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Plan Your Summer for a Successful Personal Statement - Afua Kudom

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This presentation explains how to plan your summer in order to gain relevant experience to write a winning personal statement, including personal statement examples.

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Plan Your Summer for a Successful Personal Statement - Afua Kudom

  1. 1. ACORN HOUSE COLLEGE PLAN YOUR SUMMER FOR A SUCCESSFUL PERSONAL STATEMENT JUNE 2016
  2. 2. BA LAW, CAMBRIDGE AFUA KUDOM • Studied 2000-2003 • Head of Schools
  3. 3. WHAT DO YOU ALREADY KNOW ABOUT PERSONAL STATEMENTS?
  4. 4. WHAT IS A PERSONAL STATEMENT? • 4000 characters/47 lines long • Uploaded to the UCAS website as part of your application to UK universities • All universities see the same personal statement • A chance for you to sell yourself – for most universities, the only chance
  5. 5. TWO QUESTIONS YOUR PERSONAL STAMENT SHOULD ANSWER…. 1) WHY ME? 2) WHY THIS COURSE?
  6. 6. PERSONAL STATEMENT: WHAT TO INCLUDE • Subject motivation and interest • Specific area(s) of the course you are interested in and why? • Any links between your A Levels and course choice? • What have you read/studied independently to further your knowledge of this subject? • Work experience/extra-curricular activities relevant to your course? • Why you are best suited to the course?
  7. 7. PLANNING YOUR SUMMER • Attending University Open Days • Further reading • Work experience/independent research
  8. 8. HOW YOUR SUMMER ACTIVITIES WILL SUPPORT YOUR PERSONAL STATEMENT
  9. 9. SUBJECT MOTIVATION AND INTEREST Attending as many open days as possible will help you understand how the courses differ across the universities and what it is really like to study that subject. PERSONAL STATEMENT BIOCHEMISTRY EXAMPLE “It is not just the logical problem-solving aspect of biochemistry that appeals to me, but also the philosophical and ethical dimension of science.”
  10. 10. EXTRA CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES Taking part in activities outside of school will be a unique selling point and help demonstrate your subject motivation beyond the school curriculum. PERSONAL STATEMENT ENGINEERING EXAMPLE “Fascinated by inventions and creations, I was determined to be part of the people behind them. I attended an "Introduction to Engineering" course at the John Hopkins University Centre for Talented Youth. Building a spaghetti bridge as a team was the final project. In preparation, we measured tensile and buckling limits of spaghetti, designed the bridge, computed the loads on each beam, and then improved the design accordingly. At the same time, taking university lectures from different yet interconnected branches of engineering showed me how broad and multidisciplinary the subject is.”
  11. 11. TALKING ABOUT WORK EXPERIENCEWork experience should be used as an opportunity to make links between your course and how it relates to the ‘real world’. PERSONAL STATEMENT CLASSICS EXAMPLE "I spent a week with West Yorkshire Archaeological Services, where I obtained practical experience in the profession. I was able to handle Roman artefacts which would usually be untouchable, behind glass cabinets in a museum. My placements helped me to gain an insight to vocations frequently tied to Classics.”
  12. 12. Do • Research the course before hand • Emphasise academic motivation • Illustrate intellectual curiosity • Give specific examples of interests • Be engaging/add a personal touch • Be honest • Be specific • Have the interview in mind A SUMMARY PERSONAL STATEMENT
  13. 13. PLANNING YOUR SUMMER • Attending open days  Have questions to ask course leaders and current students  Attend subject taster sessions and lectures • Further reading  Start with topics and themes that interest you the most  Ask others for recommendations • Work experience/independent research  Make work experience an interactive experience (ask questions) and choose placements that will help develop skills/experiences relevant to your course  Carry out your own research and summarise your key learnings
  14. 14. QUESTIONS?
  15. 15. THANK YOU Good luck with your application

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