What Are Good Example Topics for College Admissions Essays?

The college admissions essay is your chance to tell the admissions committee about yourself. It is your chance to provide them with information about you that they couldn't get from your transcripts or test scores, making your application more personal.

What Are College Admissions Essays?

College admission essays ask you to reveal something about yourself. When selecting topics, you should consider what you would like the admissions committee to know. Below are some good examples of topics for college admission essays that might help convey relevant information.

College Admissions Essay Topics

According to the College Board, college admission essay questions usually fall into one of three categories (www.collegeboard.com). These include questions about you, questions on why you have selected the school and questions on another given topic.

Questions About You

Many colleges will ask you to tell them something about yourself. Questions may be specific, such as those asking you to define your greatest quality. Others might only ask for a personal statement. The College Board suggests that your answer should be focused and specific. You may use a story about a particular incident that illustrates a personal quality. Good examples may focus on:

  • A childhood incident
  • A specific experience
  • An incident testing a belief
  • A beneficial personality trait

Questions on the School Selection

You may be asked why you chose a particular institution. The expectation is that you will reveal something personal to the school about your choice. Examples of topics addressing this question might include:

  • A campus tour experience
  • Extracurricular activities defining career goals
  • An epiphany about your educational or career goals

Creative Questions on Various Topics

Some applications ask questions about incidental topics, such as a famous person, a period in history or a current event. Like the other two types of questions, admissions committees use this type of question to learn more about you. You should describe a personal experience related to the subject. When writing about a famous person, essays should focus on the first encounter and impression. Essays about a current event should relate how that event affected your views or beliefs. College admissions essays about historical periods should tell the reader how your life would be different during the time in question.

Essay Writing Tips

Writing an essay may seem like a difficult task, but it shouldn't be. Here are a few tips that you should know for ensuring that your essay is a hit:

  1. Be aware of the basics. Check spelling and grammar. Make sure that sentences make sense and that you avoid writing in the passive tense, since it's boring to read.
  2. Write about something that you are passionate about. Don't choose a topic randomly. You want your passion about the topic to come through and move the readers.
  3. Avoid trying to make yourself sound perfect. Nobody is perfect, and it just comes across as fake.
  4. Have someone else read your essay and give constructive feedback. Someone else might be able to point out flaws that you wouldn't have seen.

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