When writing your personal statement as part of your medical school admissions packet, you are communicating your unique attributes and abilities. To give your statement greater clarity and substance, here are 6 important considerations. 1. USE ACTIVE VOICE. Active verbs convey power and authority. Your ultimate goal is to stand out enough to get accepted, so incorporating action verbs puts the emphasis directly on you. An added bonus of using active voice versus passive voice is that passive voice sentences take up more line space, an important consideration since the number of characters count. (Example of active voice: I shadowed several doctors..., rather than passive voice: I have shadowed several doctors..., note use of the helping verb making it passive).
Address Your Weaknesses (If Necessary). The personal statement presents an opportunity to address weaknesses in your applications and offer explanations as to why things went wrong. Drawing attention to the low points in your application is a risky business, and pulling this off correctly can be tricky. If you feel it necessary to justify or explain something, first ask yourself the following two questions: a) Is this issue worth mentioning? b) Does your explanation legitimize the deficiency? For example, there is no need to address the fact that you received a B in physics. On the other hand, a failing grade in physics is something that is probably worth addressing. If you failed physics because you found it too hard or simply got lazy, it is better to leave the issue unmentioned. A deficiency resulting from circumstances beyond your control, such as an illness or death of a loved one, is something that the admissions committee and your interviewer should know about. When addressing a weakness or deficiency, strive to incorporate that section into your essay so that the essay maintains its flow and focus. Suddenly presenting an idea without connecting it to the rest of your essay will seem jarring and out_of_place to the reader. If the issue is important enough, you may in fact want to build your entire essay's theme around that point.