Your personal statement is your chance to demonstrate not only why you want to apply to a higher education course, but also what makes you a good candidate.
If you’re struggling to finalise your statement, or to bring it together into a meaningful structure, don’t panic! We’ve put together some top tips to help you demonstrate your suitability.
1. The course – why this subject in particular?
Describe your interest in your chosen course and show them that you have a real interest in the subject you’re applying for. If you’re applying to slightly different subjects at different universities and/or colleges, you can be a bit less specific, but make sure you do explain your reasons for the area of study.
2. Education – what have you learned from it?
Use this section to highlight your relevant knowledge, but also the transferable skills you’ve learned. For example, what have you enjoyed most and what study skills have you learned? What about communication or practical skills? Be as specific as possible with your examples.
3. Work experience – use examples!
Thinking about higher education and your chosen course, try to include any examples from paid or unpaid work experience that help make you a suitable candidate. This could be being organised, team-working, or being self-motivated, for example. Don’t worry if you haven’t got much experience in this area – but it’s a valuable added extra if you do.
4. Additional qualities – what makes you stand out?
Here, it’s worth thinking about what makes you a well-rounded person – do you have hobbies that specifically demonstrate any relevant skills? Perhaps you’ve been part of a student council at school or college? Are you member of a club or society, and if so what are your specific responsibilities?
If you have children, you could describe the transferable skills you use in everyday life, such as planning and time management.
5. Conclusion – bring you and the course together
This doesn’t need to repeat all the points already mentioned, but it’s a good place to emphasise your main reasons for applying and your future ambitions.