Personal statement for college application

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In Ucas Clearing ? Don't miss our Clearing guide for help and advice. Personal statements. Share this page.

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  • First of all, you're not alone. We spoke to admissions tutors up and down the country, and they all said the same thing: don't get stressed out trying to think of a killer opening! Check out our advice below on beginning your personal statement the right way, including what to include, what not to do and how to approach it or even, put it off Struggling with the conclusion to your personal statement? Read our guide on how to finish your statement the right way. As one admissions tutor said: 'Be succinct and draw the reader in, but not with a gimmick. This isn't the X Factor. They emphasised the need for candidates to engage the reader with your relevant perceptions or ideas, not by something flashy.

    See an example of an opening sentence in a personal statement , plus more templates to pick up hints from. This is what they said: 'Don't waste time trying to think of a catchy opening; it's often a complete turn-off.

    Tutorial: Writing a personal statement for a UCAS or college application | My World of Work

    Start with why you chose it. Why are you excited about studying this course? Start with that.


    What excites you about the course and why do you want to learn about it more? Don't waffle or say you want to study something just because it's interesting.

    What to include in a personal statement ?

    Explain what you find interesting about it. Start with what's inspiring you now, not what inspired you when you were six. Some tutors even suggested you shouldn't even begin at the start Concentrate on the main content of your statement and write the introduction last.

    That's what we're really interested in. So you'll be on the right track if you explain your enthusiasm for the subject or course, your understanding of it and what you want to achieve from it.

    College personal statement

    To help, every year Ucas publishes a list of the most common opening lines in personal statements and urges applicants to avoid using these 'hackneyed' phrases. Need some guidance? Check out these personal statement examples They particularly dislike it if you put a quotation in right at the start — and it's even worse if you don't actually explain why it's there. It's your statement, after all. The student who wrote about being bullied, for instance, led with dialogue, depicting a moment when she overheard classmates talking about her.

    Often, once writers have their beginning, the rest of the essay flows from there. But the final sentences are what will linger with readers, so they need to be carefully chosen. The best way to become adept at this form of writing is to read; luckily, personal essays abound these days, so encourage your kids to seek out some examples. Some schools also provide examples of personal statements they loved— check out these from Johns Hopkins as a jumping off point.

    As with any other form of writing, editing is a critical part of the process.

    When I work with students on this, we look at their drafts on both macro and micro levels, considering organization, pacing, and clarity, as well as word choice and sentence structure. Questions to consider during the revision phase are, does this tell a story?

    What is a personal statement for college ?

    Does it grab me at the beginning and maintain my interest throughout? Does it conclude in a way that makes sense and is impactful? Does it answer one of the prompts? Does it show me something interesting about who this person is as an individual? Keep an eye out for repetition and wordiness. Alanna Schubach is a freelance writer, teacher, and college advisor, and has coached high school students in personal statement writing through the Sunnyside College Readiness Program and the Gotham Writers Workshop.

    The A. Alanna Schubach. Filed to: college applications. Share This Story.