So you’ve done it all. You’ve got the grades. You’ve got your tests. Now, it’s just that last hurdle – how to write a great essay that will wow the college admissions officers. It seems so small in comparison to all the other stuff you’ve already done. And yet, for many people, it looms larger than life.
Like that boulder that Sisyphus has to push to the top of the mountain but can never quite seem to get there.
So yeah, I get it. It’s a stressful place to be. Fortunately, unlike Sisyphus, you can actually finish this task and do so in a way that will absolutely blow the socks off of that college admission officer. How do you ask? That’s a very good question that I’m going to spend the rest of this article answering.Be yourself
The first and the most important thing to remember when you’re writing your essay is to not pretend to be somebody that you’re not. The reason? Quite simple. People can figure that stuff out. They know when you’re being pretentious, or stuff, or anything else for that matter.
And besides, when you write articles like this you’re going to end up missing out on the most important ingredient to a successful essay – the secret sauce of essay writing – and that is your own personality.
Besides, how else are you going to stand out? I can assure you, everything that you’ve thought of saying has already been said. How can it not when hundreds of thousands of application letters are written every year? The only thing you’ve got that nobody has is your personality. So use it.What do great writers do differently?
There are a lot of things that separate writes from each other, but one thing that will always separate the decent from the great is editing.
Editing your texts is like cheating. It lets you get rid of bad texts and make sure that the people around you only ever see well-written versions of your thoughts and ideas.
In truth, every text needs to be edited – but this goes double for your admission essay.
So don’t write it at the last minute. Instead, write it at least a week in advance. It doesn’t have to be perfect yet at this point. It just has to be finished. Then give it a day and return to it. Edit through it. Make things better. Change things around. Two days later, do it again. Then again the day before you send it off.
Even better, get some help. Know anybody with a real writing flair? Get them to look at it and give you feedback. That not an option? Then use Supreme Dissertations to help you out. Every additional set of eyes can nudge you closer to being accepted.Watch the long sentences
Yes, you should sound like you know what you’re talking about and you shouldn’t try to sound like an idiot. The thing is, a lot of people get confused as to where you should sound smart. You should sound smart about what you’ve got to say, not in the way you say it.
In fact, long sentences and difficult words don’t make you sound smart. Instead, they reduce the fluency of your text – thereby making people struggle more to read it and lowering their impression of you.
Instead, if you use short sentences and clear language, then you can really press home how smart you are by talking about impressive ideas. If you can do that, then you’ll really wow the admission officer.
A useful tool to shortening your sentences is the Hemingway App. Just paste whatever text you’re writing in there and the text will point out how difficult what you’re writing is to understand as well as point out problem areas.
Now, to be clear, it’s only an app so use your judgment – but it will give you a good idea where you need to tinker to make your text more understandable.Last words
Whatever you do, don’t stress out too much. You might think your admission essay is important – and obviously, to an extent it is – but it isn’t quite as important you’re making it out to be. You see, as Daniel Kahneman explains in his book Thinking Fast and Slow, we’re not judges when we decide if we like an idea or a person. Instead, we’re more likely lawyers.
We take a position early on (yes they’re in, no they’re not) and then find evidence to support it. So, as long as your essay fits in with the narrative that the admission officer has, you’ll be fine. So yeah, it has to be good, but it doesn’t have to rock their world.
Truth be told, that’s nearly impossible to do anyway. After all, you’re not just one of many, you’re also coming from an entirely different point in your lives from then and it will, therefore, be hard to make their heart burst with emotion. Nor will they expect that.
Instead, do the best you can. I promise that will be good enough.