Should I include my LinkedIn and my personal website on the additional info section?Answered
I took a few courses from MOOC websites (some of which actually have 'recommended college credit' from NCCRS or ACE Credit). The colleges I'm applying to almost certainly won't give me college credits for these but I still think that it would benefit me slightly (might show that I took the initiative of self studying for the tests). I have listed the names of my courses in the additional info section of the Common App but I was wondering if it's okay to include my LinkedIn profile link there. My LinkedIn profile has all the certifications of the courses I took. Also, I have a few short and concise recommendations in my LinkedIn, and have listed and passed a lot of LinkedIn assessment tests (including HTLM, CSS, and a few other technologies.)
I also designed my own personal website just for fun a few months ago. It just contains few words about me and what I do. Almost everything written on the website can already be found on my college application but I'm really proud of developing the website because it took me a long time and it turned out to be really good looking.
So, I was wondering if I should include my LinkedIn and my personal website's link? Will it be too 'extra'? Will it turn off the AOs?
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Great question! This is something a lot of students have on their minds, so hopefully this will help plenty of others, too.
In general, your LinkedIn page doesn't add a whole lot to your application since you've already been provided a space to list extracurricular activities, including employment. Many of the certifications you've earned can be mentioned in your descriptions for your activities section (say you have an activity that is coding related -- you can mention your certifications in either the "Position/Leadership description" box, the "Organization Name" box, or the "Please describe this activity, including what you accomplished and any recognition you received, etc." (the lattermost is the most appropriate, but elsewhere is fine if it makes sense based on the room you have)). Anything that is more appropriately considered an award can be mentioned in your honors section of the Common App.
As for your personal website, congratulations! That's a valuable skill to have, and it can be one worth sharing if it shows examples of the work that you do (for example, if you are an artist or a writer and your website houses your creations). If it is just a rehash of your application, however, it becomes more of a stretch to include.
There is a sense of risk in including redundant information: admissions officers have limited time to read your application, and they may become frustrated if you send them lots of duplicate information. The last thing you want is for someone reading your application to be frustrated with you! This is why colleges generally do not accept resumes with applications. However, colleges are usually interested in seeing another facet of an applicant, so if you do feel that these things add something valuable to your application, you may include them with explanation. That is, do not simply place the links in the Additional Information section of the Common App; rather, write a paragraph or two about what they are and why they are meaningful. For your website, for instance, talk about the process of creating it, what it means to and shows about you, and what kind of work it presents. This way, readers have a reason to click the links, and even if they don't, they will have some idea of why you thought they merited inclusion.
Best of luck in the admissions process!
If you are concerned about these in the context of using the Add'l information section and loading up that section with a bunch of other factoids, links, etc., I would seriously consider the using the Locker Feature on the Coalition App which frankly encourages all students to upload add'l files such as videos, PDF, images, other documents to showcase your ECs. Since they only have 140 member colleges they might not fully overlap your Common App colleges but for most high achieving applicants cover 85% of the same colleges.
Plus if you are low income, once you fill out the questionnaire once with regards to qualifying for fee waivers, each college you add, will give you an automatic fee waiver.
What is the Locker?
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