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❶That said, the best way to confirm exactly what your school expects is to go to its admissions website.

College Application Essay Formatting Requirements

College Application Essay: How to Begin Writing It
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What seemed so scary at the time is just an everyday way to get around now. But I always look around on the platform to see if any nervous kids linger at the edges of the commuter crowds and offer them a smile. Both versions set up the same story, plot-wise, but the second makes the train ride and because of this, the author come alive through the addition of specific, individualizing details, such as the following:. We combine world-class admissions counselors with our data-driven, proprietary admissions strategies.

We know what kinds of students colleges want to admit. We want to get you admitted to your dream schools. Learn more about PrepScholar Admissions to maximize your chance of getting in. Most students have an identity, an interest, or a talent that defines them in an essential way. At first glance, this prompt seems pretty vague. But if we dig a little deeper, we can see that there are actually two pretty specific things this question is asking. This prompts posits that "most students"—which likely includes you!

For instance, are you an amazing knitter? Do you spend your free time researching cephalopods? Are you a connoisseur of indie movies or mystery novels? Any of these things could plausibly be the main, framing theme of your essay. Essentially, you need to contextualize your defining trait within your broader personality and identity.

This is where the "tell us about yourself" part comes in. What does your defining trait say about you as a person? How does it fit into your overall personality, values, and dreams?

Only deep in the woods could she explore her one true passion: College is a lot of work, and passion is an important driving force when things get busy. Thus, readers are looking for students who are really engaged in the world around them and excited about things! Colleges are looking for a developed sense of self.

Additionally, they are looking for students who can communicate messages about themselves in a clear, confident, and cohesive way. The challenge with this prompt is giving a complete picture of you as a person while still staying on message about your defining trait. You need to be focused yet comprehensive. First, you need to select that defining trait.

It should also be something you can describe through stories and anecdotes. On the other hand, a story about how you started a photography project that consists of portraits of redheads like you and what you learned about yourself from this experience is much more interesting. Be careful to select something that presents you in a broadly positive light. Are you an adventurous daredevil who loves to take reasonable risks?

Are you a nature lover with a taste for exploration? Do you love being part of a team? Select at least two or three positive messages you want to communicate about yourself in your essay about your key trait. Brody added his special brand of XYZ to everything he ever made for that bro-tisanal touch.

You want to show your own special qualities without seeming glib, staid, self-aggrandizing, or narcissistic. Alternatively, he could describe doing research on the complex gardens of royal palaces, planning his garden based on plant color and height, using the process of trial and error to see which plants would flourish, and getting so involved with this work that he often lost track of time. Are you a diamond in a world of hearts?

One approach to this prompt is to use your essay as a chance to describe your long-term goals for your career and life. For some students, this will be a straightforward endeavor. You could easily frame your "ticket" as a ticket to medical school. Just pick a few of the most gripping moments from these past experiences and discuss the overall trajectory of your interests and your essay would likely be a winner!

Read on for Option 2! While you can certainly interpret this as a straightforward question about your future, you can also use it as a chance to be more imaginative. Note that this entire question rests on the metaphor of the ticket. The ticket can be to anywhere; you decide. Or it could be somewhere fantastical, such as a time machine to the Paleolithic.

Having driven, goal-oriented, and passionate students is a huge plus for any college. Your essay is a chance to show off that knowledge and maturity. Here are some ideas for how to show that you have thoughtful and compelling visions of possible futures.

Whichever one you choose, make sure that you choose a destination that is genuinely compelling to you. The last thing you want is to come off sounding bored or disingenuous. Another key point is to avoid overreaching or underreaching.

Maybe what you really want is a ticket to the potato chip factory; however, this essay might not be the best place to elaborate on this imagined possibility. While you can of course choose a whimsical location, you need to be able to ground it in a real vision of the kind of person you want to become. College admissions officers want to find students who are eager to learn.

What will happen there? This is even more important if you go the creative route and are writing about an unusual location. Make sure you make the most of this chance to share real-life examples of your desirable qualities. Which essay below conveys more about her potential as a student? My ticket is to Starfleet Academy.

There, I would train to become part of the Command division so I could command a starship. Once I was captain of my own starship, I would explore the deepest reaches of space to interact with alien life and learn more about the universe. So if I could have a ticket to anywhere, it would be to Starfleet Academy to train in the command division.

