Top 41 Common App Admissions Essays - Study Notes

 

college app essay examples

It’s a chance to add depth to something that is important to you and tell the admissions committee more about your background or goals. Test scores only tell part of your story, and we want to know more than just how well you work. We want to see how you actually think.. Below you’ll find selected examples of essays that “worked,” as nominated by our admissions committee. Jan 22,  · One of the best ways to write an awesome essay for your college application or admissions personal essay is by learning from real college essay samples that worked. So I've compiled some great college essay examples from a variety of student experiences as well as tons of supplemental essay and personal statement topics, like the UChicago short answer questions, the "Why This Author: Ethan Sawyer. Write your own awesome personal statement with our COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY LAB, which will guide you through the process, providing tips and even more examples along the way. Before you start, check out our own sample essays—or scroll down for the Best of the Web. Whether you're an athlete, a.


The Best Common App Essay Examples


With the inclusion of the popular "Topic of Your Choice" option, you have the opportunity to write about anything you want to share with the folks in the admissions office. The best essays focus on self-analysis, rather than spending a disproportionate amount of time merely describing a place or event. Analysis, college app essay examples, not descriptionwill reveal the critical thinking skills that are the hallmark of a promising college student.

The current prompts are the result of much discussion and debate from the member institutions who use the Common Application. The essay length limit stands at words the minimum is wordsand students will need to choose from the seven options below.

The essay prompts are designed to encourage reflection and introspection. If your essay doesn't include some self-analysis, you haven't fully succeeded in responding to the prompt. According to the folks at the Common Applicationin the admissions cycle, Option 7 topic of your choice was the most popular and was used by Second most popular was Option 5 discuss an accomplishment with In third place was Option 2 on a setback or failure.

Always keep in mind why colleges are asking for an essay: they want to get to know you better. Nearly all selective colleges and universities as well as many that aren't overly selective have holistic admissions, and they consider many factors in addition to numerical measures such as grades and standardized test scores. Your essay is an important tool for presenting something you find important that may not come across elsewhere in your application. Make sure your essay presents you as the type of person a college will want to invite to join their community.

Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is college app essay examples meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it.

If this sounds like you, then please share your story. What is it that makes you you? The prompt gives you a lot of latitude for answering the question since you can write a story about your "background, identity, college app essay examples, interest, or talent. You could write about an event or series of events that had a college app essay examples impact on your identity. Your "interest" or "talent" college app essay examples be a passion that has driven you to become the person you are today.

The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? This prompt may seem to go against everything that you've learned on your path to college. It's far more comfortable in an application to celebrate successes and accomplishments college app essay examples it is to discuss setbacks and failure.

At the same time, you'll impress the college admissions folks greatly if you can show your ability to learn from your failures and mistakes. Be sure to devote significant space to the second half of the question—how did you learn and grow from the experience?

Introspection and honesty are key with this prompt. Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome? Keep in mind how open-ended this prompt truly is. The "belief or idea" you explore could be your own, college app essay examples, someone else's, or that of a group. The best essays will be honest as they explore the difficulty of working against the status quo or a firmly held belief, college app essay examples.

The answer to the final question about the "outcome" of your challenge need not be a success story. Sometimes in retrospection, we discover that the cost of an action was perhaps too great. However you approach this prompt, your essay needs to reveal one of your core personal values. If the belief you challenged doesn't give the admissions folks a window into your personality, then you haven't succeeded with this prompt.

Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like college app essay examples solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma--anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution. With the ability to write about an "intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma," you can essentially write about any issue that you find important.

Note that you do not have to have solved the problem, and some of the best essays will explore problems that need to be solved in the future. Be careful with that opening word "describe"—you'll want to spend much more time analyzing the problem than describing it. This essay prompt, like all of the options, is asking you to college app essay examples introspective and share with the admissions folks what it is that you value.

Discuss an accomplishment, college app essay examples, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others. This question was reworded in admissions cycle, and the current language is a huge improvement. The prompt use to talk about transitioning from childhood to adulthood, but the new language about a "period of personal growth" is a much better articulation of how we actually learn and mature no single event makes us adults.

Maturity comes as the result of a long train of events and accomplishments and failures. This prompt is an excellent choice if you want to explore a single event or achievement that marked a clear milestone in your personal development.

Be careful to avoid the "hero" essay—admissions offices are often overrun with essays about the season-winning touchdown or brilliant performance in the school play see the list of bad essay topics for more about this issue. These can certainly be fine topics for an essay, but make sure your essay is analyzing your personal growth process, not bragging about an accomplishment.

Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time, college app essay examples. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more? This option was entirely new inand it's a wonderfully broad prompt. In essence, it's asking you to identify and discuss something that enthralls you, college app essay examples.

The question gives you an opportunity to identify something that kicks your brain into high gear, reflect on why it is so stimulating, and reveal your process for digging deeper into something that you are passionate about. Note that the central words here—"topic, idea, or concept"—all have rather academic connotations. While you may lose track of time when running or playing football, sports are probably not the best choice for this particular question.

Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you've already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design.

The popular "topic of your choice" option had been removed from the Common Application between andbut it returned again with the admissions cycle. Use this option college app essay examples you have a story to share that doesn't quite fit into any of the options above. However, the first six topics are extremely broad with a lot of flexibility, so make sure your topic really can't be identified with one of them. Also, don't equate "topic of your choice" with a license to write a comedy routine or poem you can submit such things via the "Additional Info" option.

Essays college app essay examples for this prompt still need to have substance and tell your reader something about you. Cleverness is fine, but college app essay examples be clever at college app essay examples expense of meaningful content. Whichever prompt college app essay examples chose, make sure you are looking inward. What do you value? What has made you grow as a person? What makes you the unique individual the admissions folks will want to invite college app essay examples join their campus community?

The best essays spend significant time with self-analysis rather than merely describing a place or event. The folks at The Common Application have cast a wide net with these questions, and nearly anything you want to write about could fit under at least one of the options. If your college app essay examples could fit under more than one option, it really doesn't matter which one you choose. Many admissions officers, in fact, don't even look at which prompt you chose—they just want to see that you have written a good essay.

College app essay examples Flipboard Email. Allen Grove is an Alfred University English professor and a college admissions expert with 20 years of experience helping students transition to college. Tips for the Best Essay The best essays focus on self-analysis, rather than spending a disproportionate amount of time merely describing a place or event, college app essay examples.

Below are the seven options with some general tips for each:. See more Tips and Strategies for Essay Option 6, college app essay examples. Final Thoughts. Continue Reading.

 

Essays That Worked | Undergraduate Admissions | Johns Hopkins University

 

college app essay examples

 

Apr 01,  · This section provides insights and examples for each of the 7 Common App essay prompts for the cycle. Each of these prompts lends itself to distinct topics and strategies, so selecting the prompt that best aligns with your idea is essential to writing an effective Common App essay. Here are this year’s prompts. Sample College Application Essay 1 You Be the Judge Read the following application essay. See if you can figure out this essay's strengths and weaknesses. Then keep reading to see our critique. The Essay From the time I was able to realize what a university was, all I heard from my mother's side of the family was about the University of. Why? The Common App essay you write there is sent to basically every school that you apply to. The Common App essay is words, and contains 7 prompts to pick from. (It doesn’t matter which prompt you pick. In fact, I recommend you write your essay first and then choose the prompt to match it.) Here are those Common App prompts:Author: Ethan Sawyer.