A complete college application includes some variation on these items: the application itself, test scores, an official transcript, essay, school profile, fee, and recommendation letters. In addition every year, we hear about requests for the Self-Reported Academic Record (SRAR/SSAR).
(Prior to August 1, 2022, SSAR was a separate system; however, SSAR is now combined with SRAR. If you created an SRAR or SSAR account prior to June 1, 2022, please check here for log in instructions.)
The SRAR/SSAR is a platform to allow students to submit their transcripts of high school coursework and academic record. The student enters the courses and associated grades that you have completed or will be completing into the system, and it is transmitted electronically to the colleges who request it. Because so much data is necessary and accuracy is extremely important, students need to have their transcript in hand in order to enter their data properly.
Some colleges prefer to use the “Courses and Grades” section of the Common App for this purpose. Here is a list of the 50+ schools that currently use the Common App’s “Courses and Grades.”
Who uses the SRAR/SSAR?
The number of colleges using the SRAR/SSAR is small. This list changes every year.
Note: a few colleges refer to using a SRAR tool for registration (like the University of Illinois), but they are independent of this list maintained by SRAR/SSAR. Because some schools are independent of the official SRAR, our list below may not be comprehensive. Always trust the college’s website and admission counselors.
- Baylor University
- Binghamton University (SUNY)
- Clemson University
- Duquesne University
- Florida A&M University
- Florida Atlantic University
- Florida Polytechnic University
- Florida State University
- Kean University
- Louisiana State University
- Montclair State University
- New College of Florida
- New York University (NYU)
- Northeastern University
- Pennsylvania State University
- Rutgers University, Camden, Newark, & New Brunswick
- Texas A&M University
- United States Air Force Academy
- University of Buffalo (SUNY)
- University of Connecticut
- University of Delaware
- University of Florida
- University of Minnesota Twin Cities
- University of North Florida
- University of Oregon
- University of Pittsburgh
- University of Rhode Island
- University of South Florida
- University of Tennessee, Knoxville
- University of Texas at Arlington & San Antonio
- University of West Florida
- Virginia Tech
Check with the college to see if the SRAR/SSAR is required or optional.
Why this change to more self-reported records?
We can see the benefit to the colleges. Every high school (practically) has a different transcript format. A college employee has to enter all the information from the transcript into their system.
Penn State received close to 100,000 first-year applications each year! That’s a lot of data entry. So, we sense that this reason is the primary motivation for more colleges asking the students to do this entry work and make the process more consistent for the colleges so they can more easily compare academic record information.
Tips for completing the SRAR/SSAR:
- Colleges may suggest students wait until after they have submitted the application and logged onto their application portal before entering information into the SRAR. This ensures the student’s account in SRAR is linked correctly to their application. Read the college admission websites thoroughly and carefully to see schools’ recommendations.
- For schools that require SRAR, remember that it is a part of the application and as such, must be completed prior to the deadline. If the school recommends you wait until your application portal is created before adding information to SRAR, take this timing into consideration in order to meet deadlines. (See our important note about timing below.)
- Enter your grades exactly as they appear on your high school transcript or your score report.
- Enter your final grades for all courses completed in grades 9 through 11.
- If you are a high school senior, choose “In-Progress” for scheduled or in-progress 12th grade courses for which you do not yet have grades. If you have already completed a 12th grade course and received a grade, please indicate the grade that you received.
- Do not apply weight to your grades.
- Do not convert your grades into another format.
- Do not average your grades.
- If your school gives final official grades at the end of each year, then enter that grade.
- If your school gives final official grades by term or semester, then list each course with its final grade by term or semester. You may list the same course twice if repeated in a different term. Give the final grade for each term if that is how it appears on your year-end final transcript.
- If you’ve taken math or world language course work prior to 9th grade, and these courses are necessary to meet admission requirements, indicate those courses on your SRAR in the middle school section for your high school record.
- If your exact course name is not listed in SRAR, type it in exactly as it appears on your transcript.
- Some colleges may request self-reported ACT or SAT test scores. Some may request class rank if provided on the transcript.
These tips may vary depending on the college. It is super important to follow the college’s instructions when they differ from what we have provided above!
Thankfully, students only have to complete the academic record once. Students are assigned an identifying number which they can share with the various colleges.
A note on timing (2nd bullet above)
Often, colleges will send you a link to join their applicant portal after you have submitted your Common or Coalition App to them. You will enter your SRAR information directly to them via their applicant portal. Some colleges specifically state that they do not look at the courses and grades on your Common or Coalition App. They will send you the link to their portal for this information. Watch for an invitation to create your portal. Do not do create a portal account until after you are invited.
Since you must wait to receive a link from the college, do not wait until the last minute to submit your Common App or Coalition App to them. If you do, you risk not receiving the portal invitation from the college until after the deadline to apply has passed. As a result, your SRAR information won’t be on time. They won’t make an exception for a missed deadline.
Remember, each college is different.
Please visit the college’s SRAR/SSAR or admissions web page. They will clearly lay out their process for this step. Some will have a tutorial or a FAQ page specifically about it. Some colleges will prompt you with an email after submitting your application asking for your completion of the record. Others will not and will expect you to be familiar with the steps they require on their admissions page. The key is going straight to the specific college for the finer details.
Submitting a final transcript
If you are admitted and enrolled, you will be asked to submit a final transcript. Colleges will check this transcript against the information you provided so be aware that purposefully reporting incorrect information can have their offer rescinded.
Originally posted 10/2020
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