A Personal Essay

A narrow focus is more interesting than broad-based generalizations. Everybody has them, and it's good to know that an applicant can see them and face them. Be specific about what this particular school can do for you. Do write about your greatest assets and achievements. Don't repeat information given elsewhere on your application.

Generally, keep in mind that the points about your life that you highlight should be somehow relevant to both your own interest in the field of study, as well as to the concerns of the admissions committee.

In judging what information to include or exclude from your essay, try to balance academic, work-related, and personal information in a manner appropriate to your situation, goals, and the application requirements.

To begin your essay, brainstorm using the following questions: Write the first draft from this, then try to find an angle or a hook which can sink into the admissions committee; a good place to start is with an original and provoking opening paragraph.

One of the worst things you can do with your personal statement is to bore the admissions committee, yet that is exactly what most applicants do.

Write a personal essay about one or more moments of uncertainty you have experienced.

Themes: sexuality, social conflict Candidates may adopt a variety of approaches (serious, humorous, anecdotal, discursive,…If you have additional, relevant information about yourself that does not easily fit into the essay, or into any other section of the university's application, you may want to include a condensed resume or curriculum vitae with your application package.This is especially applicable to those who have worked professionally since having graduated from school. You will want to answer the question as directly as possible, and you'll want to follow word limits exactly.Again, mention the person and how their work relates to your interest, but don't load this statement with what might be interpreted as false or superfluous praise.Some applications may ask you to give a personal history, telling about experiences that you have undergone which have led you to decide to pursue graduate education in a certain field of study.Don't waste your valuable essay space, or your reader's valuable time, telling the reader how wonderful or prestigious their institution is; people on the admissions committee already know this. Nonetheless, if there are special programs or institutes at the school that seem appealing to you, briefly mention that you are interested in becoming part of them.For example, state that you "want to be a member of the XYZ Group for Blank and Blank Studies because ...", but don't tell them how great, well respected, and world-renowned this part of the school is.Some applicants may ramble on about themselves in a manner that may appear self-indulgent and not very appealing to the committee.Remember, this is an application essay, not an autobiography.This is another one of those places where caution should be exercised: you want to explain the cause of your poor grades, etc. Do focus on an aspect of yourself that will show your best side.You might have overcome some adversity, worked through a difficult project, or profited from a specific incident.


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