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Glitches interrupt online college application system

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Thousands of college applicants who've already made up their minds about what college they'd like to attend may run into some frustration as early-decision application deadlines approach this fall.

An online application system, the Common Application, used by hundreds of institutions around the country, including nine Minnesota colleges and universities, that enables students to apply to several schools at once has recently been plagued with technical malfunctions.

Minnesota Public Radio says the glitches have mangled applicants’ essays, failed to register their applications or locked them out of the application process altogether.

St. Olaf and Carleton in Northfield, Minn. both use the system and are hoping the kinks are ironed out in time for their early-decision deadline on Nov. 15. MPR reports Carleton uses an alternative application process as backup, while St. Olaf relies exclusively on the Common Application.

The Virginia-based nonprofit organization has been acknowledging the problems on its social media accounts and offers some workarounds while they attempt to fix the issues.

Other Minnesota schools that use the system include Augsburg, Gustavus, Hamline, Macalester, St. John's/St. Ben's, St. Mary's and St. Kate's.

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