Many graduating high school seniors will begin working on their college applications this summer, including the personal statement which is one of the most stressful aspects of the college application.
The personal statement, which is commonly the application essay, is the component of the application over which students have the greatest influence and the best chance to tell the college more about themselves. Whereas the primary Common Application essay employs predefined themes, they are wide enough that students may write about basically anything as long as it links back to their essay question of choice.
The Importance of the Personal Statement
Whenever students consider what is needed to be accepted into college, excellent grades and test scores are typically the first things that spring to mind. While this “difficult criteria” is important, a review process that is holistic also considers other qualities,” or non-quantifiable application components like essays, references, social activities, and more.
According to NACAC’s most current State of College Admissions report, the essay is the most significant soft element that institutions assess. When utilized appropriately, the essay or personal statement can provide admissions directors with a new perspective into who a candidate is as a character, what inspires them, and, more importantly, how that student communicates and follows instructions.
A great personal essay will not ensure acceptance, but it may help a student’s application stand out, whereas a generally poor essay, when combined with other factors, can negatively affect a student’s chances of getting in. This is why writing a personal statement is so important. Students must devote a significant amount of time and effort to creating an excellent essay in order to increase the chances of their admission. Here are five suggestions to assist college-bound high school graduates in writing an outstanding personal statement essay.
Find Something New About Yourself
This is something that is constantly repeated, considering it is an area that students struggle with the most. In an effort to demonstrate knowledge or keenness, students may be repetitious and spend the whole essay discussing information that is already included in the form. If choreography is on your list of extracurricular activities, the university can tell that you like dancing, so do not spend your essay explaining what it is like to learn certain moves.
Take advantage of this chance to tell the admissions staff something fresh and unexpected about yourself. Write about anything substantive that adds additional depth to your application, whether it is how your faith affects your schooling, how a mentor helped you achieve your potential or an incident that influenced who you are now.
Take Your Time To Come Up With Ideas
You must select a relevant and unique topic in order to disclose something intriguing about yourself. While the Common Application essay prompts are useful, you must choose a personal topic that relates to the prompt you have chosen. Take some time to consider what matters to you, who or what events have impacted you, and what you find fascinating about yourself.
Choose a topic that is not clear, such as the football captain writing on winning the title in the game. Rather, consider themes, experiences, events, and other aspects of your life that are markedly special to you. The importance of creative thinking while developing a great personal statement cannot be overstated.
Be Mindful of Word Choice, Tone, and Voice.
If you do not typically write or talk in this manner, your essay should sound like you created it. Avoid using large vocabulary terms, sophisticated sentence structure, or a pretentious tone. Having said that, do not be scared to push your writing abilities.
Take your time to carefully create an essay that effectively expresses your experience and your voice in the personal statement. Avoid utilizing unnecessary words or phrases, filler words that offer no value, or terms that do not help readers understand.
Practice As Much As You Can
It is uncommon that someone’s initial draft of a personal statement is flawless. You improve with practice, just like everything else. As a means to enhance and expand your writing abilities, write frequently in a diary, blog, or other media.
When the time to pen your personal statement, practice that, too. Revise, reread, and then review again. It often takes students many drafts before they have a personal statement that demonstrates their best writing and clearly conveys the essay’s message.
Do Not Procrastinate.
A brilliant paper is rarely produced in a single day. Before the school year begins, get an early start on your personal statement by brainstorming ideas and drafting the first draft throughout the summer.
So that, you can complete some of the most challenging tasks, such as selecting a topic and beginning the writing process, before the stressful final year starts. All this permits students to receive early comments on their essays from college advisors before the rest of the class seeks help later in the year.
All these are just a few recommendations to get you started on writing an excellent personal statement during the summer. Remember to stay true to yourself and write about what matters to you.