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How to Write a Research Paper
Writing a research paper is a bit more difficult that a standard high school essay. You need to site sources, use academic data and show scientific examples. Before beginning, you’ll need guidelines for how to write a research paper.
Start the Research Process
Before you begin writing the research paper, you must do your research. It is important that you understand the subject matter, formulate the ideas of your paper, create your thesis statement and learn how to speak about your given topic in an authoritative manner. You’ll be looking through online databases, encyclopedias, almanacs, periodicals, books, newspapers, government publications, reports, guides and scholarly resources. Take notes as you discover new information about your given topic. Also keep track of the references you use so you can build your bibliography later and cite your resources.
Develop Your Thesis Statement
When organizing your research paper, the thesis statement is where you explain to your readers what they can expect, present your claims, answer any questions that you were asked or explain your interpretation of the subject matter you’re researching. Therefore, the thesis statement must be strong and easy to understand. Your thesis statement must also be precise. It should answer the question you were assigned, and there should be an opportunity for your position to be opposed or disputed. The body of your manuscript should support your thesis, and it should be more than a generic fact.
Create an Outline
Many professors require outlines during the research paper writing process. You’ll find that they want outlines set up with a title page, abstract, introduction, research paper body and reference section. The title page is typically made up of the student’s name, the name of the college, the name of the class and the date of the paper. The abstract is a summary of the paper. An introduction typically consists of one or two pages and comments on the subject matter of the research paper. In the body of the research paper, you’ll be breaking it down into materials and methods, results and discussions. Your references are in your bibliography. Use a research paper example to help you with your outline if necessary.
Organize Your Notes
When writing your first draft, you’re going to have to work on organizing your notes first. During this process, you’ll be deciding which references you’ll be putting in your bibliography and which will work best as in-text citations. You’ll be working on this more as you develop your working drafts and look at more white paper examples to help guide you through the process.
Write Your Final Draft
After you’ve written a first and second draft and received corrections from your professor, it’s time to write your final copy. By now, you should have seen an example of a research paper layout and know how to put your paper together. You’ll have your title page, abstract, introduction, thesis statement, in-text citations, footnotes and bibliography complete. Be sure to check with your professor to ensure if you’re writing in APA style, or if you’re using another style guide.
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9 Tips for Writing an Essay About Yourself
You know yourself better than anyone else, but writing about yourself can still be tough! When applying for scholarships or to college, essay prompts can feel so general (and yet so specific!) that they leave us stumped. So we’ll show you 8 tips to write an essay about yourself, so that you can land more scholarships. (Psst – Going Merry makes applying easy .)
1. Create a List of Questions
2. brainstorm and outline, 3. be vulnerable, 4. use personal examples, 5. write in the first person, 6. don’t be afraid to show off…but stay on topic, 7. show personality , 8. know your audience, 9. proofread and edit.
Let’s start with some examples of personal essay prompts:
- Tell me about yourself.
- Describe a challenge or event that made you who you are today.
- What are your short and long-term goals, and how do you plan to achieve them?
- Write about a time you failed at something. How did it affect you?
These are just a few of many scholarship essay prompts that require you to look internally, to answer a question, solve a problem, or explain a scenario in your life.
We get it. You might not be a big fan of bragging about yourself, or you might want to keep your personal stories to yourself. But by opening up and sharing your story, you can show scholarship providers, colleges and universities who you are, and why you’re deserving of their scholarship.
(Don’t just take our word for it – check out our scholarship winners page full of students like you who were brave enough to share their stories with us).
To get started, check out these 9 tips on how to write an essay about yourself:
After reading through the scholarship essay prompt, breathe, and make a list of smaller questions you can answer, which relate to the big essay prompt question.
Let’s say the main essay prompt question asks you, “What were challenges or barriers you had to work to overcome?” Then the smaller questions might be something like:
- What is your background? Family, finances, school.
- What was challenging about that background?
- What’s your greatest accomplishment? How did you get there? How have previous challenges influenced your goals?
Think of these questions as mini-prompts. They explain your story and help you answer the main essay prompt with more details than if you just answered it without a plan in place.
After considering smaller questions, it’s time to brainstorm your answers. Take out a pen and paper – or open up a document on a computer – and take your time in answering each mini-prompt. Organize your responses in order:
- Intro to main essay prompt.
- Answer about 3 mini-prompt questions.
- Conclude by rewriting the answer to the main essay prompt with a summary of your mini-prompt answers.
This organization will help you stay on topic and answer the prompt directly. (Or check out these 6 scholarship essay examples for alternative essay structures.)
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Don’t be afraid to let your strengths, challenges, and personal stories shine through in your essay! Scholarship and admissions committees love to see that you’re self-aware how you can improve as a person, or how you’ve grown because of your experiences. Honest writing can help tell the best stories (in this case, YOUR story).
Since this essay is all about you , you should make your answer as specific as possible! Avoid using generalizations (e.g., “I’m really good at music). Instead, go for more personalized statements (e.g., “My fourth-grade teacher Ms. Matay really inspired me to pursue my interest in the clarinet”). Your personal examples are what will help your scholarship essay stand out among the thousands of applicants..
You’re telling your story, so write from your perspective! You can narrate your story. You can provide an overview of what you learned from your experiences. However you choose to answer the prompt, we recommend writing in an active tone, and using “I” and “me” throughout your essay.
Most students worry about bragging in their essay, but we say go for it! This is your time to shine, so highlight your accomplishments and strengths. Review your essay to make sure that you’re keeping the tone informative and that you’re still on topic. (Brag while answering the essay prompt; don’t just mention random, unrelated but impressive facts about yourself!)You can use this brag sheet where you can brainstorm your accomplishments. While the worksheet is geared toward requesting letters of recommendation , you can still use it to write out your hobbies, interests, college list , and strengths to help you answer your scholarship essay prompt.
Just because it’s an essay doesn’t mean it has to be dry and boring. This essay is all about you, so let your personality shine through. If you’re the class clown, you can use a bit of humor. If you wear your heart on your sleeve, don’t be afraid to show emotion. Trying your best to express who you are as a person will have a huge effect on the admissions or scholarship committee!
If you’re applying for a scholarship, research the scholarship provider. If you’re applying to college, research the school. Understanding what makes the provider/college unique and what their motivations are, will allow you to incorporate that information in your essay. For example, many scholarships are funded by private companies that sell products. You might want to reference those products in your essay. A good example of this is Emily Trader’s essay for the Life Happens organization , where she uses her personal narrative to explain the importance of insurance planning, since that is the mission of the organization (which is funded by insurance companies).
The last step in answering your essay prompt is to double-check your work! One typo can be distracting and cause scholarship providers to scratch their head while reading the essay. ( Psst, humble brag: Going Merry’s application platform includes spellcheck because we’ve got your back .) In addition to proofreading for typos and grammatical errors, also consider whether the sentence or paragraph structure makes sense. Are you breaking paragraphs in the right place? Are you using topic sentences well to signpost your main ideas? Does the essay flow? Consider these “bigger” structural questions too. You might also want to ask a friend, family member, teacher, or guidance counselor to review your essay. They might catch something you didn’t see the first time around, and that can really help your essay! In fact, that is scholarship winner Daniel Gill ’s #1 tip. (Another tip is to apply for scholarships using Going Merry !)
Also, check out this helpful list of the 10 most common scholarship essay topics while you’re brainstorming!
Now that you know how to write an essay about yourself, it’s time to start applying for scholarships! Remember: You’ve got this.
Sign up for your free Going Merry profile . From there, you can easily upload and submit your essay for thousands of scholarships. We make it easy so you’ll only need to enter your profile information once! And then, you can apply away. In fact, we even have some bundled scholarships so that you only enter your essay once, to apply for multiple scholarships at the same time.
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How To Write an Essay About Yourself (and Cement Your Writing Style)
- DESCRIPTION Student Writing an About Me Essay
- SOURCE Ekaterina Naumenko / iStock / Getty Images Plus
- PERMISSION Used under Getty Images license
The “about me” essay is a classic assignment. Part of that comes from its practicality; it’s a good way to introduce yourself to new people. The “about me” essay also helps your teacher get an idea of your writing voice and style, and it involves a lot of elements that you’ll find in other writing, from research papers to fiction. Looking at some creative “about me” essay examples can help you figure out where to get started.
Brainstorming an Essay About Yourself
Before you even open your document, you should take some time to brainstorm ideas for your essay. Aside from your teacher’s instructions, the sky's the limit here. A lot of “about me” essays discuss:
A personal accomplishment of some kind (winning a writing contest, running a marathon, getting a black belt)
A special moment with a family member
A challenging moment in your life
A talent or skill that you developed and the journey you took to gain it
How To Start an Essay About Yourself
Getting started is the hardest part of anything, and essays are no different. The "about me" introduction is ostensibly the most important part of an essay. The intro is the first thing the reader sees, and it gives a reason for the reader to keep reading.
Start With a Hook
The hook is the opening sentence of the introduction. It’s the actual first thing that the reader sees, so it should be engaging and immediately hook the reader in while setting the tone for the rest of the essay.
That can be hard to accomplish, but there are a few different strategies to go with:
- Ask a question ( Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a piece of cheese and the human body? )
- Find a statistic ( Scientists estimate that there are about one quadrillion ants on Earth, equating to about 1.5 million ants for every one person. )
- Use a metaphor ( I once dated a rat. )
Starting with something surprising or unexpected is the best way to go, but try not to overthink it. Even going with a basic statement ( My name is Edna, and I love apples. ) is enough to entice a reader (Why does she love apples? Why is she writing a whole essay about her love of apples?).
Once you’ve got your hook down, get into what you actually want to talk about in your personal essay. Most “about me” essays highlight a special event or episode from your life that illustrates some larger insight about you. Use sensory details and try to keep things concrete.
The hard part is introducing the event without going too deep into the details (that’s what the rest of the essay is for).
Conclude Your Intro
If this was a research paper or traditional five-paragraph essay , the conclusion of your intro would technically be your thesis sentence . This sentence outlines the whole point of the essay. What are the contents of this essay saying about you? What insights are you revealing about your personality through the whole essay?
It’s okay to work your way backwards here. Start with a pretty basic thesis, write out the body of the essay, and then go back and modify the thesis as you see fit.
What To Include in an Essay About Yourself
Approach a creative essay about yourself the way you’d approach telling your best friend a story. You want to put in enough details that the story makes sense without ending up on weird tangents, all while incorporating a bit of your personality.
Seems obvious, but make use of paragraphs to break up your story. Exact length will vary based on what your teacher says, but shorter essays should have one to two body paragraphs, while longer essays should have at least three paragraphs.
Unless your teacher says otherwise, stick with at least five sentences per paragraph . Regardless, make sure that each paragraph presents a full thought and leads into the next.
Show, Don’t Tell
This is the type of advice that writers will repeat forever, but it’s even more annoying because it’s true.
Essentially, try to stick with illustrative details that draw from the senses. How did things smell, taste, or physically feel? Specificity and groundedness are more engaging than abstractions. For example:
I’m a really great guitarist.
That’s not super interesting, descriptive, or engaging, and it mostly just sounds like you’re bragging. Compare that to:
When I was five, my dad brought his old guitar out of the dusty attic one spring morning. He held his fingers against the wood of the fretboard and showed me how to strum the strings. I didn’t know then that I’d fall in love with making music. I only knew the safety of sitting in my dad’s lap, my mom holding a cup of coffee and smiling at us plucking away at some strings.
That has images and emotion. It feels concrete while still staying personal, and it urges the reader to want to learn more.
Include Metaphors, Similes, and All That Good Stuff
Use metaphors , similes , and all the other figures of speech available to you to add some creativity to your essay.
How To End an Essay About Yourself
Okay, you’ve got a solid intro, and you’ve finished the body paragraphs. It’s time for your conclusion . The easy part of your conclusion: reiterating your thesis and briefly reviewing your story.
The hard part: thinking beyond the essay. A conclusion addresses the “so what?” of an essay and understands that there is a world outside of the few paragraphs that you just wrote. How do the events of the essay affect who you are now? What did you learn, and how do you plan to apply that to your future endeavors?
