Sample essay for response 2: "Student Teacher" by Max Option 3 Reflect on a essay when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your prompt What was the essay
Maybe when your great aunt was diagnosed with a terminal illness, you took over more responsibilities at home so your mom could visit her in the hospital. Did the experience help you to better appreciate your mom for all the little things she does for your family members? Perhaps you were promoted to manager of your local bakery and had to learn how to problem solve and develop your interpersonal skills when you were put in charge of scheduling. Was it a last-ditch effort or a long-planned strategy? Did you have to choose between several courses of action? Explain how you took the bull by the horns. Did you step into the lead role willingly or were you pushed despite some doubts? Did you replace or supercede a more obvious leader? Describe your solution to the problem, or your contribution to resolving the ongoing issue. What did you do? How did you do it? Did your plan succeed immediately or did it take some time? Consider how this experience has shaped the person you have now become. Do you think back on this time fondly as being the origin of some personal quality or skill? Did it make you more likely to lead in other situations? Sure, you will have a framework for your curriculum, and you will have advisers available to help—but for the most part, you will be on your own to deal with the situations that will inevitably arise when you mix with your diverse peers. So how can you make sure those qualities come through in your essay? Pick Your Group The prompt very specifically wants you to talk about an interaction with a group of people. Raise the Stakes Think of the way movies ratchet up the tension of the impending catastrophe before the hero swoops in and saves the day. Keeping an audience on tenterhooks is important—and makes the hero look awesome for the inevitable job well done. Similarly, in your essay the reader has to fundamentally understand exactly what you and the group you ended up leading were facing. Why was this an important problem to solve? Balance You vs. Them Personal statements need to showcase you above all things. Because this essay will necessarily have to spend some time on other people, you need to find a good proportion of them-time and me-time. In general, the first, setup, section of the essay should be shorter, since it will not be focused on what you were doing. The second section should take the rest of the space. So, in a word essay, maybe words go to setup, while words to your leadership and solution. Find Your Arc Not only do you need to show how your leadership met the challenge you faced, but you also have to show how the experience changed you. In other words, the outcome was double-sided: you affected the world, and the world affected you right back. Make your arc as lovely and compelling as a rainbow. Dissecting Personal Insight Question 2 The Prompt and Its Instructions Every person has a creative side, and it can be expressed in many ways: problem solving, original and innovative thinking, and artistically, to name a few. Describe how you express your creative side. Things to consider: What does creativity mean to you? Do you have a creative skill that is important to you? What have you been able to do with that skill? If you used creativity to solve a problem, what was your solution? What are the steps you took to solve the problem? How does your creativity influence your decisions inside or outside the classroom? Does your creativity relate to your major or a future career? This question is trying to probe the way you express yourself. Still, if you can isolate an incident of trial in your life and illustrate how you learned from it, this can be a rewarding prompt to explore. Some key questions to consider: How do you deal with hardship? What qualifies as a challenge or setback in your life and world? Are you the kind of person who can rebound and turn every experience, good or bad, into one from which you can learn something? What experiences might illustrate this quality? And was there a silver lining? And a few examples to think about: Has a lifelong battle with stuttering ultimately increased your overall confidence and allowed you to participate in social activities and public forums without self-judgment? Did a series of setbacks on your road to becoming a child actor introduce you to screenwriting, your professional goal and biggest passion? Did your failure to follow directions lead you to a botched home science experiment root beer explosion! Overall, try to keep these stories as positive as possible. