A lot of students think that the college admissions essay is just not that important – they could not be more wrong. Here’s the thing about college admissions. There are GPS and test score requirements; there is a desire to see students involved in some extra-curricular activities. So, all students who meet these requirements will be applying to the same college as you. How, then, does an admissions committee decide between several equally qualified candidates? By that essay, of course. And while individual college essay requirements may differ, you can count on at least one, and it needs to be really good in every way. You want the reader to remember you above the others.
All You Need to Know About How to Write College Essays
If you follow these steps, you can have an unforgettable essay.
1. Start Early. You can get the essay prompts at least a year in advance, so why wait? The sooner you have the, the more time you have to perfect the thing. If you are using the Common Application, just google them; if the college has its own prompts they will either be published on the admissions link of its site or just request the application packet a year in advance.
2. Study Those Prompts: Don’t even think about choosing a prompt unless you really understand what is being asked of you. If you don’t understand, ask your English teacher to word it in another way until you do.
3. Keep a Notebook: The first step in writing your essay will be brainstorming. Have a notebook or a phone app just for ideas. If you do this for a few months, you are bound to have everything you need (and more) for the details you will want to include.
4. Eliminate all ideas that don’t fit: Get rid of things that are just not that important or that don’t relate specifically to your prompt topic.
5. Consolidate the ideas that you have left. You will want a minimum of three body paragraphs and no more than 600 words total.
6. Write a topic sentence for each body paragraph: This will further clarify the details that you should put into each paragraph. Then list those details in the order in which you will cover them in each paragraph.
7. Write those body paragraphs: Once written, go back and be certain that you have a good transition sentence either at the end of a paragraph or at the beginning of the next one.
8. Write Your Introduction and Conclusion: The biggest issue you may have is how to start a college essay. If you have not intrigued the reader by those first couple of sentences, you essay will fall flat. Can you come up with a startling fact? Can you relate a short anecdote that will engage interest right away? If you are struggling with a creative way to begin, here is one of the best college essay tips you will ever get. We have found it on the blog of one of the writing services. Get online and google “winning college admissions essays.” You will get pages of examples. Read the introductions and the conclusions of those essays, so that you can see how these essays are begun and ended. While you certainly can’t use them, you will get some great ideas which you can manipulate to apply to your own story.
9. This is Only Your Rough Draft: You should plan on having that rough draft finished at least two months before the deadline for applications. Put it away and don’t look at it for a week or two.
10. Take Another Look at the Essay: Bring it back up on our screen, read through it for content only, and ask yourself the following three questions:
Does everything I wrote relate specifically to the prompt?
Have I intrigued the reader from the very beginning?
Do I have a thesis statement in my introduction? Remember, that statement must relate to why your story has significance in your life – what did you learn? How did it change your beliefs about something?
11. Revise and re-write as necessary.
12. Clean Up the Grammar, Composition and the Mechanics: If you don’t feel really confident in this area, get some help. Your current English teacher might help; there are lots of online writing services that offer professional editing services at reasonable prices.
13. Save that perfect essay and be ready to email it or print it out and send it.
Twelve steps – some short, some lengthy. But if you follow this precisely, you will have an essay that most others will not. And if you still need help check out these paper writing services.