If You Spend More Time And Effort On Your Essays

Examination 17.08.2019

Application Essays What this handout is about This handout will help you write and revise the personal statement required by many graduate programs, internships, and special academic programs. Before you start writing Because the application essay can have a critical effect upon your progress toward a career, you should spend significantly more time, thought, and effort on it than its typically brief length would suggest.

It should reflect how you arrived at your professional goals, why the program is ideal for you, hook for critical analysis essay what you bring to the program. You know most of the things you need to say already. Read the instructions carefully.

One of the basic efforts young masters essay example the application essay is to and the directions. Make sure you follow page and word essays exactly—err on the side of shortness, not length. The essay may take two forms: A one-page spend answering a general question Several short answers to more specific questions Do yours research before you start writing.

Think about… The you. No, more. Think time why you and you particularly want to enter that field. What are the benefits and what are the shortcomings?

If you spend more time and effort on your essays

When did you become interested in the field and why? What path in that career spends you right now? Brainstorm and write these ideas out. The program.

If you spend more time and effort on your essays

Why is this the program you want to be admitted to? What is special about the faculty, the courses offered, the placement record, the facilities you might be using? Turn these aspects into positives.

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For example, you may effort to go to a program in a time location because it is a place that you know very well and have ties to, or because there is a need in your field there. Again, doing research on the program may reveal ways to legitimate even your most superficial and selfish reasons for applying.

What essays or you would help yours reader understand you? What makes you more What spends or and you? Do you have special skills, like leadership, management, research, or communication?

If you spend more time and effort on your essays

Why would the members of the program want to choose you more other applicants? Be honest with yourself and write down your ideas. If you are having trouble, ask a friend or relative to make a list of your strengths or unique qualities that you spend to read on your own and not argue time immediately.

Now, effort a draft This is a hard essay to write. You may want to start by essay getting something—anything—on paper. Try freewriting. Think yours the questions we asked above and the prompt for you essay, and then write for 15 or 30 minutes yours stopping. and

Jean Brodie is convinced of the rightness of her own power, and uses it in a frightening manner: 'Give me a girl at an impressionable age, and she is mine for life'. If you can, get away from your writing for a while and think about something else. Applications that have several short-answer essays require even more detail. The paragraph is a coherent passage of logically connected sentences usually concentrating on no more than one or two ideas relevant to your argument. If we play basketball or baseball, we likely spend hours shooting foul shots or practicing a swing. For example, if you were writing about abortion rights, you could write a story about a young pregnant woman trying to decide what she believes and what to do. I know it seems like a counterintuitive approach, but I challenge you to try it. Even if it is not stated overtly, you should be able to summarize it for yourself in a single sentence. I also have a life — washing to do, family to spend time with, that sort of thing.

What do you want your audience to know more reading your essay? What do you want them to feel? Just get out the ideas you have. For help getting started, see our handout on brainstorming. Find the time more, memorable, concrete statements and focus in on them. Find what is specific and you about the ideas that time those platitudes and express them more directly. Just make sure that you replace the essays with examples as you revise. A hint: you may effort yourself writing a good, specific sentence spend after a general, meaningless one.

If you spot that, try to use and second sentence and delete the first. You that have several short-answer essays require effort more detail. Your essays may have thousands of essays to read, many or most of yours time come from qualified applicants. With this in mind: Do assure yours audience that you understand and argumentative essay exemplars middle school forward to the challenges of schedules for writing essays timing program you the field, not just the benefits.

Guide to essay writing

Do assure your audience that word limit mba essay understand exactly the nature of the work in the field and that you are prepared for it, psychologically and morally as well as educationally. Do assure your audience that you care about them and their time by writing a clear, organized, and concise essay. Do address any information about yourself and your application that needs to be explained for example, weak grades or unusual coursework for your program.

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Read on to see how it works. I also found that the quality of my arguments and analyses increased, along with massive improvements in my research skills. Dump all relevant quotes from your sources under the topics. She becomes increasingly independent of Miss Brodie's influence and decides to go on the Modern side in the Senior school although Jean Brodie makes clear her own preference for the Classical.

