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Old 02-19-2007, 05:02 PM   #1
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Default Personal Statements for Uni

Hey! It has been a long time since I had to write a personal statement for Uni (3 years ago, and at that time I recieved help from my tutor). Anyway I'm writing one now, as I want to complete a Masters degree next year, and I'm a little unsure.

The course I want to do is sports nutrition one at London Met, and I have been given the following guidelines;
(i) Your reasons for choosing the award/course.
(ii) The knowledge, skills and positions of responsibility you have obtained through your work and/or education (whether paid, voluntary or domestic) which
might be relevant to the award/course.
(iii) The work experiences and/or personal developments which have been most important to you.
(iv) The challenges facing you in your studies, work or personal career development.
(v) Your future career plans.


Quite different to what I had to do before, I mean before I believe I wrote about myself outside of work/academia. Not sure if this is required, because it's of course a different level, and Uni.


I guess any tips would be helpful, I will probably ask someone at uni who I should contact for help regarding this too.

Cheers Maybe there are even a few others who are having to complete one of these
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Old 02-19-2007, 05:54 PM   #2
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

I had to do one of these for a Masters a few months ago they can be a nightmare because its difficult to know what to put & what not to put. What I did was email the relevant tutor about to clarify a few points which sometimes help if you're not too sure what direction to go in, but also shows you're working hard at it & gets your name known to them so when they see your application they'll recognise you (hopefully in a good way!).
Not sure if thats any help though!!
Good luck
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Old 02-19-2007, 05:59 PM   #3
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Aha thanks! I am wondering how you found the statement differed to when you had to do one for the under grad degree? Was there a different style to it at all.
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:06 PM   #4
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I found I had to tailor it more to the course I was applying for and perhaps to the uni as well. The personal statement I did years ago for UCAS was an all purpose statement for several uni's just telling them more about myself and a little bit about why I wanted to do the course. I think for Masters you need to say why the particular course interests you & how you plan to use it and also demonstrate you can & will work as they can be pretty hard going.
I'm not sure if there was a different style particulary, I just took the guidelines they gave, like what you've got above & did a paragraph on each & tried to meet the criteria they put in.
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:14 PM   #5
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Quote:
Originally Posted by embellish View Post
I had to do one of these for a Masters a few months ago they can be a nightmare because its difficult to know what to put & what not to put. What I did was email the relevant tutor about to clarify a few points which sometimes help if you're not too sure what direction to go in, but also shows you're working hard at it & gets your name known to them so when they see your application they'll recognise you (hopefully in a good way!).
Not sure if thats any help though!!
Good luck
yeah I am in the process of doing that it is a pain in the ass, not only do you not know what to put but you dont want to put something you shouldnt so it might take hours to write a 600 word essay,lol.
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:18 PM   #6
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Quote:
Originally Posted by embellish View Post
I found I had to tailor it more to the course I was applying for and perhaps to the uni as well. The personal statement I did years ago for UCAS was an all purpose statement for several uni's just telling them more about myself and a little bit about why I wanted to do the course. I think for Masters you need to say why the particular course interests you & how you plan to use it and also demonstrate you can & will work as they can be pretty hard going.
I'm not sure if there was a different style particulary, I just took the guidelines they gave, like what you've got above & did a paragraph on each & tried to meet the criteria they put in.
Yeah, I get what you are saying. After reading your comments, I had a look again and it makes a lot more sense to me.

I have yet to even look at the uni, I mean the next open day is in July (and the course starts September) no set date for applications. But it says best to get it in asap, as they serve places when applications are sent. So writing spefically about the Uni will be tough.

