In the latest episode of UniCast, Nancy and Meg sat down with two of our student ambassadors, Diana and Adi to discuss what makes a good personal statement. This is what we learned:
1. Before you start your UCAS application, remember...
The application deadline is in January, and you can apply to five different universities. However, if want to apply for Oxford or Cambridge, you have to choose which one because you can’t apply for both.
When you start writing your application remember there is a 47-line limit and a 4000-character limit. This includes letters, numbers, punctuation and spaces.
2. Applications for Medicine, Veterinary Science and Dentistry are different
If you are applying for one of these courses, the deadline for applications is October and you can only have four university choices.
3. Use the Point Evidence Explain format
When writing your personal statement, it’s important that you can explain why you would be the ideal candidate for the course you’re interested in. Talk about any work experience you’ve done and how the skills you’ve learned will help you at university.
4. Try to be original with your opening sentence
Did you know that 1,779 applicants use the phrase “From a young age I’ve always been interested in...” to open their personal statement. Try to avoid these cliches, it’s okay to use the phrase in the first draft but once you’ve written it, read it back and pay attention to the second sentence as this may be a better sentence to open with because it tends to be more natural.
5. Nancy’s advice: Keep Reading
In the episode, Nancy says the most important thing to remember is to “keep reading”, get as many people as you can to read it because you may have missed some typos that spell check won’t pick up because they are spelt correctly but used in the wrong context.
6. Meg’s advice: Keep Positive
Meg’s advice was to “keep positive”; talk about your love for the subject you’re interested in and what you are looking forward to studying.
You can listen to the full episode on your preferred platform, just search UniCast or you can listen online. If you are interested in studying at St Mary’s, follow 2022Simmies on Instagram for more advice about the application process and life at St Mary’s.