Application essays and personal statements
Use the links below to learn about writing application essays and personal statements.
- Application Essay Home
- Frequently asked questions
- Before you begin: useful tips for writing your essay
- Guided brainstorming exercises
- Get more help with your essay
These pages will give you some general guidelines and an opportunity to start writing.
There is no substitute, however, for talking to people in the program to which you're applying and to admissions committee members if possible.
The most effective essays develop from a good understanding of what is required for each particular program.
When possible, have others read your essay, especially people who have some familiarity with this type of essay.
Getting started: Brainstorming exercises
This webpage provides spaces for you to brainstorm and draft parts of your essay.
At any point during your use of this page, you can send the writing you've done to yourself in an email message by filling out and submitting the form at the bottom of this page.
Writers of application essays often feel that they have either too much to say or too little. In either case, a good way to get started is to do some writing that will help generate and focus your ideas.
Use the space below to do some brainstorming and mail your writing to yourself later (using the form below) to keep a record of what you've written. If you're more comfortable writing by hand, take this opportunity to brainstorm on paper in response to the questions and suggestions below.