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How to Write a Good College Essay

On Thursday, Aug. 24, first-year students moved into their residence halls at Connecticut College. I’ll bet if you had asked them where they were last year at the same time, they’d say: where you are now. And if you asked how it was to write the essay, they’d say it was one of the most challenging parts of the application.

How to Write a Great College Application Essay

I find these examples and the ensuing comments to be an example of just how subjective college admissions officers are when making their decisions. Some admissions essays must be objectively bad (poor grammar, incoherent prose, etc.) and I imagine that some must be objectively good, however, it seems to me that the great bulk lie in the middle. In that middle ground then isn’t the merit of one’s essay inextricably tied to the taste’s of the admissions officers reviewing that essay? Would a brilliant essay by Hunter S. Thompson be tossed out because the reader hated drug use and non-conformity? Would an essay by Tom Wolfe be rejected because the reader hated exclamations? Oh my! Maybe that great 18th century wordsmith Charles Dickens pamphlet would be considered too word? Or Hemingway’s to sparse?

How To Write Essays For College Applications

How to Write a College Application Essay | Synonym

As a CUNY applicant in 1979-80, I didn’t need to complete an application essay. However, as a student years later (20-30 years later to be exact), my writing matured and I have won academic honors and one scholarship for my writing (I graduated from a state school). I love writing and couldn’t imagine my life without it (although I write for pleasure, not publication).

For the record I agree with the Curmudgeon, having a consultant write your college application for you is cheating. Its fine to have some help, but the majority of the work and the essay’s “voice” should be the student’s.

How to write a good college application essay

How do you write a good college application essay

Take a minute and think about the college or university admission officers who will be reading your essay. How will your essay convey your background and what makes you unique? If you had the opportunity to stand in front of an admission committee to share a significant story or important information about yourself, what would you say? The college application essay is your chance to share your personality, goals, influences, challenges, triumphs, life experiences, or lessons learned. Not to mention why you're a good fit for the college or university—and why it's a good fit for you. These are the stories behind the list of activities and leadership roles on your application.

You already know how to write an academic essay: you start with an introduction, throw in a thesis statement, find about three paragraphs’ worth of evidence, and wrap it all up with a tidy conclusion…

Now forget all that, because a successful college application essay is totally different.

How to Write a Great College Application Essay | CollegeXpress
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How To Write Good College Application Essays

The college application process takes time, preparation and creativity, which is a lot for any active senior to handle. Summer, however, typically offers about 10 weeks free of classes and homework and many of the other stresses that come with high school. The pressure of the looming college application deadline is still months away, which allows students the freedom to play around with different ideas, test different angles and solicit feedback from friends and family.

How to Write Essays as Part of College Applications

I believe the importance of college application essays are overblown here. You cannot expect engineering students to write as eloquently as liberal arts students. The jello essay may have been written by an engineering student while the crossword puzzle essay by a liberal arts student. I hope colleges are not just looking for good writers. This country needs great engineers too! And you are not going to be impressed by many of their college app essays.

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