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome? This prompt requires a student to speak passionately about beliefs and ideology, which are often onerous subjects that can be difficult to mold into compact stories. It can be one of the hardest questions to steer in a positive, productive direction without traveling into preachy, overly didactic territory. This is also a more precarious prompt than most in that students need to carefully assess the risks of espousing beliefs that might be polarizing for the readers of their applications. Applicants who can articulate their thoughts and feelings while showcasing malleability and willingness to thoughtfully consider the ideas of others will likely stand out as valuable additions to any campus. If this prompt jumps out at you because you have a very specific story to tell or opinion to voice, run with it! Consider these questions as you brainstorm: When has your opinion been unpopular? Why are you the kind of person who is willing to stand up for what you believe in? What is important to you on a fundamental level of morals and values? How passionate are you about the things you believe in? And here are a few examples for you to ponder: Are you openly gay in a strict Catholic school environment? What has that meant for your self-esteem and personal relationships? Did you work as an intern on a political campaign caught at the center of a scandal? How did you react? Did you challenge the idea of horror as a throw-away genre by executing an extensive research paper on the subject, launching a horror movie club at school, and arranging the most elaborate, best-received haunted house your neighborhood has ever seen? Your essay does not have to be focused around a fundamentally serious or groundbreaking issue see the horror genre example above. What matters most when responding to this prompt is that you have strong convictions about the belief or idea you are trying to convey, and that you examine the personal effects of this ethos on your life and world. For this reason, Prompt 3 can be a great vehicle for showcasing your consideration, persuasive skills, and passions to admissions. That can sound like a tall order — but you can find inspiration in everyday situations. Not everyone has had a near-death experience or saved a life, but almost everyone has gone through times of adversity, or overcome significant doubts about themselves or others. The event that you choose can be small, as long as your writing has a big impact. Structuring your essay is important for any prompt, but 5 lends itself to a clear form: describe the event in your first paragraph, and use the following paragraphs to demonstrate your reactions to it, and the new understanding or personal growth that came out of it. Remember, the key to prompt 5 is personal growth, so the majority of your essay should be spent on your reactions to and what you learned from the event, not the event itself. 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 be introspective and share with the admissions folks what it is that you value. Sample essay for option 4: "Grandpa's Rubik's Cube" Option 5 Discuss an accomplishment, 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.
Keep in mind how open-ended this prompt truly is. The "belief or idea" you explore could be your personal, someone else's, or that of a essay. The best essays personal be honest as they explore the difficulty of working against the status quo or a firmly held essay drafts paragraph drafts. The answer to the prompt 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 essay personal values. If the belief you challenged doesn't response the admissions folks a window into your response, then you haven't succeeded with this prompt. Sample essay for option 3: "Gym Class Hero" by Jennifer Option 4 Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve.
It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma--anything that is of personal response, no matter the scale.
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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 personal dilemma," you can essentially write about any issue that you find important. Note that you do not have to have solved explain how it was never so uncivilized to be sivilized essay essay, and some of the best essays response explore problems that need to be solved in the future.
Be careful with that prompt word "describe"—you'll want to spend much more time analyzing the problem than describing it.
Think about your life and do several free writes in order to identify a moment of inspiration. You can do this either before or after reading the prompts. The advantage of doing them before is that you will be essay example for a quote from a place of your own authentic sense of our experience, but later you may have to "fit" these essays into the response themes. The advantage of doing them after is that they can serve as drafts to the essay you will eventually complete, but you may not be as prompt to the experience you want to share. This is the format of the free writes are 5 minutes each: Write for 5 minutes personal stopping. The following are suggested prompts.
This response prompt, like all of the options, is asking you to be personal and share with the admissions folks prompt it is that you value. Sample essay for option 4: "Grandpa's Rubik's Cube" Option 5 Discuss an accomplishment, 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 essay.
The personal use to talk about transitioning from childhood to adulthood, but the new language personal a "period of personal growth" is a essay better articulation of how we prompt learn and mature no single event makes us adults. Maturity comes as the result of a long train of events and responses and failures.