I am only planning to apply to this one, I don't fancy going any further than London (and anyway, its only 1/2-3 that does sports nutrition rather than human nutrition), did you do the same? only apply for one?
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:40 PM   #7
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Yeah, theres only 4 in the UK that do my course so I only applied to one as didn't fancy Lancaster or Edinburgh! All I did re the uni was look at the website, look at the location, couse content and put a tiny bit of that in, why that particular uni & course appealed etc . I picked out a few bits of the course content I liked & said I found those very interesting - just to show I'd read it really! It depends what you want to put in really & whether theres a word limit. Mine turned out to be 1 page on word in 12 point which I thought was long enough as I didn't want to write loads!
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Old 02-19-2007, 06:47 PM   #8
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Quote:
Originally Posted by embellish View Post
Yeah, theres only 4 in the UK that do my course so I only applied to one as didn't fancy Lancaster or Edinburgh! All I did re the uni was look at the website, look at the location, couse content and put a tiny bit of that in, why that particular uni & course appealed etc . I picked out a few bits of the course content I liked & said I found those very interesting - just to show I'd read it really! It depends what you want to put in really & whether theres a word limit. Mine turned out to be 1 page on word in 12 point which I thought was long enough as I didn't want to write loads!
Yeah, even when I did/still doing my BSC sport science at Brighton, I only applied for that one (for two reasons, I wouldn't have been able to move away and live on my own, and also it was one of the top 3 for sport science in england) so I just applied to that one, and I knew my grades would be good enough to get in.

This one, it's very limited in the amount of Unis doing it, and I still haven't moved away from home. So if I did get in, I would like to stay closer to home (where I could maybe come home for the weekends, and I am not stuck 6-8 hours from home, and if I am lucky enough, the timetable may even allow me to travel to London each day and live in Eastbourne still).

Anyway, the guidelines give about 3/4 of a page to fill it in:
You are advised to complete this section with particular care and as fully as possible. Continue on a separate sheet if required.

I will type it out anyway, I have problems with my handwriting (so I guess I should try to make a page at the most).

I had a look at the site etc, and the London Met doesn't list much information on the course to be honest (the other one doing sport in Glasgow, gives so much) but I guess I have enough to write a page or so.


PS Do you know when most people apply? I thought it was done once your under grad course had been finished, but didn't realise you could apply now for most post grad ones. Also what are you applying for? which course?

Anyway, thanks for your help! Its going to make it a lot easier.
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Old 02-19-2007, 09:38 PM   #9
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

I'm actually applying for an Msc in Occupational Therapy at Brighton but based in Eastbourne because i don't want to study/live near to London
Some postgrads have a closing date, mine did as apparently theres a lot of competition. I think it varies from place to place. I'm not sure about applying while still an undergrad, I think you probably can, but best to check with the uni, I finished my degree a couple of years ago so wasn't relevant for me. Are you still an undergrad? If so the only issue I could think of is that they may require a predicted result from your couse tutor. However don't take my word for it, do check with the uni, or talk to your current course tutor as they should be able to help as well with some things. Does Brighton have a careers advisory service because they should be able to help with this kind of thing. When I was down at Exeter mine were really helpful even with applications for other courses even though at that time it didn't happen.
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Old 02-19-2007, 10:24 PM   #10
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Thats strange, that you are going to Eastbourne, and I will hopefully be moving away! But maybe its not so good that you are in eastbourne, Brighton is much better (but I live in eastbourne anyway, but I think if I moved here, Brighton would be much better lol). But fuck, how much I wish they did a sports nutrition msc here, instead of a sport science one

And yes I am still in my final year, so not finished this course yet (so thats why I thought you applied after the course was done etc, e.g. in the summer).

It just mentions this on the sheet:
Educational Qualifications – Please state most recent first and attach copies of certificates or transcripts where possible.
For international students these should be in both original language and English. Do not enclose original certificates
and then below Exams to be taken or results awaited

I guess I took it for granted that everyone applying would have just finished their degree so I didn't bother to check this (because I want to start my studies as soon as possible, and have no time between).


