Your character shows up in three places on the application: the interview if you have oneyour involvement in extracurricular activitiesand your essay. Of the three, the essay is the most immediate and illuminating to the admissions folks as they read through thousands of applications.

Tips for Writing a Winning College Application Essay

Allen Grove is an Alfred University English professor tips for a college essay a college admissions expert with 20 years of experience helping students transition to college. Updated April 25, tips for a college essay, Nearly all colleges rate application essays as either important or very important in their admissions process. A poorly executed essay can cause a stellar student to get rejected. On the flip side, exceptional application essays can help students with marginal scores get into the schools of their dreams.

They are looking for good citizens for their campus communities. Mechanics Matter Grammatical problems, punctuation errors, and spelling mistakes can hurt your chance of being accepted. When excessive, these errors are distracting and make your application essay difficult to understand. Even a few errors, however, can be a strike against you.


Such essays read like what they are: tedious lists. Other parts of the application provide plenty of space for you to list extracurricular activities, so save your lists for the places where they belong. The most engaging and compelling essays tell a story and have a clear focus. Through carefully chosen detail, your writing should reveal your passions and expose your personality. A thoughtful and detailed narration of a difficult time in your life tells far more about you than a list of competitions won and honors achieved.

You also want to avoid sounding like a whiner -- use your essay to show off your skills, not to explain the injustices that lead to your low math score or failure to graduate 1 in your class. Reveal Your Character Along with the essay, most colleges rate "character and personal qualities" as extremely important in their admissions decisions.


They show a lack of care and quality control in your written work, and your success in college partly depends upon strong writing skills. If English isn't your greatest strength, seek help. Ask a favorite teacher to go over the essay with you, or find a friend with strong editorial skills.

Many students have been rejected for failing to take the prompt seriously and writing essays that end up being more foolish than clever. Focus on Tone Not just humor, but the overall tone of your application essay is remarkably important. It's also difficult to get right, tips for a college essay. When you are asked to write about your accomplishments, those words on how great you are can make you sound like a tips for a college essay. Be careful to balance your pride in your achievements with humility and generosity towards others.

Add a Touch of Humor While it's important to be thoughtful and mature, you don't want your college application essay to be too heavy. Try to lighten up the essay with a clever metaphor, a well-placed witticism, or a little self-deprecating humor. But don't overdo it. The essay that is filled with bad puns or off-color jokes will often end up in the rejection pile. Also, tips for a college essay, humor isn't a substitute for substance. Your primary task is to answer the essay prompt thoughtfully; the smile you bring to your reader's lips is just a bonus and a tear can sometimes be effective too.

 

tips for a college essay

Essays that Worked - Tips for a Good College Essay - Hamilton College

 

 

The tips below will help you win big with your essay. Avoid the List on Your Application Essay Many college applicants make the mistake of trying to include all of their accomplishments and activities in their application essays.

tips for a college essay

8 Tips for Crafting Your Best College Essay

If you can't find expert help, there are many online essay services that can provide a careful critique of your tips for a college essay. Continue Reading.

Tips for a Stellar College Application Essay. 1. Write about something that's important to you. It could be an experience, a person, a book—anything that has had an impact on your life. Here are his 10 best tips. 1. Be concise. Even though the Common Application main essay has only a suggested minimum of words, and no upper limit, every admissions officer has a big stack to read every day; he or she expects to spend only a couple of minutes on the 1abgowel.cf: Lynn F. Jacobs, Jeremy S. Hyman. On the flip side, exceptional application essays can help students with marginal scores get into the schools of their dreams. The tips below will help you win big with your essay. Also be sure to check out these tips for the 7 personal essay options on the Common Application, this advice for improving your essay's style, and the sample essays.

 

Tips for a Stellar College Application Essay. 1. Write about something that's important to you. It could be an experience, a person, a book—anything that has had an impact on your life. Here are his 10 best tips. 1. Be concise. Even though the Common Application main essay has only a suggested minimum of words, and no upper limit, every admissions officer has a big stack to read every day; he or she expects to spend only a couple of minutes on the 1abgowel.cf: Lynn F. Jacobs, Jeremy S. Hyman. On the flip side, exceptional application essays can help students with marginal scores get into the schools of their dreams. The tips below will help you win big with your essay. Also be sure to check out these tips for the 7 personal essay options on the Common Application, this advice for improving your essay's style, and the sample essays.