When you first begin to write your college application essay, it can be overwhelming. In fact, it can be the hardest part of your application to a college. With this essay you need to convince the admission staff that you would benefit their college. You also need to show that you are someone beyond your GPA, that you are not just a number.
It would be easy if there was a simple step by step process to write that perfect essay. Yet there isn't. There are however, a few tips to follow that will help you write a stellar essay.
This may be obvious, but answer the question the college asks you. Surprisingly many will skirt around the essay question and never truly answer it. Even if the essay is perfect, it won't be accepted if it doesn't answer the question.
Avoid generic answers and sentences. Try to get the reader to visualize your world. Simply writing that you achieved a 4.0 your entire high school career is generic. Expound upon it. For example, write about the extra studying you did. Write about a difficult class and how you overcame it. Write about how engrossed you became in a subject.
Don't feel the need to put the biggest words you can find in your essay. A few big words here and there are fine. Your entire essay filled with big words will make you come across as trying too hard.
Make your introduction count. The admission staff will weed through hundreds of essays a year. If your introduction catches their attention, you have a better chance of gaining admission. You want them to become engaged in your essay and remember you.
Proper structure and grammar count big time. You should follow the structure of an introduction, related paragraphs and a conclusion. Proofread your essay several times and then have someone else proofread it. They may catch something that you've missed. A misspelled word or improper grammar is a surefire way to get your essay thrown in the trash. If writing is not your strong suit, enlist the help of your English teacher or a tutor.
Above all, be yourself. The point of the college application essay is for the admission staff to see who you really are. Grades and test scores never define who a person is. This is your chance to show them your personality. A chance to show them that they need you to attend their college.