Purpose and format of statement of purpose
Statement of Purpose examples don’t just present you as an aspiring contender. They also showcase your writing skills. Graduate school and college entail a lot of serious writing. It’s not remarkable for students at this level to write reports and papers that can be 10-20 pages long.
Bearing this requirement in mind, you will need to show in your statement of purpose format that you’re truly an able writer. Here are some tips you may consider when composing your statement of purpose template:
- Check your document for any grammatical or spelling errors.
- Use clear, succinct, and strong language.
- Avoid using repetitive language and clichés.
- Keep formality in your language.
- Always maintain a confident and positive tone
The general statement of purpose format is a lot like any other type of academic document. You must use:
- Times New Roman font with 12-point size.
- 1-inch margins on all sides of the document.
- 1.5-inch line spacing throughout the document.
This general format makes your writing more readable and is also an expected format in letters of this type. Unfortunately, an applicant won’t get extra points for rendering a letter with standing visual formats. It is, therefore, more important to concentrate on impressing the reader with the actual substance of your statement of purpose template.
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Tips for writing statement of purpose
Often, you might get confronted with the issue on what to include in your statement of purpose letter. You may look at different statement of purpose examples to get inspiration and to know exactly how to go about writing the document. To guide you further, here are some tips for for writing an effective statement of purpose examples
- First paragraph: all about you
Start by introducing yourself with a short background, then state your current career objective or goal. Make sure that this introduction relates to the program you’re aspiring for. When comparing statement of purpose vs personal statement, this is the main difference.
For instance, you don’t talk about how much you love animals when you plan to apply to medical school. All the information contained in the introduction should have something to do with the specific aspect of the program you’re applying for. This means that you have to do thorough research on the program. This ensures that anything you include on the document relates directly to the details included in the program.
- Second paragraph: your reasons for applying
The next thing to include in your statement of purpose template is an explanation of the reasons why you became interested in this specific field of study. In the first section, you stated your goal and background related to the program. Here, you provide an explanation of your interest.
This is the reason why you’re writing a statement of purpose, to inform the admission officers the reasons you’re applying. Avoid giving reasons that are too general as this only confuses admission officers on your purpose. Furthermore, they won’t see you as a good candidate but just as part of a group who just provides too many reasons.
If you understand your own reasons for applying and you specify them as much as you can, you can easily convince admission officers that you’re the correct choice.
- Third and fourth paragraphs: why you’re the best candidate
In the third section, you can open up on your personal experiences that have relevance to the area of study you want. Take these from your past jobs, projects, internships, and so on. However, some people may not be able to come up with such applicable experiences.
If this was your case, talk to other people, friends, and relatives who know you very well. They may help in ferreting out some significant experiences you’ve had.
You can describe in the fourth paragraph any other experience you’ve had which helped you decide on the field of study or have helped you in preparing for graduate studies. But be as concise as possible in expounding on this topic as the letter is not the right forum to narrate long stories.
- Closing paragraph: future plans
In the final section of the letter, take time to concisely explain your long-term objectives, career-wise. Be very specific and clear when writing about this topic. You may notice the objective here is very different from your current goal in the first paragraph.
In the beginning, you talked about your present desires or actions and the goal in this final paragraph refers to what you’re planning to achieve. In the concluding paragraph, you discuss what you want in the future.
How to prepare effective content for the statement of purpose?
Never take for granted the value of statement of purpose examples. You have to compose this document perfectly and in conformity with the statement of purpose format. Most students think it’s just another essay assignment where they talk about themselves. But as aforementioned, when considering a statement of purpose vs personal statement, the former is more important.
An effective letter gives the impression that you’re interested in letting the recipient know how much you want to study in their institution.
- Write stories instead of statements
Most people would rather read a novel than a newspaper. While the latter can only offer you news and an eye-catching headline, the former tells a story which you can relate to. This applies as well to statement of purpose letters. Given a storyline, you can imagine yourself in place of the narrator or character.
You then understand why he had made such decisions in his life. Moreover, stories are better remembered than statements.
- Quantify the stories you write
As you write these stories, they should serve as a source of information about you. When it comes to information, it comes down to a game of numbers. This means that your narration should contain measurable quantities instead of just stories. This way, the reader understands you better if you add more depth to your statement of purpose.
- Be specific
Everything you say in your statement of purpose should be specific. Don’t include irrelevant stuff just to impress the admissions committee. Whatever you say must have supporting details. Be as introspective as possible but also, explain things clearly.
Be direct and straightforward with your explanations without having to sound arrogant. As for your reasons, make sure to word them properly by finding a memorable way to say it.
- Customize your document
One of the worst mistakes when sending out statement of purpose examples is preparing a basic template and sending the same to multiple recipients. All you change are the relevant names and details.
Aside from these, the rest of the document remains the same. This is never a recommended idea for the simple reason that you will send the statement to different places which are very different from one another.
- Use a formal but conversational tone
Don’t be too formal and stiff with the language of your statement of purpose. As mentioned earlier, it should read like a story using a slightly formal language. Add a tinge of fun and uniqueness. Write it with a conversational tone, like when you’re talking to someone, but remember to avoid using casual language.
- Don’t invent information about yourself
A statement of purpose should serve as a medium that communicates your personality, attitude, and character to the admissions committee. Although it’s a good idea to make your statement in the form of a story, this doesn’t mean you should create one.
Never inject lies in your statement. Only write stories that have factual bases. If you have something great to write, then do so. If you don’t have anything, don’t.
- Talk about the problems you have faced in the past
The statement also affords you the opportunity to focus on some problems you’ve faced. Share your shortcomings like issues with your academic background, a gap in your career or any other issues that you can talk about to reassure the admissions committee.
Not everyone has a clean background, so it’s best to be as honest and straightforward as possible. Explain these issues in a mature way. Indicate the reasons which led to your issues. This is better than constantly defending yourself about the same.
More importantly, though, talk about how you overcame these predicaments and what you have learned from these experiences. You should highlight these in your statement.
- Ask your family and friends to proofread and make suggestions to your essay
Get your family and friends involved by requesting them to proofread, or maybe even critique, your work. Remember that your statement of purpose speaks about you as one person.
The close people around may not be as adept on technical lingo but one thing is for sure. They’re all experts on “you.” This is the exact reason why you should seek their assistance.
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