Personal statements are a vital part of university applications. This is your opportunity to showcase what makes you different from others, other than your UCAS ID and birth name. Your university must be convinced that you are the best candidate in a mere 4,000 words. Your personal statement is your best chance at getting a job. It must be great. Many people are afraid to make any mistakes so they think if somebody could “write my personal statement for me”. These are some tips to help you write an outstanding piece.
1. You can make a draft with no character counter.
I decided to turn on the character counter when I began writing. This would ensure that I didn’t exceed the 4,000 limits. My first mistake was when I reached 3,500 characters, I panicked because I was only halfway through my story. I decided to turn off the character counter and continue writing. I ended up with 7,000 characters, instead of the 4,000 I was expecting, but I had already written everything that I wanted to. I just had to remove some words and compress them. This is far more efficient than adding ideas and keeping the file under 4,000 characters. The final version had 3,999 characters.
2. Take your time.
Don’t rush. You will not have a great personal statement ready in just a few hours. Even a few days. The final version that I sent in took me over a month. Sometimes, it is worth taking a break and coming back to it again after a while.
3. Find the right words and expressions.
You sound more professional and elegant when you use the words ‘accomplish’ instead of ‘do’ or ‘presume’ rather than ‘think’. It was more difficult for me as an international applicant because English is not my native tongue. However, there are many useful and efficient translation and synonym programs available online to assist with this. Google Translate was my main tool. It has a lot of synonyms for translating words from English into another language. This synonym thing must be done carefully, as too many fancy words can make your statement difficult to read and overdone.
4. Focus on your strengths.
These 4,000 characters are where you will try to sell yourself to the university. Your personal statement is just as important as your product proposal. It’s all about how amazing that thing is. Your past experiences, knowledge, and future plans should be included. It is not acceptable to write “I tried to learn Spanish, but it was too difficult after a week” or “I don’t know how to do maths well, but it is understandable since I hate it so much.”
5. Choose the perfect opening sentence.
A good way to make a first impression is to start with something unexpected, funny, interesting, or unusual. You don’t have to try and squeeze humor out of your brain. You will find the perfect opening sentence in an instant, even if you have spent hours writing your personal statement. Don’t overthink it.
6. It can be your work, voice, and ideas.
Before you start writing your first draft, experts from the best admission essay writing services recommend that you don’t read any personal statements. This will give you an inaccurate idea. It is not worth trying to conform to any established patterns or follow the lead of someone else. This is all about you and not someone else.
7. Be honest.
If you cannot say “I love You” in Spanish, don’t claim that you speak Spanish fluently. If your only example of problem-solving is the trick of holding five bottles in one hand, you shouldn’t claim that you are good at it. You are fine the way you are. You don’t have to project a false image. The truth will always be revealed sooner than you think.
8. Ask someone to proofread the statement.
Your parents, teachers, friends, enemies… The more people that you share it with, the more feedback and the better your final version. While some advice is better than others, it’s easier to get feedback from multiple people and then differentiate later.
9. It is important to read it loudly many times.
This helped me tremendously when I was able to read it out loud to my family members and friends. It is easy to forget that your paragraphs don’t always flow together when you write them sentence by sentence. However, if you take the entire thing out and read it aloud, you will see all the ambiguities, so you can fix them.
10. After you have submitted your university application, it is time to stop reading it.
After you have sent it in, I recommend that you don’t read it for several months. It’s possible to feel that it isn’t as good as you thought, but this is normal. The worst part of the entire process is waiting to hear back from universities. This is even worse than filling out the application …). Once you receive the offer that you want (which I am sure you will), you’ll be able to tell me what you think. You will find out that your application was perfect in the way it was sent.
Let’s sum it up:
Be yourself and share your experiences. You are the university’s representative.