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How To End A Personal Statement So The Admissions Committee Remembers You
Students are often unsure of how to end a personal statement. A strong conclusion makes all the difference in whether your application gets noticed by admissions officers or not.
If you’ve just finished writing your personal statement and you’re stuck on your ending, then don’t worry! This article will walk you through the essentials of personal statement conclusions.
Avoid writing a tedious and forgettable ending for your personal statement by following these rules.
Talk About Your Main Points
Don’t end your final paragraph by stating what you’ve never mentioned in the body of your personal statement. Remember, the purpose of your conclusion is to wrap up the package.
You shouldn’t say, “My experiences kindled my passion for engineering,” if you didn’t mention these “experiences” in the first place!
So actually summarising your key main body points is a great conclusion in many cases.
Summarise Your Key Points In A Simple Way
After reading thousands of personal statements, the admissions committee will be happy to see you concluding your personal statement with a clear summarisation of the vital points.
Go over your personal statement and jot down the main takeaway of each paragraph. Once you have that list, find a way to integrate them into your conclusion.
You can dedicate a sentence to each key point, tie them all together, and you now have a conclusion that does what it’s supposed to do!
Use Your Key Points To Restate Your Passion For Your Course
If you’re wondering how to end your personal statement using your key points, use them to restate your passion for the course you’re applying for.
Say your key points including your skills and experiences, and wrap them up by saying, “With the [your specific skills] and [your specific experiences] I’ve gained over the years, I’m committed to [mention your course].”
By doing so, you’re hitting two birds with one stone. One, you’re reminding the admissions committee that you have the skill set necessary to succeed in your course. Two, you’re demonstrating your dedication to your desired course.
Double Down On Your “Why”
Another powerful ending is to remind the reader of your “why.” Many students pursue their chosen course because they’re not sure what else to take.
So being clear on your purpose immediately sets you apart from the rest.
To do this, take the most heart-moving story from the body of your personal statement on what inspired you to apply for your course. Mention the main idea of it in a sentence or two, then end with a “for this reason, I believe pursuing [mention course] is the best way to achieve my [state your why].”
If your course is related to education, perhaps your “why” is to help children learn by allowing them to show how they learn best.
Say you’re writing a medical personal statement . Maybe your “why” is to forward technology that helps safeguard the elderly from falling accidents because you witnessed your grandparent suffer injuries from a fall when you were young.
Doubling down on your “why” shows your conviction and direction on why you’re applying for your course.
Mention The Next Step Of Your Application Process
What’s the next step after the admissions committee accepts your personal statement? For many courses, they’ll call you up for an interview . Go ahead and mention this in your conclusion!
Write along the lines of “I’m looking forward to dedicating myself to this course, and I would love to receive an invitation for the interview.”
The reader will right away recognise that you’ve done your research. You know what the next step should be. You are serious about this application!
Make The Universities Excited To Have You As Their Student
Studying at a university is not merely a means to an end. It’s a profound journey in and of itself! You’ll meet new colleagues, form lifelong communities, and discover mentors who will guide you along with your future career.
Think of them when you’re pondering on how to end a personal statement. What can you contribute as a student to make the university a better place? Demonstrate your excitement in meeting them, building relationships with them, and serving them!
A statement as straightforward as “I am eager to establish new, lifelong relationships and use my [mention your skills] to help make the university a better place for learning and community-building.”
Demonstrate Your Willingness To Learn
Universities exist to train and mould students, not the other way around! A little humility goes a long way. Show yours by demonstrating your willingness to learn. Nothing excites teachers more than willing students.
To pull this off, make sure you know what values your course upholds. It could be service, excellence, inclusivity, and so on. State in your conclusion that “I’m looking forward to learning how to embody [write down the course’s values you resonate with], to grow and succeed in [mention your field of study].”
There’s so much value packed in this simple personal statement ending. Tweak it and make it yours!
Avoid Famous Quotes
Many students insert famous quotes from well-known persons when ending their personal statements. Avoid this tactic as much as possible because you’re driving attention away from YOU as the applicant.
If you want to include famous quotes, put them at the beginning of your personal statement to grab attention. To keep your reader’s attention focused on you in the end, why not come up with a memorable, relevant quote of your own?
Use The Bookend Strategy
Bookends are sturdy objects placed at either end of upright books to keep them standing. When you translate that into writing, the bookend strategy is when the introduction and conclusion statements connect to support the body between them.
You may start your personal statement with a heart-wrenching story about how you watched your beloved pet die of the wrong diagnosis. Then, for your conclusion, you can call back on this story and state how this event fuels you to pursue veterinary practice.
The bookend strategy is a clean and efficient way how to end your personal statement.
Ask Help From Your Family And Friends
If you’re still stuck on how to end a personal statement, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Approach your family and friends because they know you more than anyone. Read to them the introduction and body of your personal statement.
Ask them what particular line struck them the most. Maybe they know something about you that you missed including in your personal statement. What characteristics do they see in you that will help you succeed in your course?
Gather their answers in one place, and after reading them in one go, you now have a decent idea of what to emphasise in your conclusion statement.
Never State That It’s The “Conclusion” Or “Summary”
The most boring, generic way to end a personal statement is to write “In conclusion” or “In summary.” It’s actually one of the topics we cover in what not to put in a personal statement .
Avoid this writing style at all costs. A good conclusion statement doesn’t require explicit announcements.
By its style and structure alone, the reader knows immediately they’re about to read a lasting statement. So don’t hesitate to proceed straight to the major points. As long as the conclusion connects seamlessly with the previous paragraph, you’re good to go!
Universities hold honesty in high esteem. Show authenticity and honesty in your personal statement beginning with an attention-grabbing introduction to a strong conclusion.
The best way to radiate honesty in your personal statement is to write from the right mindset. When you work on your personal statement, your objective is to show who you are and demonstrate why you are a worthy candidate for the course .
Don’t try to impress. If you come from that standpoint, you’re more likely to add embellishments. The experienced admissions committee can smell insincere personal statements from a mile away. So stick with who you are and let your personality shine through.
Give Yourself A Break, Then Come Back To It
When working on how to conclude a personal statement, you need to give yourself time. After writing a rough draft of your conclusion statement, take a break and return to it after a few days.
When you return to it, you’ll be surprised to notice details you haven’t seen before. Edit as you like, and make it better. Keep the old versions of your conclusion at hand so you can readily compare them with your newest, edited text. Compare and choose which one sounds better.
5 Bad Examples For A Personal Statement Conclusion
These are 5 personal statement examples for conclusions that don’t meet the criteria outlined above.
- In this application essay, I have made it clear I am an outstanding candidate for a degree because I think everyone will love my positive attitude and I deserve it.
- In summary, you can see my highlighted qualifications and experience, I know they’re not the best, but I want to stress that my passion for this field is what sets me apart as a candidate. It shouldn’t matter if the others are more qualified or experienced than me.
- Remember the skills I have, that’s really what sets me apart from other students, they don’t have what it takes to break the rules creatively and not follow the book.
- Finally, I would like to thank you for considering me for this opportunity and I hope you will make the right decision by choosing me, otherwise, I may cry and be disappointed.
- As a final note, it’s easy to see how qualified I am for this degree and how I will excel in it – but you should accept me because I’m cool and will get along with everyone else.
5 Amazing Examples Of A Personal Statement Ending
- In conclusion, I am excited about the opportunity to study computer science at this university. My passion for technology, combined with my programming skills and experience, make me an ideal candidate for the program. I am eager to learn from the esteemed faculty and contribute to the research community. I am confident that this program will enable me to achieve my career goals and make a meaningful impact in the field of technology.
- In summary, I have always been fascinated by the human body and its functions. My experience in volunteering in hospitals, combined with my academic record, makes me confident in my ability to handle the rigours of a medical degree. I am excited about the opportunity to study at this esteemed university and to contribute to the field of medicine through research and patient care.
- To wrap things up, I am excited to pursue a degree in Mechanical Engineering at this university. My passion for designing and building, combined with my experience in physics and mathematics, make me confident that I have the knowledge and skills to excel in this program. I am eager to learn from the esteemed faculty and contribute to the field of mechanical engineering through research and innovation.
- Finally, I am honoured to be considered for a law degree at this university. My passion for justice, combined with my research skills and experience, make me an ideal candidate for the program. I am excited about the opportunity to learn from the esteemed faculty and to contribute to the legal field through research and practice.
- As a final note, I am excited to pursue a degree in Environmental Science at this university. My passion for the environment, combined with my experience in environmental research, makes me confident that I have the knowledge and skills to make a meaningful impact in this field. I am eager to learn from the esteemed faculty and contribute to the field through research and conservation efforts.
How Long Should the Conclusion To A Personal Statement Be?
A personal statement conclusion should be 150-200 words long and leave a positive lasting impression on the reader. A UCAS personal statement should be 4000 characters long, making the conclusion 705-940 characters long – this is just a rough estimation based on the average number of characters per word (4.7).