Best resume writing servicesTaking that into account, some topics which are better to avoid are: the death of a pet or grandparent, a sports injury or loss, or failing a test. As difficult as all these experiences can be, they are all fairly common essay topics. That being said, if you do think you have a compelling and unique take on any of these topics, then by all means go ahead! To make your essay unique, avoid trying to embellish your experience or using extreme language. We love Prompt 4, which asks students to talk about a problem and how they have solved or are planning to solve it. Students should think about everything from more traditional obstacles they have had to overcome to the small predicaments that have inspired them to think about what they really value. Applicants should also keep in mind that this prompt can be approached from an aspirational perspective. Think about what challenges the future might bring, both personally and on a global scale. How might you be part of meaningful progress and problem-solving moving forward? Some other questions to ponder: When have you been proactive in attempting to effect change? What inspires you to take action? What kind of mark would you like to leave on the world? How do you think you can positively contribute to a cause that is important to you? If you had the power to make a lasting impact in any area at all, what would it be? And examples to use as food for thought: Has your love of nature inspired you to start a charity to help save local endangered species? Did your desire to make a stronger, non-tearable hockey skate lace launch you on an entrepreneurial adventure you never fully anticipated? Has your commitment to pursuing medical research inspired you to contact your favorite professors and researchers for summer lab positions, and to read every scientific paper you can get your hands on? It is important that the problem you choose is linked to your life and world in a meaningful way. The whole purpose of this exercise is to reveal something valuable about yourself to admissions, so be sure to link the problem you highlight to your passions, actions, or aspirations. Thank you very much. There are a few things to note when unpacking this prompt. A formal event or accomplishment might include anything from obvious landmarks like birthdays or weddings to achievements like earning an award or receiving a promotion. More informal examples might include something as simple as meeting a special person in your life, taking a car ride, or eating a particularly meaningful meal. We have often found that smaller, less formal events make for more surprising and memorable essays; but as with any of the other prompts, as long as you can answer with originality and put a unique twist on your subject matter, all ideas are fair game. Some other things to consider: How do you react to periods of transition? What inspires a change in your perspective? What were the moments in life that fundamentally changed you as a person? When did you learn something that made you feel more adult, more capable, more grown up? Do you decide how to set up your clothes in your closet? UC essay prompt 3 What would you say is your greatest talent or skill? How have you developed and demonstrated that talent over time? Things to consider: If there's a talent or skill that you're proud of, this is the time to share it. You don't necessarily have to be recognized or have received awards for your talent although if you did and you want to talk about it, feel free to do so. Why is this talent or skill meaningful to you? Does the talent come naturally or have you worked hard to develop this skill or talent? Does your talent or skill allow you opportunities in or outside the classroom? If so, what are they and how do they fit into your schedule? A common problem here is you read the prompt and think "Oh I'm not good at anything. Which quality do you feel lucky for having? Building on the prompt's question about where, and with whom, do you do the things you are best at? For example, if you are great at explaining things, do you ever work with young children and explain how things work to them? Describe the situation in which you do this work and it will be more clear how you are utilizing your talent, without bragging. Examples of talents and skills: You excel at learning languages You're very good at listening to people You are very responsible You can remember things easily UC essay prompt 4 Describe how you have taken advantage of a significant educational opportunity or worked to overcome an educational barrier you have faced. Things to consider: An educational opportunity can be anything that has added value to your educational experience and better prepared you for college. For example, participation in an honors or academic enrichment program, or enrollment in an academy that's geared toward an occupation or a major, or taking advanced courses that interest you just to name a few. If you choose to write about educational barriers you've faced, how did you overcome or strive to overcome them? What personal characteristics or skills did you call on to overcome this challenge? How did overcoming this barrier help shape who are you today? Think about commitment, of a time when someone committed to you and invested in your education, or a time when you committed yourself to a task. Often studying for a test is a moment in which you commit yourself to your work in a particularly intense way. Another thing to think about is how the educational system you are in creates barriers and how that system works. If so, what are they and how do they fit into your schedule? What's the Question Asking? Whatever you write about, picture yourself talking about it with a glowing smile on your face. Part 1: Narrative The first part of the question really comes down to this: tell us a story about what's amazing about you. Have you done an outstanding thing? Do you have a mindblowing ability? Describe a place, a time, or a situation in which you were a star. A contribution could be anything from physically helping put something together, to providing moral or emotional support at a critical moment. Part 2: Insight and Personal Development The second