Give it some thought, and don’t be afraid to be a little cheesy. As long as you keep it sincere and genuine, a little cheesiness can be effective.
Short "Describe Yourself" Essay Sample
For shorter essays, you generally want to keep things fairly tight and focused, while adding in some creative details and imagery to make it fun to read.
In preschool, the other kids called me "Polka Dot" because of the birthmark on my cheek. I remember coming home crying. My dad told me all the usual sayings about "sticks and stones" and judging a book by its cover, but it was something else he said that really helped me. He said that the people who understand others the best are the ones who haven't always been able to fit in. I still have a birthmark on my cheek, but I've long since become comfortable with it. I think I learned early to accept myself physically, and that's been hugely helpful as I've gone through the teenage years. When everyone else was worrying about whether they had the right shoes or bag or brand of jeans, I've spent my energy on learning about people. My bedroom at home offers a great symbol of who I am and what is important to me. The walls are simply painted and decorated with photographs of my family. My bookcases are filled with psychology texts and sociology journals, and my desk is covered in research papers. I know this isn't the bedroom of a typical teenage girl, but I'm so excited to learn more about psychology and how other people think. I plan to spend my life trying to understand people, and I hope someday to help them in a clinical practice of my own. - Kate Miller-Wilson
Longer Essay About Yourself Example
A longer essay gives you a bit more room to breathe with your details and provides more space for creativity. If you’re not sure how to start, write a shorter essay, then go back and add embellishments where you feel it fits.
Start with a strong introduction , such as an anecdote or specific example of your personality. Follow this with details that help the reader really understand who you are. In a longer essay, you have time to show your skills at descriptive writing .
I remember right where I was sitting the first time I wrote a poem: on the floor of my messy bedroom surrounded by dolls I hadn't played with in months. I couldn't understand why I simply didn't want to play with them anymore. I was getting older, and it scared me. I put my fears on paper, not even really intending to write a poem. I just let the words flow out of my pen, about how I couldn't even remember what my doll's voices sounded like anymore. I tentatively showed the poem to my teacher the next day at school, and I was surprised when she loved it. I hadn't really thought it was anything amazing. My teacher's encouragement gave me the support I needed to keep writing. I began to read books of poetry, and I wrote every single day. I learned that in order to improve, I had to write whether I felt inspired or not. By the end of eighth grade, I had written 200 poems. They weren't all great. In fact, a lot of them were really bad. A few stood out, though, and my teacher helped me enter one in a local contest. When it won, I knew I just had to keep writing. I kept at it all through high school, receiving plenty of rejections. Some of those rejections were devastating, and there were times I felt like quitting. By now, though, I thought of myself as a writer. What would I be if I stopped writing? So, I dug in and wrote. I wrote about teenage things, about heartbreak and existential crisis. I wrote about my world, about my school, and the beauty of our natural surroundings. Often, I just wrote about my perspective and tried to convey that in a way that moved other people. Now, as graduation approaches, I have been published 24 times. I'm certain I want to pursue a degree in creative writing. There's so much to learn about words and the beautiful ways we can use them, and I want to learn all of it. I hope to get a BA in creative writing, and after that, I want an MFA. Some day, I'd like to support others who write too, just as my encouraging teachers helped me. My journey as a writer has taught me a lot of things about myself, but the most important thing I've learned is that I don't give up. It takes more than natural talent to become good at something; you simply have to do it. The old adage is true: Writers write. I write when I know I'm making something I love, but I also write when I'm discouraged and think I have little to say. I write to be read, but I also write knowing sometimes, no one will read my work. My persistence is the secret of my success so far, and I know it will serve me well in college and beyond. - Kate Miller-Wilson
Beyond the “About Me” Essay Assignment
A lot of the things that you learn and use in an “about me” essay are applicable even beyond your class. Your personal statement when applying to college is essentially an extension of the “about me” essay, and “about me” pages on professional websites and social media use elements of the “about me” essay. Even if you don’t foresee writing in your future, it never hurts to think more critically about yourself and your life experiences.
Writing an essay about yourself can be intimidating, but hey, no one’s better equipped to write about you than you!
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How to Write About Yourself
Last Updated: February 5, 2023 References Approved
This article was co-authored by Lucy Yeh . Lucy Yeh is a Human Resources Director, Recruiter, and Certified Life Coach (CLC) with over 20 years of experience. With a training background with Coaching for Life and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) at InsightLA, Lucy has worked with professionals of all levels to improve the quality of their careers, personal/professional relationships, self marketing, and life balance. There are 14 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 27 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 5,411,788 times.
Whether you're writing an essay about yourself for a scholarship, a self-introduction, or a personal bio for a job application, coming up with the right words to capture what makes you unique can feel challenging. Fortunately, there are tips and tricks that can make writing about yourself a breeze. Want some help getting across just how impressive, interesting, and skilled you really are? Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about putting yourself into words effectively, complete with examples.
Writing of the Autobiographical Nature
- Who are you?
- What is your background?
- What are your interests?
- What are your talents?
- What are your achievements?
- What challenges have you faced?  X Research source
- What is your most interesting or unique quality? What word(s) describes you the best? Choose that topic.
- Bad: I like sports.
- Ok: I'm a fan of basketball, football, tennis, and soccer.
- Good: My favorite sport is football, both to watch and to play.
- Better: When I was growing up, I would watch Big Ten football with my dad and brothers every Saturday, before we'd go outside and toss the football around. I've loved it ever since.
- Braggy: I'm the best and most dynamic worker at my company right now, so you should want to hire me for my talents.
- Humble: I was lucky enough to be awarded three employee of the month awards at my current job. Turns out it was a company record.
Writing Personal Essays for School
- Common themes or prompts for autobiographical essays include overcoming obstacles, great successes or spectacular failures, and what you learned about yourself.
- Depending on the assignment, you may need to connect a personal anecdote to a reading or an idea from class. Start brainstorming topics that are connected to that idea, to give yourself a variety of options to choose from.
- Common autobiographical essay cliches include sports stories, mission trips, and dead grandmothers. While these can all make for excellent essays if done well, it is difficult to stand out when telling the story of how your lacrosse team lost a big game, then practiced hard, then won. It has been written before.
- If you want to tell the story of your nasty break-up, start with the break-up, do not start with the star-crossed way you met. You have got to get immediately to the tension in the story.
- When you have an idea of your topic, start writing a "memory list" of specific things that you remember about the event. What was the weather like? What did it smell like? What did your mother say to you?
- Your opening paragraph will set the tone for the rest of the essay. Rather than telling the dull biographical details (your name, your place of birth, your favorite food), find a way to express the essence of the story you are going to tell and the themes you are going to explore in your essay.
Writing a Cover Letter for an Application
- Outline your qualifications and highlight your talents in a cover letter.
- Write about who you are.
- In a cover letter, describe how your education and experience qualifies you for this position.
- Explain how this opportunity will benefit your career goals.
- When in doubt, keep it brief and serious. If you are unsure whether or not telling an amusing anecdote about your friend's bachelor party is appropriate in a cover letter, it is probably best to leave it out.
- "I'm writing to apply for the entry-level position with Company Inc. advertised on your website. I think my experience and training makes me an ideal candidate for this position."
- Contrary to popular belief, it is not necessary to include your name in the body of the letter: "My name is John Smith and I am applying...." Your name will be included in the signature , as well as the header of a cover letter, so there is no need to put it in the text itself.
- Who you are and where you come from.
- Where you want to go.
- How this opportunity would potentially help you get there.
- Be as specific as possible.  X Research source It is alright to note that you are "A passionate leader in all walks of life" but it would be much better to write about an example of a time you lead in a surprising way.
- Stay focused on skills and talents that connect specifically to the thing you are applying for. Extracurricular involvement, leadership roles, and other types of outstanding achievement may be important to you personally, but it may be totally extraneous. If you include something, ensure to connect it specifically to the goal of the cover letter.
- Be as specific as possible. If you are writing a university cover letter, it is obvious that you have to have a degree to get a job as a doctor, but how did you come to choose this field? Why did you choose this school? What, specifically, do you want to take away from the experience?
- Be careful about using a cover letter to critique a business. It is not the time to describe the suffering of a particular brand over the previous fiscal quarter, then promising that you will be able to turn it around with your ideas. That might not go over well if you are hired, and then you are unable to live up to the promise.
- Even if it is impressive, a high GPA or class ranking does not belong in a cover letter. Highlight it on your resume, but do not include it in two different places of the application.
- Mailing address
- Telephone and/or fax number
Expert Trick : Save time and effort by creating one generic format that you can use for many different job applications by tweaking the specific content for each one. Start with a general introductory paragraph , then a section or two fleshing out your resume and expertise as it relates to the job, and finish it off with a closing paragraph and a note of thanks.
Writing a Short Biography Note
- Pretend you are writing about someone else. Write your name and start describing that person like a character or a friend: "John Smith is the Executive Vice President of Company Inc..."
- If you are a jack of all trades, say so. Do not be afraid to list "actor, musician, mother, motivational speaker, and professional rock climber" if they all apply equally.
- It is common to list degrees that you have received. Pay particular attention to anything that ties into the work you are writing about. If you have special training, include it here.
- "John Smith is the Executive Vice President of Company Inc., in charge of marketing and overseas acquisitions. He received an MBA with distinction from Harvard and lives in Montauk with his cat Cheeto."
- Do not overshare. It can seem funny to immediately start with "John Smith loves rafting and hates eating Cheetos. He's a total boss" and such bio notes can be appropriate for some venues, however be careful to avoid awkward oversharing. Telling everyone about your killer hangover might be best left for after work talk.
- Stephen King, who is one of the most successful and popular authors in recent history, has a bio note that just lists the name of his family members, his hometown, and his pets. Consider leaving out the self-congratulation entirely.
- Remember that you’re supposed to talk about yourself, it’s the main topic. Don’t talk about your friends or family, even though you may feel tempted to. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
- If you are having a difficult time writing about yourself, search online for examples of personal writing, in order to get some ideas and inspiration. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
- Don't think about how others feel about you. Everyone thinks from a different perspective. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
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- ↑ https://www.forbes.com/sites/deborahljacobs/2014/06/03/what-to-do-when-you-need-a-bio-rather-than-a-resume/#317efa044e43
- ↑ https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/professional-bio-examples
- ↑ https://writingcenter.unc.edu/tips-and-tools/brainstorming/
- ↑ https://www.theclassroom.com/write-short-essay-describing-background-6324007.html
- ↑ https://www.format.com/magazine/resources/photography/online-portfolio-about-page-step-by-step-guide
- ↑ https://blog.prepscholar.com/common-app-essay-prompts
- ↑ https://qz.com/80136/heres-the-secret-to-cracking-the-college-essay/
- ↑ https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/723/03/
- ↑ https://www.hercampus.com/high-school/7-worst-college-application-clich-s-how-avoid-them
- ↑ https://theundercoverrecruiter.com/cv-vs-resume-difference-and-when-use-which/
- ↑ https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/resumes-cover-letters/whats-the-ideal-cover-letter-length
- ↑ https://theundercoverrecruiter.com/8-steps-writing-bio-pro-chris-brogan-fact/
- ↑ https://patthomson.net/2018/06/04/writing-a-bio-note/
About This Article
If you have to write an autobiographical description of yourself, write down a list of your talents, interests, and accomplishments. Use this list to help you choose one specific topic for your description, such as your academic achievements or your leadership qualities. Use specific, unique details to support your topic, such as being awarded an academic scholarship or the fact that you were president of the newspaper in high school. You can list bits of your personal life, but be careful not to overshare. If you want to write about yourself a cover letter or personal essay, keep reading the article! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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- How To Write An Essay About Yourself With Tips And Examples
How to Write an Essay About Yourself With Tips and Examples
Essays are essential in demonstrating student’s proficiency in writing academic texts. Basically, this proficiency includes writing creatively and without notable mistakes and errors. By considering writing essays about themselves, students should follow the same approach that they use when writing other types of essays, including research papers. In essence, authors should focus on preparation, stage set up, writing process, and perfecting their compositions. Also, these steps are essential in ensuring the writer’s essay is of high quality. In turn, these essays on yourself do not rely on external research to strengthen the main arguments. On the other hand, papers rely on personal anecdotes to make them authentic and original. Hence, a student needs to learn how to write an essay about yourself.