Do You Feel More Confident Writing A Personal Statement Conclusion?
To end your personal statement in the best possible way, you need to know the body’s key points. Use them as pillars when deciding which direction your conclusion takes.
Will you highlight your future goals? Maybe you want to focus on your why? Take the time to decide. And if you’re stuck, don’t hesitate to ask for help from your family and friends so you can leave a lasting impression on the applications committee.
How much did this article help you out? Don’t forget to bookmark this page for future reference!
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How to End a Personal Statement: 10 Tactics & Strategies
In this post, I'll cover:
- 3 ways to maybe not end your essay
- The two essential qualities of an outstanding ending
- 10 tactics, strategies, and techniques for making your ending stand out
A. Tactics (small changes that requires less planning ahead)
- 1. Connect to your values
- 2. The bookend or callback
- 3. The road forward
- 4. Save your thesis (or your whole intro) for the end
- 5. Connect to your career
B. Strategies (may require big changes, or more planning ahead)
- 6. The “why us?” set-up
- 7. Back to the beginning, but something’s changed
- 8. The twist/reveal
- 9. The “theater of the oppressed” ending
- 10. The ellipsis ...
Okay, so think of a movie you’ve seen that you really enjoyed for most of the way through … and then the kinda boring or cliche ending lost you. Do you want to invite that movie to hang out at your college for the next few years? Probably not.
Three mistakes we see students make when it comes to ending their personal statement include thinking that you:
Should just restate the thesis (because English class)
Have to have a great ending in mind before you start
Shouldn’t worry much because the ending isn’t all that important
But we’re here to tell you that:
Yeah, probably don’t restate your thesis—in fact, many great personal statements don’t even have an explicit thesis.
You can write a great ending even after you’ve written the rest of your essay.
A great conclusion can be an essay-maker. It can take your personal statement from “pretty good” to “outstanding”
This post will show you how.
(I heart accidental rhymes.)
So let’s. Talk. Endings.
By the way: I’m using the term “we” instead of “I” here because I co-wrote this piece with my long-time friend, Andy Simpson. He has 15+ years experience guiding students on essays and, like me, geeks out on this stuff.
A great personal statement ending answers the question “So what?” or “Why does this matter?”
But how do you do it?
First, how not to do it.
3 Ways to Maybe Not End Your Essay
Don’t just repeat or restate your thesis . We know, your teacher told you to (ours did too). And it might not be a bad idea for the conclusion to your AP US History or AP English Lang/Lit paper (although even there, maybe change the phrasing a little). But probably don’t do this on your personal statement. It can feel repetitive, or basic. And you are not basic.
Don’t end with a cheesy quote or something that anyone else could have written . We’re talking about quotes like, “Be the change that you wish to see in the world,” or phrases like, “I learned that everything happens for a reason,” or “I learned that I too can make a difference.” And if you’ve written a draft already, take a quick look at your last lines. Could someone else have written them? If so, a) we’re glad you’re here, and b) delete them and keep reading.
Be careful not to refer to things that you haven’t really shown earlier in the essay. Sometimes we’ll read essays that end with something like, “I’m grateful for all the lessons these experiences have taught me …,” but we don’t really know what those lessons are because the author didn’t tell us in the essay. If you refer to all the hard work you’re proud you did, for example, show us the hard work earlier in the essay.
What goes into a great ending?
The Two Essential Qualities of an Outstanding Endingy
A great ending often has two qualities: surprise and inevitability . H/T Aristotle
Think about a great film ending—usually you feel some combination of “Whoah, I totally didn’t see that coming,” and “Ah, right, it probably had to end like that.”
We’re talking about The Sixth Sense , Inception , or Titanic . And totally j/k re: Titanic because that was a TERRIBLE ending—both Jack and Rose could’ve totally fit on that door. The boat sinking was a shocker, though, right? Does every great movie have both those qualities? No. And must you have both those qualities to get into a great college? No. But these are two good qualities to keep in mind as you read this post and write your essay.
10 Tactics, Strategies, and Techniques for Making Your Ending Stand Out
We’ll split this list into three categories:
Tactics: Things you can do once you’re pretty much done, or if you aren’t willing to rewrite your essay much.
Strategies: Things that, to make work, you kinda’ either have to have planned out ahead of time or be willing to rewrite some stuff.
Techniques : Small things you can do or apply to the tactics and strategies.
Important note: Not every personal statement ending will fit into these categories; they are just some ideas you can try based on some approaches we’ve seen work well for other students.
1. Connect to Your Values
This one is one of the easiest. It basically works like this: Look back through your essay and ask yourself, “What values am I showing?”
Then don’t name those values too much in the body of your essay, but do name them explicitly in your conclusion.
Here’s an example (note the values in bold ):
Upon reflection, I found that my answer didn’t exist in books or research, but somewhere very close from the beginning—my intuition. In other words, I didn’t need an elaborate and intricate reason to prove to myself that health is an inalienable right for every human being—I needed self-reflection. So I ask again, “Does every life matter?” Yes. “Do I have solid, written proof?” No. Paul Farmer once said, “The thing about rights is that in the end you can’t prove what is a right.” To me, global health is not merely a study. It’s an attitude—a lens I use to look at the world—and it’s a statement about my commitment to health as a fundamental quality of liberty and equity .
To read the entire Does Every Life Matter essay, click here.
Why This Ending Works
If you read the entire essay (at link above), you’ll see the author touches on a few different themes in his essay—heritage, community, moral behavior, etc.—but he doesn’t make them super explicit until the end. Once he names them at the end, we (as readers) go, “Ah, that’s what we thought you were talking about.”
Ending with values is also a pretty good idea because a) it shows your ability to self-reflect, and b) highlights some qualities that, oh, by the way, will be useful in college and beyond.
Heads-up that this doesn’t work quite as well if you’ve already clearly named the values earlier in the essay—in fact, it can feel repetitive. So, if you’re trying this approach, a) make sure you didn’t already explicitly name the values earlier and, if you did, b) delete or rephrase those parts of your essay so that when you name the values at the end, it won’t feel as repetitive.
And by the way—did you notice how the whole paragraph above felt repetitive? That’s because, if you were reading carefully, we already wrote before the example, “Then don’t name those values too much in the body of your essay, but do name them explicitly in your conclusion.” So, to edit, we should cut that sentence (and that’s what we’d have you do in your essay).
You’ll find another example of this type of ending in the Makeup essay (check out the mentions of “scientific inquiry,” “voice,” “connect me with others,” and more in those last lines).
2. The Bookend or Callback
Bookending involves referring to something you’ve set up earlier in the essay. It’s something comedians do a lot and refer to as a “callback.” For a few examples, check out How Dave Chappelle Delivers a Callback starting at 1:05. (Trigger warning: There’s some adult language in that video. If you prefer, here’s the Wikipedia link explaining the same concept.)
Here’s an example of a callback in a personal statement:
The essay begins ...
“I have been pooped on many times. I mean this in the most literal sense possible. I have been pooped on by pigeons and possums, house finches and hawks, egrets and eastern grays. “
And the essay ends ...
“The upshot is that I simply cannot walk away from injustice, however uncomfortable it is to confront it. I choose to act, taking a stand and exposing the truth in the most effective manner that I think is possible. And while I’m sure I will be dumped on many times, both literally and metaphorically, I won’t do the same to others.”
To read the entire “Poop, Animals, and the Environment” essay, click here.
What We Like about This Ending/Why It Works
This one is great because, on the one hand, the ending catches the reader by surprise (we didn’t see that coming!). But it also feels inevitable (because she’s calling back to something she set up at the start). That’s that surprise + inevitability we mentioned a minute ago. (Thanks, Aristotle.)
One thing that’s cool about this tactic is that you can do this once the rest of your essay is already written. And, if you do it well, it’ll feel like you planned it all along.
If you’d like one more example, check out the Endodontics essay, whose author was pretty much done but still felt like the ending was missing something. So he went back, added the detail about “mineral white or diamond white” near the beginning, then wrote a last line that linked back to it. And yet when you read it you get the sense he’d planned his ending from the beginning.
Quick note: While you shouldn’t feel like you have to use humor, the cleverness in the endings of both the “Poop” and “Endodontics” essays mentioned above do leave a nice last impression.
3. The Road Forward
There’s something beautiful and inspiring about an open road. The sense of potential and possibility it offers. The invitation it makes.
So it can be nice to end an essay with language that feels like an open road—that ends with a sense of exploration and, maybe, a little excitement.
Here’s an example from a personal statement:
“I see a reflection of myself in the divide at the 38th parallel because I see one part isolating itself in defense to outside threats, and another part coming out to face the world as one of the fastest-developing nations. Just as my shy persona before debate and extroverted character after debate are both part of who I am, the Korean civilization is also one. And just as my parents expect much from me, the first of my family to attend college, I have grand expectations for this field of study.”
