ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How To Write the Perfect College Admissions Essay

Updated on January 6, 2011

The essay portion of the application for a college or university is your one pick-me-up. Your grades might not be straight A's, and you may not have the best ACT score, but if your essay wows the college admission staff, you have a great chance of getting in. Many people are convinced that there is no chance of their essay actually being read after they send in their college application. Of course, nobody can be sure of the answer to this, but I think it's safe to say that the more difficult it is to get into a certain college, the more likely they'll read your essay. To be safe, though, you should always make sure your essay is perfect. That means no typos or grammatical mistakes should be anywhere in the essay when you hit that submit button! But there is a lot more to writing an impressive admissions essay, and I've narrowed it down for you.


1) Spend a good amount of time thinking over the topic you will use.  Don't write your essay on a spur-of-the-moment idea -- chances are, you'll probably end up thinking of something better and write a brand new one. If you're writing the essay that you use on the Common Application, or any other application that lets you write about a topic of your choice, you can literally write about anything you want. But, the thing is, you're only allowed to do this if you can do it well. I've read college admissions essays (successful ones, that is) that we're about the most random things, like taking a shower, that were incredible because the author really knew how to write. 

Basically, make it interesting. So interesting, that even a college admissions advisor will like it, even though it's 3:30 and you're the one hundredth application he's evaluated today. Don't just talk about some experience you had, talk about how that experience changed your life and affected the person you are today. Add interesting details, and even a little humor. When it comes to essays, you want to be as entertaining as you are impressive.


2) Pay close attention to your language. Of course, don't have any spelling errors. That's a given. But there is more to grammar than you may think; besides, you're only a senior in high school, and you haven't learned every single mechanic of grammar. When you're finished take it to the English teach with the best reputation at your school and have him or her look it over. You never know if the person who will read your essay majored in English in college. 

While you're in the process of composing, take note to good essay writing strategies. Regardless of how good your English is and how interesting your story is, your essay will not flow properly unless you take these steps. Here are some helpful hints to look at while you are writing:

  • Try not to repeat the same adjective, verb, or noun more than twice in the entire essay. It gets too repetitive. You should be using a thesaurus actively.
  • If you have a few long sentences in a row, make the next sentence short. Otherwise, the essay will drag. 
  • DO NOT overload the paper with questions (to the reader) or exclamatory sentences. Use, at most, two of each. 
  • Make use of other types of punctuation, such as the semicolon and dashes.

3) Make your conclusion leave an impression. This is always the hardest part of the essay, but it's important to make sure yours is incredible. It's the last thing the admissions' staff will read, so it must be good. Inside it should be the effect that the content of essay had on you. For example, if you're writing about your love for bird-watching, your conclusion should talk about how spending so much time being silent and observing nature has made you feel connected to it and somehow changed you for the better. It should leave the reader thinking "Wow, this person really has a unique quality." 


I hope these tips have helped! If you are planning on writing an essay, comment the subject and some details, and I'll give you tips that are more specific!
Also, you can refer to an interview I had with Roy Peter Clark, renowned writer, about writing a good essay for a college application.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)