General Guidelines of Writing an Essay About Yourself
Essay writing is one of the activities that students engage in to develop their creative writing skills. Unlike a research paper , an essay that a student writes about yourself does not rely on external research. Basically, one can argue that this type of article is exploratory. Also, it explores the writer’s life across different settings, such as school life, home life, and social life. While such essays may differ from a research essay in content, it follows the same structure: introduction, body, and conclusion. Then, a research paper utilizes external research to make it relevant, but a personal essay that a student writes about yourself uses personal anecdotes to create relevance. In other words, since such a piece explores the student’s life, it is only prudent for a person to include one or several stories that give readers a glimpse into their personality.
Writing an Essay About Yourself: A Step-by-Step Guide
The strategy of writing academic texts is almost the same, regardless of the kind of the type of text. In short, whether academic writing involves a research essay, report, thesis paper , dissertation , or personal story, writers must engage in some activities, which are similar across these types of papers . Basically, these activities include preparation, stage set up, writing process, and wrap up of the writing process.
Step 1: Preparation
Preparation is the first step in writing an essay of any type. Basically, this stage has several components, including defining the topic, preparing ideas, and considering the audience. Concerning the topic, a person who writes about yourself can use the instructor’s theme or choose one if none is provided. In the latter case, authors should settle for a topic that interests them, one that they can find information to back up claims and arguments easily. When it comes to writing all about me essay, students should choose topics that allow them to capture a broad perspective about their lives. On preparation of ideas, students need to reflect on their lives, including positive and negative experiences and strengths and weaknesses. About the audience, they should write with expectations of instructors in mind.
Step 2: Setting Up the Stage
After preparation, the next step in academic essay writing is to set up the stage. Basically, components of this step include making notes, creating an essay outline , and creating an annotated bibliography. When writing an essay about yourself, a student should make notes when reflecting on your own experiences. In this case, a personal anecdote comes into play. Then, authors should use a personal account, highlighting a positive or negative experience and areas of strength or weakness. When it comes to creating an outline, students should use academic standards of essay outlines – introduction, body, and conclusion. Although it is unnecessary to write down these headings, authors must ensure that those reading all about me essays can identify where each of these sections begins and ends. In turn, there is no need for an annotated bibliography since no external research is required.
Step 3: Writing Process
After preparing and setting up the stage, students start writing their essays about themselves. Basically, components of this step include making the first draft, ensuring the paper captures everything that authors intend to write about, has a thesis statement , and captures the writer’s concluding thoughts. In this case, first drafts are essential because it allows writers to have an opportunity to perfect their papers through revisions and editions. Then, the thesis statement is the writer’s guide. Besides, it dictates what authors should focus on in body paragraphs. In turn, concluding thoughts are the writer’s words that summarize lessons learned. Hence, each of these components is essential in an essay about yourself.
Step 4: Wrapping Up
After writing the first draft, students begin to write the final draft. But before they start, they should read and reread the first draft to ensure it is free of any grammatical mistakes and other writing errors, such as inconsistent arguments and illogical flow of ideas. For example, if writers identify such mistakes and errors, they should revise and edit an essay about yourself accordingly. In turn, revisions help authors to eliminate inconsistencies in arguments and illogical flow of ideas, while editions help them to fix grammatical mistakes, such as a lack of punctuation or wrong use.
Main Features of Writing All About Me Essay
1. topic and concluding sentences.
When writing an essay about themselves, students should begin each body paragraph as they would in any other article – start with a topic sentence. Basically, this sentence captures a single idea that writers interrogate in a particular section, meaning that it offers an insight into the paragraph’s content. On the other hand, a concluding sentence is final thoughts about what writers have said in a specific section. Then, rules of academic writing dictate that the concluding sentence links the topic sentence with the thesis statement. In other words, it is the part of a single paragraph that creates sense for readers regarding the topic sentence and its place in the writer’s main argument.
2. Transition, Peer Review, and Final Draft
Students need to ensure that, as they write an essay about themselves, they create a logical flow of ideas from the beginning paragraph to the end. Basically, such elements may be transition words, like “consequently,” “furthermore,” “nevertheless,” and “hence.” To ensure that students do not miss identifying errors in their essays, they should subject their work to a peer review. For example, this aspect involves giving the first draft to a mentor who reads through it to make sure it is perfect. When mentors are satisfied with the paper’s quality, students start writing the final draft. However, they should also read through it at least twice and subject it to peer review before submitting it to a specific department.
3. Specific Information
As indicated, writing an essay about yourself differs from a research paper because it does not rely on external research to back up claims and arguments. Instead, writers utilize a personal story to shed light on their experiences and attributes. In this sense, such personal anecdotes are the specific information necessary for an essay about yourself. Moreover, this information is specific to a person provided through reflective writing. Hence, a personal essay that a student writes, which is about yourself, should be exploratory, descriptive, and thoughtful.
Like any other academic text, writing an essay about oneself is often prone to mistakes. For example, some of the common mistakes that writers or students make when writing an essay about yourself include writing about things that do not help readers to have a proper grasp of their personality and using exaggeration. Basically, writing an essay about yourself should enhance the readers’ understanding of authors – their life experiences, attributes, likes and dislikes, and strengths and weaknesses. In turn, exaggeration involves using information that is likely to be untrue to impress readers. To solve the first mistake, writers need to focus on personal anecdotes, as they help to highlight instances of the author’s life that is worth noting. To avoid exaggeration, students should desist from trying to impress and seek to be authentic in their writing.
Example of Writing an Essay About Yourself
My First Year of School by Zac
I walked into the classroom, shaking in terror. The class was full of howler monkeys, but I was not with howler monkeys. I was with a bunch of five and six-year-old kids. I acted as if I was watching a horror movie until I met the super lovely Mr. Keig. Mr. Keig was the best teacher in the universe. Mr. Keig was like a giant to us, and he still is. At first, I was scared of Mr. Keig, but I found out he was super friendly. He taught me how to read and write. Add and subtract. He even taught me how to make school fun. At the beginning of school, I was horrified by math and reading. I was soon shown that those subjects were not formidable opponents, but I had yet to meet my match. Writing. I hated writing. I had met my match, my enemy, my formidable opponent. The reason I hated writing was that I wrote slowly. It took too long for me to write, and I was always the last one to finish my newest story. It was also ever boring for me. It was hard to find inspiration or the urge to take a step up. Math and reading, on the other hand, I sped through like Speed Racer. I was still shy, and I only had a few friends in the first couple of weeks of kindergarten. I figured out making friends was not a piece of cake. I eventually made friends. Thank God that problem was over. Even though we got to play and create our own art, sometimes, school days were dull. Sometimes days felt like they were two million years long. There were other times when I was terrified about a test, and it seemed like the paper was laughing at me, and my pencil was dodging my paper. I was sweating, shaking, and FREAKIN’ out. I eventually pulled it together and got my test done. Relieved, relaxed, and incredibly calmed down. Tranquil and thrilled I was. It felt like I was soaring through the sky a million miles per minute. What I learned from my year in kindergarten was to face your fears. If you are scared, don’t run away from your worries. Another lesson I learned was not to judge a book by its cover. I assumed the school was going to be extremely hard, and tests were going to be impossible. I assumed wrong. The school (kindergarten) was not as hard as I thought it was going to be. While kindergarten was a bit challenging, I knew I could succeed if I set my mind to it and work hard.
Summing Up on How to Write an Essay About Yourself
Essay writing is an essential activity in a student’s life, as it exposes one to the dynamics of creative writing. When writing such an essay, authors learn how to use personal stories to highlight their positive and negative experiences, including strengths and weaknesses. In essence, such stories replace external evidence that writers use in research essays. Then, the guide to effective writing of such an essay includes several components, including preparation, stage set up, starting the writing process, and wrapping it up. Also, these aspects of writing an essay about yourself allow a person to build own thoughts, organize papers, and perfect academic texts. As a result, perfection involves revising any inconsistent ideas and illogical arguments and revising any grammatical mistakes, such as punctuation errors.
When writing an essay about yourself, a student should master the following tips:
- Be thoughtful, but not fretful. Writers should, through reflection, highlight areas of their lives that provide an insight into their personality. In this case, they should do it without fear of what readers might think about them.
- Keep an essay personal. The majority of the essay’s information should be about an author. For example, such elements involve talking about life experiences, attributes, strengths, and weaknesses. In turn, the use of personal anecdotes is essential in achieving this goal.
- Do not guess what readers want to hear. Students should not seek to impress readers, but they need to inform them.
- Feel free to be creative. Without exaggeration, authors should use personal stories creatively to keep readers interested in essays.
- Tell readers something that they do not already know. The best way to keep readers interested is to use stories that writers have probably never shared publicly. In turn, such stories or experiences inject all about me essays with an aspect of amazement.
- Ask for input from close ones. Students can ask parents, friends, mentors, counselors, coaches, and teachers to provide ideas, as they know about personally.
- Polish a paper about yourself. Essays should not be about the writer’s story only. In turn, it should demonstrate the writer’s proficiency in writing by lacking grammatical mistakes and other notable errors.
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How to Write About Yourself in a College Essay | Examples
Published on September 21, 2021 by Kirsten Courault . Revised on July 22, 2022.
An insightful college admissions essay requires deep self-reflection, authenticity, and a balance between confidence and vulnerability. Your essay shouldn’t just be a resume of your experiences; colleges are looking for a story that demonstrates your most important values and qualities.
To write about your achievements and qualities without sounding arrogant, use specific stories to illustrate them. You can also write about challenges you’ve faced or mistakes you’ve made to show vulnerability and personal growth.
Table of contents
Start with self-reflection, how to write about challenges and mistakes, how to write about your achievements and qualities, how to write about a cliché experience, frequently asked questions about college application essays.
Before you start writing, spend some time reflecting to identify your values and qualities. You should do a comprehensive brainstorming session, but here are a few questions to get you started:
- What are three words your friends or family would use to describe you, and why would they choose them?
- Whom do you admire most and why?
- What are the top five things you are thankful for?
- What has inspired your hobbies or future goals?
- What are you most proud of? Ashamed of?
As you self-reflect, consider how your values and goals reflect your prospective university’s program and culture, and brainstorm stories that demonstrate the fit between the two.
Writing about difficult experiences can be an effective way to show authenticity and create an emotional connection to the reader, but choose carefully which details to share, and aim to demonstrate how the experience helped you learn and grow.
It’s not necessary to have a tragic story or a huge confession. But you should openly share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences to evoke an emotional response from the reader. Even a cliché or mundane topic can be made interesting with honest reflection. This honesty is a preface to self-reflection and insight in the essay’s conclusion.
With difficult topics, you shouldn’t focus too much on negative aspects. Instead, use your challenging circumstances as a brief introduction to how you responded positively.
Share what you have learned
It’s okay to include your failure or mistakes in your essay if you include a lesson learned. After telling a descriptive, honest story, you should explain what you learned and how you applied it to your life.
Prevent plagiarism. Run a free check.
While it’s good to sell your strengths, you also don’t want to come across as arrogant. Instead of just stating your extracurricular activities, achievements, or personal qualities, aim to discreetly incorporate them into your story.
Mention your extracurricular activities or awards in passing, not outright, to avoid sounding like you’re bragging from a resume.
Use stories to prove your qualities
Even if you don’t have any impressive academic achievements or extracurriculars, you can still demonstrate your academic or personal character. But you should use personal examples to provide proof. In other words, show evidence of your character instead of just telling.
Many high school students write about common topics such as sports, volunteer work, or their family. Your essay topic doesn’t have to be groundbreaking, but do try to include unexpected personal details and your authentic voice to make your essay stand out .
