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Getting into Grad School can be a difficult task, especially since you need high grades and usually require a personal statement

Tips on Writing a Personal Statement for Graduate School

Getting into Grad School can be a difficult task, especially since you need high grades and usually require a personal statement

Tips on Writing a Personal Statement for Graduate School
Getting into Grad School can be a difficult task, especially since you need high grades and usually require a personal statement of ‘why you should be accepted there.’ Many students have serious problems with the latter. We teach that ‘talking about ourselves’ throughout our lives is not the ideal scenario and might even feel disingenuous about what we’re saying.

However, seeing that in most cases this is a requirement, it’s necessary to ‘get over yourself’ and write a personal statement that will wow the admissions board and secures you a spot within the academic institution of your choice.

Today we’ll be going over some of the essential tips to help craft you an exceptional personal statement for graduate school.

Just Get Started!

The first and foremost point we should be covering is inertia. The personal statement won’t be writing itself, so stop putting it off and just start it already!

Many people deliberate about ‘what they need to put into it’ and of course this is understandable as this might be the very document that will grant you access to the institution of your dreams. Of course, you’ll want only to present the absolute best you can deliver, however, if you never start this will never happen.

Remember, you’ll always be able to edit your work afterward, but if you don’t get started, there will be nothing to write.

Explain the ‘Why’ in Detail

Many people make the mistake of using sentences like “I have always wanted to be X” when writing these kinds of papers. It is a big no for a wide variety of reasons – primarily because it’s cliché. Instead, focus on specific topics within your field and how you believe you could provide valuable insight or action to help remedy the situation.

It shows the reader that you are articulate about your chosen profession and are involved with what’s happening in your niche.

Be Specific

Show the reader that you have long been walking this path, and that the grad school will be used to hone your particular skills. Provide specific examples, experiences you have done in the past that relates to the subject you’re thinking about taking. Did you participate in the student government? Model UN? Debates? All of this is valid to include in your statement.

Be Sincere

Additionally, explain what exactly attracted you to the particular institution you’re thinking about it. Try to figure outside of the box on this one as mentioning their accolades is probably being said by hundreds of other applicants.

What specially attracted you to choose this particular institution?

Demonstrate Your Motivation and Conviction

You need to show board members that you will work hard and find creative solutions to get the job done. You don’t just want to say, “I want to be here because I am a hard worker,” but rather, show them an example where you excelled within a related scenario. How have you overcome past hurdles using your unique approach? This will indicate that you are an out-of-the-box thinker and faculty members like this in their students.

Don’t Go Overboard

Another big mistake is writing a book where a paper is required. What I mean by this is that you want to keep the document as concise as possible. Don’t think that length will influence the decision process. Instead, think of the sheer amount of submissions these faculty members receive each year and try to make their jobs more comfortable as well.

Some people, even include a link to a video which helps explain more about your statement. This is something you should consider adding to your application.

Enjoy the Process

Writing a personal statement is self-discovery. You have to become the object of your analysis. This exercise will reveal hidden truths about your character and flesh out your abilities on paper. It’s a very awakening experience if done right. Don’t think of this as a “task” but rather an exercise in getting to know yourself with a bit more understanding.

It also helps you to picture your values and motivations more tangible.

Bottom Line

Writing a personal statement for Graduate School can be a stressful experience, however, if you follow the tips provides above, it should be relatively easy and enjoyable. Don’t fret, just let your creativity run wild and then, later on, edit it with conviction. Try to get your hands on previously accepted personal statements by the institution you’re thinking about and see what worked in the past then make it better.

We’re always in a constant state of evolution and writing an original personal statement is like taking a snapshot of who you are at the time of writing it. Think of it as freezing a moment in time and presenting that picture to the school board.  

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