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Admissions Essays

Page history last edited by Jon Brammer 14 years, 7 months ago

There are three common types of essays that are written to gain entrance into academic programs: the basic freshman application essay, the transfer admission essay, and the graduate school essay.  Sometimes these are called “personal statements” or “statements of educational goals”, but they all amount to basically the same thing.  The reviewers of your writing want to know if you are someone they want at their institution; they also want to know if you can express yourself reasonably well in writing.

Remember that the focus of your admission essay will vary a bit depending on the specifics of the question being asked.  Also be sure to read ALL the directions and abide by any limitations on length and/breadth.

The College Board has some excellent examples of admission essay questions.

Some colleges also post examples of successful essays from actual students.  Connecticut College titles their web page “Essays That Worked.”

Transfer essays have all the same basic components as regular admissions essays, but sometimes they focus more on continuing life experience as well as educational goals.  There are some good tips here from Foothill Community College- How to Write and Application Essay and Greenfield Community College- Tips for Writing An Admission Essay.

Admissions essays for graduate school often ask for more complex writing and more specific details about educational goals.  There are some good guidelines for personal statements and graduate admissions essays here; there are also other good resources at UCSD for professional school statements and admissions essays.

As always, TRCC Writing Center staff will be happy to review your admissions essay and offer advice for revision in person or via e-mail.


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