To find an original angle, try these techniques:
- Focus on a specific moment, and describe the scene using your five senses.
- Mention objects that have special significance to you.
- Instead of following a common story arc, include a surprising twist or insight.
Your unique voice can shed new perspective on a common human experience while also revealing your personality. When read out loud, the essay should sound like you are talking.
First, spend time reflecting on your core values and character . You can start with these questions:
However, you should do a comprehensive brainstorming session to fully understand your values. Also consider how your values and goals match your prospective university’s program and culture. Then, brainstorm stories that illustrate the fit between the two.
When writing about yourself , including difficult experiences or failures can be a great way to show vulnerability and authenticity, but be careful not to overshare, and focus on showing how you matured from the experience.
Through specific stories, you can weave your achievements and qualities into your essay so that it doesn’t seem like you’re bragging from a resume.
Include specific, personal details and use your authentic voice to shed a new perspective on a common human experience.
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How to Write a College Essay About Yourself
David Sep 30, 2020
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The scholarship you’re applying to requires that you write an essay about yourself. Easy peasy, how hard could it be? After all, you’ve been living with yourself for the last 17+ years! You know yourself better than anybody. You open your computer to start typing but your mind goes blank. Everything that you know about yourself suddenly seems unworthy of a $5,000 scholarship.
What in the world can you write about that will spark enough interest in the scholarship committee? Before you start panicking, check out our step-by-step guide on how to write a college essay about yourself.
Step 1: Brainstorm
The first way to tackle any scholarship essay prompt is to start with some thinking. We highly suggest that you take time before starting to write to brainstorm the essay prompt. This will not only get your creativity flowing, but your essay will be more organized and cohesive.
To start brainstorming, sit down in a quiet space with a pen and paper. Think about your background, your family life, your family’s financial state, your academic history, your childhood, your education, sports you play, and anything else about yourself that makes you who you are. If you’re stuck, strike up a conversation with your parents or friends about yourself to get you rolling. Jot notes about yourself down on the paper.
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Now, it’s time to take the facts you’ve written about yourself and dig deeper. The goal of your scholarship essay is to tell a story about yourself that will convince the scholarship committee that you deserve to win. How can you turn facts about yourself into a compelling story? What information can you provide about yourself that will broadcast your character?
It helps to think about who your audience is. To do this, get to know the scholarship organization better! Visit their website and read their ‘about’ section. What do they stand for? What kind of students do they award?
Your audience might be interested in how much you studied to get your 3.8 GPA. Your GPA and test scores may have helped get you into college, but they might not be enough to win you scholarship money. Thousands of students have near to perfect GPAs, and writing about it can be a bit dry.
Your audience wants to read about the challenges you’ve faced along the way or meaningful experiences you’ve had. Did you have to watch a younger sibling every day after school because your parents were at work? Have you experienced mental health challenges or learning disabilities that have made studying hard for you? How did you decide that you wanted to study business in college? This is what we mean when we say to dig deep. Go past the surface level. Talk about the experiences you have had that have gotten you to where you are today.
Step 2: What to Include in an Essay About Yourself
A scholarship essay about yourself is obviously very broad. You can take your essay in many directions. Remember, you want to provide information about yourself that makes your essay worth reading. Including facts about yourself in your essay is fine. But, you better be seasoning those facts with a lot of flavors.
Here are some ideas to include in your essay.
Topics You Can Address in Your Essay
There are plenty of ways you can talk about yourself in your essay. Remember, your essay must focus on yourself and your personal experiences in life. You can choose one or two of the following topics as the basis of your essay.
- Experiences that have inspired your degree choice.
- Challenges you’ve faced that have impacted your life and education.
- Unique hobbies you have or the sports you play.
- How you’ve changed over the years.
- Your experiences in school.
- Professional goals you have for the future.
- Your achievements.
- Special relationships that have inspired you. If you choose this topic, remember the essay still needs to focus on you.
The topic you choose to write about should be one that you can connect back to your education or career goals. If it didn’t impact your education or career in some way, it’s likely not relevant for the scholarship.
Remember, you need to talk about the why and the how. For example, why are you pursuing a degree in law? Why did you choose this degree path? How will a law degree help you in your future? How have past experiences led you to dream of becoming a lawyer?
Step 3: Sketch an Outline
Now that you have an idea of what you’ll write about it, it’s time to get organized. Creating an outline is your final step before starting to write. Choose one or two of the topics we suggested and start breaking down what you’ll write about in each paragraph. Your essay should consist of an introduction, 3-5 body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Check out our tips on what you should and shouldn’t include in your essay:
- Impress from the start of your essay.
- Place yourself in the reader’s shoes. Do you show enough of your personality in your essay? Do you convince the reader that you deserve to win?
- Do your research and learn about the organization. Try and connect yourself to their initiatives. Do you have a hobby or goal that matches the organization? What can you bring to the organization?
- Only include relevant information. If something seems unnecessary or out of place, it probably is.
- Write in the first person, this is about you after all.
- Give specific examples. Don’t say you struggled during freshman year, instead, show what that struggle looked like.
- Show off your strengths and achievements.
- Make your essay interesting! If it doesn’t captivate your audience from the start, it’s not good enough.
- Proofread and edit your essay. Those little spelling mistakes can cost you the scholarship. They are distracting and they don’t do a good job at convincing the reader that you’re professional. Everybody makes mistakes but it’s on you to check your work before submitting.
- Use the correct format .
- Write about academic weaknesses in your transcripts. This is your chance to take responsibility for the ‘D’ you received during freshman year algebra. You might write about your struggles with algebra and how you were motivated to improve by getting a tutor. Definitely do not play the victim card by blaming a teacher!
- Making mistakes is human! Write about what you learned from your mistakes and how they have made you stronger.
- Be authentic- write how you speak (of course, with correct grammar). Trying to impress with big words from the thesaurus isn’t as impressive as you think.
- Follow the essay instructions! You can write the best essay but if you don’t follow instructions, you risk being disqualified.
- Lie- Making up stories to win over the scholarship judges isn’t going to win over anybody! Lies scream inauthenticity. Trust us, it’s obvious when students lie and scholarship judges aren’t impressed.
- Brag- If you think that bragging about your 4.0 GPA is going to win you scholarship money, you’re wrong. Show off your confidence in a way that doesn’t come across as overbearing and arrogant.
- Use the essay as an opportunity to divulge your deepest darkest family secrets. This is not the place to cry your heart out or disclose personal information.
- Be vague about your professional goals. What sounds better, awarding a student with clearly defined goals or a student who doesn’t know what they want to do in life?
- Repeat the same information over and over again. You will have your readers yawning!
- Use cliches. Cliches are overused! Be bold and different.
Step 4: How to Start an Essay About Yourself
As with all scholarship essays, your essay about yourself should captivate readers from the very beginning. Start your essay with a creative introduction that will make the readers want to continue reading your essay. You may choose to start with a personal story or experience.
Avoid using cliches such as “from a young age” or “for as long as I can remember.” Also, avoid using quotes. These are other peoples’ words, not your own.
At the end of your introduction paragraph, you should have a thesis statement that makes it clear to the reader why you are applying for the scholarship. They should be able to taste your enthusiasm and understand your motivation for applying.
How to Start an Essay About Yourself Example
When it comes to my passion for teaching others, you might say I wasn’t given much of a choice in life. As the older sister of four, it was my responsibility to lead the way and teach my two younger brothers and sister. At least, I assumed that responsibility. I helped them with everything from school projects to packing for camp in the summer. It’s no surprise to me that years later, I have chosen to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Education at the University of Texas in the fall. With this scholarship, I will be able to pursue my degree in education and return to my hometown to teach in a local elementary school after graduating.
Step 5: What to Include in Your Body Paragraphs
Your body paragraphs are the meat of your scholarship essay. This is where the scholarship readers really get to know you. Your body paragraphs should each contain an argument with supporting details and examples.
Your job in these paragraphs is to bring your personality out as much as possible. You also want to connect your arguments with your educational and career goals, and of course, to the scholarship you’re applying for. Make sure you relay to the reader how the scholarship will help you fulfill your goals.
How to Write a College Essay About Yourself Body Paragraphs Example
My role as a teacher to my little brothers and sister was only the start of it. As soon as I was of appropriate age, I started babysitting my neighbors on the weekends to earn extra money. Sure, that meant sacrificing my weekend nights with friends, but I was able to save up quite a lot of money from my Friday night and Saturday night gigs. For me, it was never only about the money. I loved spending time with the little kids. I would come up with fun activities to do with them, like “restaurant night,” where we would create menus and whip up ice cream sundaes in the kitchen.
By high school, it was clear to me that I wanted to be a teacher. I took several classes in high school that confirmed this dream of mine. I particularly enjoyed my early childhood education class where I learned theories in childhood development, classroom management techniques, and about developing curriculum. I even started to write up my own curriculum and made my younger siblings be in “school,” with me as their teacher. I don’t think they were too happy about all those extra hours of school…
Over the last year, I completed an internship as a teacher’s assistant. Every Tuesday and Thursday I spent half the day working with a 3rd-grade teacher at the local elementary school. I learned so much from this experience, like how to manage behavior problems and how to encourage shy students to participate in lessons. I can’t wait to come back to my hometown and work as a teacher after college.
Step 6: How to End an Essay About Yourself
By the time you get to writing your concluding paragraph, you may feel an urge to finish up your essay quickly. But, your concluding paragraph is also important in making that final last impression. Don’t rush through it.
Your concluding paragraph should wrap up your essay while giving an overview of the main points of your essay. You should do the following in your concluding sentence:
- Restate your thesis in other words.
- Give an overview of the arguments you made in your body paragraphs.
- End your concluding paragraph with a big thought related to your future.
How to End an Essay About Yourself Example
You might say that my upbringing made me who I am today, but I think it’s a lot more than that. I wouldn’t have the confidence I have today in myself and in my future goals if it weren’t for my studies and jobs throughout high school. I am so excited to start my degree at the University of Texas and keep developing the tools and skills I need to become the best teacher I can be.
Step 7: The full Example of How to Write a College Essay About Yourself
Now that you have learned how to write a solid introduction, conclusion, and body paragraphs, it’s time to put it all together. Here is the full example:
The “Tell Us About Yourself” scholarship essay prompt might feel frustrating. It can feel intimidating but it’s really not so bad once you know how to tackle it.
Use these tips and you’ll be good to go. Time to start writing!
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David Tabachnikov is the CEO of ScholarshipOwl. Formerly at Waze and Google, David is an experienced CTO/R&D manager with over 10 years of experience of leading tech teams. David fervently believes that students should have greater access to education, and is passionate about using technology to help them achieve that goal.
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Tips and Tricks on Writing An Essay About Yourself - A Guide
From our simple internal research, all the students who get a task to write an essay about themselves face similar challenges. As simple as an essay about yourself might sound, it can be the toughest nut to crack by all means.
That said, when writing an essay about yourself, it is a chance to reflect on who you are. Naturally, it is like writing a personal essay, and it is always a common type of academic paper. It is still one that you write without being too egocentric or egoistic. As such, taking a descriptive and reflective stance is inevitable.
And when writing, you have to ask yourself some questions. But still, nothing is tough than writing about yourself unbiased. If it is a college admission essay about yourself or a personal statement, you have to stick to the thorough writing rules.
Our essay writing service compiles this helpful article guiding you on tips for successfully writing essays about yourself.
We promise that by the end of this article, you will understand how to make an outstanding essay about yourself. You will also come up with a masterpiece story on yourself that will wow your readers.
Why do you write an essay about yourself?
Students often ask why writing an essay about themselves matters. There are various essays about yourself and thus reasons for writing one. First off, such essays test your understanding of the college essay writing process. The tutors or instructors use the essays to test your grasp of grammar, coherent writing, language, and the use of punctuation. Besides, they also assess whether you know how to start an essay about yourself and if you can write an outstanding body and conclusion.
Probably, the above reason is why most essays about yourself are either 300 words or 5oo words long.
