Introductory essay: where to start?

Most admission essays are written according to a standard scheme, but that doesn't make it any easier. More often than not, problems arise at the start. But when you finally get started and gain momentum, everything will go like clockwork. So where do you start working on your essay?

You can start anywhere in the essay.

Many candidates get hung up on the first sentence. How do you start it? Try to leave the beginning for later. You don't have to write the essay strictly in order - from the first sentence to the last. If you start with a different part of the 99 papers review, that's okay. In general, the best way to write an essay is to make a list of the main theses, and develop your thoughts around them.

What makes you special?

Since the admissions essay is your chance to show the admissions committee all your strengths, you can start with what makes you different from the other candidates. Or start by talking about an experience that was a turning point in your life. Why did you become interested in this particular discipline? When did you realize you wanted to study in this program? What was the biggest motivation for that decision?

Don't try to write a ready-made essay right away.

You should focus on the writing process, not the finished result. Write whatever you feel is necessary and relevant, then you can reread everything and leave the main ideas you need, properly formatted. Some candidates even write several versions of the essay to choose the most successful one afterwards.

Get as much feedback as possible.

Let as many people as possible read your essay. This should be done before you make your final edits so that you don't have to redo the finished paper later. Also, be sure to give yourself a break from your essay. This way you can look at it with a fresh eye, see what should be tweaked, added or cut out.

Don't be afraid to brag.

You need to make sure that the essay reveals all of your strengths. Sometimes it is very hard to talk about yourself, because we are always taught that it is modesty that beautifies a person. But not in a situation where it's about getting into your dream program! Don't be afraid to brag a little if what you write about yourself is true. Your goal is to amaze and inspire the reader.

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