I know I would make a superb command officer. My ten years of experience in hapkido have taught me discipline and how to think on my feet. Working as a hapkido instructor in my dojo the past two years has honed my leadership and teaching qualities, which are essential for any starship commander.

Additionally, I have the curiosity and sense of adventure necessary for a long career in the unknown reaches of space. Right now, I exercise my thirst for exploration through my photography blog. Using my DSLR camera, I track down and photograph obscure and hidden places I find in my town, on family trips, and even on day trips to nearby cities.

I carefully catalogue the locations so other people can follow in my footsteps. Documentation, after all, is another important part of exploring space in a starship. Both versions communicate the same things about the imagined destination, but the second essay does a much better job showing who Eleanor is as a person. All we really learn from the first excerpt is that Eleanor must like Star Trek. We can also infer that she probably likes leadership, exploration, and adventure, since she wants to captain a starship.

In the second essay, on the other hand, Eleanor clearly lays out the qualities that would make her a great Command officer, and provides examples of how she exemplifies these qualities. She ties the abstract destination to concrete things from her life such as hapkido and photography. This provides a much more well-rounded picture of what Eleanor could bring to the student body and the school at large.

Remember to tie your imaginative destination to concrete details about your special qualities! A future as a driving coach for motorcoach drivers was a no-brainer for the founding member of the homonym club. Personal interaction with objects, images and spaces can be so powerful as to change the way one thinks about particular issues or topics.

What did you do to act upon your new thinking and what have you done to prepare yourself for further study in this area? This essay topic is trying to ask as broadly as possible about an experience with art that has moved you in some way. This means that your options for answering the question are quite varied. So what are the two different parts of this prompt? Think of a time you experienced that blown-away feeling when looking at something man-made.

This is the reaction and situation the first part of the essay wants you to recreate. You can focus on a learning experience, which includes both classes and extracurricular activities, or you can focus on a direct experience in which you encountered an object or space without the mediation of a class or teacher. The only limit to your focus object is that it is something made by someone other than you. Your reaction should be in conversation with the original artist—not a form of navel-gazing.

The key for this part of the essay is that your description needs to segue into a story of change and transformation. This brings us to the second part of the essay prompt: What qualities, philosophy, or themes do you now try to infuse into what you create?

You have some choice, too, when it comes to answering, "What have you done to prepare yourself for further study in this area? Or you could describe investigating new media or techniques to emulate something you saw. Or you could discuss learning about the period, genre, school, or philosophical theory that the original piece of art comes from in order to give yourself a more contextualized understanding. At the same time, this essay is asking you to show your own creative readiness.

Describe not only the work you have produced but also your ability to introduce new elements into that work—in this case, inspired by the piece you described. What are some best practices for teasing out the complexities of art in written form? Here are some helpful tips as you brainstorm and write your essay.

For example, you could write about something you learned on your own from a documentary, museum visit, or art book. Alternatively, you could discuss a little-known public sculpture, a particularly striking building or bridge you saw while traveling, or a gallery exhibition.

Whatever you end up writing about, make sure you know some of the identifying details. Do you think it or you was in the right place at the right time to be moved by it, or would it have affected you the same way no matter where or when you saw it?

Be careful with your explanation since it can easily get so vague as to be meaningless or so obscure and "deep" that you lose your reader. Before you start trying to put it down on paper, try to talk out what you plan to say either with a friend, parent, or teacher.

How has your understanding of the materials you want to work with changed? What about the message you want your works to convey? Or the way you want your works to be seen by others?

What is the reason you feel compelled to be creative? Just as nothing ruins a joke as explaining it does, nothing ruins the wordless experience of looking at art as talking it to death does.

Here is my suggested trick for writing well about art. First, be specific about the object. Second, step away from the concrete and get creative with language by using techniques such as comparative description.

Use your imagination to create emotionally resonant similes. Is there a form of movement e. Does it remind you of something from the natural world e.

If the work is figurative, imagine what has been happening just before the moment in time it captures. What happened just after this point?

Using these kinds of non-literal descriptors will let your reader understand both the actual physical object and its aesthetic appeal. There may be personal information that you want considered as part of your admissions application. Write an essay describing that information. You might include exceptional hardships, challenges, or opportunities that have shaped or impacted your abilities or academic credentials, personal responsibilities, exceptional achievements or talents, educational goals, or ways in which you might contribute to an institution committed to creating a diverse learning environment.

