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35 Questions to Ask Before Preparing the Perfect Statement of Purpose Essays

Posted on Dec 26, 2017

Writing a statement of purpose from scratch unnerves even the best of writers. This is no ordinary essay. This essay is a compilation of your goals, dreams, and your milestones. Not just that, you have to write an essay stunning enough to take you through the golden gates of your dream college abroad.

So how do you begin to write the perfect statement of purpose? What should you do to ensure that you have covered all ground to create a jaw-dropping good essay that positions you as the ideal applicant?

The best way forward is to create a bank of pertinent questions that help to answer the key questions about your life goals. As you chalk out your answers, you will achieve two things:

1. Clarity of thought.

Some of you may feel confounded by the multiple options, the lack of clarity, and an inability to make a decision. If you are plagued with doubts, answering the questions from a question bank helps to clear your mind. You see your goals clearly, and understand how to work towards them.

“Write down detailed answers to each of these questions.”

2. Comprehensive presentation of your profile.

The question bank will ensure that you have all aspects covered. You may want to mention an important event that changed your life. Or you may want to talk about how you developed leadership skills in a outbound program. If you use a comprehensive question bank, you can make sure to include all important aspects that go into making a well-rounded letter of intent.

35 Questions to Help Write the Perfect Essay for Your Study Abroad

  • Write down detailed answers to each of these questions. Some questions may have overlapping answers, but to evade the risk of missing out an important detail, write the point again.
  • As far as possible, give details. Flesh out the story, express your feelings, thoughts, and dreams wherever required. This helps the admissions committee to get a greater insight about you.
  • To make your story real, make sure to include some failures you may have encountered. But don’t leave the failures unaccounted for. You have to explain what you learned from your failures, and how you plan to overcome them in the future.
  • Wrap up your essay with a powerful thought, that reflects your aspiration. Use specific examples, numbers and details to establish credibility to your story.
  • Tie all loose ends. Your essay should be consistent with the content in your resume, letter of recommendation and transcripts project about you. For example, you couldn’t possibly say that you are an avid computers fan, when you have no accolades, recognition or achievements to add weight to your statement.

Questions:

1. Describe any special, unique, or distinctive quality about you.

2. What details of your life might help the admissions committee understand you or help set you apart from other applicants?

3. When did you originally become interested in applying for this program?

4. What are your learnings about the program?

5. What are your learnings about yourself that has further stimulated your interest and reinforced your conviction that you are well suited to this field?

6. How have you learned about this course – through classes, readings, seminars, work or other experiences, or conversations with people already in the field.

7. If you have worked in a professional setup, what have you learned (leadership or managerial skills, for example), and how has the work contributed to your personal growth?

8. What are your career goals?

9. Are there any discrepancies in your academic record that you want to explain?

10. Any unusual obstacles or hardships that you may have had to overcome (e.g., economic, familial, physical) in your life?

11. Any personal you possess that would enhance your prospects for success in the field or profession? (Examples you may want to consider: integrity, compassion, persistence, hardworking, relationship building, leadership, quick learning, team player, etc.)

12. Is there a way to demonstrate or document that you have these characteristics?

13. What skills (leadership, communicative, analytical, number crunching, logical thinking, organizational skills, etc.) do you possess?

14. Why might you be a stronger candidate for graduate school – and more successful and effective in the profession or field — than other applicants?

15. What are the most compelling reasons you can give for the admissions committee to be interested in you?

16. What you want to study at graduate school?

17. Why this particular course or specialization?

18. Why do you want to study at this college?

19. Why us? List at least 3 points that you like about our school.

20. Why study in this country? List compelling reasons why you chose this country.

21. How much and what kind of experience you have in your area of specialization.

22. Is your experience related to your choice of degree?

23. If you already work in the same field, what additional skills do you hope to gain from the specialized program?

24. Would you choose to take up a job or pursue research?

25. What are your expectations from both the graduate program, and the university?

26. Would you like to study or do research under any particular professor?

27. How can you contribute to our university and our program?

28. Apart from work and education, what are your hobbies, interests, and habits?

29. What do you understand about our student community and culture?

30. Why do you think you will fit in?

31. What is that one unique aspect/characteristic about you that we should know?

32. Why does it matter to us or to the fellow students of your class?

33. What in your life story makes you special, unique or impressive?

34. What interests you about the field of work/study for which you are applying and how did you learn about it?

35. What are your relevant work experiences?

These questions will help you draft the perfect statement of purpose. Use these questions to form the skeletal structure of your essay, and craft a winning essay with the help of the points you noted.

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