To read the entire “With Debate” essay, click here.
This conclusion opens with a nice metaphor, demonstrating both the author’s ability to think creatively and generate insight. It also reminds us of the growth we’ve seen the author go through over the course of the essay. Finally, this conclusion leaves us with a nice combo of purpose and potential—and in my experience, when an admission reader senses they may be able to help someone realize their potential, they’re usually pretty excited to do that.
Who This Might Work Well for: Students Who Have Faced Challenges
If you’ve worked through significant challenges in your life, this ending might work especially well for you. Here’s an example:
“I know I’m not like many students my age, but I'm happy with who I am. I am the student who works on the weekends scrubbing restrooms, carrying trash bags and mopping kitchen floors. I am the student who won't give a second thought to missing a party to help my parents babysit my sisters or accompany them to a new job. I know that one day I will not take my family to a bowling alley to clean it but to enjoy it. And who knows maybe one day I will learn to bowl.”
To read the entire “Bowling” essay, click here.
This author answers “so what” by sharing how her experiences have shaped her values and sense of self. The details here, in conjunction with those in the body, give us a sense of the strong character she’s developed. And the hope and vulnerability of the final lines make us as readers hope for the same things for her.
But this is important: Please don’t think you need to force this—don’t build a hopeful tone at the end simply because you think that’s what your reader wants. Do so if it reflects your experience.
- Adrian’s Personal Statement
- The Little Porch and a Dog
4. Save Your Thesis (or Your Whole Intro) for the End
“But wait,” I hear you say, “I thought you were not supposed to put a thesis in your personal statement.”
Actually, I said don’t just repeat or restate your thesis. If you don’t state the main point of your essay in your body paragraphs, you might decide to include it at the end.
There are two ways you can do this, and we’ll discuss them one by one:
Variation A: The “Put Your Thesis at the End” Approach
Putting your thesis at the beginning can sometimes lead to a personal statement that feels a bit too much like one of those essays in which an author builds an argument and supports it with evidence. And although it could be argued that you’re building an “argument” in your personal statement—an argument demonstrating that you’ll bring a lot of value to a college campus—this method isn’t quite the same. We’ve found that by explicitly naming their thesis at the start, then supporting it with bits of evidence, some students create a slightly less interesting story simply because the ending often isn’t all that surprising.
One way to avoid this is by delaying the thesis ‘til the end.
In the “ Hiking ” essay, for example, the author describes a few positive experiences he’s had with Boy Scouts. But he waits until the very end to share an insight that ties all the experiences together.
Check out the “Hiking” essay here.
Heads-up: The next thing we’re about to share won’t really make sense unless you read the “Hiking” essay.
What’s neat about this personal statement is that the author touches on a few different values/sides of himself in the body paragraphs … but it’s not until the final paragraph that he claims these different sides of himself as identities. Check out that final line again: “When I'm hiking, I'm not merely a hiker ; I'm a historian , a conservationist , and a teacher all in one” (bold emphasis mine).
This ending works because, earlier in the essay, the author describes (i.e., shows us) these parts of himself through specific examples and details, then he names them (i.e., tells us) explicitly at the end of the essay. Note that if the author instead had decided to open his essay with that line, it kinda’ would’ve spoiled the ending of the movie (or, in this case, essay). The reader might’ve thought something like, “Okay, cool, guess I don’t really need to read the rest—thanks for saving me some time.” Ending with this sentence, however, creates a sense of both inevitability (since the final line pulls together the essences of the separate paragraphs, and surprise (because we didn’t think to name these different sides of him in quite this way—as identities he claims/roles he plays).
Note: To make this surprising, it was important for the author to not name these identities along the way, instead saving them for the end.
Variation B: The “Put Your Thesis at the End” Approach
Here’s an example from a student who chose to put not just one sentence in her conclusion, but her entire intro paragraph:
“My home is a dynamic and eclectic entity. Although I've lived in the same house in Cary, North Carolina for 10 years, I have found and carved homes and communities that are filled with and enriched by tradition, artists, researchers, and intellectuals. While I may not always live within a 5 mile radius of a Bojangle's or in close proximity to Lab 304, learning to become a more perceptive daughter and sister, to share the beauty of my heritage, and to take risks and redefine scientific and personal expectations will continue to impact my sense of home.”
To read the entire “Home” essay, click here.
Like the author of the “Hiking” essay above, this student does a nice job of pulling together the examples by zooming back to a wider frame of reference (but doing so with specific phrasing and language). Note that the author could have opened her essay with this paragraph, but doing so would have yielded a much more predictable (read: boring) essay.
Instead, she shows images and experiences in the body paragraphs so we get to “watch the movie” of her life before she tells us what they mean to her.
Note: In order to make this work, the author had to make sure the central topic of the essay (in this case, “home”) was super clear. She does this by repeating the word “home” at the ends of the first, second, and fourth paragraph, and in the middle of the third paragraph (she chose not to mention the word in the same place each time just to offer some variety). So if you try this one, make sure the topic/theme of your essay is clear.
5. Connect to Your Career
Quick PSA: College is not just a career conveyor belt (and colleges generally don’t see themselves that way). It’s a place where you can learn a lot about yourself and the world while, hopefully, meeting some awesome people.
Having said that, describing in your conclusion how your experiences relate to your career can be effective for a couple reasons:
It can be similar in effect to The Road Forward—we as readers like imagining the exploration ahead for the writer, and we may even want to help them on their journey.
Mentioning a future potential career can also set you up for one of the most common supplemental essays, the “Why us?” essay. If you take this approach, you can even think of your personal statement and the “Why us?” as effectively two parts of the same essay, where Part I (the personal statement) tells the story or stories of how you’ve arrived at your career path, while Part II (the “Why us?”) describes how you’ll make use of the specific opportunities at whatever college(s) you’re applying to. Some students structure their whole application like this, btw.
Here’s a quick example of a student who mentions his career at the end of his personal statement, which explores his long-held love of mazes and games:
“A few years ago I grew tired of working within the constraints of most internet games and I wanted to program my own, so I decided to learn the language of Scratch. With it, I created several computer games, incorporating such unordinary aspects of gameplay as the avoidance of time-travel paradoxes, and the control of "jounce," the fourth derivative of position with respect to time. Eventually, I came to realize that Scratch was too limited to implement some of my ideas, so I learned C#, and my potential expanded exponentially. I continue to study programming knowing that the more I learn, the more tools I have to express my creativity. To me, studying computer science is the next step of an evolution of boundary breaking that has been underway since my first maze.”
To read the entire “Mazes” essay, click here.
This conclusion has a few nice elements to it: It functions to bookend the essay (see above); it provides a wider frame/context for the specific details and experiences shared in the body paragraphs; and as mentioned above, it sets the author up for any “Why us?” essay he’ll write.
The “ Endodontics ” essay also ends this way, but where the “Mazes” author added the career connection near the end of his writing process, the “Endodontics” author actually planned his entire essay around the career that he mentions in his conclusion.
Which brings us to our next point: There’s a deeper way of writing about your career ...
6. The “Why Us?” Set-Up
What it is: A conclusion that sets up nicely for a (separate) “Why us?” essay. In some cases, the personal statement is even planned around a specific program that will be discussed in a “Why us?” essay. This can work especially well if, while researching colleges, you found The Perfect Program for you—like one that basically checks all your boxes.
The key to making this strategy work is to write your personal statement in a way that does not simply replicate the content you’ll share in your “Why us?” essay. Instead, think of your personal statement as kinda’ like sharing your “origin story” (yeah, like in a comic book or Marvel movie).
For an example of an essay that shares a budding activist’s origin story, check out the personal statement, “ The Instagram Post .” The ending reads:
“My role model Ruth Bader Ginsburg says, “dissent[ers] speak to a future age... they are writing not for today but for tomorrow.” Retrospectively, I realize that The Post was my voice of dissent―through it, I initiated a campus-wide discussion and openly challenged the majority opinion of my school for the first time. As I aspire to become a civil rights attorney and the first Asian woman on the Supreme Court (I hope it doesn’t take that long!), I am confident that I will continue to write and speak out for justice ―for tomorrow.”
To read the entire “The Instagram Post” essay, click here.
If you read the whole personal statement, you may find the ending somewhat surprising (in that you perhaps didn’t expect at the start of the essay that the author would eventually say she wanted to become a civil rights attorney) and inevitable (because this path makes sense given the trajectory she has been on since her Instagram post).
But this is really just Part 1 of her journey. The next chapter (i.e., Part 2) is essentially what she maps out in her “Why us?” essay.
You can read her “Why us?” essay for Michigan at this link .
Note how the first line of her “Why us?” essay not only references the end of her personal statement, but also expands on other interests—all of which she’ll explore in the Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) concentration at Michigan.
