The majority of college authorities require you to write an application essay before get an admission. It's an opportunity for you to reveal your best qualities. You need to prove the admission committee what makes you stand out from the other applicants. Writing a college application essay can be difficult for you if you fail to follow proper guidelines. After reading this article, you will be able to learn the simplest ways and critical areas of writing a college application essay.Application Essay Prompts and Topics
The college admission committee may ask you to write one of the following three types of essays.
While writing a college application essay, you need to write something influential. Remember, your writing will prove your psychology and thoughts about the society and the world. Do not raise any controversy. Be generous while writing a political or religious issue. Write something unique and be honest.Write your Essay
Start with an attractive introduction. You know the famous quote by John Milton, 'morning shows the day'. A catchy introduction can grab the readers' attention till the end of the essay. In the introduction, discuss your purpose of writing very shortly. Then discuss everything in the body paragraph. Excessive writing may harm your impression. Maintain the relevancy of the topic. The conclusion paragraph should be short and clean. Summarize the whole essay here.Check Your Essay
All affords will fail if you make any grammatical or factual mistake. Be aware of that. You need to read carefully. Give it to a professional essay writers to find errors and flaws. Correct all the errors and submit confidently.
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We are pleased to share the 2015-2016 Essay Prompts with you. New language appears in italics:
The changes you see reflect the feedback and consensus of nearly 6000 individuals who responded to our recent survey. Among the survey highlights:
Students applying to Yale with the Coalition Application or Common Application are asked to respond to a few Yale-specific short answer questions in addition to the Common Application’s personal statement essay or the Coalition Application’s general essay. Those who submit the Coalition Application are also asked to upload a digital file of their creation along with a short reflection. Those who submit the Common Application are asked to respond to two short essay prompts. See additional details below.
You may begin your freshman application to Yale by visiting the Coalition Application or Common Application online. We recommend reviewing Yale’s advice on putting together your application before you begin.
If you would like to begin working on your short answer responses and essays before beginning your application, please see the 2016-2017 Yale-specific questions for the Coalition Application and Common Application below.Short Answer Questions
Applicants submitting either the Coalition Application or Common Application are asked to respond to the following short answer questions:
Upload an audio file, document, image, or video you have created (any one thing of your choosing) in the last four years that is meaningful to you. It should be related to one of the two topics below. In 250 words or fewer, reflect on why you chose to share this with us and how it relates to the topic you select. (Uploads are limited to the following file types: mp3, word, pdf, jpeg, mov, mp4.)
Please note that professional-level editing of the audio/document/image/video is neither necessary nor encouraged. While we are not providing limits to the length of the material you upload, the Admissions Office may not have time to review the entirety of your submission. Sometimes, less is more.
Uploads provided here will be reviewed by the Admissions Office only. If you wish to submit material that may be evaluated by Yale faculty, please see our Supplementary Material instructions .
Optional Engineering and Computer Science Essay
If you selected one of the computer science or engineering majors, please tell us more about what has led you to an interest in this field of study, what experiences (if any) you have had in computer science or engineering, and what it is about Yale’s program in this area that appeals to you. (Please answer in 500 words or fewer.)Essays - Common Application
Please choose two of the following topics and respond to each in 200 words or fewer.
Optional Engineering and Computer Science Essay
If you selected one of the computer science or engineering majors, please tell us more about what has led you to an interest in this field of study, what experiences (if any) you have had in computer science or engineering, and what it is about Yale’s program in this area that appeals to you. (Please answer in 500 words or fewer.)
No matter what the prompt asks for, almost any effective college essay should showcase one or several of what I call your “defining qualities.”
If the prompt asks you to write a personal statement (for The Common App ), tell about yourself or wants to know why you are a fit for their university, you will need a clear idea of the core qualities or characteristics that make you who you are—that “define” you.
Once you know those, you can write an essay that helps the reader understand how you are that way, and why it matters.
Of course, along the way, you will also mention your related interests, passions, idiosyncrasies, talents, experiences, accomplishments and even your endearing flaws.
(If you are confused at this point, you might want to check out my Quickie Jumpstart Guide to better understand the role these “defining qualities” play in a college admissions essay or personal statement.) (more…)
College Admissions Essays It’s Official: Get Creative!
Colleges tell students that they want their essays to show them what sets them apart from the pack and what makes them unique. Yet most of the college application essay prompts do a poor job of helping students find topics that help them reveal their true personalities and character. TheLos Angeles Times just wrote an article about how some colleges are finally crafting prompts that do a better job of encouraging students to feel comfortable taking a risk and showing their idiosyncrasies and quirks, rather than showcasing only their accomplishments and hardships. The main point of the article: Get creative!
