Every year, millions of hopeful students apply to their dream colleges and universities. If leading educationists and educational administrators are to be believed, ultimately it all boils down to the College Application Essay! While the entire application process can be tedious, in most instances the final ‘yes’ or ‘no’ depends on those 500 to 1000 words that you write.
Most students get it all wrong when it comes to crafting the perfect college essay. They tend to show off their Thesaurus vocabulary, opt for showboating and end up losing touch with the examiner that is evaluating them for three major things-
- Clarity of thought
- Personal experience and learning
- Commitment to improvements
In this resource article, we are going to help students that aspire to get into their dream educational institutions. While the applications tend to be in the millions, we should remember that there are only a handful of seats and institutions up for grabs. This means that you only get one chance. It also means that if you feel you are not good enough, you need to take help from experts at FreshEssay.
What ‘Not To Do’ in Your College Application Essay?
Before we get to what you should be doing, it is best to first discuss the mistakes that need to be avoided when you are writing your college essay. Leading experts recommend steering clear of the following things if you want to have a fighting chance of succeeding with your application-
- Firstly, avoid showboating with big words. You need to be subtle in your word selection. This is not a Ph.D. dissertation but a college essay. If you want to be safe, avoid coming across as a pseudo-intellectual.
- Secondly, try not to write something that is fabricated or coming straight from your imagination. The more you are veering towards fiction, the more you are losing touch with experiential reality.
- Thirdly, no one wants to know about your volunteering stints. No one is interested in knowing how good, noble, or community-centric you are. Make sure that you are being truthful and honest about who you are and what your past experiences reflect.
- Fourthly, you do not have to disclose everything about how your past DUI stint made you a better human being, or how you vowed to get into college simply because your Ex said you aren’t good enough. Don’t make this mistake at any cost.
- Fifthly, you need to regulate the overuse of humor in your college essay. Try not to be overtly humorous, especially if it is uncalled for. Humor means different things to different people and is purely subjective. Your examiner might not find you funny.
Experts also state that it would be in your best interest to not express your political or religious views in a college essay. You need to come across as neutral, balanced, and rational in your thoughts and expressionisms. If you are able to steer clear of these mistakes, you have already made an initial first positive impression.
Tips and Tricks to Make Your College Essay Stand Out
We mentioned earlier in the article that your college essay is not a Ph.D. dissertation. This means that you do not need it to be twenty thousand words or so!
You want your college essay to be crisp, energetic, and reveal who you are as a person. In this section, we are going to discuss five key tricks that you need to focus on to make your college essay stand out and be apart from all the other applications.
- Have a great ending for the essay-
Do you know why we started with this point? This is because while everyone starts off their essay right, they tend to not pay the attention that an ending deserves. The best college essays should end with the examiner wanting more. You want the ending to be powerful, actionable, or even allow the reader to draw their own conclusions. Make the end right after the pivot.
- Never summarize any arguments or points-
If you want to jeopardize your college essay, the worst thing you can do is summarize the points. When it comes to writing an essay, you need to be to the point, direct, and clear. Remember, that you just have anywhere between 500-1000 words to write. If you end up using a hundred of them for a summary, you are practically wasting valuable essay real estate!
- Trying too hard and making it come across in the essay-
We all know that you can go to any lengths to get into your dream college. This sentiment can show itself in many negative ways, most notably in your college essay. The best essays are all about a natural flow and process. If you are trying too hard, it will become apparent to the examiner and not hold you in good stead. Make the process or writing as natural as possible.
- Follow instructions to the ‘T’ when writing the college essay-
During college admission seasons, students might be writing college essays for different institutions. Nearly all of them might have their own guidelines and instructions. Make sure that you are being thorough when it comes to the guidelines that have been set forth. 50% of the students are filtered out at this stage simply because of following the wrong instructions.
- Always have a review process or ask someone to proofread your essay-
One of the mistakes that most of us make is not asking someone to proofread our essays. Reviewing your own work might not be the best way to make you understand your mistakes. If you have someone else go through it, they will be able to spot the errors and rectify them. Proofreading is the best way of ensuring that whatever you are sending out is the best.
The Bottom Line
That’s it. In this resource, we have tried to offer practical tips and tricks that can help you make your college essay stand out. Additionally, we have also listed down some of the major mistakes that you need to avoid when writing and sending in your college essay. If you have any doubts or would like us to clarify any of the points mentioned in the article, please let us know in the comments section below.