What is it?
The Self-reported Student Academic Record is basically a student’s transcripts in another format completed by the student instead of the high school. It is used as a substitute for official transcripts during the initial college application review process at several schools in Florida including University of Florida, Florida State University, Florida Atlantic University, University of North Florida, Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida Polytechnic University and The New College. Students complete this record by inputting their high school courses attempted and/or taken and their respective grades including the courses in progress senior year.
Why do schools use it?
In Florida, UF began using the SSAR in 2013 and several schools have followed since then. They adopted it in order to streamline the process of connecting transcripts to applications. Instead of waiting for transcripts to be sent from the high schools, students’ SSARs are able to be connected directly to their applications. In addition to linking the students’ academic records to their applications more efficiently, the SSAR allows colleges to sort through transcripts easily as the data was manually entered by the student in a standard form instead of being sent as a non-standardized document from the school. While many students complain about the tedious work of data entry, others say it relieves stress as they are now in control and do not need to rely on the school to send their transcripts on time.
When should students complete it?
The SSAR is a regular and essential piece of the college application to the schools which require it. College applications are not considered complete until the SSAR is received along with everything else. Students should complete it while they are working on their applications and ensure it is submitted to the colleges by the admission deadline they are aiming for. While some colleges such as UF will accept the SSAR a few weeks after the early application deadlines, it makes the most sense to finish it all at the same time and avoid the risk of having an incomplete application. So if you are applying for a November 1 priority deadline, get it in by then, etc.
How is it completed?
Before starting the SSAR, students need to obtain a copy of their high school transcript to use for the data entry. They will then create an account on the SSAR website and begin entering the information. Once complete, they should double-check for any errors before submitting. Connecting the SSAR to the application varies by college. Several schools have students connect it after they have submitted their application by logging into their student account where they check their application status and inputting their individual SSAR code. Others send students an email with a link to log in to their SSAR account and connect it to their application. Students should regularly check their email and application status pages for each college to ensure they have complete applications.
What if a mistake is made?
As long as the mistake or course change is corrected before the application is reviewed and/or before the application deadline, you can log in to your SSAR account and make the changes. If you are too late, you should call the admissions office at your chosen colleges to inform them of the errors. If you made a slight error and do not catch it, it will most likely have no affect on your application. However, if it appears that you intentionally inflated grades or did/did not list courses taken, your application will be thrown out. Do your best to accurately input the information. Students who have been accepted and plan on enrolling at colleges which require the SSAR will have to send in their official transcripts to verify the information they entered on the SSAR.