This is an exciting trend, in my opinion, one I’ve encouraged for years now. My advice is to try to write about these more creative topics even when answering prompts that still aren’t creative. (Such as the list of Common App prompts, especially now that there will not be the Topic of Choice option.) I have lots of tips and advice all over my blog on how to find these types of topics. The point is that college admissions folks are starting to change their prompts because they are sick of reading about the same topics where students recount mission trips and sports victories. Take a risk. Get creative. Tell a story. Write about something mundane. rather than impressive. (more…)College Admissions Essays: Samples Samples of College Admissions Essays and Personal Statements– and Why They Can Help You Write Yours!!
I always tell my students that one of the best ways to find great topic ideas is to read the essays of other students.
One great idea often triggers another! Reading other student’s essays also can give you an idea of the narrative style or voice of these essays, which is looser and more conversational than your typical academic essay.
I recommend several book collections of sample essays in this post. but if you can’t get your hands on those, here are a few I found online:
I would never have believed that writing about the Twilight series could be a super essay topic–not in a million years. But below, I’m going to share how one of my brightest students landed on Edward Cullen as the perfect topic during one of my recent “Jumpstart” tutoring sessions. And how it’s going to be a brilliant essay!
As a little background, this particular student is fierce. She’s a top student, loves chemistry and also is an accomplished dancer. Her first college admissions essay (she needs to write 2 for the University of California app.) is going to show how she is a problem solver. But what about that second essay? I believe if you are writing more than one essay for an application,they should complement each other–that is, balance each other out.
This is when I really push for the idea of a “mundane” topic. one that is everyday, and often would be the last topic in the world you would even consider writing about.
EXAMPLES: The kid who realized he had leadership skills the night he had to wash dishes at his dad’s restaurant. The girl who starred in her school musicals but wrote about her passion for karaoke. The tiny dancer who came to terms with her size 9 feet. The football tackle who loved to bake cakes for his teammates. Notice that on the surface, none of these topics sounds “impressive.” But trust me, they end up as the most interesting and memorable essays–exactly what you want! The other quality all these topics share is they have an “unexpected” quality –you wouldn’t expect a football player to love baking, or a dancer to have big feet or to find a leader behind a stack of dirty dishes. (What’s something about you that no one would believe?)
Here’s how our conversation went as we brainstormed a mundane–and unexpected–college essay topic:
College Application Essays Five Places to Start
After helping students discover their own unique topics over the last five or so years, I can spot a great topic the minute a student mentions one.
And I suspect it’s no different for the college admissions people who read zillions of these.
Like most written pieces, you know after the first sentence or two if it’s going to be engaging or a drag (boring, trying to hard to impress, too general).
I can almost hear their conversations as they decide which essay to neatly stack in the “Yes” pile and those to toss over into the growing “No” pile:
“What do you think about the kid who got stuck in the tree?”
“How about the guy who went to Italy and took a class over summer studying architecture.”
“Lucky him. But I didn’t really get any feel about what he’s all about. Pass.”College Admissions Essays How to Write an Anecdote For Your College Application Essay, Personal Statement or other Essays
If you can write an anecdote, you can write a powerful essay.
But a lot of students don’t know what an anecdote is, let alone how to write one.
It’s really just a weird word for a little story or animated description of something that happened.
Usually they are very short.
If done well, they make excellent introductions for all essays since they grab the reader’s attention.
In essays, an anecdote is an example of a point you want to make that uses a little story or animated description.
Example: You want to make the point in your essay that you are a creative person .
So you write an anecdote to illustrate your point: You could describe something creative that you made, or you could describe yourself making something interesting.
During a walk near my home, I found a long stick that looked like the letter “Y.” I smoothed the surface with sandpaper and covered it with blueberry blue paint I found in the garage, then wrapped it with twine and colored yarn. From my junk drawer, I tied seashells, a couple old keys and a bent fork to the ends and hung it in my room.
“What’s that?” my little sister asked.
“Art,” I said, even though I wasn’t even sure what I had made.
(Then background your interest in art, how you think about it, why you value it, how it has affected you, changed you, and what your plans are for it in the future…)
College Admissions Essays How to Find “The Unexpected” in Your College Application Essay or Personal Narrative
One way to add snap, crackle and pop to your college application essay is to give it a little twist.
