How to Write the Best Personal Statement Admissions Essay
So, maybe you’re struggling to create a college admissions essay that will knock the socks off the admissions offices. Doubts grow as you ponder how you can come up with an original insight or an idea separating you from the pack. It’s now time to formulate a game plan for a college essay that will set off bulbs in the heads of staff members and place you on the path to acceptance. In pursuit of this goal, advice will be offered on how to start your college essay, and ways to structure your personal statement in a way that offers the admissions offices insight into your life. This will be followed by examples of essay prompts and closing remarks.
How to Start Your Admissions Essay
1. Go to the admissions website – or Common App – and find materials of the school to which you are applying. This is the absolute first step. Write down your favorite topics and begin to brainstorm.
2. Look inward and identify your strengths and best qualities. You may be determined or creative or empathetic. Identify the strengths that you want to convey to the admissions committee. Ask what differentiates you from most applicants, and how you can make this clear in a personal statement.
3. Incorporate your strengths into the essay. For instance, convey a story about a time or experience when you displayed these strengths. Produce alternative beginnings and conclusions as you work on the essay. Remember: the clearer your examples are, the better your essay will be viewed.
How to Structure Your Essay
The essay is designed to demonstrate that you can convey your thoughts in an organized and persuasive fashion. To facilitate this, the essay should have the following components.
1. An introduction with a central idea expressing the intention of the essay and supporting ideas that will be used to refine the main point.
2. A body with a few paragraphs, each of which would have a supporting idea. Begin each paragraph with a topic sentence articulating its principal point. Stay within the stated page limits. Admissions essays are generally brief. Brevity beats verbosity!
3. A conclusion summarizing the essay, and reiterating the central idea and supporting ideas. A strong writer should look over the essay to check for coherence and to check whether you made a compelling case for gaining admission.
4. Consider having a peer review the admissions essay to get their feedback. You can also get admissions essay help from Top Test Prep’s programs.
Five essay prompts to get you thinking…
College admissions essay topics should be personal since you are selling yourself and why you are a good fit for that institution. Illustrations of possible topics include the following:
-Describe a significant interest or experience that has special meaning for you.
-Does any specific attribute, quality, or skill distinguish you from everyone else? How did you develop this attribute?
- What is your approach to life? Reveal your life philosophy.
-What is a major achievement in your life? Who and what assisted you in reaching your aim?
- Explain which of the negative features you possess you’d like to get rid of and which of the positive features you’d like to promote and enhance.
It’s time to find a quiet place and start deliberating on your admissions essays.
David Dickson is on the college admissions counseling team for Top Test Prep. Top Test Prep offers private tutor programs and admissions counseling to help students gain admission to prep schools, colleges and graduate schools. Call to learn more: (800) 501-Prep.