What’s in a name?

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet… but unfortunately it won’t get matched up with Rose’s application.

As you are gathering your credentials for your application, one simple step can save you a thousand headaches.

Make sure the name you are using on your application matches the name on your testing, transcripts, letters of recommendation and any other supporting documents.

This should, of course, be your legal name. Sounds simple enough but for some applicants it can get very complicated.


  • Do not use nicknames on applications, official documents, or correspondence with schools you are applying to. The Bard won’t get matched up to William Shakespeare at all and even Billy Shakespeare would take extra time to match.


  • Always include your Common Application ID (CAID) and/or your NYU University ID (e.g. N88888888) when you are emailing or mailing. Documents will be matched faster and the person answering your email can easily find your record. If you don’t have a CAID yet, you can create your account today at commonapp.org.


  • If you’ve had a legal name change, make sure you note it on your application and send in the proof (name change paperwork, marriage license, etc.) with your Common App ID to every school you are applying to as soon as you submit the application.


  • If you know some supporting documents won’t arrive with your current legal name, be proactive and reach out providing your Common App ID, both names, and an explanation for the discrepancy


  • Hi there, is it possible to change your application to Early Decision II if it has already been submitted as RD?

    Thanks for your time.

    Madeline Forrest
    December 8, 2016

    • Yes, since we are before the application deadline (January 1) for both Early Decision II and Regular Decision, you can update your notification plan.

      The easiest way to do this is to reply to your NYU Application Acknowledgement email which you will receive within 10 business days of submitting the application. This email will contain your NYU ID information (which is required to make this type of application update). Simply reply and request to change from Regular Decision to Early Decision II. Once your request is processed you will receive an email confirming the change.

      Thanks for applying to NYU!

      Jasmine Solomon
      December 8, 2016

  • Thanks for posting this. My nephew is starting to look at colleges, I will be sure to send him a link to this blog.

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