SOP, also known as a statement of purpose, is what many find very confusing, and misunderstands what it’s all about. Many students see it as an essay to write about themselves and begin to write things that are off point on a statement of purpose. In this article, you will learn fully how to write a good statement of purpose.
Statement of purpose is one of the vital aspects of student applications, this is why university admission committees always place a high priority and hefty weight on a statement of purpose, and the way it’s being structured. This is because they will want to know your level of interest to study in their school.
A good statement of purpose should be like this:
‘’I am applying for admission to the faculty of engineering for the mechanical engineering program, at oxford university because I believe the skills I have acquired will help to blossom your program because I believe there will be challenges, which will as well leverage my skills, and develop my scientific and technical knowledge.
I am pleased and delighted to apply for the Master of Science program, at Stanford University. Because, ever since I was small, I have always had a love for science, and for as long as I can remember, I’ve always had the zeal to become a scientist or an engineer.
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Furthermore, it’s obvious that 99% of statements look to be structured similarly, and most of the time, students do copy and paste statements of purpose, edit and rewrite or change little words, which makes the statement of purpose irrelevant to the purpose of the application. If you want your statement of purpose, to stand out, if you want yours to be recognized by the admission c committee, if you want your statement to attract favor, be ready to carve out a great statement of purpose, original and great.
How can I make my statement of purpose stand out from the crowd?
You want to learn how to write a good statement of purpose, you want something that will stand out from the crowd? It’s quite easy. One thing that is involved is that, before the admission committee will admit you, they will expect you to answer some questions, however, the questions may not be asked openly, but you should prepare to answer the following questions accurately.
- What do you intend to study at graduate school
- What’s your aim to study this degree
- What’s your aim of coming to study in this particular college, why did you select us?
- What’s your aim of coming to study in this particular country, how did you hear about us?
- What’s the level of skill and knowledge in this particular field?
- How many years or months of experiment do you have in this field?
- The experience you’ve acquired is related to your field?
- If you are experienced, or skilled, do you have the intention of gaining an additional skill?
- After your graduation, what do you plan to do with your degree
- After your graduation what do you intend to do, take a job, or venture into research?
- What do you expect from the university and your program?
- Would you like to venture into research under any professor? If yes why that?
- In what way will contribute to the development of our university, what skills you have to contribute to our college.
- Aside from the skills you, education, and academic qualification, what other hobbies do you have?
- What understanding do you have about our community, student activity, and our culture? What do you think about us?
- What are those unique characteristics that you have which are not known to us, kindly state them here.
Now, that you understand the questions that are likely to be asked, you are to study the questions carefully, so you can be able to provide a detailed answer to them, before starting to write your statement of purpose. Provide a detailed answer to each question that is being stated above, and build a comprehensive answer that will be catchy enough that it can make the admission committee consider you.
Furthermore, if you are applying for a graduate program, you won’t be chanced for a personal interview, which means the best way to convince the panel is via your statement of purpose.
Be ready to get your story conveyed in the best possible way so that the panel will find it interesting enough. If lucky enough, the admission committee finds your statement of purpose catchy and interesting enough, you will end not only getting admission but also granted admission.
Strategies to Write a Powerful Statement of purpose
When writing your statement of purpose, you must follow some specific strategy. Though it’s well acknowledged that most students just write whatever comes to their head or mind, however, do not be included among those people, if you can learn how to accurately write a good statement of purpose, then you are sure to be selected among others. To write a good statement of purpose that will stand out and be original, there are some strategies. For this purpose, here are laid down strategies for you to follow.
Write stories and not statement
If you were being a choice to choose between newspaper and novel, which would you rather choose?
Without hesitation, we are quite sure you will choose a novel.
This is a result of what they each carry; a newspaper will only give you, mere news, while a story will give an inept of an interesting story, a novel will give you a little piece of an interesting story, that you will surely get attracted to. A novel will captivate your attention, and bring the humanity out of you, it will make you imagine yourself in the scene, and lastly, stories are always much more remembered than statements.
Stories connect to us, statement don’t
Take this for an example
‘’ a few years ago, I got an employment offer into a new multinational company. There was no special task assigned for me to do, I only have to wake up early in the morning, go to work, and repeat this routine all over the week. There was practically nothing new for me to learn at the place of work. I thought about this, and I decided to further my education, so I could learn things and leverage my skills and get a better job offer.
Sounds like a story right? More of a normal story that happens to everyone, now take a look at this
one Monday morning, I found myself, In a lonely room surrounded by computers, everywhere seems like a desert to me, I reasoned about my purpose in the place, and then the reality dawn on me, that I will be wasting my time if I continue staying here, I decided to dig the gold out of me, and I go out on the look for a greener pasture.
Both seem like a narrative story, right? But which of them sounds more interesting and catchy? If you were an examiner, which of them would you rather go for? Which do you think, will be easily remembered out of numerous applications.
Now, have a deep thought, and think again, how does your statement of purpose sound? Like a newspaper or like a novel? If you were to be among the admission committee, which of the stories would you rather choose? The latter right?
It’s time to have a deep thought, before writing your statement of purpose, understand the reason why you want to write it, make it sound emotional, economical, and convincing, do not just write a plain text and call it a statement of purpose.