This works particularly well because she isn’t repeating too much from her personal statement; she’s expanding on it. Look at this sentence from her “Why us?” essay in particular:
“The interdisciplinary nature of PPE perfectly suits my desire to understand human beings through different lenses. I strongly believe that social and geopolitical issues must be approached in a multidimensional context--complex relationships between individuals and communities demand equally sophisticated analyses.”
These sentences help us understand her “why” and connects back to some of the themes and values of her personal statement, but here we get some more elevated language. Later in her “Why us?” essay, she names specific opportunities and classes in the PPE program that will help her achieve the goals she’s named.
For another example of this type of ending, check out “ The ‘Not Black Enough’ East-Asian Influenced Bibliophile ,” which is a bit more open-ended, but still works well. To see that student’s “Why us?” essay, click here .
7. Back to the Beginning, but Something’s Changed
What it is: You link back to the person you were at the beginning of the essay and reflect on how you’ve changed. This is similar in approach and effect to bookending, but (as you’ll see if you read the full essay linked below) it takes a lot more planning ahead (whereas bookending can often be the last thing you think of). This kind of ending will inherently show growth and reflection, two nice qualities to demonstrate in your writing.
Here’s the start of an essay that uses this strategy ...
“It was Easter and we should’ve been celebrating with our family, but my father had locked us in the house. If he wasn’t going out, neither were my mother and I.”
And here’s the ending:
“My Easter will drastically differ from past years. Rather than being locked at home, my mother and I will celebrate outdoors our rebirth and renewal.”
To read the entire “Easter” essay, click here.
By mirroring some language from the opening, you can achieve the same kind of closure that basic bookending does. But here, there’s an added element of growth, development, understanding—we see how the author has more fully stepped into themselves through the course of the narrative. There’s also a similar effect to a few of the other approaches we’ve discussed in that when we see this growth, we cheer for the writer.
8. The Twist/Reveal
What it is: You set up an expectation in the reader through the structure and focus of your essay, then pivot against that expectation in your ending. This is effective for the same reason that movies with (good) twist endings are effective—we enjoy the surprise, the revelation, the way the ending requires us to recalculate all that we’ve just seen. It also indicates a certain degree of skill and understanding as a writer, since setting up a twist that we don’t see coming isn’t easy.
Note that this is similar in effect to The Twist opening described here .
Check out the ending of this essay:
“The more I scratch off from my goals list, the more it brings me back to those days handling spatulas. Anew, I ask myself, “Is this how I want to spend the rest of my life?” I want a life driven by my passions, rather than the impositions of labor. I want to explore new paths and grow within my community to eradicate the prejudicial barriers on Latinos. So yes, this IS how I want to spend the rest of my life.”
T o read the entire “¡Ya levantate!” essay, click here.
When the writer ends the first third of his essay with “This was the scene that ignited the question in my head: ‘Is this how I want to spend the rest of my life?’ The answer was no. So I started…,” we’re expecting the rest of the essay to explore how their life has led them to an understanding of how they do want to spend the rest of their life. And they do. Sorta :). But the recall at the end and the twist in a new direction offer a satisfying reveal and require a re-evaluation of what has come before.
Note that this example also shares elements with the “Back to the Beginning, but Something’s Changed” approach.
The “Theater of the Oppressed” Ending
What it is: You put the ending of the essay in the reader’s hands. You don’t resolve it.
Check out the ending to this essay:
“Living in a low-income immigrant household has taught me to appreciate all I’ve been given. Testifying in court helped me grow as a person, has made me more open-minded and aware of the problems facing my community. And my involvement in the urban farm has led me to consider a career as a nutritionist. Though neither of my parents attended college, they understand that college is a key factor to a bright future and therefore have been very supportive. And though we don't yet have the house with the small porch and the dog, we're still holding out hope. I believe college can help.”
This one hits hard each time we read it. Those last lines are powerful, the culmination of a moving story. And the author leaves what happens next in the reader’s hands.
This technique is similar to a technique used by Theater of the Oppressed (hence the name), where actors onstage play out a conflict and then, instead of resolving it, pause to seek out input and ideas from the audience members. In the case of the personal statement, the “audience” is the college admission officer and the author says, in effect, “It’s up to you to help finish this story.”
Note that this kind of ending only works with certain kinds of challenges/circumstances. For another example of this strategy, check out the “ Growing Up in Lebanon ” essay: “And I look forward to becoming the first man in my family to finish college.” We know this is somewhat similar to the example above, but we imagine this strategy could work with other endings—and if you’ve seen one or written one, feel free to share it with us by emailing [email protected] We’d love to see it.
10. The Ellipsis ...
What it is: Leave something unanswered, like an ellipsis. What’s an ellipsis? It’s the dot dot dot at the end of a sentence that looks like this: ...
You’ll find one example in the “Dead Bird” essay at this link . You’ll find another example in the “I Shot My Brother” essay at this link .
We’re not going to post a super in-depth analysis of these two essays simply because it’ll ruin the ending of these two (very good) pieces of writing.
But we do want to say a few things about this type of ending:
For this type of ending to work, a) the author must create a sense of suspense so that the reader wonders—and actually cares about—what will happen next, but then stops before revealing what happens next, and b) there must be a limited set of possible paths for the reader to imagine. In other words, it can’t be completely open-ended (i.e., “anything is possible”).
In the “Dead Bird” essay, for example, we sense that either a) she has come to a deeper understanding of the trauma she experienced, or b) she hasn’t.
In the “I Shot My Brother” essay—and we’re going to keep it a little vague here so we don’t ruin the ending—we sense that the author’s brother is about to reveal a) good news, or b) bad news. We also sense that the author will share with his brother the essay and it will either a) turn out well, or b) turn out poorly.
In each of these cases, though, we think we can guess how it’s going to go … and it also doesn’t really matter what happens next because already the author has gone through a major change (who they are at the end is very different from where they started).
This type of ending is really hard to pull off. We’d recommend you not obsess over using this type of ending at the expense of writing an essay that demonstrates all the skills, qualities, values, and interests that you’ll bring with you to college.
We’re actually not sure that these two essays are necessarily the best personal statement examples because, while the authors do exhibit great sensitivity and writing ability, we’re not sure these personal statements show... the skills, qualities, values, and interests that the authors will bring with them to college as well as they might.
Check out the “ If Ink Were Ants ” essay for a personal statement example that we believe does more clearly show great qualities…and ends with an actual ellipsis. Now, you don’t have to end yours with an actual dot dot dot, but you’ll see how the author does a nice job of setting up where she might go in the future without spelling it out explicitly.
In short, if you use this method, we’d recommend making your ending somewhat but not completely open-ended.
A Final Word on Endings
Having said all this … do you have to write an awesome ending to get into a great college? Not necessarily. Great students get into great schools with personal statement endings that are just so-so. The “ Arab Spring in Bahrain ” essay ending, for example, is arguably just okay, and that student still got into a Very Famous School That You Have Heard of. (We don’t like to name schools, as it can lead to copycatting.
But a great ending can leave a great last impression, as you’ll see in the examples above.
So pick one and get crackin’!
Action Item: Choose one (or more) of these ending techniques and try it out. If it doesn’t work, try another.
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You want to leave the admissions tutor reading your personal statement with a strong lasting impression – one that will leave them no choice but to make you an offer (or invite you to an interview).
There are several ways you can do this.
HE Careers Adviser Liz says:
A good ending can link back to what you claim at the beginning or be a short summary as to what you’re looking forward to at university, new challenges etc… or even your commitment as to why you would be an ideal candidate (without bragging).
Read more here about how to begin a personal statement . Then follow our tips on how to bring it all together at the end.
Think about what you’re writing in this critical spot – what’s your reason for including it here? Keep the ending of your personal statement short, concise and to the point.
Shona Barrie – Director of Admissions, University of Stirling
How to end your personal statement: what to write.
A key academic skill at degree level is being able to form a structured written argument, including a conclusion that summarises the key points.
As Liverpool student Joseph says:
You don’t want a conclusion in the same way as you would for an essay, as that’s just taking away from your word count. Don’t draw it out.’
In other words, keep it to the point and punchy.
There’s no set way to end your statement. Instead, think about the following and how it might help you to stand out:
Tie it back to what you’ve written earlier
Revisit the key points you’ve already spoken about in the main body of your personal statement and emphasise them again in your conclusion. This could be reiterating key skills, interests, and experiences you’ve already touched on, giving them one last chance to hit home (but don’t just regurgitate what you’ve already said).
Talk about the future
Looking to the future is an optimistic way to finish. It shows you’re goal-oriented, and you’ve carefully thought about how this course fits into your plans. You don’t need to have the next ten years mapped out, but if you’ve a broad sense of your career path – or any related life ambitions you want to fill – it’s worth mentioning them here, as well as how this course will help you achieve those.
Learn more about career prospects for your subject (and more) in our subject guides .
Think about your university experience
You could conclude by talking more generally about what you want to get from your overall university experience. For instance:
- Would you like to build your confidence meeting people from a variety of backgrounds?