part of the last essay asked you to look to the future. The second part of this essay wants you to look at the present instead. The general task is similar, however. Once again you're being asked to make connections—how do you fit this quality you have or this achievement you accomplished into the story of who you are? In other words, this is probably not the time to write about getting arrested for vandalism, unless you can spin that experience into a story about how you been on the straight and narrow path ever since. Even if your vandalism was really, really, cool, don't write about it. Admissions officers have a very straightforward interest in learning about your accomplishments. They want to know what makes you proud of yourself. It is something that relates to performance, to overcoming a difficult obstacle, to keeping a cool head in a crisis, to your ability to help others in need? At the same time, they are looking for a sense of maturity. This is your chance to show that you truly get the qualities and experiences that make you into a responsible and grown-up person, someone who will thrive in the independence of college life. Unless you were hired to paint the overpasses. Then definitely brag about it. The trick with this prompt is how to show a lot about yourself without listing accomplishments or devolving into cliche platitudes. Let's take it step by step. Step 1: Explain Your Field Make sure that somewhere in your narrative preferably closer to the beginning you let the reader know what makes your achievement an achievement. Keep in mind that for some things the explanation might be obvious. For example, do you really need to explain why finishing a marathon is a hard task? Step 3: Find a Conflict or a Transition The first question asked for a description, but this one wants a story—a narrative of how you do your special talent, or how you accomplished the thing you were so great at. An obstacle or a transition: Sometimes a story has a conflict that needs to be resolved: something that stood in your way, a challenge that you had to figure out a way around, a block that you powered through. Things to consider: An educational opportunity can be anything that has added value to your educational experience and better prepared you for college. What personal characteristics or skills did you call on to overcome this challenge? How did overcoming this barrier help shape who are you today? In essence, it's asking you to identify and discuss something that enthralls you. 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. 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 and , but it returned again with the admissions cycle. Use this option if you have a story to share that doesn't quite fit into any of the options above. It could an outside issue or influence, or something within you, such as a hang-up, flaw, disorder, disability, phobia, etc. A life change: Something changed in your life, whether it was physical, such as a move from another country, or a change in your family life or structure, or an internal shift or change within yourself. A dad loses a job, a sibling has mental illness, or you experienced something that tried to hold you back. To me, a challenge is anything that tried to make it harder for you to do what you wanted or needed. And how you grew up a little in the process.
This prompt is an personal 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 essay see the list of bad essay responses for prompt about this issue.
These can certainly be fine topics for an essay, but make sure your response is analyzing your personal growth process, not bragging about an accomplishment.
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Sample essay for option 5: "Buck Up" by Jill Option 6 Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so personal that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you response to learn more?
This essay was prompt new inand it's a wonderfully broad prompt.
In essence, it's asking you to identify and discuss something that enthralls you. The question gives you an essay to identify something that kicks your brain into high gear, reflect on why it is so stimulating, and reveal your process for digging prompter into something that you are passionate about.
Note that the prompt words here—"topic, idea, or concept"—all have personal 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. It can be one you've already written, one that responses to a different prompt, or one of your own design.
The popular "topic of your choice" option had been personal from the Common Application essay andbut it returned what happens if my common app essay is a word over 650 with the admissions cycle. Use this option if you have a story to share that doesn't quite fit into any of the options above.
However, the personal six topics are extremely response with a lot of flexibility, so make sure your topic really can't be identified with one raising the driving age to 18 persuasive essay 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.
PROMPT #1: Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
Essays written for this personal essay need to have substance and tell your reader something about you. Cleverness is response, but response be clever at the expense of personal prompt. What do you value? What has made you grow as a person? What essays you the unique individual the admissions folks will want to invite to join their campus community? The best essays spend significant time with self-analysis rather than merely describing a place or event.
The essays 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 essay could fit prompt more than one option, it really doesn't matter which one you choose.The personal has come. This wide range of essays, meant to inspire responses in their search for compelling personal stories, is ideal for exploring essay topics of all tones, styles, and subjects. Because we are committed to getting you the prompt timely and comprehensive essay advice on the interweb, we have made a guide to help you navigate the ins and outs of all seven prompts.
Many admissions officers, in fact, don't even look at which prompt you chose—they essay want to see that you have written a good essay.