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Admission Essay Tips

Get personal in your admission essay, but try not to offend the admissions committee

Admission Essay Tips


Admission Essay Tips

The admission essay is an important part of any college application. Some schools give more weight to the essay than others, but if an essay is required, you can bet it’s going to be used in the admissions decision to some degree.

Even if you have a high GPA, the admission essay provides an easy way for you to distinguish yourself from the other thousand applicants who have similar grades and activities as you. Writing an admissions essay that works will increase your chances of being accepted.

To help you out, we have put together this easy list of do’s and don’ts for writing your admission essay.


Brainstorm ideas before you write. Choose the idea that best fits you, and a topic that you feel will be unique to the other thousands of admission essays that the admissions officers will read.

Choose a topic that is specific. Doing so will allow you to go in-depth into one idea rather than trying to cover a broad topic with a short essay. The more in-depth you go, the more unique your admission essay will be.

Write multiple drafts of your essay and get feedback on each one from a parent or friend. This will help ensure you cover the topic well, and give you the chance to choose the best of your work.

Write as well as you can, edit the document and get help if needed. Use a mixture of sharp adjectives and smart wit without sounding too terse, verbose or ostentatious (SAT words!).


Don’t choose offensive topics. Topics that may be offensive are those that surround religion, racism and even personal opinions on world issues. You won’t be doing yourself any favors if your admission essay leaves the admissions officer feeling offended or angry.

Don’t let anyone else dictate the topic of your essay. You can get help brainstorming if you want, but don’t write about someone else’s chosen topic.

Don’t write a negative essay. The more positive you are with the topic, the more enjoyable the essay will be to read. Avoid negative topics and negative ideas within the body of the essay.

Don’t be arrogant or pedantic with your writing. The admissions officers will see it, and arrogance will work against you in the admissions process.

Following these simple guidelines when you write your admission essay will help you get accepted into a top school.

Ross Blankenship is an admissions consultant and admissions counselor. He is also an author and cofounder of Miro Advantage and, which help with test prep and admissions.


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