STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD.
WRITING A PERSONAL STATEMENT
The time and effort put into your statement will be apparent from the off. If you've had limited time to prepare your narrative; rushed it, the last thing you need is to add poor spelling and grammar...this will add to the feeling of "how much does this person want to study this course?"
Use a word processor to ensure you get it right the first time:
- LibreOffice Writer
- WPS Office Free Writery
- Google Docs
100% free programs to help get it right!
I said I played "Football every weekend, and had made it to the Captain of the team", but I haven't played much over the winter months (and certainly won't be captain on my return).
Your statement will be a starting point to generate a conversation about you, if and when you achieve an interview. Any mistruths will be glaringly obvious to the interviewer if you can't go into detail about your achievements or goals.
Be confident in your interview by knowing everything you wrote in your statement is true.
Highlight your strength and achievements! It’s not enough to just state your interest in a subject: failing to include important skills could be costly. Draw attention to the experiences you have, and how they are suited to the course you wish to study.
I know, it sounds daft...but the number of times I have read a statement where a student forgets to point out the accomplishments they have made to date, is worrying. Just stating that you 'love' or have a 'passion' (another No-No) for a subject, doesn't stand up!! Link your achievements to the course you are applying for:
'Being the Captain of the football team, not only means that I am a team player, but that I can manage people...' or, 'At the weekend, I work in a busy coffee shop. Not only has this given me more independence, but it has also given me the ability to understand the importance of working together...'
“At the weekend I like football, playing FIFA on my PlayStation and watching football, so want to study Football Coaching”.
Avoid ploughing through things for the sake of it. Ensure each detail is connected and strengthened by evidence. Elaborate on comments to justify why you’re an ideal applicant.
As an example, what did you learn from your work experience? What insights did you gain from The Duke of Edinburgh award? Why you applied for the head boy or girl role in your school.
“I wasn't great at English, and failed GCSE Art, but I like History”.
Concentrate on the positives. There’s no benifit in apologising for something you didnt pass in school. Be confident, and write about your positives which explain how you satisfy the courses requirements.
“What is Biomedical Science? I don’t know... I had to work hard to get a level 4 at GCSE, but thought it would improve my knowledge”.
Whilst this is quite funny, it’s a dangerous approach. The College admissions department are unlikely to take you seriously, so manage your humour on this occasion and take a more serious passageway.
A carelessly written statement won't be appreciated, so take your time to get it right. Check your spelling and grammar. Do several drafts and ask a mentor or parent to proofread it before you send the final version.
Plan a draft of your statement before writing it - make bullet points and notes of achievements and ideas before you start. It can often be hard at times to see achievements in ‘things’ you may take for granted and do daily.
As previously mentioned, don’t just list all your activities and experience. Explain why they are relevant to the course you’re applying to by mentioning the skills they involve, remembering to be enthusiastic and passionate about yourself, and the course you are applying for.
Remember, if you are invited to attend an interview, the College enrolment staff will most certainly ask you questions based on the information you covered in your statement.
Your application form will need thought and effort. But don't fret about it. The colleges simply want to hear a little about you - this is your opportunity to tell them why you will be an ideal candidate for the course.
Your statement doesn't want to be too long. Think about the things we've recommended, outline what you want to say, then plan it out.
Take your time and you'll arrive at something you're satisfied with.
Most applications open on September 1st for students applying for the following year's enrolment. College deadlines most often fall between November and February. Early admission means preparing your application sooner in your final year (11 and 13).
Early applications give you more time to focus on coursework and exams.
Don’t leave your statement to the closing second to write—a hurried statement could:
- Appear impassive or vague
- Have errors you missed in a rush
- Miss important information that counts