What is the Purpose of an Admission Essay?

The main purpose of an admission or an application essay is to enable the members of an admissions panel or committee to consider the various backgrounds of those who apply to their institutions, and to assess their skills, achievements, and suitability. Additionally, essays of this type show a school or college which candidates have the potential to flourish at their institution, especially in the case of applicants whose academic records are only average.   

Possible Topics for an Admissions Essay

It is commonplace for colleges and universities to provide candidates with an essay topic or a list of possible topics to choose from. These essay topics are often personal in nature and their main objective is to allow committee members to evaluate each candidate on various criteria such as their levels of maturity, motivation, future career aspirations and, of course, how good they are at writing. For example, one university in the USA once asked candidates to write about someone who had impacted or influenced their lives. In addition, the applicants were required to explain how and why that person was important in their life. In the event you are given a choice of topics, do your best to pick one that has personal meaning for you.   

Planning and Drafting an Admission Essay

Begin by drafting an outline with a list of all the main points you will discuss. Writing an essay on a personal topic chosen by an admissions committee can be an emotional experience to some extent. Still, you should stick as closely as possible to the guidelines or instructions provided if you want to end up with a good-quality and well-organized paper. In the event you try to write free-style or without a distinct plan, your essay may end up looking haphazard and very difficult to follow.   

Setting the Right Tone

Your aim should be to write in a personal tone. Because these types of topics require a narrative style or the writer’s own opinion, it is acceptable to use the first person perspective unless you have been instructed to do otherwise. However, notwithstanding the personal nature or tone of these essays, the language you choose needs to be professional but not stiff or artificial-sounding. You should always avoid slang and you should definitely not use offensive language. Keep in mind that those reading your essay are members of an admissions committee and they almost certainly expect the quality of your writing to meet the standards of their college.    

Revise Your Work

Once you have written a draft of your essay, you should revise it. One factor an admissions committee will be looking out for is how good you are at adhering to instructions. During the revision stage, you should compare your work to the questions or prompts and any other instructions you were provided with. If any of the criteria or instructions has not been met, you will need to revise your writing so that every aspect is accounted for.  

Proofreading is another critical element of writing an admissions essay. It is important your admissions essay is as close as possible to perfect with respect to grammar, structure, and syntax. You could consider asking one of your tutors to check your essay over before you submit it. It is very likely they will be able to spot any obvious mistakes and offer advice on ways to improve it.