Tips for writing your college application essay


The importance of your college application essay lies in what cannot be found within your grades or any other component of your college application – your personality.

Your essay is your opportunity to tell your story whilst also showcasing your writing skills. This will allow the admissions team to evaluate you on a deeper level and learn about who you are as a person – your personal experiences, your aspirations, creativity, and the things you value.

Below, we share a few tips for writing your college application essay:

Review essay prompts

First, review the essay requirements for the college you are applying to and ensure that you meet them, such as word count or specific topics. These are typically posted on their website.

Plan and draft

Before you begin, decide on your main point and organise your essay. Do some research if necessary and draft an outline for the topics you would like to cover.

Strong opening

It is important to capture your reader’s attention from the beginning. This can be written as a statement or question that introduces your topic in a general sense, which you address and go further into later.

Be clear and concise

Make your essay easier to read by using fewer words to make stronger points – keep it brief. You can easily lose your reader’s attention by rambling.

Be authentic

A common mistake many people make is trying too hard to sound like something they think the college is looking for – some even try too hard at sounding authentic. Be yourself, be honest, and write with your own voice. Don’t overthink it.


Wrap up your essay by summarising the most important point and/or most memorable aspect of your essay topic. Most people remember the last thing the read – leave your reader with something to think about for a lasting impression.

Take a break and before proofreading

Before submitting your essay, take a short break and then go through the document for any final editing and polishing. It is best to proofread with fresh eyes to avoid skipping over any mistakes. You can also have a friend or colleague help you with this step.

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