Think about why you want to study, and the need for you to do it, before writing the statement of purpose, if you think hard, you will surely find a connection. The reason why you want to study might not sound or look obvious in plain text, but if you think hard, you will surely find a connection.
If you have been able to carve out a strong reason for the need for you to study, it’s time for you to develop a story, develop an interesting but catchy story, and the benefits will come back hugging you in no time. Nothing comes easy, be ready to give it all it takes, make research, and learn from others before you start writing.
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Quantify your stories
That you were asked to write a story, doesn’t mean you should carve out a story that doesn’t relate to the purpose of your application, do not write a story that will sound like a thesis, rather, write something meaningful, that will convey a piece of detailed information about you.
Your story should serve as a remarkable source of information about you and your application. Also, when it comes to a story, quality should not only be a considerable factor, quantity matters a lot too. Write something measurable, add varieties of words that will give the story a good depth, and convey deeper Information about you. This will enable the reader to have an understanding of the dept of the story.
As an illustration; if you have once worked for a nongovernmental organization, teaching mathematics topic; you can easily say this.
During my school days in engineering college, I joined a nongovernmental organization, to assist them to teach little kids mathematics subjects.
This may sound good and straight to the point, but does it give the reader much information about you, does it sound informative enough? Obviously no.
What about you changing it to something that sounds like this?
During my school days, while I was still in the college of engineering, I joined a nongovernmental organization, where I was assigned the position of a math teacher. I had to take the responsibility, I taught all the students in grades 1 to 5 mathematics, I taught them topics like, algebra, simultaneous equations, trigonometry, etc. And all the students I thought had nothing but an A in mathematics after their exam.
Does this sound more informative?
What differences did you notice, one is more informative than the other right the last one is more informative. The last story, while surely makes the reader imagine the scene as reality, have a more understanding of what took place and happened. This is simply the power of numbers, it gives more authority and value to your story.
If you can quantify your story, make it well detailed, the committee, won’t forget your name, and your application will surely be set aside from others.
How to write a good statement of purpose, is to complete training on its own, which requires adequate time to learn. We hope you are learning.
Whatever happened during your college, be it research or training, let it be included, so your statement can have a good meaning, more beautiful and realistic.
Be specific about whatever you include in your statement of purpose, don’t just include it, because you think it will add value, or impress the admission committee.
Be ready to dig out something specific and informative, do not write something like “I chose this degree because I love it” this is totally on point, and will piss the admission committee off. Explain in detail why you chose the field, how you think it’s going to be beneficial to you, and how you are ready to impact your world with the skills.
Also, do not “beat around the bush” we normally discuss with your friends. Be specific, always make sure to hit the nail on the head. Don’t use lines such as “I want to impact my world” use specific lines.
Some schools want a statement of purpose from you, not just because they want to know what you are all about, rather they want to know how well you can think on your own, how creative you are, and how to sound like you are. Be ready to explore different words.
Customize Your Essay.
One major mistake many students make is that they write basic text using the same template, without customizing or changing words. And forward to different organizations.
This is never a good idea if you genuinely want to learn how to write information a good statement of purpose.
You might think changing the name will make the statement of purpose look different, however, each University has each way they want their SOP to look.
This simply means if you are applying to multiple organizations, be ready to seek out what the University wants, understand what the admission committee is looking for, and optimize it, in your statement of purpose.
When it comes to culture, each country has its own culture, you should make a deep research about the culture of the country, of where the University is located, and write about it in your statement of purpose.
Use A Formal But Conversational Tone
Most of the essays or statements of purpose always come in two dimensions, super friendly and super formal.
A super formal statement of purpose is a formal one, which seems as if you are writing for an official purpose or to military personnel, while the second sounds like the one, you are writing to a friend.
If students are asked which one to choose, the majority of students would choose the friendly format of SOP, to outsmart and show how dedicated they are to the panel. However, few smart students would choose the friendly format.
To Make it concise, a good way to go is using a conversational Tone in your statement of purpose. Don’t be too serious, write as if you are talking to someone in person, write like a novel, make it fun and unique, however, avoid the use of casual language.
Imagine You Are Talking To Your Dean Or The Director Of Your Colleague: in your journey on learning how to write a good statement of purpose, see your statement of purpose as a conversation between you and your director or dean, quite sure, you wouldn’t want to sound too funny and smart right?
Learn How To Portray yourself And Do So Indirectly
Your statement of purpose is an avenue to pass information about yourself to your direction or dean. You should be ready to portray yourself indirectly in the article and do so smartly.
Avoid the use of causal words, portray yourself as the following.
- Eager to learn Etc
All these are to let the admission board know a lot about you.
Your statement of purpose can be as long as 1000 words, but always endeavor, that it contains useful information about you. This is where your writing skills should come in. If you can’t write well, you can hire someone to do this for you at a low rate.
Don’t Create Stories Be Yourself
Because we asked you to write stories that can impress the admission committee, doesn’t mean you should write stories, that isn’t true. Only write true things. Don’t fake anything!
Is this detailed enough on how to write a good statement of purpose? If yes, kindly share with the right audience.