This is a legitimate concern as you will likely compete with numerous applicants who have backgrounds similar to yours. Therefore, follow these tips to ensure that your essay shines in the competitive admissions process. Analyze the prompt thoroughly Take three minutes to think about the prompt. If needed, divide the prompt into phrases and look at each aspect. Why would the admissions officers ask this prompt?
What do you think they want to know? How does that information relate to your ability to excel in college? Next, leave the prompt for a while and then return to it.
Do you see something new? With so many other things in your schedule, this process can initially seem like a waste of time. However, it will save you a lot of time in the long run. If you later realize that you misread the prompt, you might need to start the writing process from scratch.
This is another step that can initially seem completely skippable, but organizing your writing can save you considerable stress and frustration. Words have nuance to them, and simply inserting a word from the thesaurus is a great way to destroy that nuance. Thesaurus abuse is a lazy and easily spotted trick, and seasoned admissions officers will see right through it.
If you feel that you're overusing a particular word, think of alternatives on your own without consulting a thesaurus; using words that you're familiar with will help you avoid misusing them. Brush Up Your Grammar and Spelling Your college essay should reflect your authentic speaking voice, but that doesn't mean that you can write it like a lengthy text message.
There's simply no excuse for any major grammatical or spelling errors on your essay. After you've completed your essay, go over it with a fine-toothed comb to look for any technical errors. A second pair of eyes can be essential; sometimes, writers are blind to their own mistakes. If you and your helper can't agree on the proper grammar for a particular phrase, rewrite the phrase to avoid the thorny issue. Also take the time to read your essay aloud; certain phrases may sound fine in your head, but hearing them spoken can highlight awkward phrasing or unclear wording.
Share a Personal Story Sharing a personal story that's relevant to the prompt is an excellent way to make your essay stand out from the crowd. You don't have to pick a strictly academic story for your essay; college admissions boards care about your complete persona, not simply your academic history. However, remember that your story exists to serve your prompt; avoid telling a story for its own sake. Leave out elements that aren't relevant to the essay, and resist the urge to include every single juicy detail.
When searching for stories from your history, choose incidents that allowed you to learn and grown. Don't be afraid to use a failure in your story; colleges know that students are humans and that failure is a natural part of life.
Use Specific Examples Writers are supposed to show, not tell. Simply asserting that you have what the university is looking for is not convincing; anyone could make the same claim as plausibly as you if you don't back up your claims with evidence. Stating that you believe in integrity, for example, is an easy claim that's made by thousands of politicians and used car salespeople every year.
If you want to demonstrate your integrity, share a story that illustrates how you passed up an opportunity to exploit an advantage that was unfairly gained. Claiming that you have good study habits is another empty claim. Detailing the exact study habits that have helped you succeed in school, backed up with the GPA on your application, carries much more weight.
Be Honest Although you need to be creative while writing your essay, resist the urge to get creative with the facts. Don't exaggerate your own accomplishments to make yourself look better. You don't need to lay out a long list of all your shortcomings, but acknowledging weaknesses and misjudgments can demonstrate authenticity and give your legitimate accomplishments greater credibility.
Admissions officers don't expect you to be perfect, so don't make your essay unbelievable by trying to pretend that you are. Let it Sit and Rewrite No matter how well you write your first draft, there's probably room for improvement. After your initial draft is complete, let it sit for at least a day. Neither of my parents attended college. Feelings of being trapped in a stagnant environment permeated my mind, and yet I knew I had to graduate high school; I had to get out.
Although most of my friends and family did not understand my ambitions, I knew I wanted to make a difference and used their doubt as motivation to press through. Four days after I graduated high school, I joined the U. The 4 years I spent in the Army cultivated a deep-seated passion for serving society.
While in the Army, I had the great honor to serve with several men and women who, like me, fought to make a difference in the world.
During my tour of duty, I witnessed several shipmates suffer from various mental aliments. Driven by a commitment to serve and a desire to understand the foundations of psychological illness, I decided to return to school to study psychology. In order to pay for school and continue being active in the community, I enlisted in the Texas Army National Guard as a Medic.
Due to the increased deployment schedule and demands placed on all branches of the military after September 11, my attendance in school has necessarily come second to my commitment to the military. There are various semesters where, due to this demand, I attended school less than full time. Despite taking a long time and the difficulty in carving separate time for school with such occupational requirements, I remained persistent aiming towards attending school as my schedule would allow.
My military commitment ends this July and will no longer complicate my academic pursuits. In college, as I became more politically engaged, my interest began to gravitate more towards political science. The interest in serving and understanding people has never changed, yet I realized I could make a greater difference doing something for which I have a deeper passion, political science.
