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College Essay Help and Tips

The college essay is an important part of the process when applying to schools. Students that have acceptable qualifications in other parts of the admissions process can use the college essay to secure a spot in a freshman class. Because it is such an important part of the process, students sometimes need college essay help to deliver the best writing possible so they can improve their application to the school.

Admissions officers see a lot of college essays. Though the essays will not get a student accepted into school, it can help a student move from the wait list to the acceptance pile. To write a good college essay, a student must take time, prepare, research, and demonstrate creativity to stand out from the thousands of other students who are also applying to the same school.

Start the College Essay Early

One of the best college essay tips is to start writing early. If a student knows they will be applying to schools in the fall of their senior year, they should start preparing to write their essay in the summer before the school year starts. The roughly two-month break is the perfect time for students to start getting their thoughts together, free from the pressure of the academic school year. Though the deadline for the essay is not until later on, by starting the process early, a student can get the work done free of deadline stress. This also allows the student to try multiple approaches to writing the essay to see what works and doesn’t work and gives them time to get feedback from trusted sources. By starting early, a student also gets ample chances to rewrite, which is always an important part of the writing process.

There are a number of college essay tips that can help prospective students. Students should always write about themselves. You want your personality and qualifications to be on stage, not something that has nothing to do about you as a person and a student. You also want to write using your own voice and words. College admissions officers are reading thousands of essays, and know how an 18-year-old college applicant writes.

Keep the College Essay Simple

One mistake often made by college essay writers is to try and put too much information into the essay. A college essay tip that will make it easier to write (and read) your college essay is to only focus on aspects about yourself. If you write about something your are involved in or passionate about, or how you performed on a superior project done in class, that will tell a lot more information about you as a potential college student than an unfocused essay. Feel free to summarize your accomplishments, but only use as much detail as you need. If something is in your application file already, don’t include it in the application. The admissions officer will have already seen it.

Another college essay tip is to not overtly try and impress the college admission officer. It’s better to state what is important to you and why, rather than brag about accomplishments. Much of your competition is as highly qualified as you are. It’s also important to tell a good story, with structure and an ending. The old writer’s guideline “Show, don’t tell” applies here. You want to show your reader why you are a great student and excellent candidate for admission to their school by writing in an active voice with strong verbs.

Important Supplemental Questions for Your College Essay

Finally, one portion of the essay students must also take seriously is the supplemental questions that follow the personal statement portion. College admissions officers take the answers very seriously, and will weigh your responses as heavily as the college essay itself.

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