Universities build a picture of your students from all the different information they provide, to help decide whether or not to offer a place. This picture is made up of several different pieces: the personal statement, academic record, predicted grades, and a teacher reference. Students should consider the personal statement to be a short reflective essay on why they are the perfect candidate for the degree couse they are applying to.
Students should ask themselves these questions to help decide what information to include: Why are they applying to study this subject area? What makes them suitable? What are their future career aims and how are these relevant to the course? Which of their skills and experiences are most relevant?
Remember, the same personal statement is used for all courses they apply to, so avoid mentioning universities or colleges by name, and ideally choose similar subjects. If they're varied then they should write about common themes like problem-solving or creativity. Students can only submit one personal statement and this cannot be changed after the application has been sent.
- don’t let spelling and grammatical errors spoil the statement
- Students should demonstrate that they know their strengths and can outline ideas clearly
- Statments should be enthusiastic and demonstrate an interest in the course
- Expect to produce several drafts and proofread as many times as possible.
- Don’t exaggerate - students may get caught out at interview when asked to elaborate on an interesting achievement
- Don’t leave it to the last minute as the statement will seem rushed and important information could be left out.
You may wish to download our Personal Statement Worksheet. This is designed to help students think about what information they could include in their personal statement.
Our Education Liaison team runs Personal Statement Workshops in Schools and Colleges as well as on campus in Lincoln.
To find out more about this and the other workshops and presentations we can offer your students, please visit our Activities for Schools page.