- Are you hoping to engage with a local community through a mutual passion or vocation?
Also, talk about how you will be an asset to a university.
Remember, all of your UCAS choices will see your personal statement , so it may be best to keep it general, rather than being specific about one university.
Chloe Ng – Higher Education Career Coach, Manchester Metropolitan University
- Do tie it all in together – your passion for the subject and your future career.
- Do think about what you will bring to the broader university experience (not just the academic side).
- Do check your spelling and grammar – admissions tutors say it demonstrates an attention to detail and accuracy.
- Don’t go off on a tangent right at the last minute.
- Don’t list too many career ambitions at the end – keep it focused.
- Don’t repeat yourself – they only need to read each point once.
- Be positive and remember concluding your personal statement is a reminder to the admissions tutor on why they should choose you over someone else.
- If you’re struggling with the ending, take a break and come back to it.
- Even though you might want it off your plate, it’s important not to rush the ending.
- Re-reading what you’ve got so far may also help you see what you’d like to reiterate in (or leave out of) the conclusion.
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Mature students: Five things to do now to boost your personal statement
Starting your personal statement
Personal statement dos and don’ts
Writing your full personal statement
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UCAS scans all personal statements with the Copycatch system, to compare them with previous statements.
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How to End a Personal Statement: Strong Tips And Examples
EssayEdge > Blog > How to End a Personal Statement: Strong Tips And Examples
When everything is written down, thoughts are made up together and you see the whole picture of your essay right in front of your eyes, you may think of how to end a personal statement . It may seem to be the easiest part of writing, but, to some extent, it is not. The destiny of the conclusion is to formulate the last impression of you as a personality.
Table of Contents:
How to close a personal statement
Concluding the results of a completed job is always the most pleasing step in doing anything. Moreover, you can see with your own eyes the way you have passed to achieve your aim. The same regards personal statement conclusions. The key point of writing the conclusion is to accentuate the willingness of the applicant to receive a studying offer and get admitted to the educational institution. You have to think closely about the last paragraph in your essay. It must be the last bullet point to persuade the reader to do next-step actions further.
It may be difficult to decide what exact point you want to add at the end of the essay to complete the writing. First of all, take a break, read your essay several times, and summarize in your mind everything you have written. It is necessary to write standout sentences in your personal statement conclusion to assure the admission tutor that you are the one who is worth getting a place in the educational institution.
While writing, remember that you should concentrate on your essay’s main idea, whether it is the given topic or your personal opinion. The summary should be short and terse, but expedient. Moreover, keep in mind that you are supposed to fit into the given requirements. Your conclusion should be about ⅓ of the entire paper.
And remember to check, check, and check everything a few times.
How to end personal statement and not to fail it
While thinking about how to end personal statement, you may come up with a bunch of questions. The main one may be about what to write and not screw everything up. Here are a few examples of what you shouldn’t write in your conclusion paragraph.
- Rhetoric questions Forget about writing the statements you don’t know how to answer. This may only confuse the reader and leave them in suspense. In this way, you may only underline the point of not knowing something.
- Writing a list of your skills without proofs Even if you want to demonstrate all your skills, don’t do it without proof. Don’t waste the words for just designating the things you are able to do or the knowledge you have. It is wonderful that you have all these aspects, but the admission tutor may not understand the destiny of just naming. Try to involve them all in your main paragraph of the essay.
- Not expressing your future intensions Don’t just tell about your former personal background. It would be good to add to your personal statement conclusion some ideas on your future perspectives. Describe what you want to get out of the studying process and how you would embed it into your life and career.
- Plagiarism from successful essays It is not prohibited to use samples of successful essays just like a pattern. However, you must not copy paste as all the rights of the writer are reserved. It may only spoil your reputation and will not bring any advantages to your essay. If you feel that you need help, it is better to refer to personal statement editing rather than plagiarize.
- Writing the statements that are not related to the topic It is very good if you have a lot of stories to share. Though, you must be careful and think closely about whether the story you write about related to the main topic of your essay or not.
Need help? Check out EssayEdge editing services:
Personal statement conclusion: tips on doing such a thing
So, how to conclude a personal statement? Your conclusion should be comprehensive and impressible. Below you can find a few tips on how to write everything well.
- Take a break Really! It is worth it so to start in advance to have time to leave your writing for some time. After a break, you will read it with a new sight. Maybe you will remove something or, vice versa, add some more information. While having a break, you can think about the conclusion, you may recollect something in your mind that is worth to be written down.
- Read everything many times Yes, you may feel aversion from your essay, but remember that it is a step to your future success and that is why you have to be attentive to the details. Try to figure out the main storyline of your essay and hold it till the conclusion. Peruse everything that is already written many times and you may feel what is missing.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help If you feel confused and don’t know how to close a personal statement, you don’t have to be scared. Everything can be resolved, remember about that. Ask your friends or parents to read your personal statement as they don’t know you. They may share with you some ideas and tell the general impression. According to that knowledge, you can easily make up your thoughts. If you are still not sure about your text, you can use personal statement editing services. Professionals will touch you up to the thought that is in need.
- Summarize everything you mentioned above Yes, it is a very useful skill if you can do a summary, no matter if it is your essay or review of achievements that you have been doing through the years. Placing the accents and underlining your best sides would be a good idea.
Personal statement conclusion examples
As it is mentioned previously, there is nothing wrong with using personal statement conclusion examples. In this way, you can find inspiration and feel more confident and secure that you move in the right way. You shouldn’t neglect using successful examples to see how it works, but in no way, you mustn’t copy paste such samples into your essay.
Here is an example of a successful personal statement ending.
To summarize everything mentioned above, I reckon that I am that one person who is worthy of getting the allowance to enter the university. The main reason for that is my strong motivation to implicate the knowledge I’m supposed to get while studying, into the life of people around the world. As I mentioned before, I have such goals and a number of gained skills. Being admitted to the university may support my intentions and help me to develop the abilities I’ve already had. Moreover, I feel that this is a place where I must improve myself. I have a lot of familiar students and their stories about studying and university life impress me every time I hear them. My plans are global and I can make them real while studying and after graduating as I will have resources and experience.
It is an example of a successful conclusion as the applicant highlighted their motivation, made an accent on the plans, and summarized the story that was told in the main paragraph. Also, this person mentioned that they have a kind of connection to the community of this university that gives an understanding that it will be easy for him to become a part of the university society.
Ending the personal statement is difficult, but the most pleasing part of the whole essay. With patience and efforts, everything can become possible. You can use examples to get inspiration. Moreover, using tips can really help you to cope with the given tasks. Remember that everything will be fine. More details on how to write personal statement you can find in the EssayEdge blog.
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- How to End a Personal Statement
- Tips on How to End a Personal Statement Successfully
How to Format Your Personal Statement Correctly
5 successful ways how to end a personal statement, 5 worst ways how to end a personal statement, general tips on making a personal statement application, 5 great examples of a personal statement ending, personal statement for a medical school, personal statement for mathematics, personal statement for a law school, personal statement for a biology, personal statement for economics.
It is important to write this paper according to all requirements. With this document, you must prove that you suit the chosen position and show the admission committee or a recruiter that you are much better than all other candidates. Reading this you will learn how to end a personal statement properly.
You can create a personal statement for graduate school , a university, or any other place you want to apply to. When people create this document, they often make a big mistake when they try to write those things they think the admission committee or recruiters want to see in the ideal candidate for the position. To avoid this you can look at college application essays samples prepared by an admission essay writing service to be sure you do everything right.
You should understand there is a huge difference between this essay and an honestly written one. You need to be sincere and mention only true things about yourself. Don't try to look better than you are, just try to describe yourself brightly to be selected from tons of other applicants.
Needless to say, you have to grab the officers' or recruiters' attention, otherwise, you won't get chances to apply for a position of your dream. We suggest writing this document very carefully and thoroughly because your future depends on it. In our guide, we will give some general hints on writing and paying attention to the conclusion - it is the last part of this important paper. Go ahead and keep reading to find great tips and successful examples!
How to write personal statement ? Students need to format a personal statement just like any other kind of essay. If you want to make a strong and well-structured work, follow a three-paragraph structure:
- Introduction — in this part you have to make a catchy beginning to grab the reader's attention. You have to mention the name of the company or the course and the position or degree you are applying for.
- The body part — feel free to make several paragraphs here to support your candidacy. You have to provide readers with information about your personal experiences, characteristics, skills, goals, knowledge, achievements, etc. Don't forget to write the brightest examples from your experience to prove all the qualifications you mentioned.
- Conclusion — it is a short closing paragraph where you have to thank your audience for reading. A good idea is to put a phrase you hope to hear from them soon. You need to summarize ideas shortly and wrap up your paper properly.
When you are making the conclusion for personal statement , your goal is to concentrate on the main idea of your document. Remember you should write in the laconic style to make this part short but effective. Summarize your skills and interests shortly, include your plans for the future years, and provide information about why you fit the chosen course. Be careful with the length: your personal statement conclusion should be around ⅓ of the entire paper (150-200 words). We have one more blog that has an answer on how long is a personal statement .
