Top 3 Ways to Screw Up your Personal Statement Essay

The personal statement or college admission essay is probably one of the most essential admission requirements that you will submit to the schools that you will apply to.  Not only can you use the such essays to showcase your writing skills, but it is also a chance for you to introduce yourself, your character, and your personality to the admission committee.(1)  If you want to write an excellent admission essay, then you should know what mistakes to avoid.  Here are top three fatal mistakes as seen in some bad examples of personal statements:

Writing a full-length biography of your life

The admission committee doesn’t want to know about your entire life, from birth to the present.  You have to keep your goal in mind, when writing your admission essays, that is, to introduce yourself and state why you want to go to the school you are applying to.  Based on some examples of personal statements, you can see how writers specifies how can do well in the school.(2)  Even if you have a very interesting biography, you have to make sure that the experiences and instances that you talk about are relevant to the topic at hand.

Talking about just dreams and not real experiences

Another mistake that people often commit on their college admission essay is focusing too much on their dreams and aspirations.  While some personal statement examples mention dreams and aspirations, you should also talk about the experiences that you have actually been through.  Talk about how some of the challenges and opportunities you have faced in the past have prepared you for college.  After explaining a little about your real experiences, you can then go into how you plan to use your college education to reach your future goals and aspirations.(2)

Making bad connections between experiences and goals

It is a good idea to link your experiences to your future goals, but it is important that you avoid making a bad connection. By reading examples of personal statement online, you can see how writers mention experiences that don’t actually coincide with their future plans.  When making relating your experiences with your aspirations, try to make your essay flow.  A good idea would be to briefly describe an experience, then go into how this forged certain values and virtues into your character, and then describe how such virtues and values are essential for your college life and your future in general.(3)


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