UT Austin allows its applicants to mix and match essays from the ApplyTexas application from its own option: This essay prompt states that the additional information you might want to share with the admissions team can be either positive or negative—so long as it qualifies as "exceptional" in some way.

In fact, the prompt actually uses the word "exceptional" twice to really cement the idea that the everyday challenges or successes are not what this essay should highlight. In this sense, determining whether your experiences qualify for this prompt is a matter of degrees. For example, did you manage to thrive despite being raised by a single parent? But what if you flourished despite living in multiple foster families and aging out of the system during your senior year of high school?

Such a narrative is arguably more appropriate for Topic S. Well done, and feel free to tell your story for Topic C. The answer to this question is pretty straightforward. Although there are many different moving, emotionally impactful experiences we can have, some of these are actually quite common.

Wondering whether what you went through counts? This might be a good time to run your Topic S idea by a parent, sibling, school counselor, or trusted teacher.

Do they think your experience is widespread? And do they agree that you truly lived a life less ordinary? The majority of your answer to the Topic S prompt should be telling your story and its impact on you and your life. Think about, and include in your essay, how you will impact campus life. The college essay is your opportunity to show admissions officers who you are apart from your grades and test scores and to distinguish yourself from the rest of a very talented applicant pool.

If you are using the Common App to apply for college admission in , you will have — words to respond to ONE of the following prompts: Admissions officers want to feel connected to you and an honest, personal statement about who you are draws them in. Your love of superheroes, baking chops, or family history are all fair game if you can tie it back to who you are or what you believe in.

Avoid a rehash of the accomplishments on your high school resume and choose something that the admissions committee will not discover when reading the rest of your application.

But overcoming challenges demonstrates courage, grit, and perseverance! The obstacle you write about can be large or small, but you must show the admissions committee how your perspective changed as a result. Your answer to this question could focus on a time you stood up to others or an experience when your own preconceived view was challenged. Choose this prompt if you have a relevant—and specific!

This essay is designed to get at the heart of how you think and what makes you tick. Present a situation or quandary and show steps toward the solution. Admissions officers want insight into your thought process and the issues you grapple with, so explain how you became aware of the dilemma and how you tackled solving it. Describe the event or ccomplishment that shaped you but take care to also show what you learned or how you changed.

Colleges are looking for a sense of maturity and introspection—pinpoint the transformation and demonstrate your personal growth. This prompt is an invitation to write about something you care about. So avoid the pitfall of writing about what you think will impress the admission office versus what truly matters to you. Colleges are looking for curious students, who are thoughtful about the world around them.

Make sure you explain how you pursue your interest, as well. Test Your College Knowledge! You can even write your own question! Whatever topic you land on, the essentials of a standout college essay still stand: Show the admissions committee who you are beyond grades and test scores and 2. Dig into your topic by asking yourself how and why. Individual schools sometimes require supplemental essays. Here are a few popular application essay topics and some tips for how to approach them:.

Avoid the urge to pen an ode to a beloved figure like Gandhi or Abraham Lincoln. Choose someone who has actually caused you to change your behavior or your worldview, and write about how this person influenced you.

Be honest and specific when you respond to this question.

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Popular College Application Essay Topics (and How to Answer Them) Get help writing your college application essays. Find this year's Common App writing prompts and popular essay questions used by individual colleges.

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Need help with the Common App Essay prompts and questions? College Essay Advisors' founder Stacey Brook breaks down all you need to know about this year’s prompts. Common Application Essay Prompts: A Guide. Looking for help with the Common Application Essay? Below CEA’s Founder, Stacey Brook, breaks down all you.

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25 Creative College Essay Ideas and Prompts to submit along with your college application. To assist you in writing your best personal statement, colleges might provide creative college essay. Our Team Are Qualified to Help with College Admission Essay Prompts Writing an effective essay is a difficult proposition, but it is vital that you are able to come up with something that is going to be different to what everyone else submits so that you stand out.

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The 25 creative college essay prompts listed above should give you a starting point to write your own personal statement. The personal statement is used by most colleges to help them evaluate the type of person you are, which can help differentiate yourself from other applicants who have similar academic backgrounds to yours. College admissions officers read thousands of college application essays. These tips and strategies can help you make a strong impression. College admissions officers read thousands of college application essays. These tips and strategies can help you make a strong impression. Many students have been rejected for failing to take the prompt.