Second, quality essays about yourself can be admission essays, personal statements, reflective papers, or application papers for college. Therefore, they determine or define your destiny in the higher education system.
Third, these essays are also a prerequisite when applying for scholarships or grants. The committee can ask you to write an essay describing yourself. Sometimes, it could be about your academic qualifications, failures, problem-solving skills, analytical skills, or leadership experience. So, they can be used to eliminate candidates and get a suitable number.
Finally, essays about yourself can be a requirement when applying for a job. Sometimes, even when moving into a new position, you must write an essay about yourself. It is usually a chance to carefully introduce your skills, capacity, knowledge, and abilities.
So, by all means, you will never evade writing an essay about yourself. So how do you generate ideas?
Generating Ideas When Writing Personal Essays
Thanks to an organized higher education assignment system, your instructor, institution, or college registrar will give you a personal essay prompt. You can always choose a relevant topic for the essay about yourself from the prompt alone.
However, after reading the prompt, you need to ask yourself some questions:
- What interests me?
- What are my short- and long-term goals in life?
- What do I love doing?
- What are my challenges?
- Where was I born and to whom?
- What are some of the challenges I have overcome?
- What are some personal achievements I cherish?
- What do I dislike or like?
- Why do I feel bad?
- What makes me a great leader?
The list is endless, but these are some questions to help you brainstorm ideas when writing an essay about yourself.
If you fail to generate the best ideas for your essay, your plain essay can turn into an awfully dry autobiography. So, there are certain conventions, recommendations, and approaches to make a glittering essay about yourself.
Here are some ground rules when writing an essay about yourself:
- Take an unbiased point of view, and do not spike the essay with that which matters less.
- Use the narrative structure, and divide the essay into five paragraphs.
- If you must write controversial things about yourself, seek a second opinion to help edit the essay.
- Throw in some funny things about yourself in the essay.
- Follow all the essay writing conventions.
- If you borrow a quote, idea, or statistics, include citations and references to avoid plagiarism.
- Always work beginning from the topic, generating a catchy title, and writing the introduction after the body and conclusion. This is a common approach to ensure your introduction to the essay about yourself is loaded.
- Like any other essay, proofread the essay before turning it in.
Dos and Don'ts when Beginning an Essay about Yourself
How to start an essay about yourself can be a tough deliberation from within. Not anymore, stay tuned and read between the lines. Now, even a person of eloquence and excellent oratory skills to express his or her thoughts through writing can experience difficulties starting an essay.
Besides, thinking of the beginning of an essay can be tedious and can cloud your creative process. So, when writing this type of descriptive or reflective essay, here is how to start your essay:
- Before commencing to write an essay, formulate an idea and define your goal.
- Brainstorm using the freewriting technique. This approach involves writing down all the thoughts that come to mind without considering the rules of writing. It helps bypass the creative crisis and come up with robust ideas.
- Plan your introduction by outlining how and when to use a hook. If the introduction seems boring to write, deal with the body and the conclusion and write it last.
- Engage either an opening hook sentence to attract the reader and keep them.
- Use an anecdote or a quote at the beginning and intrigue your readers with premium-level essay writing.
- Come up with a well-crafted opening paragraph that gives: your history, the main points you share about yourself in the paper, and your character or traits.
- Avoid cliche and old ways of starting such essays. You should never use I was born My name is Also, do not repeat what is already in the prompt.
Great Opening Sentence Hooks for Essays about yourself
A good opening sentence invites the readers and having an essay hook keeps them to the last dot. Now, having recalled the importance of introductions in essays, we have compiled a list of some essay hooks for personal statements. Here are some ideas:
- Use literary tools or stylistic devices like metaphors, allegories, and anecdotes to start your 3-paragraph essay or even a 500-word essay about yourself.
- Admission officers cherish reading essays with controversial statements in the beginning. Be controversial to hook your audience.
- Sometimes slide in some rhetorical question as they form catchy essay hooks too.
- Winning hooks for essays about yourself contain statistics, facts, and numbers because they have a way of reinforcing credibility.
- Use a thesis statement at the beginning instead of the end.
- Quote from great autobiographies, distinguished leaders, or orators.
- If you are a fun of reading novels like the words of Marcus Zusak- The Book Thief, or Chimamanda Ngozi's Novels, be sure to use quotes from such works. They show that you are widely read.
- Write your story as glaring as you would wish your epitaph to read.
Now that you have ideas on how to generate winning essay hooks for an essay on yourself, it would help to learn some tricks.
Tips when Writing an Essay about Yourself
Here are some wonderful ways of making an essay about yourself great. You can write that essay fast once you have these simple tricks and tips in mind:
- The requirements sheet and the essay prompt must be your guide when writing.
- Skim through college admission essay examples about yourself that were written by other people online. You can also search for scholarship essay examples about yourself; the internet is awash of essay examples. But only get inspirations and ideas and avoid copying or paraphrasing as that is someone else's story.
- If you are wondering how to write a leadership essay about yourself, enlist some of the leadership positions, experiences, or traits you have. You can also ask some friends to tell you about your leadership skills.
- Personal essay examples can also be a great starting point.
- Come up with a catchy title for your essay.
- Sketch some life examples, memories, achievements, interests, and goals.
- Reread your plan and ask yourself questions about your real identity.
- After writing the story, it is ideal for rereading it out loud take a break and read again. Sometimes, it is also good to get a second opinion, and our correct my essay service can come in handy. Mind all your Ps and Qs to avoid losing marks over silly mistakes.
- Express yourself creatively and do not limit yourself. But as always, ensure that you meet the essay word count.
- Essays about yourself are the same as an autobiography of myself, write them from a personal perspective as you would wish someone else to know about you.
Most essays about yourself are anything between 500 words to 1000 words. Sometimes, you can be asked to write about yourself in 100, 200, 300, 600, 700, or 900w words, the rules of writing essays about yourself apply in equal measure. Only that this time you have to sieve garbage and alone leave what answers the asked questions.
Things to Avoid when writing Essays about Yourself
We call these the no-go zones when writing profile essays about yourself. Your my life essay or who you are essay should only focus on some areas. There are dark areas that can be avoided when writing a short story about yourself:
- Avoid writing about sensitive topics or subjects. Sometimes sensitive topics can go overboard and become too personal. That way, you can only be subjective rather than objective when writing your profile essay on yourself.
- Never start with trivial phrases when introducing yourself. Instead, using an intriguing rhetoric question that sends the reader to the end of the essay is preferred.
- Do not write on sensitive matters like same-sex marriage, gender, politics, religion, nationality and race, income levels, and political stance.
- If an essay about yourself is only 400 words, avoid writing a long history.
- Do not have a long conclusion and a baseless body and intro. Remember, conclusion and introductions to university and college essays should each be ten percent of the total essay word count.
- Avoid using verbose just to make an essay about yourself lengthy.
- Don't use complicated words and avoid oxymoron or paradoxes.
- Avoid tautology at all costs by keeping it real, concise, and straightforward.
Only make sure the story fits the essay prompt and use simple words to describe yourself in the essay. Our guide on how to write a five-paragraph essay can come in handy when planning essays about yourself.
Constructing a Good Conclusion to an Essay about Yourself
We have discussed how to write an excellent concluding sentence elsewhere on our website. For your admission essay or personal statement, the end always spells your success or failure. Ending an essay about yourself can seem closer when you have had a good time exploring yourself.
However, all the good grades and acceptance to college begin with a good introduction. Here are some tips:
- Identify and signal the end of your story. You can use a closing sentence for that but avoid the typical closing sentences.
- Like a movie, a sad story could end well, and that is an excellent point to implement when concluding an essay about yourself. For instance, if you are exploring how you overcome some challenges growing up, you can conclude by stating how you finally got over.
- Your introduction should have a list of two to four major points featured in the body.
- Paraphrase your thesis statement and make the reader answer your question in the introduction if you included a rhetoric question.
- Reflect on some major points and main ideas in the paper and conclude with a powerful hook to make your story vivid, fresh, and memorable in the minds of the audience.
And that is just how you work on a perfect introduction and conclusion to an essay about yourself.
Example of an Essay About Me
I was accustomed to working hard from when I was young. My parents would insist on hard work as the greatest value that would open any door and bring to life our dreams. I always found myself thinking beyond my age mates. At some point, I noticed that I was a skilled public speaker and possessed excellent leadership skills. I nurtured both skills as I advanced and thrived in my academics. Through these skills, I inspired my peers in various fronts.
During my high school days, I was selected to represent my school in the debate and public speaking competitions. My prowess and oratory skills earned me the trust of the local leaders. Soon, every newspaper and radio station booked an interview. Besides, some products wanted me as their brand ambassador. I took every opportunity as it came, but never let the success of the moment prevent me from attaining high academic standards. I planned my time between schoolwork, doing chores, and handling my personal commitments. It was the only way to ensure success in all fronts. Even though it was a tough endeavor, I finally managed to graduate top of the class. The exemplary performance automatically earned me a spot at the university.
While at the university, I outgrew the skills I had in high school. The landscape was a totally new one and I had to adapt faster. Soon enough, after orientation, I made up my mind that I wanted to become a journalist. I made up my mind by reading biographies and autobiographies of great journalists like Benjamin Franklin, Tom Wolfe, and Joseph Pulitzer. While everything was good at home until my second year, the turn of events made it impossible for me to continue my education. My father was diagnosed with cancer and my mom passed away in a nasty road accident. To me, this meant taking responsibility as a firstborn to provide for my siblings. At only 20 years, I worked between jobs to sustain my ailing dad and my two siblings.
I had to defer the semester and possibly call off my education. However, upon researching recently, I came across this scholarship program and my thoughts of quitting studies changed. It rekindled my dream of becoming the best journalist. I am interested in this scholarship, as it will help me to financially cope with my education. Besides, I will make my dad and siblings proud. Better still, I believe that I will grow career-wise, inspire others, and help people in a situation like mine in the future. I am looking forward to being awarded this scholarship. Thank you for your time.
Get Help with Writing Essays about Yourself
You know yourself better than anyone else does. However, when a time comes for you to write about yourself finally, it can be arduous, challenging, and confusing. Specifically, it could be that you are applying for scholarships for college, an MBA, or a doctorate. Sometimes, it could be a response to an essay prompt from class. As presented above, the tips and examples of the about me essay can help you.
- A guide on the best Turnitin similarity percentage for college essays .
- Writing a perfect descriptive essay.
As you prepare to write a personal essay, you can get a sample personal essay from our reliable personal statement writers. We are the best personal statement writing website on the internet.
It is never about having difficulty formulating a thesis statement for an essay about yourself. Students work part-time jobs, and sometimes family responsibilities and friends come calling. A moment comes when even with this wonderful guide on writing an essay about yourself, you still cannot write a perfect essay.
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- How to Write an Essay About Yourself?
- How to Write an Essay About Yourself with Ease
- Let's Define the Subject
2 Different Purposes of the Paper
When reflective, when application, how to start an essay about yourself, 9 good hooks for intro, good conclusion for the paper, how to write about yourself, tips on personal writing, things to avoid, 15 outstanding topic ideas for personal essay, a stunning essay about yourself: examples.
Most likely, you're reading these lines because of a strong will to know how to write an essay about yourself. The article explores the best ways to write a winning essay for school level and college/university level, also known as a personal statement.
At school, this activity shows the level of student's writing. In college, it predetermines a student's destiny: it depends on the quality of an essay about yourself. Our talented essay writers can help you with making your paper immaculate!
Let's Define the Subject
An essay about yourself is a common type of writing assignment among college students. Usually, it tells the audience who you are, describes some real-life situations composing a picture of oneself in a certain period.
Quite often, when writing an admission, college or scholarship or career goals essay , a student needs to write about stories, experiences, or situations that changed their perception of life. One can unite these tasks in a group of papers named essays about yourself. If you want to create a piece for scholarship, you might be interested in our guide on how to write a scholarship essay .
