The Admission Essay
The admission essay is daunting at best. You need to write about yourself in a way to convince the admissions officers that you are a good fit for their university. This is generally not something that you have done much of in school.
How to Succeed at the Admission Essay
Luckily, you still use the essay writing skills you learned. You will brainstorm, analyze and evaluate. You should think about what you write before you write it.
There are many ways to plan out an admission essay. Here are a few components to essay planning:
- Write down what ideas come into your head in a brainstorming fashion
- Analyzing the question, figure out what the application is really asking
- Use an outline to lay out what you will discuss in your essay (organize!)
Now to writing the essay. You have already planned it out, so the writing should be easy, right? Well, there are a few things to keep in mind while writing or at least during your editing:
- Be very precise, do not let the sentence mean anything except what you want it to mean
- Keep your focus, write on topic
- Use active language, things don’t happen to you, you make them happen
And onto content. This essay is about YOU, not about world peace or economics or your best friend. Here are a few things the admission officials are looking for from your essay:
- Self-evaluation and reflection
- Analysis of the question
- YOU! This essay is about you and they want to see you for who you are
BIG NOTE: Don’t forget to give yourself plenty of time to write the essay (i.e., don’t write the day before the application is due) and have someone you trust edit it! Not to mention a native speaker should edit the essay.
Edit, edit, edit. Can I say it again? Edit!
As always, if you have any questions, feel free to contact me by email or leaving a comment.
Gretchen Hinderer is our blog writer. Thanks for a great piece on the admission essay, Gretchen!