Writing an Admissions Essay: 8 Tips That Work

Today is a very special day! Can you guess why? No matter when you are reading this post, today is definitely the best day to start working on your application essay. The first rule of all successful students is to start early. But even if it is already late to start early, do not give up. We are here to help you!

Writing an admissions essay is both a rather simple task and a serious challenge. On the one hand, whatever the prompt is, you are essentially writing about yourself - and this is a topic you know best. 


On the other hand, your task is to let your personality shine through the text of the essay, making the admissions officers pay attention when reading and remember you afterward. You need to show that you are likable, resilient, and open-minded while staying genuine, sincere, and modest - all at the same time. 

This, indeed, is nothing if not a challenge, both daunting and intriguing. But if you want to thrive in the college jungle, you need to love challenges! Below, we have gathered for you eight essential tips to help you write my essay that will help you get started and achieve the results you want.

Share YOUR Story

The admissions essay is always about YOU. Even if you are writing about a person you admire, focus on the traits you find especially admirable and on the ways you are trying to develop them. Say what you have learned from this person and how it has changed your life.

Do Not Be Afraid to Write About Hardships and Trauma

With all the countless assignments, deadlines, and exams, college years will definitely be a test of your determination and motivation. Even though you can always resort to the help of an essay writing service, there will be a lot of work you will have to do on your own. 

You need to show the admissions officers that you are resilient and can deal with all the difficulties coming your way. So, you can try writing about a challenge you have faced, the way you have overcome the obstacles, and what you have learned from this situation. If you lack inspiration, take a look at some of the admissions essays that got their authors to some of the most prestigious colleges. You can find these essays online.

Do not be afraid to open up in your essay and write about trauma. However, try to avoid tear-jerking intonations. Life is not only about picking daisies in the sunshine. Every one of us has been through hard times or is going through a difficult period right now. Everyone is fighting their own battle. Your task is to show that you are brave, kind, compassionate, and love life even though it can be full of sadness and tragedy. You need to become the superhero of your own story, making sure there is a happy ending.

Make the Form and the Content Work Together

Being inventive and imaginative is great, but the form and the content should always work together. The form should not dominate. Fancy concrete poetry, acronyms, and other creative gimmicks will definitely catch the readers’ attention, no doubt about that, but will the essay be able to retain the attention of the admissions officers while they are reading it? In the long run, it is your story that counts, which shows who you are as a person, not only as a writer.

Zoom in on the Details

You have already listed all your accomplishments in your CV. Now it is time to focus on one event or activity, something that truly excites you. Think of the details - they make your story look genuine and appealing. Try to create a 3D picture. Invite your readers to dive into your world so that they can understand why you love it so much. 

Write about colors, smells, sounds, sensations, feelings, and memories. Let your essay be a magical portal into another dimension - your very own dimension. Do not be afraid of looking vulnerable or childish – the admissions officers want to know YOU better and will be glad to feel welcome.

Show That You Will Fit in on the Campus

We are all unique. Every one of us has some quirks and may look weird to other people. And yet, together, we can be something more than just a sum of parts - we can be a diverse community of friends valuing each other’s differences, a synergistic force changing the world for the better in hundreds and thousands of unique ways. 

In your admissions essay, try to show that you can become an integral part of this community and that you will be a valuable member of it.

Dig Deeper

Do not just recount and describe. You should reflect, analyze, and draw conclusions. You need to prove to the admissions officers that you have critical thinking skills and can learn from any situation. Try to show how some particular experience has changed you, how it has shaped your life and personality, and how it has prepared you for college life.

Choose Your Title Wisely

While you might be tempted to skip the title altogether, do not throw away this great opportunity to make your essay more memorable. Your title should not be too long or fancy, but it should not be too short and simple either. 

Try to make your title intriguing so that the reader starts to wonder what the essay is going to be about. You can use a bright image, an oxymoron, a question, or a metaphor. It is the right place to be creative. And yet, try to avoid making the title look forced and contrived. We believe in your ability to find the golden mead! 

Develop an Effective Editing and Proofreading System

Re-read your essay many times. Do the proofreading carefully. You can always use professional services and essay help online. And, finally, enlist your friends or family members to read your essay. Ask them to give you their honest opinion. But, of course, remember that you have the last word in this discussion - after all, the admissions essay is always about YOU.

Here is one extra tip. Try to enjoy working on your admissions essay. Write about something that brings a sparkle into your eyes. If you are passionate about your subject, the essay will light up, and the admissions officers are bound to see the light when reading. We wish you happy writing!

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About the Author

Stella Cooter

Journalist, traveller and mother, Stella writes about fashion and style, luxury and adventure.

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