation process. These interviews are not required, but can help us get a feel for each applicant on a more personal level. Rarely will an interview be a deciding factor in an admission decision, but it may give us some context in which to view the application. Interviews are conducted by alumni volunteers, student fellows and admission staff. Students may not interview more than one time. 

We offer interviews on- and off-campus for seniors and transfers--you can register here. Interviews can occur either before or after submitting an admission application. Students living on the Front Range in Colorado are strongly encouraged to visit campus and have an interview; students outside of the area can check our travel plans to see if interviews are being offered in your area. Deadlines for requesting an off-campus interview are: 

First-Year Applicants Request by Complete by
Early Decision 1 November 1 November 20
Early Action November 1 November 20
Early Decision 2 January 5 January 20
Regular Action January 5 January 20
Transfer Applicants Request by Complete by
Spring October 17 November 5
Fall February 20 March 15

Interview Tips

Arts Supplement

We invite students interested in the arts to submit an optional art supplement in visual art, music, dance, theater, creative writing or film.  Art supplements will be included in a student’s application for consideration as part of our holistic review process.


Submitting an Art Supplement:

Art supplements must be submitted via Slideroom, the Common Application’s art supplement platform.   If you are applying to CC with the Common Application, please indicate that you will be submitting an art supplement under ‘Questions.’ The Common App will then populate an art supplement ‘Portfolio’ tab with a link to CC’s Slideroom portal.  If you are submitting an application through QuestBridge, simply go to and log in to submit your art supplement.

There is a $5 Slideroom fee to submit an art supplement.


Department  Instructions:

Music: Solo performances are preferred.  Please submit 10-15 minutes of material that demonstrate your musicality, intonation, phrasing and repertoire.

Film or Video:  Video submissions can be a complete piece, an excerpt from a longer piece, or a selection from multiple pieces; however, Colorado College strongly encourages students to select one piece they feel best represents their work. Limit submission length to 10 minutes total. Clearly state what role(s) you played in the production (director, camera, editing, writing, etc.)

Art:  Please note the title, date, medium and dimensions of each work. Artwork submitted on CD's will not be reviewed.

Dance:  Please submit a variety of work you have done in class, on stage, and as a choreographer if applicable.  Clearly identify yourself in the piece.  Students are encouraged to add a short ‘vlog’ introducing yourself and your work.

Theater: Theater submissions may come in the form of monologues (in contrasting styles if possible) or brief clips of performances.  Limit submission to 5-10 minutes.



Art Supplement deadlines match the CC application deadlines. Students will be able to submit art supplements starting August 1, 2016.

Early Decision 1: November 10

Early Action: November 10

Early Decision 2: January 15

Regular Action: January 15