Writing successful college application essay

Furthermore, they likely know nothing about the subject of your essay. To close this gap, you need to be as specific as possible. The first time I marched in front of a crowd, I was so nervous. We got into formation, took the field, and began to play. It was all a blur, and before I knew it, it was over. As I walked off the field after that first performance, I felt prouder than I ever had. But it could be way more specific.


  • How To Write — And Not Write — A College Essay.
  • College Application and Essay Tips.
  • Crafting an Unforgettable College Essay;
  • The Best Ways and Main Purpose of Writing a College Application Essay.

The first time I marched in front of a crowd, I was so nervous that I could barely hold up my saxophone. As we stood there on the football field ready to begin, I looked up into the stands and noticed for the first time how huge the crowd was. So many eyes on me. What if I screwed up? Before I had time to think, though, I saw the drum major take the stand and give the signal. I brought my instrument to my lips and did everything just as we had rehearsed.

The next five minutes were a blur. After the last note had faded, we turned in formation and marched off the field. Leaving the field that day was the first time I realized the power of devoting everything I had to a goal and following through. See the difference?

Note all the details. A good rule of thumb is this: write what you think is enough detail…and then write twice as much. The right amount is probably somewhere between the two. Many admissions essays focus too much on what happened and not enough on how it made you feel and what you learned from it.

To do this, you need to get away from simply summarizing events. When writing about an experience like this, it can be really easy to get wrapped up in all the cool things that happened. You need to talk about what you learned, about how this experience changed you, and how it helped form who you are today. Once again, the key is to be specific. Want some examples? On a more technical note, the individual words you use can make or break your essay. These are just filler words that we lean on for convenience.

To craft an outstanding essay you have to get past these overused descriptions. To round this article off, here are a few additional pieces of advice for writing a successful admissions essay:. I hope that after reading this post you feel a bit more confident in your ability to write your college admissions essay. It may feel scary and impossible, but with right approach and enough time , you can write an essay that showcases your unique personality and impresses admissions officers.

What questions do you have about writing college admissions essays? Share your thoughts in the comments section below, or post about it in the College Info Geek Community. Want to listen to an audio narration of this article? If this sounds like you, then please share your story. The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure.

Writing a strong college admissions essay

How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again? It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma-anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale.

7 GREAT College Essay Tips to Help You Stand Out

Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution. Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family. What NOT to Write About Speaking of obvious ideas, the biggest piece of advice I can give about writing college essays is this: avoid the obvious.

Step 1: Get Organized

Anything that comes across as narcissistic. Most of all, anything trite. But what in the world should you talk about? The point of this exercise is twofold: It helps you get all the obvious stuff out of your head first. But we want to get that stuff out of the way as quickly as possible so we can move on to the not so obvious.

As essays flutter around the room, you notice a page with a recipe for cranberry bread. First the flour and the sugar need to be sifted together into a large bowl.

Best college essays

Flour reminds me of the powder snow that falls in the West. I was born and raised in Pennsylvania, where our snow falls more like sugar; granular and icy, and makes us hardy skiers, unlike those spoiled by Western snow. Cold weather is also conducive to reading…. Finally, a student you would want to meet, someone who dares to express herself creatively rather than simply regurgitate the same old litany of high school achievements and adolescent truisms. Finally, an interesting essay!

Here’s the Magic Formula for Writing a Perfect College Application Essay

The essay makes your decision easy. Because she was willing to take a creative risk in the way she revealed things about herself, she presented herself as an interesting person, somebody the admissions officer wanted to meet. And those two things — by themselves — made the admissions officer smile and made it an easy decision to put Ms. First, an effective essay hooks the readers immediately and makes them want to read the rest of the essay.


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He still had a hundred essays to read before 6 p. Sometimes it seems that there are only four types of essays: the 'class president' essay, the 'I lost but learned' sports essay, the 'I went to Europe and earned how complex the world is' essay, and the good old 'being yearbook editor sure is hard work' essay. When I read one of those, it takes amazing willpower to get to the third paragraph.