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What does college usually look at in a college essay?

I am about to write college essays for my college applications and would like to know how to make my application seem better than the rest. This will help me in writing my essay.

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Doc’s Answer

Hillary colleges are look for three things in your admission essay: a unique perspective, strong writing, and an authentic voice. People in admissions often say what makes a great essay is one where it feels like your right there in the room, talking authentically to the admissions committee!

You have a unique background, interests and personality. This is your chance to tell your story (or at least part of it). The best way to tell your story is to write a personal, thoughtful essay about something that has meaning for you. Be honest and genuine, and your unique qualities will shine through. Admissions officers have to read an unbelievable number of college essays, most of which are forgettable. Many students try to sound smart rather than sounding like themselves. Others write about a subject that they don't care about, but that they think will impress admissions officers.

Colleges are simply looking for thoughtful, motivated students who will add something to the first-year class.

Hope this was helpful Hillary
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Atul’s Answer

I am not an expert nor have I had job in the Univ Admissions office.
What I have learned is that (I put 2 kids to college who are very successful):
- Pick a subject that is unique in nature.
- How do you relate yourself in the subject you are writing an essay about.
- Write clearly and succinctly to make your point.
- I f there is a lesson to be learned from your essay - what is it.
- How does it relate to the major you are applying for.
- Do not be too brief at the same it shall not to be verbose to drive your message.
- Finally, no spelling/grammatical mistakes and have someone else review before submitting.
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Katie’s Answer

Hi! I recommend that you write about something that you are passionate about. Writing a compelling story about your life, passions, hobbies, etc. will let the colleges get to know who you are outside of your academics. This is their opportunity to learn more about you outside of your transcript. Ensure you follow the prompt and have a peer or teacher read it over and provide edits to ensure everything is up to par. Good luck!
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Elise’s Answer

Hilary,

Colleges look for a few main things:

Do you answer the prompt?
Is your writing clear and easy to follow?
Do you have a good flow? This means you set up the topic, then work through it logically.

Other than that, it is good to have some statements that let the reader inside your head. That helps them know you as an individual, rather than just another applicant who says "I love this school because...." It is also good to show how you've grown over time, if it's relevant to the prompt. You can also describe how the school/program will help you continue to grow. :)

Good luck!
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Kyle’s Answer

To put it simple,

On top of perfect grammar and punctuation,

1. How well you did your job in explaning/answering the prompt.
2. How you grew as a person in aspects of both academic and personal
3. Word choices
4. Using your own voice in your writing
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Kyle’s Answer

Definitely depends on the questions, but ultimately speaking, they want to see the personal growth. A significant grade improvement, chances you have take to grow in aspects of personal and academic, or any challenges you have faced throughout the years. They want to see how you elaborate on that.
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Ka’s Answer

You should write about a topic that you are genuinely interested in and passionate about. But the university will want to know your actions on the topic. It's one thing to say, "My grandfather passed away due to colon cancer. I am passionate about finding a cure in dedication to him."

It's better to say, "I did an internship, research fellowship, etc. on colon cancer." You acted on your interest in a concrete manner and was a self-starter. You are not a passive person.
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