In the academic world, a 3 to 5 paragraph essay about yourself may refer to one of the options: reflective paper and application paper. The difference is not this vast, but it is worth mentioning.
A personal essay becomes a reflective one when teachers ask a high school student to write about their impressions on a specific book, movie, summer vacation, experience, etc., through the prism of an author's perception of these events. A reflective paper can sometimes be compared to writing a descriptive essay .
It is not the same as the reflective essay since this paper is entirely about its author.
An application paper implies way more responsibility. It could become a ticket to the target college or university. Also, it can be required as a paper while applying for a scholarship or as a cover letter.
In this case, the main idea is to prove a particular candidate is the best one to join the institution through stressing the skills, knowledge, experience, and potential contribution to the chosen field of study. Feel free to look through our college application essay examples to find more ideas for your writing.
No matter whether students want to apply to a community college, graduate school, or extracurricular programs, they should know how to start an essay about yourself.
While writing an essay of any type, remember that the introduction is the face of the text. The opening part should be powerful to make the audience read the text from A to Z. It is impossible to catch the reader's eye without learning how to start an essay. Mind several elements of the successful, killer introduction. Here's how to start an essay introduction :
- An engaging opening sentence ‒ a hook . It should be captivating and stimulate the reader's appetite for reading.
- An impressive episode from the candidate's life to illustrate the insight. But don't get far into the details.
- Provide reliable sensory information to make your reader intrigued and more engaged.
The significant piece relates a personal story from the introduction to the body where the writer interprets what the experience has contributed to their life and how it influenced personality.
In most cases, the practice recommends completing the introduction at the end of writing. To come up with the brilliant opening paragraph, an author also should:
- Decide on the story to tell in the entire paper
- Decide on the main point to share (message to deliver)
- Think about the traits that make this story unique.
Try working in reverse order. Think about the topic first, but add an introduction and catchy title once you are ready with the body and conclusion. It would be great if the topic somehow relates to the chosen field of study.
We have recalled the importance of the opening line. Let's now check through some good hooks for essays :
- An author may start with the thesis statement instead of placing it at the end of the opening paragraph;
- If the story relates to the work of a favorite writer like Mark Twain, try to select a particular quote from one of his stories and use it to illustrate the paper;
- A writer may quote distinguished people who shared some witty ideas (it could be a political figure, sportsman, or even a pop star);
- Give background information in a literary way as famous world writers do;
- If your story is not kind of dramatic, include an anecdote or joke to set the fine-tune;
- Numbers & statistics work well if a writer plans to join a business or scientific program;
- Unveiling a common misconception people may have is another way to attract attention;
- A rhetorical question is a winning hook in most situations;
- Try using literary devices such as metaphors and allegories to start an essay about oneself.
Whether you're writing an essay about yourself for a school task or to apply for a scholarship, your conclusion should impress any reader to make them think of your thoughts even after reading. Start with summarizing the main ideas. Remind the target reader about the main events. It means a writer should list the main 2-4 points (arguments) of the body section.
Then, reflect on a thesis statement. Provide the readers with your thoughts on the paper's main ideas and end up with one more powerful hook to make the reader remember your words and think about the described events.
People often get confused when asked to talk about themselves. That should not be the case for personal essay writing, also referred to as an essay about yourself. There are several steps you should follow to create an impeccable paper.
- Get to know yourself. Write down all the critical moments of your life.
- Consider the audience you will present your essay to.
- Choose the period or event you would like to focus on.
- Formulate the main idea of your essay in the thesis statement.
- Avoid fake stories, be yourself.
- Be humble and avoid bragging.
- Write down a short outline with one main idea per paragraph.
- Draft your essay.
- Proofread your essay for any type of mistakes.
Writing an essay about yourself would be much easier if you stick to the following guidelines and use these tips.
First, write in simple language. Do not try to apply all the vocabulary words ‒ avoid tautology . It's obvious, but there's no need to insert words or idioms the meaning of which you do not understand.
Make sure the story fits the prompt. If the teacher or specific educational institution offers a prompt, recall a personal story with something to do with the proposed essay topics. Avoid the narratives without any lesson learned.
Check if the story has a qualitative plot. To do that, create a checklist made of:
- The story's start & end.
- People who take part in the plot development.
- Subjects and objects that had an impact on the story's conclusion.
- Particular details a writer remembers about the described episode.
- Revise the paper. Reread the final text several times to detect and fix grammar, spelling, & punctuation mistakes and replace plagiarized text if found.
Some things help make your essay better and the ones that only harm your text. Check the list of mistakes that might worsen your paper:
- Do not miss essential essay components: intro, main body, and conclusion.
- Fake stories will only spell backward.
- Do not retell your whole autobiography.
- Cliche stories are a terrible option.
- Avoid too many unnecessary details that are not related to your story.
- Do not boast too much, and try staying humble.
- By any means, avoid using curse words. No comments.
- High-flown vocabulary you have never used before is a bad idea. The essay should be easy to read.
- Describe how you felt about those situations rather than just describing events: how they changed your personality and helped you improve and become the person you are today.
- Personal fears & their roots
- My best friend
- Describing favorite meals
- Discussing the home pet
- Explaining the reasons to love Christmas
- The best color of the personal root
- The craziest life in a life
- Project a treehouse of your dream
- Most preferred outfit and what it stresses
- The most curious thing about the writer
- Interpreting your name
- Discussing favorite book or movie
- Describing the dream place to attend on holidays
- Explaining the career of your dream
- A something you would like to invent
The last thing in this guide to make it complete is an essay about yourself example.
After reading plenty of tips and several examples on how to write an essay about yourself, an author may better understand how to prepare a solid essay about yourself. What if you have any doubts? Send us your draft for editing, or order an admission paper from scratch!
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- Writing a Winning Essay About Yourself - 10+ Best Tips & Examples
- How to Write an Essay About Yourself: Tips to Consider and Samples
- What Is an Essay About Yourself
Purpose of Personal Writing
Personal essay types.
- Tips on Crafting a Cover Letter
- Admission Essay Sample
- Tips on Writing a Personal Essay
- Personal Essay Sample
- Essay About Yourself Topics
- Bottom Line
Knowing how to write a personal essay is critical in the academic context. Be it a personal narrative essay or an admission paper, a student needs to walk a fine line between focusing on the most remarkable achievements and avoiding overestimations. It may seem that there is nothing easier than discussing your experience. However, when it comes to the writing process, you may discover different writing styles and requirements. Read the article to find out the basics of composing an essay about yourself for various academic purposes.
What Is an Essay About Yourself
An essay about yourself is a piece of writing that describes the writer's meaningful experience. Personal writing focuses on the life situations, challenges or events that have a profound impact on the author . In this type of essay, a story is narrated in the first person. Composing an essay about yourself is a great way to demonstrate your core skills, achievements and preparedness to overcome obstacles. If you want to make sure that your writing stands out, contact our team of academic experts and ask ' write my essay '.
An essay about yourself may be written for a number of purposes. The main objective of a paper about oneself is to share a significant event or tell about a person that has left a lasting impression. This type of essay is commonly used to support your resume or college admission form . In this case, it should provide decent reasons to choose your candidacy over the other applicants. Paper about oneself may also be used to narrate a personal story and, as such, should be written in the form of a personal narrative.
Depending on the intent of a piece, personal essays differ in writing style and tone. Generally, there are two major types of personal writing you may be required to create in the academic context:
- A cover letter . Otherwise known as an admission essay, it is a formal writing piece that introduces a student for internship or admission. A cover letter is commonly used to provide additional information about a candidate for college or university admissions, scholarships, or job interviews.
- A personal essay for high school . A paper about yourself may be a part of a high school assignment or college application. Its purpose is to narrate about a writer and explore valuable experience in a semi-formal manner.
It is essential to distinguish these two types of essays to choose an appropriate tone of voice and writing style . After all, you don't want your paper to sound too conversational if your primary purpose is to craft a cover letter for a scholarship application. In case you are not sure how to write a scholarship essay , we have got you covered.
Refer to the comparison table below to learn more about the main characteristics of each essay type.
Now that you are familiar with the peculiarities of each type of paper, it's time to learn how to write an essay about yourself for different academic purposes.
Tips on Crafting a Cover Letter
01. Split up the question into subtopics. Whether it's a college essay or a scholarship paper, you most likely will be given the main question that needs to be answered in your paper. Try to divide the main topic into subtopics and then address them one by one. Assuming you need to write an essay about your achievements, then you will need to cover the following related subtopics:
- Brief background information on your accomplishment
- Your experience that influenced your achievements
- The challenges you had to overcome to achieve your goals
- Your valuable takeaways
02. Create an Outline. A well-structured outline will allow you to remain focused on the main objective. An outline should comprise all subtopics related to the subject matter. Once you've got the main prompt subject divided into smaller sections, it's time to organize them logically. You can use a standard five paragraph essay structure.
03. Describe an education-related experience. Describing your first wedding ceremony is not the best idea. Highlight the insights you've gained at school, college, or other educational institutions. If you have a specific person who has inspired you to enter a target college or choose a particular domain, you may create a reflective paragraph to integrate such information.
04. Start an essay with a captivating opening line. Even though the essay about you should be focused on your achievements and professional skills, do not start your writing with meaningless phrases. Use statistics and interesting facts to begin your paper. Another great way to start an essay about yourself is to put an intriguing question that requires an answer in the end.
05. Show your goals and ambitions. If you are writing a paper about yourself as a part of your admission, describe your skills and university goals. Give an admission officer an overall idea of your strengths, and explain how you can apply your knowledge at that particular college or university.
06. Format your paper. An essay about yourself doesn't require an additional abstract or reference page. However, you need to format your essay properly. Check the writing requirements to ensure that you are using the right font, size, margins, intervals and borders. In other words, a paper about your professional experience should look organized and structured.
07. Revise the paper. A finished draft is only half the battle. Once an essay about yourself is done, double-check it for grammar, spelling, or punctuation mistakes . You may download a grammar checker or use the tools available online to make sure that your essay is error-free. Also remember that your writing should be 100% original.
Admission Essay Sample
Do not hesitate to refer to the sample of an excellent admission essay attached below.
Tips on Writing a Personal Essay
01. Choose a meaningful event to narrate. Tell a memorable story that has a significant impact on you. This type of writing aims to discuss a life situation that leads to the broader idea. Generally, a personal essay for school focuses on challenges, failures, outstanding achievements, or life lessons.
02. Focus on a real-life story. Whether it's a student or a teacher, your reader would like to learn about the actual things you have gone through. Don't write about situations or events that have never taken place in your real life. You should be as sincere as possible.
03. Develop your essay around a single topic. The primary purpose of personal non-fiction writing is to address a separate issue at a time. Do not list all your achievements, as you would do in a scholarship essay. Try to focus on a single challenge or life situation that has shaped your perspective.
04. Outline your essay. Having a structured essay outline helps to stay on track. A typical personal essay for the high school includes an introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Start with a brief overview of a life experience significant to you, and then cover all related points in the body part. Conclude your paper with a summary, and remember to highlight a takeaway.
05. It's all about a great introduction. An introductory part should be powerful to make your reader want to read the rest of the essay. Forget about general phrases like "My name is..." or "Everybody loves..". When you compose an essay about your life, you don't have to sound trivial. Start your paper with a fascinating fact from your life or an intriguing question.
06. Avoid sensitive topics. Writing a piece that reflects your experience should not hurt the feelings of other students or teachers. The taboo topics you want to avoid when crafting your personal paper include gender, racial, political, and religious issues. It is recommended to focus on commonly accepted things, even if you want to share your thoughts on tough times in your life.
07. Proofread your paper. Students often ignore this step, and by doing so compromise the quality. Even a single mistake can confuse or even bother your readers. Remember to check your writing for grammar and stylistic errors.
Personal Essay Sample
Below you can find an excellent sample of a personal essay for high school. Feel free to use it as a reference as you write an essay about yourself.
Essay About Yourself Topics
Now that you are familiar with all tips and tricks on how to write an essay about yourself, it's time to select a great topic. Below is a list of the top essay topic ideas compiled by our expert writers.
