Going to Grad School: Statement of Purpose


I can honestly say that the only thing that I struggled with when it came to writing my statement of purpose was keeping it to only two pages double spaced. I felt as if I had so much to say, that shaving it down to the very minimum was really hard. Luckily I have a group of really good friends who have been more than willing to help read what I've been writing. It took probably about seven or eight full edits to get it to what it was. 

Each statement of purpose will be different from the next; your story is different from mine. This is the time you really have to shine and say what you're interested, why you wanna go to that college, and why your grades/test scores/extracurricular are what they are. Because all of the other parts of the applications (for the most part) are very much the same, this is one of the very few chances that you have to actually show your personality and your dedication. 

The way that I structured my paper was the first paragraph introducing what I want to study, the middle body paragraphs about why my grades/extra curricular activities are what they are, and the final paragraph was about why I wanted to go to the specific universities, what I wanted to study, and who I would like to work under. While I can't give too much advice about the statement of purpose since it is such a personal paper you have to write, what I can say is you really should have people proofread your paper. The littlest overlooked mistake could be very critical - especially for those of us who are applying for humanities/writing based programs.


If you’re interested in graduate school and are unsure where to start, I’ve done a couple of posts describing my experience with the application and the process. You can check out these posts if you are thinking about if you want to go to graduate school, need to know how to find a graduate school once you decide to apply to graduate school, how I wrote my resume for grad school, want to know what the application looks like, about the GRE, or asking for letters of recommendation.
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