Applying for college is a big and important step for high school seniors. An admission essay is often a cause of worry for many students and their parents.
This is, of course, quite understandable because your college admission essay will play in important role in the way you present yourself to the institution you want to apply to.
The whole process can be very stressful for students. To make this easier and fun, we give you tips how to write a successful college admission essay.
Start With a Short Overview
Overall, yourcollege admission essay should not be longer than 800 words. Remember that this is an admission essay, and not a biography, so you should be as concise as possible.
Begin with a short overview of who you are, and, most importantly, why do you think that this university is a good choice for you.
If possible, try to do this in one or two sentences.
Talk About Your Skills
Sometimes it can be hard to find the correct balance between sounding over confident and properly expressing your skills.
In your admission essay, however, it is important to talk about your skills. Don’t try to list too many things, focus only on the most important ones.
The tone of your writing should be personal and direct. You will probably face a tough competition so you will have to distinguish yourself from the rest. Avoid using clichés and phrases, and don’t try to sound too academic.
Your main task is to present yourself, and in order to do so, it’s best to sound like a real individual.
Don’t Try to Impress
One of the common mistakes students make is that they try to impress. Using elaborate language and talking too much about skills, accomplishments and ideas can only serve to lower your chances, because everyone else is doing it.
You should be yourself without trying to impress anyone.
Avoid Lengthy Descriptions
It is important to be concise and to avoid overly long descriptions. Once again, you task is to present yourself, not write a personal biography.
Colleges expect from your admission essay to be incomplete, and this is no reason for concern.
A 17 year old has no reason to write a three-page essay.
Tell Something About Your Expectations
Your expectations from your future academic career and college life should form an important part of your admission essay.
Write about your expectations and your understanding of what it means to be a student.
Try To Be Original
An original and unique work will always have much better chances for success than a cliché ridden one.
There are many ways to express yourself and show originality. Mention something personal, such as your positive experience or something which inspires and motivates you.
You can try the following:
- Put your famous quote. Keep it relevant and consistent with your essay.
- Use anecdotes. You will want to engage them admission officers and give them something interesting to read. Consider an anecdote, but don’t overuse it.
- It’s OK to try and use as much as different words as possible. However, don’t try to sound sophisticated, chances are it will have an opposite effect.
Don’t Repeat Yourself
Be careful not to repeat yourself, especially the information that is already included in your application form and your resume.
Try to be specific and concrete and avoid vague terms and generalizations.
Always Be Honest
Some students embellish their achievements and skills in order to impress the admission committee. This is not a good way to start your college life and will come to haunt you back later.
Be honest and don’t try to inflate your achievements, even when you think it may not be enough. It’s your determination and will to learn that counts.
An important aspect for any academic endeavor is your ability to think independently and have your own vision of the world and yourself. Colleges want students who are self-aware and are able to act and think as responsible individuals.
Remember that your admission essay is personal, it is about you, not someone else. Avoid commonly used constructions and clichés and be authentic.
Be Sure To Follow Instructions
When applying to college and writing your admission essay, follow the directions and instructions provided. These instructions are there to make the whole process easier, both for applicants and for college administration.
Moreover, by following instructions, you show that you are responsible and reliable.
Don’t Try To Sound Too Serious
Your admission essay should be viewed as one part of your efforts, you should not give it too much importance and put yourself under stress.
Don’t try to sound too serious. Just be yourself.
Check for Errors
As an admission essay is the most important college paper, you should thoroughly check it for spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors. Carefully proofread your essay before you submit it.
You can use a spellcheck, but it is always better to proofread yourself. Spelling and grammar errors are not a good way to present yourself, so pay special attention to proofreading.
The importance of a good college admission essay should not be overestimated. However, keep in mind that this is only a first step on your path and that the most important thing is to present yourself. It’s not to be or not to be situation.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself, have fun and introduce yourself in the best way possible.