Your UCAS personal statement is one of those things that can be truly terrifying! But the truth is, it doesn’t have to be. First, lets look at what a UCAS personal statement is and what it’s meant to do, then we can look at how you can write an effective one to make you stand out from the crowd and get that all important offer you want.
Another way to look at your UCAS personal statement is like a cover letter that accompanies your CV or list of qualifications. It’s one of the first things that the universities will look at and read through before going on to see what qualifications you hold and are expecting to achieve.
Now just as with a cover letter, you don’t want to be too off the wall and wacky as that will potential annoy the university more than it will impress them. Your personal statement is your chance to articulate your love and passion for the subject you want to study at degree level, demonstrate what it is about studying the subject that drives you to want to know more and discover more.
Again though, just like with a good cover letter, you don’t want to write page after page of waffle, you need to get to the point and be clear about why you want to study the course. Remember, universities will be receiving thousands of applications and they aren’t going to want to wade through every personal statement, so if you don’t catch their attention in the first paragraph, chances are, they won’t read on any further.
What to Include in your UCAS Personal Statement
So when writing your personal statement, make sure you try and include the following:
- Why you want to study the course – what excites you about the prospect of studying the subject.
- Who you are – include a bit about you, why you enjoy studying, what motivates you.
- Additional skills or expertise you hold – if you have some relevant work or voluntary experience in the field make sure you include it!
- What you like about the university – why do you want to study your degree with them in particular?
Remember to keep the points clear and specific, avoid waffling and try your best to write naturally in a style that suits you. If you’re finding it hard to start your statement, then leave your opening sentence to the end, you would be surprised how much easier it is to edit text once you have it down in front of you.