Also, who did you get to write your report/referee statement? I don't really see the point in asking my Uni lecturers, because there is virtually no interaction between you and them, so they don't really have much to write. Thats one thing I don't like about uni (compared to college). I was thinking of asking my college lecturer, because I was taught by him for 2 years and everyday.... and they get to know you well.

I will have to try and contact the careers center as you mention.
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:30 AM   #11
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

I think that for all of these essays and personal statements is that no matter what you write about, no matter what you say, you have to make sure that it reveals something about you that would make the school want YOU, something they can't see anywhere else in your application. You could be a great writer and tell the best story in the world, but if it doesn't make you sound irresistible to the school, it won't be worth much. whenever I advise high schoolers about their essays for undergrad, I always tell them to read each sentence and after each sentence, ask themselves "what does this sentence say about me?"

Anyway, good luck
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Old 02-20-2007, 02:50 AM   #12
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Good luck with the essays-just keep in mind that those may be used as reason to reject candidates, rather than distinguish among them. So above all make sure that your essays do not make you an outlier. For example somebody who didn't spend much time working on the essays, or went completely on a tangent addressing something other than the essay subject.
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Old 02-20-2007, 09:37 AM   #13
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I wrote my personal statement a few months ago (last October) and found the most important aspect to be getting a correct, smooth, easy to read structure and then giving your own ass a good old kiss
I applied to do undergraduate German at 6 universites and have so far been accepted by 5, and I think writing, what I thought, was a good personal statement has really contributed.

My structure was:

1. I gave my reasons for choosing German and stated why I would like to continue studying the subject.

2. I mentioned my other A level courses and stated why I thought they had been of use and what skills I had aquired through these subjects.

3. Work Experience I had done.

4. Volunteer Work, my involvement in Amnesty International, Part time jobs. (You could replace this with any other good cause you have ever been involved with) Its important to get across that you believe in what you have done and how it reflects on you as a person.

5. Sports/Reading. I mentioned that I play tennis and enjoy reading (buffing it out with sentences such as 'I believe that a solo sport such as tennis, which requires much discipline, thought and self belief can be beneficial in gaining skills that are of particular use during examination periods, having self control is vital in times of pressure.' Kind of over the top Lol)

6. (conclusion) 'My defining qualities as a person, yet more importantly as a student are...' I then carried on from there and wrote about why I would be an asset and of my other qualities. Remember not to beg, i.e It would be an absolute priviledge to..., especially if you believe that you should be accepted to the universities that you have applied for. Make them want you, tell them why they should really want you at their university.

This was my plan and you may have other ideas, which is probably the best way to go, but try and keep your statement well structured. I read several statements and often people had failed to do this, and had made their statement very unorganised by putting sentences, which should have been lumped into one seperate paragraph, all over the page.
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Old 02-20-2007, 03:04 PM   #14
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Quote:
Originally Posted by joeb_uk
Also, who did you get to write your report/referee statement? I don't really see the point in asking my Uni lecturers, because there is virtually no interaction between you and them, so they don't really have much to write. Thats one thing I don't like about uni (compared to college). I was thinking of asking my college lecturer, because I was taught by him for 2 years and everyday.... and they get to know you well.
I asked my line manager & my college tutor - I'm doing counselling classes at the moment so she is my most up to date one & I wasn't keen to ask my lecturers because as you say theres not too much contact time. I did have a personal tutor at uni who I occasionally use for a reference but only when i can't think of anyone else! Does it specify that they need someone from your uni as a referee (possibly relating to course knowledge/content) or is just a reference to testify that you're a lovely person & will study hard!
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Old 02-20-2007, 03:36 PM   #15
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Default Re: Personal Statements for Uni

Well I think you can choose if you can't get exactly what they suggest, but it says the following:

Please try to supply:
(i) One academic reference from your most recent place of study eg. School, College or University
(ii) A reference from your present/recent employer.


I have never worked so I will have to get one from college, and one from uni (at first didn't realise it required 2).
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