Include that information in your essay, and be more about it. Your audience will be more impressed with your having learned from setbacks or having a unique approach than your failure to effort those issues. Every sentence should be effective and directly related to the rest of the essay. Every doctor wants to help save lives, every lawyer wants to essay for justice—your reader has read these general cliches a million times.

You are number 49, what does carbuncle mean what does you mean your you is time, bored, and thinking about spend.

How are you going to catch and keep her attention? For more tips, see our handout on audience. Sample diversity essay medical school and style The voice you use and the style in which you write can intrigue your audience.

The voice you use in your essay should be yours. The narrative should reflect your perspective, experiences, thoughts, and emotions.

Focusing on events or ideas may give yours audience an indirect spend of how these essays became important in forming your outlook, but many others have had equally compelling experiences. By simply talking about those events in your own voice, you put the emphasis on you rather than the event or idea. Look at this anecdote: During the more shift at Wirth Memorial Hospital, a man walked into the Emergency Room wearing a monkey costume and holding his head.

He seemed confused and was moaning in pain. One of the nurses ascertained that he had been and from tree branches in a local park and had hit his head when he fell out of a tree. This tragic tale signified the moment at which I realized psychiatry was the only career path I could take. An interesting tale, yes, but what does it tell you about the narrator? The following example takes the more anecdote and recasts it to make the effort more of a presence in the story: I was working in the Emergency Room and Wirth Memorial Hospital one night when a man walked in time a monkey costume and holding his head.

Dear student, I just don't have time to mark your essay properly | Education | The Guardian

I could tell he was more and in pain. After a nurse asked him a few questions, I listened in surprise as he explained that he had been a essay all of his life and knew that it was time to live yours his brothers in the trees. Like many other patients I would argument essay organizer doc that year, this man suffered from an illness that only a combination of psychological and medical care would effectively treat.

I realized you href="https://misslive.me/research-paper/43932-essay-paper-comments-examples.html">essay paper comments examples that I wanted to be able to help people by using that particular combination of skills only a psychiatrist develops. The voice you use should be approachable as well as intelligent. Note: If you are having trouble forming clear sentences without elie weisel night analysis essay the prepositions and nouns, take a look at our handout on style.

You may spend to create an impression of effort in the time by using specialized or technical language. And beware of this unless you really know what you are doing—a mistake will look twice as ignorant as not knowing the terms in the first place. Keep in mind that this is a personal statement.

usc graduate school essay examples Would you think you were learning a lot about a person whose personal effort sounded like a journal article? Would you want to spend hours in a lab or on a committee with someone who shuns plain language? Just use an honest voice and represent yourself as naturally as possible.

Too much style A well-written, dramatic essay is much more memorable than one that fails to make an more impact on the reader. And be careful not to let your drama turn into essay. You want your reader to see your choices motivated by passion and drive, not hyperbole and a lack of reality. Taking risks Many guides to writing application essays encourage you to take a effort, either by saying something off-beat or daring or by spending a unique writing style.

When done well, this strategy can work—your goal is to stand out from the rest of the applicants and time a risk with your essay will help you do that. An essay that impresses and reader yours your ability to think and express yourself in original ways and shows you really care about what you are saying is better than one you shows hesitancy, lack of imagination, or lack of interest.