The conclusion of your personal statement makes the second first impression on your audience. Use these effective hints to create a bright ending that will attract your reader:
- Include key points about the qualities you expect of yourself when you graduate from the school. Explain why you want to study. Demonstrate your interest, why you have the inspiration to learn, and why you have the enthusiasm.
- You can write a short concluding story related to your experience. Don't just describe your skills the chosen course needs, but tell how you have developed them.
- Give your readers a better understanding of how you are going to use your life experience in achieving your goals. Tell about your transferable skills — this can be leadership, good organizational skills, ability to work both independently and in a team.
- Mention that you are not afraid to use your opportunity, take new challenges and solve difficult problems. Give an explanation why you fit this course. Prove that you not only fit the selection requirements, but you have made a research to realize what this course will involve.
- Restate the main idea of your personal statement to tie all parts of your personal statement together.
These are the things you should never write in your personal statement:
- End up with a question and leave your readers in a suspense.
- Writing a number of things that are not related to the main goal.
- Providing no plans for the future and no point of view.
- Choosing courses that are not related to the particular school.
- Copyright infringement (if you are using personal statement examples from other people, make sure you do not copypaste words - their rights are reserved).
If you have no idea how to create a personal statement for college , we are ready to share some useful ideas that will help you to complete this task. Read them carefully to understand what information you need to put in this paper:
- First of all, read maximum information about the course you want to choose. Make sure you started making your personal statement beforehand so that you have enough time for writing.
- Take a sheet of paper and write down your skills, achievements, experience, activities outside of school, etc.
- Compare the list with the course description, and highlight the most relevant points.
- Make a clear plan what points you're going to include in your paper. Here you need to answer two questions: "Why did you decide to choose this course?" and "Why are you suitable to study the chosen subject?".
- Try to explain why you chose a certain school among many others. For example, if you are making a personal statement for a medical school, you have to explain to the admission committee why you are interested in medicine and why you want to choose it as your future profession.
- Don't just list your personal experiences and activities, but describe them - include in your personal statement bright examples to prove them.
- Make sure your work is structured properly. Remember the entire paper should not be too long: 500 words is enough. It's not a good idea to overdo this number, because the committee doesn't read papers that don't fit requirements.
- Try to be honest and sincere, never try to write false things because it will eventually come out. Just be yourself and don't panic.
- Don't bring any unimportant information. Never include in this paper your negative experience.
- Your audience has to feel excited from the first sentence of the personal statement. Keep in mind that boring & uninteresting papers have no chances to win.
- When your paper is finished, check every page thoroughly & correct all grammar and logical mistakes .
We want to share four successful examples that can be helpful if you feel insecure concerning how to end a personal statement correctly. Read the most successful examples to help you in writing a personal statement of your own!
I am a self-motivated & responsible person & I am looking forward to challenges. I am totally ready to solve difficult problems. I know a medical career has a lot of demands & I am sure that my desire to become a good doctor & my volunteering experience in the hospital will be very helpful.
I decided to start my career in the mathematics field because I always love my mathematics studies, so I was never in a doubt about choosing it as my future degree. I hope that my experience & my willingness to learn math will help me to make a successful career of a mathematician.
I am interested in many subject areas but lately, I turned my attention to a career in the law sphere. I can pay attention to the tiniest details; I hope this will help me to become a good lawyer. I was always good at analyzing information; I am able to find strong evidence & present persuasive arguments.
Keep in mind that there is one more blog on law school personal statement . It has a useful guide and necessary tips to help with this kind of writing.
Biology is a subject that always drew my attention. I am interested in living things & evolution, & I always work hard to find explanations of everything. I am ready for the most difficult challenges & I hope that my experience in biomedical research & my ability to gather & analyze information will help me to become a successful biologist.
Economics is a challenging subject that always attracts my attention. I understand the importance of this discipline for the entire world & I have chosen it as my future degree. I believe that my ability to achieve goals & attention to details will help me to become a good economist.
We hope you have found a lot of useful information on how to end a personal statement in our article. Good luck in writing your own document on the high level & making your own bright future! You may always refer to a professional writing agency and save your time!
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Personal statements for postgraduate applications
A well-crafted Masters personal statement is the key to convincing admissions tutors that you deserve a place on a postgraduate course. Discover the dos and don'ts of writing a personal statement and take a look at some examples for inspiration
What is a personal statement?
'We certainly find the personal statement an essential part of the application process,' says Helen Hayes, assistant registrar (postgraduate and non-standard admissions) at Aberystwyth University.
A Masters personal statement is a piece of writing that you submit as part of your postgraduate application . It's your first real chance to sell yourself to the university and to demonstrate to admissions tutors that you're right for the course.
It's likely that you've already written a personal statement for your Bachelors degree , so this should give you some idea of what to expect. However, don't be tempted to use your undergraduate personal statement as a template. You will have progressed academically since then and admissions tutors will want to see evidence of this.
Your postgraduate personal statement should be unique and tailored to the course that you're applying to. Use the opportunity to show off your academic interests and abilities, and to demonstrate that the programme will benefit from your attendance as much as you'll benefit from studying it.
'From an admissions officer perspective, given that we have to read a large number of personal statements, we are always keen to see enthusiasm, interest and passion for the subject emanating off the page,' adds Helen.
How long should a postgraduate personal statement be?
A Masters personal statement should be around 500 words. This equates to one side of A4. However, some universities require more, often two sides. Some institutions also set a character limit instead of a specific word count, so it's important that you check the application guidelines before starting to write your statement.
As they're relatively short in nature, don't waste words on autobiographical information. This isn't necessary in postgraduate personal statements. Instead, focus on why you want to study a particular programme and your potential to successfully complete the course.
What should I include in a Masters personal statement?
You should tailor your personal statement to fit the course you're applying for, so what to include will largely depend on the course requirements. However, in general you should write about:
- Your reasons for applying for a particular programme and why you deserve a place above other candidates - discuss your academic interests, career goals and the university and department's reputation, and write about which aspects of the course you find most appealing, such as modules or work experience opportunities. Show that you're ready for the demands of postgraduate life by demonstrating your passion, knowledge and experience.
- Your preparation - address how undergraduate study has prepared you for a postgraduate course, mentioning your independent work (e.g. dissertation) and topics that most interested you.
- Evidence of your skillset - highlight relevant skills and knowledge that will enable you to make an impact on the department, summarising your abilities in core areas including IT, numeracy, organisation, communication, time management and critical thinking. You can also cover any grades, awards, work placements, extra readings or conferences that you've attended and how these have contributed to your readiness for Masters study.
- Your goals - explain your career aspirations and how the course will help you achieve them. 'Describe how studying your chosen course fits in with your long-term ambitions and career path,' advises Helen.
Address any clear weaknesses, such as lower-than-expected module performance in your undergraduate degree or gaps in your education history. The university will want to know about these, so explain them with a positive spin. 'We look for positive reflection in situations like this,' explains Helen. 'Cover how things have been addressed and what will be different in your proposed postgraduate studies.'
How should I structure my personal statement?
Your personal statement should follow a logical, methodical structure, where each paragraph follows on from the one before. Make sure paragraphs are short, succinct, clear and to the point. Remember, you only have 500 words to use.
Capture the reader's attention with an enthusiastic introduction covering why you want to study a particular Masters. Then, engage the reader in your middle paragraphs by summing up your academic and employment background, evidencing your knowledge and skills and demonstrating why the course is right for you.
Your conclusion should be concise, summarising why you're the ideal candidate. Overall, aim for five or six paragraphs. You can use headings to break up the text if you prefer.
The majority of postgraduate applications are submitted online directly to the university. If this is the case, present your personal statement in a standard font such as Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman, text size 11 or 12. If your course application is submitted through UKPASS (UCAS's postgraduate application service) font style won't matter, as personal statements are automatically formatted.
How can I write a good postgraduate personal statement?
- Give yourself plenty of time and don't rush . Your personal statement can make or break your application so it needs to be perfect. Tutors can tell if you're bluffing, and showing yourself up as uninformed could be costly. Before you start, read the rules and guidelines provided, check the selection criteria and research the course and institution.
- The best personal statements adopt a positive, enthusiastic and professional tone and are presented in clear, short sentences . Avoid elaborate or overly complicated phrases. Unless otherwise stated, all postgraduate personal statements should be written in English and your spelling, grammar and punctuation must be spot on, as the personal statement acts as a test of your written communication ability.
- Don't use the same supporting statement for every course . Admissions tutors can spot copy-and-paste jobs. Generic applications demonstrate that you have little understanding of the course. In order to stand out from the crowd, Masters personal statements must be unique and specific to the course and institution.
- Draft and redraft your statement until you're happy . Then ask a friend, family member or careers adviser to read it. Proofreading is incredibly important to avoid mistakes. Memorise what you've written before any interviews.
