The Common Application
Here are some suggestions we recommend to help you write
– Brainstorm possible topics – this could be absolutely anything – Slice of life stories can be very appealing and just as noteworthy if the writing is exceptional. It’s not necessary to write about some major event or achievement. Keep a file of life stories and don’t pay attention to any
– Discuss your ideas with people you know. Listen to suggestions and elaborate on your thoughts. What do others think of your topics? Which ideas are discriminating and distinguish you as a strong applicant at your dream college?
– Don’t rush – pace yourself
– Once you have completed your “Free Write” go back and look at the specific
Once you have your topic ideas and your general outline, you can begin writing out your rough draft. We’ve seen and
– Writing that does not emphasize the writer’s strengths
– Contrived transitions that don’t connect
– Narratives that do not engage the reader
– Repeating what is on the activity resume
– Dull openings that quickly lose interest
– Using quotes that don’t connect or add anything to the
– Writing what you think admission officers want to read and therefore not your true self – using a thesaurus to impress
– Too much written in the passive voice.
– Not keeping language specific – writing too generally about too many things
– Use of slang or relaxed language
“Please briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities or work experiences in the space below or on an attached sheet (150 words or fewer).
250 word minimum – Choose One”