You worked hard but messed up on your college essay; what do you do next? Do not feel bad. It happens to students all over the country. The good news is that you still have some options left.
If you messed up your college essay, all is not lost as you fix it and write a new, better essay. The best solution is to study the steps to write essays, research, and consult an expert writer.
It could be because of a lack of organization in your paper, poor or no research, poor evidence or points, poor grammar, or not following the prompts.
Here is how to deal with it and how to avoid a repeat.
College essays are not structured like the five-paragraph English essay you learned in high school. Instead, they’re organized as a narrative, which means that they should have a clear beginning, middle, and end.
The problem is that many students do not know how to organize their ideas.
The good news is that organizing your thoughts is not difficult. There are several different ways to do it:
If you are not sure which method to use, ask your teacher for guidance.
When an application committee reads through your essay and finds that you lack sufficient evidence to support the statements, they will be left with no option but to reject it.
A good essay needs to have at least three points of argument which must be supported properly with valid evidence.
College essays need research before you write them. You need to know what makes a good one, so you will have an easier time writing a college essay or revising it well.
There are multiple resources online that cover all aspects of this type of writing, including what makes a strong thesis statement and how to avoid grammar and spelling mistakes.
We highly suggest you do some research before you start writing your essay.
It is easy to make grammatical and common spelling errors when writing a college essay because you are typing quickly or multitasking.
Some professors will give you points for good grammar, spelling, and punctuation. Every professor is different, but if you have the time, always use spell check.
A weak title can make even the best college essays look bad and unappealing, giving a negative impression about your essay before anyone actually starts reading it.
For this reason, always choose a strong title for your essay.
Many college applicants make the mistake of trying to include all of their accomplishments and activities in their application essays. Such essays read like what they are: tedious lists.
Other parts of the application provide plenty of space for you to list extracurricular activities, so save your lists for the places where they belong.
This might be the most important step in this whole process. If you panic, you won’t be able to think clearly, and your mind will go blank.
You need to stay calm and come up with a plan of action. You are going to be okay!
Talk to your counselor or teacher as soon as possible. Tell them what happened, and ask if there’s anything you can do to fix it.
For example, they could email the school and ask for an extension on the deadline. Or, they could contact the school on your behalf and explain what happened.
Or maybe they will tell you that it is not a big deal and that it happens all the time. Either way, it is better to know what steps you need to take so that you’re not left wondering for days on end about what will happen next.
You might think that the only people who make the mistake of sending in a college essay that is not their best work are those who do not know any better, but we all fall prey to this occasionally.
The important thing is not to give up hope. College admissions boards take into account that you are a high school student and you have a lot going on in your life.
So, as long as you can show them that you’ve taken a step back and made a sincere effort to improve upon your mistakes, you will be fine.
Take your dog for a long walk or hang out at the park.
If you are at school, spend some time with friends in your senior lounge or go for a run on the track team.
Even if you are not an athlete, just taking a lap around the track can help clear your head and burn off nervous energy.
The college essay is not the time to take risks. It is a chance to introduce yourself to a college, show what you can do, and make a strong impression. You will not have time to write the most cutting-edge, revolutionary essay the world has ever seen.
You will not have time to lecture on your favorite subject or take up a cause. If you are using the Common Application, you will have to write one essay for all of your colleges, but you will probably need to tweak it for each school.
You might have decided by now whether you will be writing about an idea or a person, but either way, you should know exactly what you want your essay to do.
Maybe it shows how intelligent and fun-loving you are or shows off your academic skills and dedication to learning. Do you want the reader to think of you as someone who gets things done?
Do you want them to think about how friendly and welcoming you are? Do they need to know that your motivation goes beyond getting good grades? It sounds simple, but this is where many students get tripped up.
When writing, think about who will be reading your paper. You need to remain professional when completing this task, but the tone can vary depending on who will read the content.
For example, if it is going directly to a professor, keep things more formal in the third person.
Take time to brainstorm ideas for your essay and make an outline. Some schools place more importance on certain topics than others, so try to tailor your essays based on what each program is looking for.