- Tell about your most significant achievement.
- Discuss your biggest failure and how it has influenced you?
- Tell about the challenges you had to overcome.
- What makes you a perfect candidate for this scholarship?
- How do you see yourself in 5 years?
Before crafting an essay about yourself, a writer should identify the primary purpose of writing . If it's a part of a school assignment, it's advised to stick to the semi-formal style and explore a single event. A cover letter or a scholarship essay, instead, should be written in a formal manner and focus on the skills that will make you shine through.
Ok, you decide to go to college and want to get a scholarship. This is not only a bunch of money that can cover your educational expenses but also a recognition as one of the best candidates. But here’s an obstacle on your way – an essay. That is why you’re reading this text, aren’t you? If so, time...
Understanding the basics of writing a personal essay is essential for any student who wants to succeed at college admission. In 99% cases, the applicants enter the colleges of their dreams thanks to a well-crafted admission paper, and a brilliant personal essay is all you need to stand out from the ...
Reflective writing requires analytical skills. You should not just narrate a story or retell the plot of a book. You should be able to explain why it is important, how it influenced you or helped you grow. This essay type is rather personal. Thus, you should take your time to pick a topic that is in...
How to Write an Essay about Yourself — The Ultimate Guide
Posted on Published: June 12, 2022 - Last updated: September 18, 2022
Of all people in this world, you know yourself best. Nevertheless, writing an essay about yourself is not, and will never be, a walk in the park.
While it is a bit grueling, knowing how to write an essay about yourself effectively can be your ticket to Mars – or more precisely, to your dream job or scholarship somewhere in this world.
So, today, we’ll look into the secret recipes of writing an essay about the self. Examples and explanations are available, too, to make things easier to digest.
Let’s begin with a brief answer.
Writing an essay about yourself
- Know your audience
- Write for your audience
- Stick to one topic
- Avoid sensitive topics
- Be cohesive
- Be personal
- Mention relevant people
- Proofread your work
How to write an essay about yourself in more detail
Writing is not for everyone. So, no matter how seemingly easy the topic is, like writing about the self, we can’t really say that everyone can do it.
But, on the brighter side, writing is a skill, and thus, it can be learned. Time and effort are the two main ingredients needed to get better at it.
So, to create an essay about yourself, here are eight guidelines that you can refer to and follow to make essay writing less taxing.
1. Know your audience
Knowing your audience allows you to convey your message effectively. Apart from that, it allows you to talk directly to whoever your reader is.
This can be done by doing research in advance. So, if you’re writing an essay about yourself, you need to have some idea as to who will be evaluating your essay.
If you are applying for a job, for instance, you need to bear in mind that one of the Human Resources staff will most likely be your target audience.
All in all, knowing your audience should give you a great avenue for your essay preparation as a whole; this allows you to take control of whatever writing piece you want to focus on.
2. Write for your audience
Apart from knowing your audience, it is needless to say that you have to write for your audience too.
Yes, you will be discussing your life in your essay, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t connect to your audience when doing such a thing.
Writing for your audience basically means looking for a strategy to make your target reader empathize with your story.
In other words, you have to write in such a way that your reader gets too immersed in your work that he or she will be reading until the last word in your conclusion.
Thus, you have to make your story as interesting as possible – just like how prose writers do their job, or at least close to it.
3. Stick to one topic
When writing an essay about yourself, it is advised to focus on one topic. So, instead of writing every relevant experience you’ve had, it is best to stick to one and go in-depth with it.
This allows you to write a richer essay, and at the same time, this would also keep your reader hooked on a particular event in your life.
Writing one too many topics in a single essay is not suggested because it derails your audience from what you really want to convey.
To contextualize, just think of a teacher introducing ten book chapters in a sixty-minute class. Apparently, you are less likely to retain all the information in this scenario.
So, again, think of a single topic that has essentially molded you to become a better version of yourself and just stick to it.
4. Avoid sensitive topics
While you can generally be free as to which topic you’d be writing about, there are certain things that you might want to steer clear of.
Some of these sensitive topics include gender, religion, social taboos, and politics. You should also avoid saying negative things about certain people and their beliefs in your essay.
In case your personal experience has something to do with sensitive issues, the best thing you can do is to focus on how you were able to cope with it.
Again, avoid name-dropping people who may have wronged you before so you won’t get off-topic.
5. Be cohesive
Cohesion or unity is not only important within a nation. It is also a fundamental aspect of writing and any other structured communication activity.
Effectively connecting your ideas by transforming them into readable text allows you to demonstrate your organizational skills to your reader.
Needless to say, you also need to be as coherent or logical as possible when presenting your inner thoughts so that your audience can be in-sync with you.
You can show cohesion by using connective devices such as conjunctions and adverbs or a combination of both, conjunctive adverbs, especially at the beginning of your paragraph or sentence.
6. Be personal
As you are writing an essay about “yourself,” you obviously have to be as personal and warm as possible in your write-up.
Being personal does not mean you have to share your deepest secrets with your reader just to grab their attention and keep them intrigued while reading.
What it means is that you need to present your story in such a way that it characterizes yourself and not anyone else.
The purpose of personal statements and essays about the self is actually for an organization or institution to get to know you as a person.
So, at the end of the day, you had better showcase your human side when writing these kinds of texts.
7. Mention relevant people
While it was mentioned early on that you have to avoid badmouthing others in your essay, it follows that you definitely can praise relevant people in your piece.
Mentioning how others have helped you get through the toughest times in your life bodes well because it shows your grateful side to your reader.
On top of that, it also shows that you are not self-centered and that you actually know how to appreciate others who have helped you along the way.
To do this, you can mention your family members, mentors, classmates, sports coaches, favorite writers, philosophers, and so on.
8. Proofread your work
Last but not least, you have to reread your work and make corrections, if necessary. It is best to do this a day or at least a couple of hours after you finish writing.
Essay writing is not just a five-finger exercise. It takes time to get done, and hence, you’ll get drained of your energy after doing it for hours.
This means that upon reaching your conclusion, you’ll probably not have the same amount of mental energy as much as you had when you started your introductory paragraph.
So, you may not be able to spot superfluous and ambiguous sentences as well as grammatical and typographical errors upon reaching the end of your essay.
Also, you have to remember that even the most seasoned writers are not immune to all kinds of writing errors that can be committed, hence proofreading is a whole different story.
If you can, it would actually be best to ask another person to proofread your essay and ask for feedback from that person.
Now that we’ve discussed the do’s and don’ts when writing a personal essay, let us now see how all these parts fit together.
Here’s an example essay for your reference:
Sample 1: A general essay about yourself
Thinking I got it all figured out, a careless mistake changed my life forever. Back in early 2015, I was confronted with the most challenging problem I had to face – the consistent two red lines on the five pregnancy test tubes I bought for $5.99 at Walmart. “No. This can’t be true,” I thought to myself, so I scheduled a doctor’s appointment a couple of days later just to make sure. As expected, the doctor confirmed that I’ve been cooking a little bun in the oven for five weeks already. Devastated and still in shock, I headed back to my small apartment and blankly stared at the TV screen for hours not knowing how to react.
Fast forward to a couple of weeks later, when I finally had my bearings, I called my mom in Idaho, told her what happened, quit school, and decided to go back home. Mothers really know best, and this isn’t a myth at all. My mom accepted me and helped me get through all the physical, mental, and even social struggles I had back then, notwithstanding her own life problems at that time. Seven months later, I gave birth to the most wonderful purple-ish creature I have ever seen in my entire life – Everett.
My son Everett, who looks more like my mom than me, has taught me so many things I never knew I was capable of – from changing poopy diapers to becoming a moderately-celebrated one-woman band in my hometown, Nampa. Yes, Everett has also made me pursue the only thing I loved but never knew I was good at – music. My son is four years old now, and I’ve been steadily raising him up through being a freelance voice talent during the day and a local musician at night. With this set-up, I have been able to see my son grow day by day without missing a beat.
This entire experience has not only taught me how not to give up on life but also on myself. My mom, most especially, has also contributed a lot to why I decided to keep going despite everything. For that, I owe what I have become today to my beautiful son Everett and to my guiding light, my mom, Evelyn.
How to write an essay about yourself for a scholarship
Writing an essay for a scholarship program more or less shares the same structure as any kind of personal essay out there.
The difference, though, is that you will have to explain the purpose of your essay in the intro paragraph if you won’t be asked for a cover letter for it.
Writing a cover letter for an essay is also not just a cakewalk because it would also require time and effort to get done, just like any other writing piece.
Also, scholarships do not just land on one’s lap. It is something that we have to apply for and do some research about.
If you’re lucky enough and you have the right connections, someone might just be able to introduce scholarship programs to you.
When this happens, you had better prepare a thank you letter for a scholarship that you can give to your scholarship grantor.
So, how exactly should you write an essay about yourself for a scholarship program? Let’s try to find out below.
Writing an essay about yourself for a scholarship
- Write your intent
- Build the hook
- Describe your experience in detail
Provide a climactic event
- Reconcile and offer value
1. Write your intent
If a cover letter for your essay is not necessarily asked by the institution or organization you are applying for, it would be best to explain your purpose at the beginning.
This part is important because it is what tells your reader why he or she is holding a piece of paper or staring at his or her screen.
Remember that not all people are good readers, which means not everyone will immediately understand what you are trying to convey.
So, be clear with your purpose or intent in the first paragraph. Clearly, you should also formally introduce yourself in this part.
2. Build the hook
The hook comes after the intent – at least in a scholarship essay that does not necessarily require a cover letter.
The hook is what captures your audience’s attention, so this part is nothing less than crucial too. Think of the hook as something that would tell your audience “Hey, I’m worth reading.”
You can use a rhetorical question or statement here. Or, you can also use a relevant quote or a life lesson that you had learned based on the story you’re writing.
In the example essay a few sections later, you will see that the hook uses a jump-in strategy where it immediately tells you why the essay is more or less worth reading.
3. Describe your experience in detail
As the hook is designed to capture your audience’s attention, they would be asking “why” you wrote it in the back of their minds.
So, the next paragraph should be where your story starts so your reader can build a connection to your hook.
You can start with the day your story happened or a little before that. You may also want to use visual representations like describing your story’s setting.
The very point of this paragraph is to bring your reader to the day that your story happened. This is done to make them walk through your life or whatever story you are telling.
Like in books and movies, you can also add a climax to your essay. The climax is known to be the highest point or peak of your story.
Here, you might want to be as detailed as possible so that your audience would also feel the tension that you are building.
The use of appropriate descriptive words is simply the key to making this happen. So, write your climax in such a way that your reader will be holding his breath while reading.
4. Reconcile and offer value
After the climax comes the reconciliation part. Here, you would want to write about the most important lesson you have learned from your experience.
This can also serve as the conclusion already. In this part, you will explain how your experience molded you to become better.
You can also mention relevant people in this paragraph, and explain who they are and how they helped you somehow get through life.
To see how all these parts fit together, here’s an example essay for a scholarship application:
Sample 2: Essay for a scholarship application
As the ginormous wave came toward me, I felt so thrilled waiting to ride and tame it with my five-year-old surfboard. Little did I know that another ginormous rock was also waiting underneath the waters to change my perspective on life forever.
I have already been surfing for a decent amount of time because I grew up around Laguna Beach, Orange County. So, I thought to myself “This is just going to be another awesome ride.” As the giant wave neared, I patiently paddled toward it and prepared to stand. Four seconds in, I was doing really well, so I gave myself a silent “good job” praise. A few moments later, I suddenly got off-balance and ended up getting rag-dolled by the apparently not-so-harmless wave.
“Stay out of the washing machine,” I suddenly heard my brother’s voice in my head. That was the very first lesson I had to learn the easy way back when I was younger. That wasn’t my first time getting wiped out either, so I was confident I could just survive the first wave. Thinking I got it all under control, I rose to the surface only to see an even larger wave about to crash. It was too late. I had been annihilated by nature once again. But this time, a sharp edged-rock hit the back of my head and caused me to faint and drown. Luckily, another surfer saw what happened and immediately helped me get back to the shore.
