Essay on personal and academic background and statement of purpose

Which program are you applying to? Go for the Goals in Your Statement of Purpose. What do you need help with? Identify your goals. Write about your goals. Identify your goals You know you want a graduate degree, but do you know exactly what you want to do with it? Consider exactly why you feel so passionate about your subject area. Evaluate your personality, aptitudes, and interests. Explore different career paths.


Think about where you want to be after completing your graduate degree. Explain your motivations. Tailor your graduate school experience to your goals. Tailor your past experiences to your goals. Keep your goals statement focused. Accepted has been helping graduate school applicants gain acceptance to top programs since As Seen On. Who We Are.

Requirements and prompts

Free Resources. Applying to grad school means having to write a killer statement. But what exactly is the difference between these two types of essays? First off, what is the main difference between a statement of purpose and a personal statement for grad school?

How to Write a Statement of Purpose for Graduate School | The Princeton Review

The short answer is that a statement of purpose is about what you want to do, while a personal statement is about who you are. Quick side note: we've created the world's leading online GRE prep program that adapts to you and your strengths and weaknesses. Not sure what to study? Confused by how to improve your score?

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What is a statement of purpose?

Click here to learn how you can improve your GRE score by 7 points, guaranteed. Now that you know the main difference between a personal statement and a statement of purpose, which one will you have to actually write for your grad school applications?

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The answer to this question depends on what documents your school requires and how it defines the two types of essays. In fact, many grad programs use the terms interchangeably! Meanwhile, some grad schools combine qualities from both statements into one comprehensive statement. Generally, most grad programs will require at least one essay. For research-based programs, this will likely be the more academic, more formal statement of purpose. In this section, we give you our top tips for how to write a truly effective and compelling personal statement and statement of purpose for grad school.

We also give you some general tips you can use for both essays. Most statements of purpose will require you to introduce your future goals academic, professional, or both and describe how this particular program will help you achieve these goals. Make sure that you also explain why this program in particular will help you. You likely already did some research on the program—why else would you be applying? You are likely to find areas that need improvement — be sure to take notes or highlight them. It can help to read the essay out loud; a general rule is that if it sounds unusual when spoken aloud, it should be rewritten.

Then, revise the essay. Have another individual or individuals read your essays critically and provide feedback. Your mentor can be an ideal person to provide that feedback; alternatively, you might try a university writing center or your peers.

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  • Writing a Statement of Purpose.

Using the feedback and your own thoughts while reading the essay, edit it further until it is a polished product. Be sure to proofread, check formatting, and make sure that all aspects of the essay prompt are clearly and thoroughly addressed.

How To Write A Perfect Admissions Essay (Statement of Purpose)

Here are some recommended elements to include, strategies to try, and recommended elements or strategies to avoid. As you complete your graduate applications, you might also consider applying for financial aid or some sort of graduate research fellowship such as the Ford Foundation Fellowship or the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.

Such fellowships typically require a background statement that is similar in some aspects to the statement of purpose. HOME Undergraduate Program Resources Graduate School Resources Applying to Graduate Programs Writing Statements of Purpose and Other Application Essays Writing Statements of Purpose and Other Application Essays As noted in the application qualifications and admissions criteria section of this website, the statement of purpose in other words, the primary application essay; sometimes also called personal statement , background statement , and other names can play a major role in determining whether an applicant is invited to interview and in final selection decisions.

Types of Statements of Purpose and Other Application Essays Depending on the program, you may be required to provide a statement of purpose , application essay , autobiographical essay , personal statement , career goal statement, background statement , or other similarly named piece of writing.

Common themes include: 1,2 Your long-term career plans Your research interests or areas of interest in psychology Your reasons for choosing the program that you are applying to Your prior research experiences Your academic background or objectives Your motivation for pursuing your field of study It is common for programs to specify how the essay should be formatted, or at a minimum, its maximum length.

How to Write a Statement of Purpose and Other Application Essays When writing an application essay, it can be helpful to rely on the following steps. Outlining This is an optional step.

Strategies for Winning Over Admissions Committees

Revising It is easy to get burned out on writing, so after you have completed that first draft, set it aside for a while.