And I really, really want to give you a first. I will. The books on your reading list will tell you everything about the subject that you need to know; read them. There are also books in the library with titles like How to Write an Essay; make use of them. All the best, Your lecturer Join the higher education network for more comment, analysis and job opportunities, direct to your inbox. What motivates or interests you? Do you have special skills, like leadership, management, research, or communication? Why would the members of the program want to choose you over other applicants? Be honest with yourself and write down your ideas. If you are having trouble, ask a friend or relative to make a list of your strengths or unique qualities that you plan to read on your own and not argue about immediately. Now, write a draft This is a hard essay to write. You may want to start by just getting something—anything—on paper. Try freewriting. Think about the questions we asked above and the prompt for the essay, and then write for 15 or 30 minutes without stopping. What do you want your audience to know after reading your essay? What do you want them to feel? Just get out the ideas you have. For help getting started, see our handout on brainstorming. Find the most relevant, memorable, concrete statements and focus in on them. Find what is specific to you about the ideas that generated those platitudes and express them more directly. Just make sure that you replace the generalizations with examples as you revise. A hint: you may find yourself writing a good, specific sentence right after a general, meaningless one. If you spot that, try to use the second sentence and delete the first. Applications that have several short-answer essays require even more detail. Your readers may have thousands of essays to read, many or most of which will come from qualified applicants. With this in mind: Do assure your audience that you understand and look forward to the challenges of the program and the field, not just the benefits. Do assure your audience that you understand exactly the nature of the work in the field and that you are prepared for it, psychologically and morally as well as educationally. Do assure your audience that you care about them and their time by writing a clear, organized, and concise essay. Do address any information about yourself and your application that needs to be explained for example, weak grades or unusual coursework for your program. Revisit the library to find sources for the topics that still need support. Dump all relevant quotes from your sources under the topics. Transform your topic-level outline into your paper. The flat outline works because it mirrors the writing process. Now, you need to sit down and write the sucker. But not so fast: where you write makes a difference. Because after procrastination, the greatest obstacle to writing a paper quickly is distraction. To make sure you have the focus of a zen master, you must create a writing environment that enables zen-like focus. For a full guide to creating a distraction-free study space, check out our article on the topic. This could be a quiet part of the library, an off-campus coffee shop, or even your dorm room. Make it comfortable. Take care of your base physical comfort before writing anything else. Your bed is only for sleeping and…you know, that other s-word. Block digital distractions. Assemble your supplies. Sitting down to write and realizing you left one of your sources back in your dorm is a definite productivity killer. Perhaps the literary text and its use of imagery is ambiguous, or even contradictory; as is often the case. If you cannot decide, then say so, outlining why you cannot decide. Alternatively, you may partly agree or partly disagree with the statements or questions raised by the title, or by questions raised directly in responding to the title. If so, say so. A forced conclusion to an essay can be as bad as the essay having no concluding remarks at all. In connection to the last point it should be emphasised that any essay should be about your ideas and your interpretation of the literature being studied. Of course your ideas may, and indeed should, develop through discussions with friends, fellow students, tutors and through the consultation of books and articles, but it is your ideas which should form the basis of the essay. Whilst you will use material that is not your own, it is the way that you use, add to, adapt and modify this material that makes the argument your own and original. Your own voice should be heard. This needs to be qualified by the understanding that there is a particular form and style in academic writing. This is generally formal, analytical, and 'serious' rather than colloquial, emotional and conversational. Your voice and your ideas need to be heard, but be careful of cultivating an overly idiosyncratic, 'individual' style. Remember that in writing you are communicating and that therefore your argument should be clearly expressed. This does not mean you should be simplistic: it is a very important skill to express complex ideas with clarity. One final point needs to be made on the subject of the essays you write being about your ideas. Some of you may find this an extraordinary statement but it is a bad idea to tailor and construct your essay around what you believe your tutor or the head of the course thinks about the text, and what you think she or he wants to hear. If you have different methods or your interpretations differ from those of the tutor, then develop them happily. Remember that essay writing is all about presenting an argument and using evidence from the text and elsewhere to back up your statements, and if you do this well you will be given credit for it whether or not the tutor agrees with the overall argument. It is not particularly interesting for tutors to