Standard college essay questions

But, after reading these enthralling stories about other people, I still know absolutely nothing about the student who wrote the essay. What are you like beyond your GPA and test scores? What makes you unique? What can you contribute to our campus community? Now, keep in mind that creativity and a bit of humor are nice. Professionals on admissions committees have the daunting task of reading thousands of application essays per year, and it can get a bit tedious after a while.

That being said, remember to choose an essay topic that helps keep the focus on you but is still flexible enough for you to incorporate your personality, your history, your individuality, and your impact on those around you. Some college and university applications provide essay questions that influence some pretty good answers. In fact, many schools have cool, offbeat essay questions that really provide you with the opportunity to present the admissions committee with new insight as to who you are.

Take a chance! Get out of your comfort zone!


  1. Instructions & Preparation for 12222-2020.
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Go out on a limb and take a stab at the question that helps you paint a unique and compelling self-portrait. And if your dream school presents you with some of the old standards, remember to approach the subject from the most unique angle you can. Immediately I was stunned trying to think of the events that must have lead up to this moment and how this student was going to swing this into a positive light.

Prepare yourself--plan your admissions essays in advance.

I had to read on. The student went on about how he developed the strength and technique needed to be successful in the position and how that experience shaped him into the man he had become. We want you to expand upon a few characteristics that make you great, not just give us a list with the thousand and one things that contribute to your greatness. Outliers in either direction were immediately noticed, though—writing words when the space accommodates , or submitting pages when a single page was requested—can send a bad first impression.


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  • But the difference between words and words, or words and words, will go completely unnoticed. Admission officers do notice, however, the clarity of your thought and the effectiveness with which you convey your ideas. If your message was well-said in words but the maximum was , so you added 50 words of fluff, those 50 words are diluting the strength of your message.

    College Essays. September 8, by Becky Leichtling. We've overseen thousands of students get into their top choice schools , from state colleges to the Ivy League. We know what kinds of students colleges want to admit. We want to get you admitted to your dream schools. Learn more about PrepScholar Admissions to maximize your chance of getting in. I have always loved riding in cars.

    CollegeVine's essay prompt database

    After a long day in first grade, I used to fall asleep to the engine purring in my mother's Honda Odyssey, even though it was only a 5-minute drive home. As I grew, and graduated into the shotgun seat, it became natural and enjoyable to look out the window. Seeing my world passing by through that smudged glass, I would daydream what I could do with it. In elementary school, I already knew my career path: I was going to be Emperor of the World.

    While I sat in the car and watched the miles pass by, I developed the plan for my empire. I reasoned that, for the world to run smoothly, it would have to look presentable. I would assign people, aptly named Fixer-Uppers, to fix everything that needed fixing. That old man down the street with chipping paint on his house would have a fresh coat in no time.

    The boy who accidentally tossed his Frisbee onto the roof of the school would get it back. The big pothole on Elm Street that my mother managed to hit every single day on the way to school would be filled-in. It made perfect sense! All the people that didn't have a job could be Fixer-Uppers. I was like a ten-year-old FDR. Seven years down the road, I still take a second glance at the sidewalk cracks and think of my Fixer-Uppers, but now I'm doing so from the driver's seat.

    As much as I would enjoy it, I now accept that I won't become Emperor of the World, and that the Fixer-Uppers will have to remain in my car ride imaginings. Or do they? I always pictured a Fixer-Upper as a smiling man in an orange T-Shirt. Maybe instead, a Fixer-Upper could be a tall girl with a deep love for Yankee Candles.

    35 College Essay Prompts and Topics

    Maybe it could be me. Bridget the Fixer-Upper will be slightly different than the imaginary one who paints houses and fetches Frisbees. I was lucky enough to discover what I am passionate about when I was a freshman in high school. A self-admitted Phys. On my first day, I learned that it was for developmentally-disabled students.

    To be honest, I was really nervous. I hadn't had too much interaction with special needs students before, and wasn't sure how to handle myself around them. Long story short, I got hooked.

    Three years have passed helping out in APE and eventually becoming a teacher in the Applied Behavior Analysis summer program. I love working with the students and watching them progress. When senior year arrived, college meetings began, and my counselor asked me what I wanted to do for a career, I didn't say Emperor of the World. Instead, I told him I wanted to become a board-certified behavior analyst.

    A BCBA helps develop learning plans for students with autism and other disabilities. Basically, I would get to do what I love for the rest of my life.

    Tips for Brainstorming your Common App essay

    He laughed and told me that it was a nice change that a seventeen-year-old knew so specifically what she wanted to do. I smiled, thanked him, and left.

    The Experience

    But it occurred to me that, while my desired occupation was decided, my true goal in life was still to become a Fixer-Upper. I'll do one thing during the day, then spend my off-hours helping people where I can. Instead of flying like Sue, though, I'll opt for a nice performance automobile. My childhood self would appreciate that.

    6 Bizarre REAL College Application Essay Questions! - College Raptor

    Bridget takes a somewhat different approach than Stephen, but her essay is just as detailed and engaging. Let's go through some of the strengths of her essay. The essay is arranged chronologically. Bridget starts each paragraph with a clear signpost of where we are in time:. I wanted to become a board-certified behavior analyst. What makes this essay fun to read is that Bridget takes a child's idea of a world made better through quasi-magical helpers and turns it into a metaphor for the author's future aspirations.

    It helps that the metaphor is a very clear one: people who work with students with disabilities are making the world better one abstract fix at a time, just like imaginary Fixer-Uppers would make the world better one concrete physical fix at a time. Every childhood Fixer-Upper ever. Ask your parents to explain the back row to you.

    go site This essay uses many techniques that make Bridget sound genuine and make the reader feel like we already know her. Technique 1: humor.

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