Because of the incident, I was hospitalized for a month, and my parents thought I wouldn’t make it. At that time, it would be fitting to say that I hit rock bottom, literally. Had Dylan, my savior, chosen another surfing spot, I would have not been able to write this essay at all. I owe my life to him, to my family, and to the doctors who decided not to give up on me at the end of the day. For the record, the day I had my surfing accident was the same day I decided to quit school because I had mindlessly thought it wouldn’t do me any good. So, when I recovered, I firmly told myself I would do everything not to mess up ever again, especially when education is at stake.
This particular near-death experience of mine has taught me to value the gift of life. Most of all, this has taught me that education is way more important than what I thought I would only be good at — surfing. If I will be given a chance to secure a slot in your scholarship program, rest assured I will make the most out of it to make Dylan and my whole family proud, to say the least.
How to write an essay about yourself for a job application
Meanwhile, job application essays about the self may take just a slightly different approach from that of a scholarship and general one.
An essay about yourself intended for a job application is also known as a cover letter in business correspondence.
You may want to check out our guidelines on how to write a cover letter for an event manager job as a reference or sample.
At other times, essays about the self may also be called a personal statement, such as when applying for teaching-related positions.
Although encompassing a similar intent, a cover letter is different from a personal statement in terms of creativity and level of formality.
When writing an essay about yourself for a job application, the main goal is to “sell” yourself to your potential employer.
It follows that you need to highlight relevant skills and experiences that would tell your reader exactly why you can be a good fit for the role you are applying for.
So, how can we do that? Let’s find out in the next section.
Writing an essay about yourself for a job application
- Introduce yourself formally
- Show why you are a good candidate
- Summarize how you can be an asset
1. Introduce yourself formally
Like in the essay for a scholarship program, the default strategy is to formally introduce yourself to your reader and explain your writing purpose.
This allows your reader to get the hang of why your essay is being laid out in front of them. Put simply, this part should quickly explain the rest of the information that goes right below the intro.
Ideally, two to four sentences should suffice in creating the introduction part of your job application essay.
2. Show why you are a good candidate
“Show” and do not “tell” why you are a good candidate in the body of your essay – this is the golden rule when writing it for a job application.
As you may know, the body comes after the intro. In a five-paragraph essay, the body is composed of paragraphs two, three, and four.
In a three-paragraph essay, which is the structure in the example below, your body is made up only of paragraph number two.
In the example, you will see how the body aims to elaborate on how the applicant got influenced by external factors in applying for the role.
On top of that, you will also see in the body the applicant’s genuine motivation in seeking a particular job. Being as genuine as possible is highly suggested when writing this kind of essay.
3. Summarize how you can be an asset
Lastly, you can summarize your message into three to five sentences. You can do this by focusing on the most important areas that the job may entail.
Do not sell too much on the idea that you are the best among the other applicants because that’s something you should do during the interview.
Instead, the goal you should have in mind when writing this part is, in fact, to prompt the reader to schedule you for an interview.
This means that having a call-to-action prompt towards or at the end of your last paragraph is also highly suggested.
Sample 3: Essay for a job application
Apart from my educational and professional experience as a virtual sourcing associate last year, my interest in this particular role has been mainly influenced by my elder sister. She has been working from the comfort of her apartment for three years now. Before that, she used to live with us in my parents’ house. That particular role actually gave her enough resources to move out and start a life of her own — something I would also want for myself. She used to live with us back when I was still in college, so I had the chance to help her with some tasks from time to time.
This situation gave me an initial exposure to a remote employment setup. Remote employment is the kind of setup I am strongly vying for because of the freedom it offers. Clearly enough, a remote employment setup is not for everyone because it also has its own can of worms. To succeed in this, one must have effective time-management, communication, and organizational skills. However, as I have been exposed to this early on, and I am undoubtedly interested in it too, I believe I can be a good fit for the position you are looking for. I would be glad to share more about what I can offer to your organization in an interview.
How to write an essay about yourself for a job interview
Applying for a role in an organization is one thing, whereas securing an interview from your target organization is another.
If a person or organization wants you to write an essay about yourself before an interview, it means that they want to save time and effort.
Therefore, taking your best shot in the essay writing part is highly advised as this would also allow you to pitch yourself more.
In this kind of intent, you need to elaborate more on your personal side so as to give your interviewer an idea of who you are as a person on top of being a professional.
Writing an essay about yourself for a job interview
- Jump to the hook
- Build the tension
- Explain what you have done
- Mention a relevant person
- Show excitement toward the interview
- Thank your interviewer for the invitation
1. Jump to the hook
As you are writing an essay about yourself for a job interview, it means that you need not necessarily introduce yourself anymore.
In other words, your interviewer wouldn’t have scheduled you for an interview had he or she not known about your basic information.
So, quickly jump to the hook and grab your reader’s attention. Remember to stay honest and not overdo this part.
2. Build the tension
Tension-building through words is an art. Luckily enough, this idea should not be treated as only limited to movies and novels.
Here, you will explain a problem or challenge that you are most likely facing and convey it through your human side.
Bear in mind that life is not all roses and rainbows, so it’s fine to share some of your struggles in life as a person.
You can show your emotional side in the sincerest manner possible in this part and avoid a showing-off stance.
3. Explain what you have done
After building the tension, you may now start explaining what you have done to try to solve the problem or challenge you explained early on.
In the particular case of job interviews, it would be nice if you could tell a story of how you got to learn to apply for the role you’re vying for.
Perhaps, you can go a little bit deeper into the details of how or why you came across the job posting or how you had an idea about the job opening.
When doing this in an e-mail message, you may want to avoid saying “I came across your job posting” because of how “unintentional” it sounds.
4. Mention a relevant person
This part is optional. But, if there’s a particular person that has introduced the job opening to you, it would be best to mention that person in this part.
This would demonstrate your good and grateful side to your reader, or perhaps, potential employer, which is definitely what you want to happen.
To do this, you can simply elaborate on how a relevant person helped you out by introducing the job vacancy or maybe even how a certain person encouraged you to take a leap of fate.
5. Show excitement toward the interview
Another proven and tested trick you can incorporate in your essay for a job interview is to show how excited you are for the interview itself.
Remember that your excitement should be directed towards the interview and not the job role yet as you are not yet officially hired.
Showing excitement and humility at the same time is a great recipe for landing your dream job or any other goal in life.
6. Thank your interviewer for the invitation
Finally, a brief paragraph dedicated to thanking your interviewer for setting up an appointment with you should also do the trick.
If you are able to appreciate another person’s role in introducing a job opening to you, you should also not forget to thank your interviewer for taking a chance on you.
So, the conclusion of your essay should bear a grateful and excited tone but already dedicated to the interviewer.
You can see how all these tips and parts fit and flow together in the essay below:
Sample 4: Essay for a job interview
But, I didn’t want to just look for any job – as I have always wanted to become a writer. I also knew right from the start that going back to my parents’ house is never an option, no matter what. So, finding the right balance between what I really wanted to do and what I actually needed to do at that time was one of the hardest decisions I had to make.
With a bit of luck and a lot of desperation, I decided to draft an application for an entry-level writer/researcher role in a start-up media company in New York City. Earlier that night, I bumped into a long-lost friend from Ohio who was the main reason for how and why I got the role I applied for.
My friend Lillia, a single mother of two lovely kids, happened to just move to an apartment located beside XYZ 86.09 – a local radio station. “I’ve read they’re looking for a new research staff or something like that at the station because the last one just quit last week. You should give it a try” – these were more or less the exact words that she said that night.
So, when I got home, I did some research about the radio station, did more about the position, wrote a cover letter together with a resume, and submitted the application online. When I woke up the next morning, an interview invitation was already sitting in my inbox. At that exact moment, all I ever wanted was to do my best in the interview so I could land the job I always knew I’m good at. Interestingly enough, willpower and luck should somehow go together to make things happen.
So, I sincerely thank you for inviting me to an interview at your station this Friday, Miss Levine. I would be more than happy to share and know more about what I can do to contribute to your company through the role I am applying for.
How to write an essay about yourself from a third-person perspective
Writing from a third-person point of view simply requires the use of third-person pronouns. That said, doing so means avoiding the use of first and second-person pronouns.
Third-person pronouns include everything else except “you,” “we,” and “I.” So, these pronouns are made up of “he,” “she,” “it,” and “they.”
Writing in the third-person perspective in academic writing allows the objective and neutral flow of ideas.
In creative writing, third-person narration allows you to present yourself as a character in your own story. This is good because it makes your ideas less biased and more convincing.
In connection with this, the question of whether we should write a resume from a first-person perspective is asked by quite a lot of people.
The rule of thumb when writing formal texts such as resumes is to religiously avoid the use of “I’s.” Instead, pronouns must be dropped to make the information more factual.
So, how exactly can we write an essay from a third-person point of view? Is that even possible? Let’s check that out below.
Writing an essay about yourself from a third-person perspective
- Think of yourself as a book or movie character
- Steer clear of “I,” “we,” and “you”
- Stick with “he,” “she,” “it,” and “they”
1. Think of yourself as a book or movie character
The first thing to do is to simply think of yourself as a character, probably the protagonist, in a movie or book that you want to write about.
This means that you need to think of yourself as someone else while recalling your own story. Doing this is naturally tricky as you have to distance yourself from, well, yourself.
However, in the example later, you will see how and why writing an essay about yourself in a third-person perspective makes the story more interesting and less opinionated.
2. Steer clear of “I,” “we,” and “you”
The next thing to do is to avoid using the personal pronouns “I,” “we,” and “you.” While “I” and “we” are both in the first person, “you” is used in the second person.
Remember this rule, and you’ll come up with an interesting essay or even a short story about yourself. You may even want to consider becoming a novel writer in the future after doing it.
3. Stick with “he,” “she,” “it,” and “they”
Last but not least, to come up with a nicely-written essay about yourself in third-person POV, remember to only stick with the pronouns “he,” “she,” “it,” and “they” while drafting.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you cannot use other types of pronouns such as object pronouns, possessive pronouns, and reflexive pronouns that are also in the third person.
You have to treat “he,” “she,” “it,” and “they” as your default reference pronouns only no matter what kind of story angle you want to build on.
To make things clearer, here’s an example essay about the self but written in a third-person point of view:
Sample 5: Essay from a third-person perspective
Fast forward to the present, Joe is now a licensed architect in Silver Spring, Montgomery County, Maryland. He built a start-up firm from scratch. Today, this very architectural firm, whose mission is to create and design spaces that are both sustainable and environment-friendly, already has around forty employees. This goes to show that, at least, he managed to quadruple the number of years he spent at school with his current company size.
If you ask him today what made him decide to root for his own success, he could go for hours. If you asked the same question a decade ago, he would just laugh and tell you to talk to another person instead. According to his staff, they could never, ever believe he used to be the black sheep of the family. That exact reaction is what keeps him going these days. It makes him feel like he is on the right path, and for that, he can’t thank all the people he works with enough.
He is also grateful for his parents, especially his mom, who did not give up on him before. Of course, he wouldn’t be able to get to where he is right now without the guidance of his mentors and professors at school. Joe hopes that his story, though not the most ideal, could somehow help those students who are still trying to be the best versions of themselves.
Frequently Asked Questions on “How to Write an Essay About Yourself”
How can i start an essay about myself.
To start writing the first paragraph of an essay about yourself, you can make use of either a formal introduction plus the intent. Or, you can start directly with a hook in the form of rhetorical statements or questions, quotes, or personal life lessons.
How can end an essay about myself?
To end an essay about yourself, you have to reconcile the ideas that you previously introduced. This means you have to summarize the points you presented and write a realization about those. You can make this part more powerful by focusing on other people’s contributions to your improvement rather than talking more about how you did things alone.
What topics can be written in an essay about myself?
Near-death experiences, general life struggles, education, mentorship, ambitions, and weaknesses are some of the most popular topics that can be used when writing an essay about the self.
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