Tension is one of the second most important elements in writing, closely allied to suspense _ the "what happens next" ingredient. The problem for many students is to try to condense the personal statement into 600 words. Obviously, the admission officer knows you only have this limited space, but nonetheless does judge you on the four minutes it takes to read your personal statement, if your personal statement includes tension and suspense _ it is sure to be a winner. The secret to a good personal statement is not to give away too much to quickly, keep us guessing, hanging onto every word, thus building up tension and suspense. In order for there to be tension in your personal statement, there must be (or have been) something important at stake. Perhaps this was your family life or what you believe is your future. Perhaps the reason why you chose the course you wish to study. Whatever it is, by not divulging the outcome too soon, you will maintain the reader's interest for that much longer. The following personal statement starts with a powerful suspense filling introduction:
Failure to comply with essay requirements _ Different schools will have different requirements when it comes to writing personal statements. Typical requirements and guidelines include the word count, number of paragraphs, fonts, document size, and deadline of submissions, among others. More than writing a personal statement that will pique the interest of your readers, following the set guidelines is no less important. By following correct instructions, you are essentially communicating to the selections board that you are willing and able to stick to the rules.