For more info visit UCAS Site [http://www.ucas.com] UCAS Personal Statements – The ‘Top 10’ mistakes _ Spelling mistakes (This is unacceptable and will mean that many admissions tutors will move you to the bottom of the pile) _ The opening sentence of the personal statement is not punchy and attention grabbing enough (Remember the admissions tutor has to sift through 100’s of applications so your introduction needs to stand out above the crowd and grab the attention of the admissions tutor) _ The personal statement does not outline why you would like to study your chosen subject _ The structure of the personal statement is too disjointed and does not flow (There is nothing worse than jumping ‘backwards and forwards’) _ The word ‘I’ is used too much throughout the personal statement _ Lack of paragraphs (There is nothing worse than staring at a solid block of text) _ Sentences are too long – use full stops to break up long sentences Misuse of grammar (Most notably commas) _ The personal statement does contain a concluding sentence summarising your application (Don’t just end your personal statement with a ‘cliff hanger’!) _ And finally……PROOF READ, PROOF READ, PROOF READ!!!! (Ask as many people as possible to read through your personal statement and give you feedback – but do remember that it is YOUR personal statement)
oMake sure you haven't used over long, unwieldy sentences or paragraphs. If you have you must break these up. _ oThat you've started your personal statement with a powerful introduction so this captures your reader's attention _ straight away. oThat your structure is easy to follow and that each sentence hooks into the next line. oThat you finish with your future career goals. _ A key advantage is to use a professional to edit and improve your personal statement. If, however you are working in isolation and do not have that advantage, be wary of allowing family or friends to read and comment on it. For one thing, an outside will be objective and critical: they may be full of praise or go to the other extreme so far as style, at least, is concerned.