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Nazifa

October 14th, 2022

Tips for writing your personal statement

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Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Nazifa

October 14th, 2022

Tips for writing your personal statement

0 comments

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

The personal statement is easily one of the most important parts of your application to study at university in the UK. For that very reason, that virtually everyone who applies to university dreads writing it is not at all surprising. Trying to prove to admissions tutors in only 4,000 characters that you deserve a place on their course is certainly a daunting task — but it is by no means impossible! Here are four tips for writing a personal statement that is sure to impress anyone who is lucky enough to read it.

Explore the subject

Before you even begin writing, it is important to allow yourself some time to simply delve deeper into the subject matter for your chosen course. Spending substantial time and effort looking into relevant topics in more detail will help you to make sure that the course you have in mind is really the right one for you. If you are unsure about your course choice, doing further research into the subject will either confirm your enthusiasm or unveil your indifference towards it, both of which are invaluable to discover. Additionally, by the time you have figured out what you do and don’t enjoy through this process, you will have done enough research to be prepared and excited to write about your passion for your selected course.

Begin the process early 

Like anything else important in life, the personal statement should certainly not be left to the last minute. Moreover, as a task that demands so much of you, it is not something you will want to rush and later regret. As a result, make sure to start very early—even if it’s only for the purpose of brainstorming—so you have plenty of time to continually improve what you’re working with. Beginning early on allows you to experiment with different ideas until you can narrow down and refine them. However, be careful not to fall into the trap of making too many drafts as it can become overwhelming to have to choose between very different versions that are each good in their own ways. Once you have a rough idea of which direction you would like to take your personal statement in, write everything carefully and deliberately, focusing all your energy on making your final version as good as possible.

Make it all personal

As the name itself makes obvious, the entire point of a personal statement is for it to be about why you personally are interested in your chosen course. Whilst it might seem a near impossible task to condense this into a meagre 4,000 characters, the tight character limit is precisely why it is imperative that you are very specific about what exactly you like about the subject the whole way through your personal statement. The more specific you are, the easier it is to demonstrate authentic interest. No personal statement for any subject has a checklist of things you must include, so only write about what genuinely appeals to you. Rather than viewing the personal statement as a burden to prove your worthiness of an offer, take it as an opportunity to showcase your passion and knowledge about your subject. Whilst this doesn’t promise to take away all the stress and difficulty, it will help you enjoy the process much more, which ultimately will allow your genuine interest to shine through. 

Editing equals perfection

Producing a well-written personal statement is naturally important as an academic piece of writing but, more fundamentally, it aids you in making a good impression and effectively getting across what you want to say. Editing for clarity and precision will take considerable time, especially if you want to make the very most of your character limit. However, it can also be one of the most rewarding parts of writing your personal statement as you start to see it all come together so fluidly at the end. Make sure to also seek out feedback from others, but only from a select few people whose opinion you truly value and trust. Ultimately, you yourself will need to make the most important calls about what to keep and what to get rid of. Spend time proofreading for spelling and grammar mistakes and playing around with the language and structure until you really feel that you can’t make it any better. If you do that to the best of your ability, you are bound to have written a piece of work that you are proud of having created from scratch.

For more information on how to write a competitive personal statement, visit the LSE website.

About the author

Nazifa

Hi! I'm Nazifa and I'm a BSc International Relations student from London.

Posted In: Applying: Undergraduate

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