MORE! College Application Essay Writing Tips

Here are two more guidelines that will help you write the best college application essay you can possibly write. Answer the Prompt While this may seem obvious, many students veer away from fully answering the essay prompt, and wind up hurting their chances for acceptance. Admissions Directors are expecting all aspects of an essay prompt […]

Danger! Application Essay Samples Ahead!

application essay sample

The truth about college application essay samples There are many books on the market, and websites online, containing college application essay samples. They might be sample essays by students who were accepted to Harvard or simply “outstanding application essays.” Reading a few of these gems can be useful and the conscientious high school senior should […]

Why Your College Essay Shouldn’t be Perfect

perfect college essay

I would like to clear the air regarding a major misconception about writing the college application essay. There is no perfect way to write an essay. That’s right. There is no perfect college essay. Sure there are lots of experts generating lots of lists (I’m one of them) about how to write an application essay. […]


At the risk of oversimplifying, here are three “re’s” students need to keep in mind when writing their college application essays. Re-flect Unless a student was raised by wolves or comes from Pluto, it is rare that an outstanding essay topic instantly reveals itself. On the contrary, it takes time and serious self reflection to […]


There was an article in The New Yorker magazine this week about beloved non-fiction writing teacher, Bill Zinsser, author of the classic writing instruction book, On Writing Well. The author of the article, William Singer, was a student of Zinsser’s and states: “Our first imperative was to eliminate “clutter,” which Bill regarded as “the disease […]

Writing the College Admissions Essay: Last Minute Changes

The day students submit their college application essay brings intense feelings of accomplishment , joy and yes, relief. But it is also a time of danger. As they read their essay one last time, students are sometimes tempted to make one last tweak, change one last word, delete a phrase that never felt right to […]

Diary of a College Admissions Essay

November 25, 2012 Sunday after Thanksgiving. More supplementals today, almost finished. Still trying to be “original,” without being totally bizarre. Like today, I wrote one where I said that when I toured Bucknell I was amazed to learn that I spoke their language. I was fluent in “Bucknell.” What was important to them, was important […]

Writing the College Application Essay – MANAGING THE FEEDBACK

Once you’ve completed your college application essay, it’s always a good idea to get feedback from other people. But who those people are, and how you manage their feedback, can often be the difference between a good essay and a great one. Here are six ways to manage that feedback, and use it to your […]