What do I need to avoid?
- follow online examples too closely
- use your undergraduate UCAS application as a template
- be negative
- lie or exaggerate
- use clichés, gimmicks, humour, over-used words such as 'passion' or Americanisms
- include inspirational quotes
- make pleading/begging statements
- needlessly flatter the organisation
- include irrelevant course modules, personal facts or extra-curricular activities
- namedrop key authors without explanation
- use overly long sentences
- repeat information found elsewhere in your application
- leave writing your personal statement to the last minute.
How should I start my Masters personal statement?
Try not to waste too much time coming up with a catchy opening. The more you try, the more contrived you'll sound and the more likely you are to fall into the trap of using clichés.
Avoid using overused phrases, such as:
- For as long as I can remember…
- From a young age…
- I am applying for this course because…
- Throughout my life I have always enjoyed…
- I have always been interested in…
- I have always been passionate about…
- I have always wanted to pursue a career in…
- Reflecting on my educational experiences…
Admissions tutors read hundreds of applications per course so the opening paragraph of your personal statement needs to get straight to the point and make a real impact. Avoid overkill statements, gimmicks and popular quotes.
If you're really struggling, come back and tackle the opening once you have written the rest.
How should I end my personal statement?
Conclusions should be short, sharp and memorable, and leave no doubt in an admissions tutor's mind that you deserve a place on a course.
The perfect ending should pull all of your key points together without waffling or repeating yourself.
Like the rest of your Masters personal statement, keep the ending simple. Be succinct and make it clear why you'll be an asset to the university and end on a positive note, with a statement about why the institution would be lucky to have you as a student.
What are admissions tutors are looking for?
- an explanation of how the course links your past and future
- an insight into your academic and non-academic abilities, and how they'll fit with the course
- evidence of your skills, commitment and enthusiasm
- knowledge of the institution's area of expertise
- reasons why you want to study at the institution
- demonstrable interest in the subject, perhaps including some academic references or readings.
Personal statement examples
The style and content of your postgraduate personal statement depends on several variables, such as the type of qualification that you're applying for - such as a Masters degree , a conversion course or teacher training . Here are some postgraduate personal statement templates to help you get started:
Law personal statement
You'll apply for an LLM the same way you would for any other Masters, directly to the university. Whether you're undertaking a general LLM or a more specific programme, such as an LLM in human rights or international business law, you'll need to convey why you want to study the law in more depth and how this could potentially aid your career. Discover more about LLM degrees .
Psychology personal statement
Applications for conversion courses such as these are fairly straightforward and made directly to individual institutions. You need to explain why you want to change subjects and how your current subject will help you. Explain what experience you have that will help with your conversion subject, and what you hope to do in the future. Learn more about psychology conversion courses .
Social work personal statement
If your Bachelors degree was in an unrelated subject but you now have ambitions to work as a social worker you'll need a Masters in social work (MSW) to qualify. Social work Masters have a substantial work placement element so you'll need to cover what you hope to achieve during this time as well as demonstrate other relevant experience. Find out more about social work courses .
PGCE primary personal statement
As well as detailing why you want to work with this particular age group, a PGCE primary personal statement should highlight the ways in which your educational background has inspired you to teach. You'll need to cover relevant skills you have gained and any related work experience, as well as demonstrate your knowledge of the primary national curriculum. Read up on PGCEs .
PGCE secondary personal statement
You'll need to cover why you want to teach at secondary level while also acknowledging the pressures and challenges of working with older pupils. As you'll be teaching a specific subject, you'll need to evidence your knowledge in this area and demonstrate how your first degree was relevant. It's also essential to highlight any related work or voluntary experience. Learn more about teaching personal statements .
Find out more
- Search postgraduate courses .
- Find out what else you must consider when applying for a Masters degree .
- Completed your application? Discover what postgraduate interview questions you may be asked.
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By Nik Taylor (Editor, The Uni Guide) | 22 September 2022 | 6 min read
End your personal statement with a bang - universities explain how
Wondering how to end your personal statement? To help make this part of the university applications process a little bit more straightforward, we spoke to over 20 universities to find out how much impact the end of your personal statement can have on your application – and how to conclude it with a bang.
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You've got the beginning and middle parts of your personal statement sorted – but how are you going to end it? And does the ending even really matter? The short answer is yes, it does. As Laura Knight, education liaison officer at Staffordshire University , explains:
"A strong conclusion gives a roundup of the evidence a student has given in their statement to show how their knowledge, skills and experiences will enable them to come to university and not only want to learn more but also want to succeed in the future."
Here are the eight things you should do when concluding your personal statement and why they matter: follow these tips and you’ll nail it. Visit the personal statement forum and the university applications forum on our sister site The Student Room to see what other students are saying about applying to uni.
1. Remember your personal statement could be key to you getting an offer
Your personal statement is a really important part of your application – it's your chance to convince admissions staff why you'd be a great fit for the course. Paul Starkey, director of recruitment and admissions at the University of Bolton , told us that your personal statement is "one of the only opportunities to really stand out, not only talking about academic study, but also showing knowledge of the course you’re interested in and any extracurricular activities relevant to your application."
And when it comes to how you end it, “a strong conclusion is essential to leave no doubt in the reader's mind that you deserve an offer," says Bangor University’s Emma Harris.
- Read more: how to write an excellent personal statement in ten steps
2. Keep it simple
You should use the end of your personal statement to emphasise your key points – you want it to be easy for the reader to understand why they should offer you a place.
"A strong conclusion should pull together all of your key points," says Laura Clash from Nottingham Trent University .
Ian Freedman, student recruitment officer and Simon Jenkins, the UK student recruitment manager at Keele University , explains that it’s important to remember that "you will have a reason for applying to university and to your particular course; the conclusion offers a great opportunity for you to reiterate what this reason is."
Rather than trying to leave a last impression by using big words and complicated expressions, "keep it simple but powerful, with strong and eloquent language" says Joanna Haran, deputy head of admissions at the University of Salford .
- More like this: universities reveal all about personal statements
3. Don’t waffle
Make sure your personal statement doesn’t end weakly with a load of waffle that doesn't really mean anything; keep up the momentum by "using your conclusion to reinforce your commitment to the course you’ve chosen. Keeping this short and concise is better than long and vague" says Pat Watson, head of UK and EU admissions at Anglia Ruskin University .
Rosie Reynolds, outreach officer at the University of Westminster , agrees, adding "you should use this section to clarify to the admissions tutor that you meet the criteria they are looking for."
Be careful not to waste this space by adding unecessary additional personal information. Gavin May, student recruitment assistant at St George's, University of London , says: "keep it simple, concise and relevant!"
- More like this: how to write your university application
4. Keep in mind that your personal statement could be the key to an interview
Don't underestimate how much importance universities place on personal statements when making their decisions. "Many of our courses shortlist applicants based on the applicant’s personal statement, so a powerful conclusion to a personal statement can be the difference between getting an interview and being unsuccessful," says Phil Hiley, admissions team leader at University of Bradford .
Gillian Woolley, pre-entry information, advice and guidance adviser at the University of East London adds that if the course you’re applying to includes an interview then it’s a good idea to conclude with "I would love to do this degree and hope you will invite me for interview".
- More like this: teacher secrets for writing a great personal statement
5. Personal is always best
Remember to keep it personal throughout the whole statement – including the ending. Make sure you "summarise what you are most looking forward to about studying at university" says Kirsty Wilkinson, Loughborough University school and college liaison manager, as well as "why you feel that this is the right course choice for you".
Professor Martin Coyle, School of English, Communication and Philosophy, Cardiff University , shared that you should "be truthful; be true to yourself; do your research before writing the personal statement and that way it will have substance and be convincing."
- More like this: personal statement FAQs
6. Make it clear why you’ll be an asset to the university
What better way to finish than by spelling out exactly why you'll be such a great student? "End with a statement about why the universities would benefit from having you as a student" says Hannah Robinson, outreach officer at the University of East Anglia , and "share how you’ll make the most of your uni experience and how you’re looking forward to the challenge."
Shona Barrie, recruitment, admissions and marketing manager at Heriot-Watt University , explains that universities are more than just a place where you’ll study, and understanding that universities are communities is important: "Tell us why you will be an asset to our university community (without it sounding like a job application), so it's not just about getting a degree – it's about appreciating the bigger picture!"
- More like this: the ten biggest mistakes when writing your personal statement
7. Show you understand the university’s values
Are you clear about the mission and values of your dream university? Have you considered how your personal values might align with them?
"SOAS is unique, so we want to see how unique you are,” says Paul Sharp, undergraduate admissions officer at SOAS, University of London . "We want applicants who won't settle for the status quo, but who live and strive to learn and improve every single day that they are here with us."
