Students are about to write one of the most important essays (homework) of their life. Don’t panic. A great college admissions essay will present a vivid, personal, and compelling view of you to the admissions staff. It will help students stand out from the rest of the applicants.
In order to stand out from the crowd, the essay must elicit an emotional response from the reader. The focus of the essay should be personal, authentic, not superficial. The essay must prove a point or thesis. The reader should be able to follow a main idea from beginning to end. It should be developed with vivid and specific facts, events, quotations, examples, and reasons. The student should write as she speaks and use a relaxed conversational style.
Be original. Remember, what bores the writer will generally bore others. Show genuine enthusiasm. The student should pick a topic that genuinely excites her. The enthusiasm will show through. The writing will be invigorating and the reader will enjoy reading the essay.
Create some surprise. The introduction that surprises the readers and makes them want to read past the first paragraph will grab attention and help the essay stand out from the crowd.
Use action verbs. They make the essay much more lively than passive voice.Use short sentences and simple words. Use simpler, concise language. The student wants the readers to understand the essay. Vary sentence structure. Intermingle long sentences with shorter sentences to keep the reader from getting bored.
Avoid acronyms and abbreviations. They have no place in your essay. Avoid controversy. Avoid offensive tone or language. Avoid sexist language. Substitute asexual words for sexist words. For example, use “firefighter” instead of “fireman”.
Be careful using humor. It’s more important to tell an interesting story. Choose nouns and verbs that are as specific as possible.
Revise until it is perfect. The essay will go through several drafts before it is ready. Keep in mind that the essay must be more than interesting–it must be captivating. Let the enthusiasm show through. Adhere to the word limit. 500 word limit does not mean 550 words is okay. Proofread. Don’t rely solely on the computer’s spell check.
Show the essay to someone who can be objective. To produce the best possible essay, the student needs a good editor. Get Lee Academia to give you constructive feedback on how the message is coming across.
Writing a successful college admissions essay is not a simple task. Students should plan on spending a lot of time writing, reviewing, and polishing so that it is just right. With perseverance, student will end up with an outstanding essay that will capture the reader’s attention, allow colleges to reach an emotional conclusion about the student, and get that letter of acceptance.
Stephenie, having been a tutor/instructor/mentor since 1996, discovered her passion and founded Lee Academia Educational Consulting, LLC. after she left the dental and medical field. She loves teaching/mentoring and counseling her students. Her passion lies in educating others and helping them pursue their educational path. Today, certified in College Counseling and with more than 10 years of experience, Stephenie and her team continues to blog about current updated educational news and events.
Lee Academia Educational Consulting, LLC