Studying Basics of Tips on how to Create a College Entrance Essay

If you're a senior in high school, you're probably all too familiar with the pressures of that final year. Some of you still have the ACT to take, while others are worried about dealing with the hardest classes of your academic career. Arguably the most stressful aspect of being a senior, however, is college applications.

Few things are more tedious than college applications, and it doesn't help that they're rarely free. You copy the same information over and over into each one, and you have little control over the facts they ask for. One aspect you do have control over, however, is the college entrance essay. Learn the basics of how to write a college entrance essay and optimize the one part of your college application that you can actually control.

Understand the Prompt

Like any essay, the college entrance essay needs to be on topic. While it's generally more broad than academic essays you might be used to, the entrance essay still needs to address fully the topic at hand. Fortunately, most entrance essay topics are fairly similar. Questions tend to inquire about your academic or extracurricular goals, or they might want you to dive into your personal history to describe a time when you failed, became an adult, challenged a preconception, etc.

At their core, these prompts want you to reflect on your growth, whether it's in the past or the future. Higher education is meant to expand our knowledge which, in turn, expands who we are as people. If a college is unable to see how you're willing to grow, they may not see a point in admitting you, since learning and personal growth are inextricably linked.

Outline Your Ideas

Once you are clear about your answer to the prompt, it's time to lay out the structure of your essay. Your response may be fantastic, but if it's not presented correctly, it won't accomplish much. While this may be a formal essay, you're trying to tell a story about yourself, and every compelling story needs to have a beginning, middle and end.

Keep structure in mind when telling your story. Imagine a story you would be interested in reading. Consider what would draw you in as an opener. Are you more interested in charming anecdotes or serious questions? More importantly, which would serve best for the story you're trying to tell? These essays can take on many different tones, and all can work well. You just have to make sure you keep yours consistent throughout.

Write And Write Again

Sitting down and writing the essay may be the part you dread the most, but you need to make sure you give yourself adequate time. Writing the essay is just the first part. After your initial draft is completed, you need to proofread and rewrite any portions that could use work. Remember, you're not just looking for grammatical mistakes or ways to optimize your sentence structure. The content itself needs to be quality.

When it comes to essays of virtually any kind, content is king. You need to make sure you're not wasting any space on the page with fluff that could be summarized in just a few words. This is your college entrance essay after all, not a middle school report on Steinbeck. Writing style aside, make sure you stay true to yourself. Let your own voice shine through, and at least sound genuine, even if you stretch the details a bit from reality.

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