How To Write An Effective College Essay

How To Write An Effective College Essay-79
When it comes to the college essay, taking a risk—however small or big—is better than playing it safe.Try writing different versions of your essay, maybe in completely different formats, just to see if one of them resonates more than the others.“Admissions officers have to read so many essays that physically look the same.Quartz technology reporter Mike Murphy, for example, wrote his essay on being stranded at the bottom of the Grand Canyon as a kid.

When it comes to the college essay, taking a risk—however small or big—is better than playing it safe.Try writing different versions of your essay, maybe in completely different formats, just to see if one of them resonates more than the others.“Admissions officers have to read so many essays that physically look the same.Quartz technology reporter Mike Murphy, for example, wrote his essay on being stranded at the bottom of the Grand Canyon as a kid.

Seasoned admissions officers—particularly at elite schools—know how to spot cookie-cutter applicants and toss them into the reject pile in seconds.

Luckily, you do get a modest chance to distinguish yourself.

Parents and teachers will often tell students who are just starting out on their essays to “write sincerely,” “write about your feelings,” “write about what matters to you.” That advice, while well-intentioned, is not helpful. Instead of starting from such a broad place, begin with the narrow strategy of researching the worst college-essay clichés; that way, even if you don’t have the faintest idea what to write about, you at least know what you have to avoid.

Examples of hackneyed essay characteristics that immediately make admissions officers roll their eyes include: Now, what to write about?

is never the same as a.m.” He goes on to explain how he and his relatives were accidentally separated on the trip, walking the reader through the challenges he faced on his way back to safety, and ending on a tone of humility and lesson-learning.

Good essays don’t all need to hype up an applicant’s superpowers: They can expose weaknesses, demonstrating subtlety and self-awareness.

Essay prompts are intentionally open-ended, and there are several ways to go about choosing a topic.

Here’s a nearly foolproof one: Write about a person, place, or idea that you perhaps to the point of geeky, nervous-laughter embarrassment—love.“Write about what you’re interested in, not what you think is interesting about you,” says Quartz lifestyle reporter Jenni Avins, who wrote about her part-time job in high school making crepes in a coffee shop: “I was really interested in the people who came into this creperie, and this little world.

Even if you’re only applying to a couple schools that you know you can get into, it will still serve you well to write a compelling admissions essay.

Standing out from everyone else could put you in the running for additional scholarships and will also simply make a good impression, which never hurts.

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