Personal Statement for College Application

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A personal statement is a personal document submitted to university to convince the respective authorities that you are a deserving candidate. In the personal statement, you tell them about the qualities you endure in yourself which justify your candidature. 

Why do personal statement matter for College applications?

Colleges and Universities are looking for a candidate who has the necessary skillsets essential for the growth of their institution. Moreover, they do not want someone who has a vague plan ahead of his studies and does not want to contribute to society through his academic value. A couple of more things that are reflected by your personal statement are:

True insights of the candidate

A personal statement is purely written by the candidate themselves which gives the admission committee a good insight into its personal life. It also reflects the true personality of the candidate which will be judged by the university to determine your candidature. Personal statements carry the true intention of the candidate to join the respective university/college for a respective course.

Communication skills 

The personal statement is purely written by the candidate so it gives the authorities an idea whether the respective candidate is proficient in a particular language or not. Language plays an important role while securing admission to the respective university and this is why Universities and colleges demand a language proficiency test score from a recognized organization.

True Motivation 

The personal statement carries your true motivation for opting for the selected course in a selected university. It also carries your personal and professional goals which motivated you to pursue a higher education. It also helps the admission committee to understand your reason for leaving your home country.

What is the format of a Personal Statement?

The personal statement is one of the most important documents submitted to the university justifying your candidature for the respective university. Although every university follows the respective guidelines, here is how you can approach your personal statement. Here is a sample format for your personal statement:

  1. Begin your personal statement with an attractive introduction, stating your reason for writing your personal statement.
  2. From the next paragraph, state your academic and professional pursuits along with the reason for choosing them and how they have helped you in your progression till now.
  3. In the next paragraph, you can tell about your motivation to join the particular university, and how it will help you to achieve your future goals.
  4. You can add the core values you have in yourself which will help you to sail smoothly through the upcoming academic pursuits and challenges.
  5. In the end, you can conclude by assuring the respective committee that you will respect the rules and regulations set by the university and will always be grateful for the opportunity to study at their institution.

NOTE: This is a sample format, but before writing a personal statement, it is important for you to go through the university’s guidelines first.

What they are expecting from your personal statement?

Background information

They want to know about your past academic and professional experiences. This will give them an idea of your past choices and how they are relevant for your future progression. This information also helps the university’s committee to check whether you are congruent with your choices or not.

Your Achievements

They want to know about your achievement in the academic and professional realms of your life. They also want to know whether you have handled any position of responsibility or any leadership position. They also want to know how these achievements have shaped your personality.

Value you bring

This is the most important part of your statement. The university is very much keen to know the value you are bringing to the institution. Whether you are valuable to them or not will determine your admission to the respective institution.

Future Plans

They want to know whether you have a future plan or not. It will help them to understand whether you are actually passionate or not. This shows that you have a weak motivation which is the most important for rejection.

Things you should remember while writing your first personal statement

Honesty is the key

If you are not honest with yourself you can not be honest with anyone. If you honestly put forward your motivation there are better chances that your personal statement will be selected in the first go.

Positive Tone

The tone of your writing should always be positive. This shows that you are a motivated candidate and give the committee a good impression of your candidature.

Proofread again and again

It is better if you proofread your personal statement again and again to eliminate all the possibility of error. Any small error even in grammar and any factual error will cost you a significant rejection.


This is the most important part of the personal statement. Having congruency in your choices and motivation gives the admission committee a good idea of your mindset. It also displays that the candidate is not lying.

Things you should never include in your personal statement

Too many phrases

Phrases are used to create an impact in your writing but if you use them a lot then your personal statement will be covered with phrases only and your honest motivation will be hidden in between.

Not following the guidelines

Guidelines given by the university have to be strictly followed in your personal statement. If you are not following them it gives the admission committee an idea that you are a vague and unattentive candidate.

Starting Late

If you have to submit your personal statement in April it is better to start preparing for it prior 3 months. This time period is important for you to think about all the aspects of your academic and professional life which motivated you and your achievements in school, college and work life.

Grammar errors

This is the most important aspect of your document. Having a small grammatical error will give the admission committee the idea that the respective candidate is not proficient enough in communication skills. This skill is important to communicate with peers and professors at the institution.

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