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How to Write a Winning College Application Essay

Categories: College Life, Writing

You’ve completed all application forms, taken the tests, and now it’s time to impress your college’s admission officers with an amazing application essay. Like nothing else, this essay will give the readers a real sense of who you are as a person and student.

Your college application essay should breathe life into your application. It should explain who you are beyond the test scores, grades and extracurricular activities. But that’s not as scary as it seems. With some time and planning, you’ll be able to prepare an essay that stands out.

Choose a Topic that Will Highlight You

In your application essay, you need to share your personal story and interests and highlight areas that are not covered in other parts of your application. You shouldn’t focus on the great aspects of a chosen college or the amount of dedication it takes to become a doctor. Keep your focus narrow and personal and tell the readers who you are. Choose a story to tell that perfectly demonstrates your abilities, beliefs, or achievements and make sure you have enough supporting details to rely on.

Write a Compelling Introduction

To catch the attention of the admissions officer, you need to start with a compelling introduction. It has to reveal to the reader what your essay is about and keep them engaged. You may open with a captivating story or an anecdote to let the admissions officers know who you are. Try to show some of the best parts of your personality right from the first sentences.

Tell the Truth

Your essay is a reflection of who you are. Don’t write false information about yourself just to look better in the eyes of the admissions officers. It’s never a good idea to start a new stage of your life from a lie. Besides, committees may check details and cancel the acceptance based on the fake facts. Make sure to use your own voice and show off who you really are, not who you think they want.

Give Good Examples to Support Your Ideas

An application essay is basically a brief look at how your mind works and how you see the world. If you want your essay to be trustworthy, make sure to back up your thoughts with the solid examples. That means that every time you express an idea, you don’t just state a fact, you also specify the concrete examples to support it. You may choose examples from your personal experience or write how you developed a certain belief.

Avoid Clichés

Admissions officers read thousands of applications every year and they will notice the overused phrases. Your task is to distinguish yourself, so don’t allow yourself to be influenced too much by the examples of others application essays you have read. Your essay is a chance to stand out, so re-read it and delete or rewrite all sentences that sound like a cliché.

Ask Someone to Proofread Your Essay

Don’t turn your essay in without proofreading it. Ask another person (your friend, teacher, parent) to read your essay and catch mistakes. After reading so many samples and following all instructions, it may be hard to understand whether you’ve done a great job. Use the help of others to make sure that your writing sounds just like you.

Now start writing and prepare a winning college application essay!