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How to Write a Personal Statement for University Applications
What is a personal statement? How do you write a personal statement that makes you stand out? How do you write a personal statement that will make the admissions officer give you a chance?
A personal statement is a brief essay that highlights your best qualities. It is written usually for school or job applications. A good Personal statement should delve into your talents, skills, passions, ambitions, and accomplishments in a semi-autobiographical way.
In this situation, we are looking into a personal statement that will accompany your application to any university in the UK. This is simply because, when applying to study for an undergraduate degree at any of the universities in the UK, a written personal statement is a part of your application. According to The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), It must be included as part of the application.
Why do you then have to write a personal statement? Should your results be enough? The reason why you are required to write a personal statement as part of your application is that, the institution wants to know what kind of a person you are. A written personal statement is an opportunity for you to allow the admissions officer to assess your application based on not only what they say about yourself, but also how you say it.
When you discuss your goals for a university course, your plans after graduation, and why you are applying to that particular university. The university is giving you an opportunity even without meeting or knowing you to demonstrate a genuine interest in the course you are applying for and also your understanding of your chosen subject.
What Should You Then Include In Your Personal Statement?
One thing that you should bear in mind when writing a personal statement is that you should take your time to plan it out. A great personal statement is not what you should rush through. Unlike a CV, your personal statement should be organised into clear paragraphs, rather than a single block of text.
Although you are not required to follow a specific format, here is an example of what you should try to include in your personal statement:
- Reasons for wanting to study.
- Your career aspirations.
- Why you are suitable for the course.
- How you became interested in studying the subject.
- What attracted you to that particular university.
- How your current study is relevant.
- Your skills and achievements.
- Your related hobbies and interests such as your passions because it allows you to display your positive character and personality.
- Please never include any negative, substory, because nobody wants to know about that. Positivity is key.
How Long Should Your Personal Statement Be?
The length of a personal statement varies by university, but for an undergraduate application, the average length is between 400 and 600 words. A 1000-word personal statement may be required for some postgraduate programmes, but this will be clearly stated by the university.
How Can You Make Your Personal Statement Stand Out?
- Show your passion for the chosen subject.
- In order to catch the attention of an admissions officer, start the statement strong.
- Connect other interests of yours, hobbies and passion to your course.
- Take your time because a great personal statement does not come together in a few hours. If you need to take a break for a few days and return to it with fresh eyes, do it.
- Admissions officers are trained to detect a lie from a mile, so do not lie, be yourself and be truthful, because if you lie, it will count against you.
- Have someone proofread it for you. The more people you show it to, the better the final version is likely to be.
A Feel of How a Good Personal Statement Should Be Organised!
- The first paragraph should picture your career objective: what you intend to achieve when you complete the course
- The second paragraph should show your previous studies. Here, you should tell more about what you have achieved academically. If you have ever received an award for academic excellence, state it here.
- If you have ever worked, the next paragraph should showcase your work experience.
- Followed by a paragraph telling the admissions officer how you are convinced that you will be successful on the course.
- And lastly, your academic objectives, this is where you will show what you feel the successful completion of the course will make you accomplish in life.
Finally, be yourself and write honestly about why you want the course. Use your own voice and never ever try to copy anything online because you will be found out. Check and check again to make sure there are no spelling or typographical errors, and then send it off.
You may want to read about the benefits of studying in the UK