JRA Educational Consulting Blog

College Application Personal Statement – Chapter 5: The Closing Paragraph

Last Updated on Sep 28, 2020 6:00:00 PM

Over and over in our chapters up to this point, we’ve stated explicitly that your personal statement must convey qualities that reveal your character to the admissions reader. It’s not coincidental that the closing sentences of your personal statement essay should also leave the reader with a final burnished image. In the best case, you tie together your narrative with mature reflection. Therein lies the impact of your writing.

Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

College Application Personal Statement – Chapter 4: A Great Opening Line

Last Updated on Sep 28, 2020 4:00:00 PM

College admissions directors read hundreds − if not thousands − of college application essays, morning, afternoon, and evening.  They're the people in college admissions looking for the good read, the applicant’s essay that will make their day. That’s why getting the reader’s attention right from the start goes a very long way toward making you stand out from a long procession of students.

Topics: College Application Essay, College Application, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, College Application, Personal Statement

College Application Personal Statement – Chapter 3: Selecting a Topic

Last Updated on Sep 28, 2020 2:00:00 PM

Three of the four qualities we listed in our last blog chapter – maturity, self-reflection, and intellectual curiosity – must be combined well in order to be effective; your essay must tell a story whose conclusion demonstrates the fourth quality, the impact as expressed through personal reflection. You are not simply telling a story; you are demonstrating your observational powers at this stage in your life – specifically, how your story affected who you have become.

Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

College Application Personal Statement – Chapter 2: Character Counts

Last Updated on Sep 28, 2020 12:00:00 PM

“To be or not to be” might be germane for Hamlet, but one that’s relevant to the topic at hand is “To Create a College Application essay outline” or to try winging it without one – and the correct answer’s cogent for demonstrating the type of character that admissions officers look for in applicants.

As background, we’ve worked successfully with many thousands of students on their essays, so we’re acutely aware that while one can “get there” with lots and lots of winging, one’s just as likely to both come up with a substandard essay and have one’s fingers fall off.

Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

Your College Application Personal Statement – Chapter 1: Starting Steps

Last Updated on Sep 28, 2020 10:00:00 AM

There's no reason to panic – at least not yet– but because college applications are due during the first semester of your senior year, you should begin working on them now if you haven’t already done so. And if you're just getting started and wondering how to complete your personal statement for your college application, we’re here to help, so you've come to the right place.

More than 800 colleges accept the Common Application, so that's what we’re going to focus on in this post.

Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, College Admission, Personal Statement

Covid-19 Has Infected the Common App!

Last Updated on Jun 2, 2020 12:22:57 PM

This year’s Common App will include a Covid-19-specific writing prompt for students who would like to share with colleges how the pandemic has impacted their lives, personally and/or educationally. The goal is to reduce anxiety for applicants affected by these extraordinary circumstances and provide them with a way to share their experience with colleges. Responding to this prompt is optional – truly optional – not “optional” the way some colleges’ supplemental essay questions are optional, but to which you should nonetheless respond. One thing’s for sure: you don’t want to write a response that doesn’t stand out, that sounds like everyone else’s response, or lacks sensitivity. We’ll explain. But first, let’s look at the wording of the optional prompt:

Topics: Common Application, College Counseling, Personal Statement

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Topics: Common Application, College Counseling, Personal Statement

Completing College Application Writing Supplements

Last Updated on Oct 21, 2019 3:44:40 PM

We recently published a blog, Twelve Guiding Principles for Creating a Sparkling College Application Personal Statement, that focused strictly on the main essay/personal statement called for in the Common Application and the Coalition Application. While some colleges that accept those two applications don’t require submission of the personal statement as part of the application, most do. And many of the colleges that accept those two applications have additional writing supplements. In this post, we’ll describe some of those supplements and how they can be best approached.

Topics: College Application Essay, Supplemental Essays, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, Supplemental Essays, Personal Statement

12 Principles for Creating a College Application Personal Statement

Last Updated on Oct 10, 2019 7:45:28 PM

College application personal statements and application writing supplements are entirely different, have entirely different purposes, and should be approached entirely differently.

Topics: College Admission, College Application, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Admission, College Application, Personal Statement

How to Respond to the UF Essay Prompts

Last Updated on Aug 13, 2019 11:12:41 AM

According to UF admissions, if you’re applying to become a freshman, you must submit a personal essay that allows admissions to get to know who you are. The word count limit is specified in the two application platforms – either the Coalition or Common Application, the latter of which UF is accepting for the first time this year. Here are the essay prompts from which to choose

Topics: College Application, UF, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application, UF, Personal Statement

Getting started: Crafting Your College Essay

Last Updated on Feb 1, 2019 11:03:18 AM

By the start of their second semester, most high school juniors have begun creating and honing a prospective college list, and scheduling college visits. What most don’t realize is that it’s also the ideal moment to begin working on college applications, especially the often-dreaded college application essay (commonly known as the personal statement). Where to get started? What’s the perfect topic? What are college admission readers looking for? These and other student questions oftentimes result in panic and procrastination: I’ll worry about it this summer! Then suddenly, it’s September….

Topics: College Application Essay, College Application, Personal Statement

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Topics: College Application Essay, College Application, Personal Statement