How to Make Your Personal Statement for University Stand Out?

5 minutes reading time (905 words)

Have you been thinking about studying abroad? If you have been thinking of applying to your favourite universities overseas, here's one thing that plays a very important part in your student visa application - the Statement of Purpose (also known as Personal Statement).

What is a Personal Statement (SOP), you ask?

A statement of purpose or personal statement for university is an essay that states an applicant's purpose and intention while applying to a particular course in a university (just like when you want to confess your feelings to someone, you send him/her a long message saying why he/she should accept you to be the bf/gf…) Let's look at how to write an effective SOP that will help your chances of getting accepted into your desired university.

Your SOP plays a very important role in your selection process and that is why you should start with it at the earliest. The sooner you start, the more time you will have to improvise it. You want to do it last minute? Fine. But you gotta make sure your inspiration and brain juice are on fire (not recommended tho).

While writing a personal statement for university, you are bound to be confused with tons of questions like:

  • How do I ensure that my preferred university accepts my application?
  • What am I good at and how do I emphasize it in my SOP?
  • Do I list out all my achievements?
  • Do I have the necessary grades and achievements?

Blur sotong? Nevermind. Start reading to understand how you can write an effective personal statement for university that will make your application stand out.

It's all about you!

Your personal statement for university must concisely explain your intentions in choosing your desired course. Do not try too hard to sound impressive or convincing. It is important that your SOP is honest and reflects your personality, intentions, and aspirations. Your primary goal is not to convince the reader, but to express your intentions and aspirations.

Be clear. Be analytical

Your writing has to be coherent and cohesive. Instead of simply describing your opinions and interests, be analytical. Express your interests and validate them with suitable examples that will help the examiner understand why you are an eligible candidate.

Academics / Everything

The examiner would wish to get a wholesome understanding of the candidate. Therefore, talk about other things besides your educational qualifications. Show them you are good academically and non-academically. You may consider including:

  • Your part-time jobs and internships
  • Your volunteering experience
  • Your strengths and weaknesses
  • Your leadership positions
  • Your achievements and awards

And other useful skills you might have 

Conclude it with your goals

You must elaborate on how you wish to benefit from your chosen field of study. Don't just talk about why you like the course. Talk in detail about it aligns with your goals. Explain how choosing this course will help you achieve your ambitions and career goals in the future.

Personal Statement Checklist

Let's learn how to write a personal statement! Starting with a stunning opening and moving to an excellent backdrop and a promising finish, there are several crucial elements of information that outline how to arrange your SOP.

  • Begin your SOP with an anecdote (a story or example) about what motivated you to pursue further education in this profession.
  • Mention your source of inspiration. To do so, think of a significant event or personal experience that influenced your academic or career choices.
  • Provide context for your mastery of the discipline through practical experiences and projects. Describing it influenced your decision to continue your education in that field.
  • Mention a subject of study or a topic of specialisation that interests you (if any).
  • Discuss the skills you intend to obtain from this programme and how it will aid you in achieving your career goals.
  • Mention your professional short-term goal.
  • Mention your specific long-term goal. Explain your career objectives for the next 10-15 years and how you want to contribute to the industry throughout that time.
  • Explain why you picked this country over your home country or another country in the world.
  • Explain why you chose this particular university. Mention any special qualities of the university that fit your requirements. 
  • In a paragraph, expand on your volunteer work, community service, or extracurricular interests, and explain how these experiences have helped you grow. You can also explain how you might be able to assist the student organisation at the university.
  • Have you been considering studying abroad? If you've been thinking about applying to your favorite universities abroad and have been wondering about the Statement of Purpose, here you go.

5 Common mistakes to avoid in the personal statement for university

  • Never exaggerate your family history. Sticking to basic information about yourself is what is expected in your SOP.
  • Being direct and concise without flattering phrases makes your SOP more appealing.
  • Do not use a lot of technical jargon.
  • Being honest is crucial, so better avoid dishonesty while writing your SOP.
  • Using unusual fonts has to be avoided to make your SOP stand out.

While it might seem a little tricky, writing a good statement of purpose is all about how well you can express your interests and capabilities. Want to get started now?

Get in touch with our education counsellors at AECC Global by filling out the enquiry form! We'll help you kickstart your study abroad journey.

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