- More like this: how to write your personal statement in an evening
8. Explain how university fits into your life plan
You could use your conclusion to look to the future, explaining exactly where you want to end up and how this particular course will help you get there. "Present your long-term plans and how your chosen course will help you to achieve this," suggests Ann Partington, senior admissions officer at UCLan .
Kimberley Ashwell, admissions officer at Buckinghamshire New University adds that providing some information on "what you imagine yourself doing after you complete your degree" will help the admissions team to picture how you’ll fit at the university.
Then, "once you've drawn together your motivations for further study, your current studies and career ambitions, deliver a strong, final line about why you deserve an offer" concludes James Aitken, schools and colleges liaison manager at Royal Holloway .
- More like this: five practical tips to help with your personal statement
Don't feel overwhelmed
If you have any questions about writing your personal statement, you could visit The Student Room's personal statement forum , or pop into the university forums to see the tips and advice that other students and university representatives are sharing.
You can also take inspiration from The Student Room's personal statement library .
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How to End a Personal Statement to Impress the Admissions Committee
Every personal statement is a hard, long-term, and painstaking work. Every student would agree that when it comes to writing a piece like that, it’s hard to start and it’s hard to finish as well.
A conclusion is a significant part because it gives that aftertaste that stays after reading it and affects the final impression about your personality. That’s why many students are looking for the answer to the question “How to conclude a personal statement for graduate school?”
Fresh Essays is here to help you write a suitable and convincing conclusion that will make a good impression on the admissions committee.
1. Make Reference to Your Opening
It is a widely known literary method – to end in the same manner as you started. Many students say that this simple trick helped them write a perfect personal statement.
Of course, it doesn’t mean that you should copy and paste your introduction part, but you can emphasize your point of view by making reference to your opening. So, you can briefly touch the points that you were talking at the beginning of your personal statement.
For example, if you started your personal statement with speaking about your passion for studying environmental sciences, you can end your statement with words like:
“As I am highly concerned about declining species, I am determined to fight against poachers and other human impacts which ruins the planet. Therefore, I want to study environmental sciences in [the name of the university], as I know that I will meet many allies here, and together we will work hard to protect the environment.”
2. Write About Aspirations and Plans for the Future
Every piece of writing has its logical evolution. The best way to make through the personal statement is to make it logically flow step by step, developing a theme:
- What do you want to study and why?
- What is your motivation?
- What are your qualities and achievements?
- What are your plans for the future?
Every step leads to another one and helps to build your text in the logical and intelligible way. If you end your statement with plans for the future, you give an impression of a purposeful and positive person.
Speak about what you want from your life, future, and education in particular. You can include in your conclusion something like:
“I admire how the principles of democracy are valued in your country. My goal is to fight for democracy in my country, and I need to be aware of tools and techniques which can help build a democratic society.”
3. Pull Together Your Key Points
Admissions committee members have tons of personal statements to look through. Sometimes they lack time to read the whole text you wrote, so they try to catch the main points such as:
- Your experience
- Your study accomplishments
- Your knowledge of the particular course and learning institution
- Your motivation
That’s why your conclusion can be the part of the whole text that will briefly tell about all of these points of your personal statement. By the time you need to start writing a conclusion for your personal statement for a university, you have probably looked up for the criteria the learning institution is looking for in applicants. This is a perfect place to remind them that you are a total match.
So you might use the following tip to end your personal statement which is to summarize all the previous information. Don’t be afraid to restate your ideas. For example, you can speak again about your positive qualities and your work experience or significant study achievements. Put it together in a few lines and make it brief but informative.
“Many journalists who I highly respect for their unbiased materials and deep analysis of the issues, such as [name], [name] and [name], have graduated from [the university]. As far as I know, in [the university] objectiveness is a high value which corresponds with my personal views on which principals journalists should follow. This is the reason why I long to study here and why I will be able to work regarding all the values [the university] supports.”
4. Keep It Simple And Honest
Many admission officers confirm that honesty is the most essential characteristic of a personal statement with a strong conclusion. The experienced committee members can clearly see if your statement is too embellished in order to impress. Being truthful is much more important for them than polished statements with stolen phrases.
Sometimes it’s just enough to give a positive ending, like:
“I like the educational program of [the university], as it contains the most interesting aspects of [the subject] for me. At this point in my life, I am fond of studying [the subject] and, as you can see from my scores, I am doing well with it. So, I am excited to enter [the university] and learn [the subject] deeper.” or “I know that [the university] provides students with much opportunities to get practical skills. I think it’s more important today than theoretical knowledge. Therefore, I am eager to study here and hope that you will deem my skills and aspirations are good enough to get a chance to study in [the university] .”
You can also talk not only about subject areas but also about extracurricular activities that this institution holds and which you will love to take participation in. This will show that you are interested in the university and have read about it a lot.
- Do not use slang.
- Do not use the same personal statements to apply to different learning institutions.
- Check your personal statement for plagiarism using specific software.
- Do not include irrelevant information or abstruse words.
- Please proofread your personal statement.
- Know the exact name of the program you’re applying to and include it in your statement.
- Address your best qualities but try to incorporate them into the story, rather than just giving it in a list.
So, these were our tips for your perfect personal statement. Give yourself some time to write and don’t rush. Remember that this piece can be your winning ticket and might get you into the college or university of your dreams even if your grades are not that great. Hope, you liked these personal statement ending examples and found them useful. Good luck!
How To End A Personal Statement: Great Final Paragraphs
Second only to the opening paragraph , the closing paragraph of a personal statement is the part that people often struggle with the most.
From repeating key points to underselling achievements and ambitions, a personal statement conclusion can be the least effective aspect of the document.
That’s frustrating, as a personal statement closing paragraph is often the part that leaves the greatest impression in the mind of the reader.
So how should you end a personal statement and create a great final paragraph?
When considering how to end a personal statement, don’t summarize existing content in a repetitive conclusion. Instead, clarify your suitability with a new example and evidence your value to the institution. Lastly, outline your ambitions in relation to the opportunities presented by the course.
I’ve broken down each of these elements in detail so that you can craft a successful personal statement final paragraph…
The Final Paragraph Must Evidence Your Suitability
Instead of detailing all the key areas in which you are a suitable candidate for the course or role early on in your personal statement, it is valuable to hold back at least one example in order to add credibility and weight to your final paragraph.
Essentially, they want to know that you understand what you’ll be doing on the course and that you’re qualified to do it well . That’s why driving this point home in the last paragraph is so important.
For more of my powerful personal statement strategies, just click here .
The table below gives some examples of ways in which you might evidence your suitability in your final paragraph . They won’t all apply to you, but the chances are that you will recognise some of these aspects from your own preparation for higher education, and be able to include them:
If you’d like a detailed post on the skills you need to include in your personal statement, then why not check this out?
Outline Your Value to the University or Employer
It’s important that the final paragraph of your personal statement clearly outlines your potential value to the organisation. To understand exactly the kind of content that admissions tutors are looking for, ask yourself this question:
How will the university I am applying for, the faculty in which I will study and the community in which I will live, be better for having me be a part of it? David Hallen
But how exactly might you add value, and how do you write about it concisely?
Adding Value to your Personal Statement
For some excellent advice on developing some outstanding personal statement examples, check out my post here . Alternatively, using a free software package like Grammarly can really help applicants convey the depth of their academic value. Check it out here or hit the banner below…
Finish Your Personal Statement by Showing Ambition
If you can show that you have an informed understanding of where the course can take you and a good idea of the demands of the industry you might want to enter, your final paragraph will be far more convincing.
For more specific content on how original a personal statement should be, and just how to include your ambitions and experiences in a way that readers will find compelling, check this post out .
You can watch a great tutorial on showing ambition in your personal statement below, or check out some helpful UCAS resouces .
Good luck with your personal statement, and don’t forget to contact me if you’d like some 1-1 support. You’ve got this! D
Reading examples of personal statements can be valuable when applying to a university or college course. After all, personal statement examples can teach you how to write and structure your...
How To End A Personal Statement So The Admissions Committee Remembers You · 1 Talk About Your Main Points · 2 Summarise Your Key Points In A Simple Way · 3 Use
This one is one of the easiest. It basically works like this: Look back through your essay and ask yourself, “What values am I showing?” Then
Be positive and remember concluding your personal statement is a reminder to the admissions tutor on why they should choose you over someone else. · If you're
The key point of writing the conclusion is to accentuate the willingness of the applicant to receive a studying offer and get admitted to the
Include key points about the qualities you expect of yourself when you graduate from the school. Explain why you want to study. Demonstrate your interest, why
How should I end my personal statement? ... Conclusions should be short, sharp and memorable, and leave no doubt in an admissions tutor's mind that you deserve a
You should use the end of your personal statement to emphasise your key points – you want it to be easy for the reader to understand why they
So you might use the following tip to end your personal statement which is to summarize all the previous information. Don't be afraid to restate
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When considering how to end a personal statement, don't summarize existing content in a repetitive conclusion. Instead, clarify your suitability with a new