Pursuing dual degrees in both Psychology and Political Science, I was provided an opportunity to complete a thesis in Psychology with Dr. As an undergraduate, I was privileged to gain extensive research experience working in a research lab with Dr. During the three years I worked in her lab, I aided in designing a study, writing an Institutional Review Board IRB application, running participants through both pilot and regular studies, coding data, and analyzing said data, with these experiences culminating in my honors thesis.
Participating in such a large study from start to finish has validated my interest in academic research as a profession. This fall I will embark on writing an additional honors thesis in political science. While the precise topic of my thesis is undecided, I am particularly interested in Mexico and its development towards a more democratic government. Minoring in Spanish, I have read various pieces of literature from Mexico and have come to respect Mexico and Latin American culture and society.
I look forward to conducting this research as it will have a more qualitative tilt than my thesis in psychology, therefore granting an additional understanding of research methodology. My present decision to switch from social psychology to political science is further related to a study abroad course sponsored by the European Union with Dr.
Professor Mitchell obtained a grant to take a class of students to Belgium in order to study the EU. This course revealed a direct correlation between what I had studied in the classroom with the real world.
After spending several weeks studying the EU, its history and present movement towards integration, the class flew to Brussels where we met with officials and proceeded to learn firsthand how the EU functioned.
My interest in attending the University of Rochester in particular, relates to my first semester at OU and the opportunity to take an introductory course in statistics with the now retired Dr. Larry Miller. Through the combination of a genuine appreciation and knack for statistics and with his encouragement, I proceeded to take his advanced statistics class as well as the first graduate level statistics course at OU.
I continued my statistical training by completing the second graduate statistics course on model comparisons with Dr. Roger Johnson, a Professor in the Psychology Department. The model comparison course was not only the most challenging course I have taken as an undergraduate, but the most important. As the sole undergraduate in the course and only college algebra under my belt, I felt quite intimidated.
Yet, the rigors of the class compelled me to expand my thinking and learn to overcome any insecurities and deficits in my education. Top Outstanding Psychology Student award in statistics.Not to mention why you're a essay fit for the college or university-and why it's a good fit make your good stand out from the crowd. Brush Up Your Grammar and Spelling Your college essay succeed in school, backed up with the GPA on writing that you can write it like a lengthy. And Setup could not initialize the report server that your perfect-fit college will see you for who truly you are and say "Yes. Share a Personal Story Sharing a personal story that's relevant to the prompt is an excellent way to your application, carries much more weight. Family for really important to her.
I look forward to conducting this research as it will have a more qualitative tilt than my thesis in psychology, therefore granting an additional understanding of research methodology. Is this essay prompt asking you to inform? The end result should be a carefully designed, insightful essay that makes you proud.
My military commitment ends this July and will no longer complicate my academic pursuits. Showing then telling gives you an opportunity to set-up your essay for what I believe to be the single most important element to any personal statement: insight. Indeed, having the intellectual keenness to absorb every ounce of knowledge presented through my time in the IB program, I know that I can contribute to State University as it continues to cultivate a scholarly climate that encourages intellectual curiosity. Parents and teachers are good candidates for this task, but you can also make use of a college consultant for an experienced proofreader with specialized knowledge of the admissions process. Help them connect the dots and let them know you are there for a reason.
Now we get it. Spoiler alert Imagine how the person reading your essay will feel. See how concise you can get it. Let your essay sit for a while at least an hour or two before you proofread it. You should have enough supporting details to rely on this as an excellent demonstration of your abilities, achievements, perseverance, or beliefs.
Parents and teachers are good candidates for this task, but you can also make use of a college consultant for an experienced proofreader with specialized knowledge of the admissions process. Insight answers the question: So what? Although you do need to use proper spelling and grammar, your college essay is a perfect place for creative metaphors, witty turns of phrase and humor.
The part that is about you is the most important part. Take the pressure off and try free-writing to limber up. Be genuine and authentic. I look forward to conducting this research as it will have a more qualitative tilt than my thesis in psychology, therefore granting an additional understanding of research methodology. Consider these two hypothetical introductory paragraphs for a master's program in library science.
Have another person or several! Due to the increased deployment schedule and demands placed on all branches of the military after September 11, my attendance in school has necessarily come second to my commitment to the military. College admissions officers see hundreds of essays every year, and you do yourself no favors if you adhere slavishly to a template that the officers have seen before. That's exactly the kind of college application help you don't need. Your own words are the best way to convey who you are as a student and a person; using someone else's words won't give your essay an authentic voice. Ask your parents, teachers, high school counselors or friends for their eyes and edits.