UCAS has sent out a release for students applying to university to help them with their personal statements.

With Christmas and the New Year upon us it is sometimes difficult to realise that the 15th January deadline is scant weeks away so UCAS recommend you get drafting as soon as you can.

UCAS says that the personal statement is “…your opportunity to tell universities and colleges about your suitability for the course(s) that you hope to study. You need to demonstrate your enthusiasm and commitment, and above all, ensure that you stand out from the crowd.”

They also say that the statement could be the only written work of yours that they see prior to deciding on a yes or no.

Studential.com says the personal statement is a “…47 line (or 4000 character) piece of writing that allows you to tell the universities and colleges you are applying to why they should offer you a place on the course”.

Here is a précis of the UCAS top ten tips guidance:

1. Express interest in the subject and show real passion

Show your ambitions and desires for wanting to do the course you have chosen and put your passion across. And show examples of where you have taken it beyond the school gates.

2. Go for a strong opening line to grab the reader's attention

Make it punchy

3. Relate outside interests to the course

Include anything that shows a wider interest in the course.

4. Think beyond university

Write about where you think the course will take you, especially where high placements are an issue.

5. Get the basics right

This is where you need to think about a logical and flowing statement structure as well as the spolling and englund!

6. Don’t try to sound too clever

Be yourself and write as yourself. You could trip yourself up by trying to use academic language where it doesn’t fit.

7. Take time and make it your best work

Don’t rush it.

8. Don't leave it until the last minute – remember the 15 January deadline!

Don’t leave it to the last minute either.

9. Get a second opinion

Get other people to read it, check it and give you feedback. Your parents would of course be a good start.

10. Honesty is the best policy

Make it your own work, don’t copy someone else’s. Every personal statement is checked by UCAS and a similarity to any other work of above 10% is reviewed by their Similarity Detection Service Team.

Don’t be tempted to exaggerate either, or the questions you get asked at interview might well become embarrassing.

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