What’s a twist?
It can be many things, but usually it offers some sort of surprise, an irony or something unexpected.
When writing about yourself, be on the lookout for your own personal life twists.
In simple terms, a twist can be anything that isn’t what you would think or expect.
Why do these work so beautifully in college application essays?
Because they a. are delightful to read because they break away from the predictable b. they often involve a problem, which needs solving and provokes personal change, and c. they show how you respond, adjust and learn.
All rich essay compost!
One client wrote a personal statement about how she was always at the top of her game, whether it was in her classes, sports or her favorite extracurricular activity, drama.
She told about the time she was certain she landed the lead role in the school musical, and her shock when someone told her someone else got the part.
Her essay focused on how she learned that supporting roles in plays, as well as in life, can be as valuable as being the leading lady. What was the twist?
In this case, she didn’t get what she expected.
It was a surprise for her not to be the star. (more…)
The college admissions season never really ends. I’m not a big one for starting too early. Parents who start talking colleges with their kids in junior high and even the start of high school kind of bug me. I understand that it’s valuable for students to have goals and understand their potential and opportunities, but to me, too much hype too soon only turns up the pressure, not the results. Believe me, they begin getting pressure early enough from peers, teachers and school administrators.
Okay, enough of what I think. My goal as a writing coach is to help students see how they have great stories to tell for their college admissions essays, and that by using a step-by-step approach they can produce quality pieces. For many, the unnatural stress placed on these essays is their greatest obstacle. They freeze up, put off starting them, and then try too hard to impress their readers. (more…)College Admissions Essays: How to Start Your Core College Application Essay
If you are writing a college admissions essay that responds to a prompt that asks you to tell about yourself, or about “a time,” or describe a quality, background, interest, identity, talent, characteristic, experience or accomplishment (such as The Common App prompts or Prompt #2 for the UC app .), then your essay is also known as a personal statement.
The most effective personal statements are written as narrative essays, meaning they relate an experience using a story-telling style.
To share an incident or moment from your past, you only need two components to make a story: a character and a conflict.
So one magic way to create a personal narrative is to search your recent past for a conflict. (You are the “character.”)
Thinking back to English class, remember that conflicts can come from many different places—from within yourself (internal: you have a personal issue or hang-up that caused you pain or trouble) to outside yourself (external: something happened to you.)
To put it simply, a conflict is a problem.
Problems come in all shapes and sizes.
They do not need to be traumas or a crises, although those can work, too.
(HINT: Basic, everyday problems work best! Check out this post about “mundane” topics.)
Here are other words for a conflict or problem: challenge, failure, obstacle, mistake, hang-up, issue, a change, dilemma, fears, obsessions, etc.
Examples of conflicts or problems: you are shy, competitive, stubborn, were bullied, are obsessed with Twilight. didn’t make the team, got injured, have big feet, frizzy red hair, smile too much, someone quit at your work, don’t have own car, can’t spell, adhd, ocd, don’t eat meat, perfectionist, slob, lazy, drunk driving, have a mean grandparent, no money, etc…
Man, there are a lot of problems out there! But for the purposes of writing these dreaded essays, that’s a good thing for once!
Once you remember a juicy problem, follow these steps:
1. Describe the time you had a problem or describe a strong example of your problem.
(Include what happened and how it made you feel. Try to start at the moment it hit, or happened for the best impact! Include the 5Ws—who, what, when, where and why! Stick to one or two paragraphs.)
These mini-stories are also called anecdotes, and you can learn more by reading my post on how to write an anecdote .
But if you are still working on an essay or personal statement, I would read through this blog for ideas and inspiration!
This spring, I have also been in the thick of the college admissions craze because my son is a high school senior. And boy what a ride it has been.
One of the hardest parts is the waiting–and I know some of you are STILL waiting to hear from prospective colleges and universities. Hang in there!!
And then there are the rejections. My son certainly had his share, and it didn’t help that they were the first schools to report. And one was his top pick. But he cast a wide net, and now has three great options to pick from, which is the next challenge. So, it all works out! And it will work out for you, too!
We went through this with my daughter, too, two years ago, and she landed in a fabulous little liberal arts college in the south and loves it. (She’s going to study in India next semester for her study abroad!)
I’m not a college counselor, but I can share with you a couple tips that I wish I had known, or paid closer attention to, for my own kids’ college quest. I can’t say we have regrets, but we certainly learned some things as we went along. In case they resonate with you, here they are (in no particular order of importance.):