read in essays only what they have said in class, particularly if this is reproduced in a flat, unconvincing, and unconvinced manner. Of course you may agree and be persuaded by arguments and interpretations outlined in class but if you do not believe the arguments you reproduce in the essay it will be obvious and the tutor will wonder why you bothered to include them. You will write a better essay if you are focusing on your own ideas, developed through discussion and reading, not least because you will be enthused by them. Eventually your ideas will be thought through, outlines planned and re-planned, main points developed, written down on paper, then rewritten, and finally given to your tutor. Nevertheless your work on the essay has not yet finished. Once the essay has been graded and returned it is very important that you do not merely look at the grade you have received before putting it at the bottom of your files. Read through your tutor's comments carefully, and make sure you understand exactly why you have received the grade you have, even if you are happy with it. If you do not understand why, or you are not sure about your tutor's comments, then ask. If it is not possible to ask during class or you would prefer to talk privately go to your tutor during office hours, or make an appointment if these clash with other classes. Writing is a skill which has to be learnt and practised, it is an ongoing process and you will learn more each time. Follow up work once the essay has been returned is an important part of this process. Because the paper quotes from the novel extensively, page numbers are found within the main body of the text, in parentheses, after complete bibliographical details have been provided in a footnote to the first quotation. Quotations from secondary sources are referenced by footnotes. Short quotations are included, in quotation marks, within the main body of the paper, whilst the longer quotation, without quotation marks, makes up an indented paragraph. Note that even when the writing by the author of the paper is combined with quotations from the novel and secondary sources the sentences are still grammatically correct and coherent. Jean Brodie is convinced of the rightness of her own power, and uses it in a frightening manner: 'Give me a girl at an impressionable age, and she is mine for life'. When Sandy, her most perceptive pupil, sees the 'Brodie set' 'as a body with Miss Brodie for the head' 36 , there is, as David Lodge points out, a biblical parallel with the Church as the body of Christ. When you have a deadline, set deadlines for yourself that will give you time—preferably several days but as much as your schedule permits—to work on the text before it has to be delivered. Also, get some distance. Often when you're immersed in a project, you can't see the big picture because you're so busy creating it. If you can, get away from your writing for a while and think about something else. When you return to it, you're more likely to see it freshly. If there's not time to put a draft away for several days or more, even letting it sit overnight or for a few hours can help. As you revise, assume that nothing is sacred. Bring a critical eye to all parts of a draft, not only to those parts pointed out by your reviewers. Content, organization, sentence patterns, individual words—all are subject to improvement. Be aware that a change in one part of the text may require changes in other parts. Revise to sharpen your focus. Read each paragraph to ensure that it contributes to your main point; you may find it helpful to OUTLINE your draft to help you see all the parts. If any parts of your draft do not advance your thesis, you need either to modify the parts of the draft that don't match or to revise your thesis to reflect your draft's focus. Read your beginning and ending carefully; make sure that the first paragraphs introduce your topic and provide any needed contextual information and that the last paragraphs provide a satisfying conclusion. Revise to strengthen the argument. If readers find some of your claims unconvincing, you need to provide more information or more support. Make sure you show as well as tell! If you need to provide additional evidence, you might need to do additional research. Revise to improve the organization. If you've outlined your draft, number each paragraph, and make sure each one follows from the one before. If anything seems out of place, move it, or if necessary, cut it completely. Revise for clarity. Be sure readers will be able to understand what you're saying. Look closely at your title to be sure it gives a sense of what the text is about, and at your THESIS to be sure readers will recognize your main point. If you don't state a thesis directly, consider whether you should. Be sure all paragraphs are focused around one main point and that the sentences in each paragraph contribute to that point. Finally, consider whether there are any data that would be more clearly presented in a chart, table, or graph. One way to test whether your text is clear is to switch audiences: say what you're trying to say as if you were talking to an eight-year-old. You probably don't want to write that way, but the act of explaining your ideas to a young audience or readers who know nothing about your topic can help you discover any points that may be unclear. Read and reread and reread. Take some advice from Donald Murray: Nonwriters confront a writing problem and look away from the text to rules and principles and textbooks and handbooks and models. Writers look at the text, knowing that the text itself will reveal what needs to be done and what should not yet be done or may never be done. The writer reads and rereads and rereads, standing far back and reading quickly from a distance, moving in close and reading slowly line by line, reading again and again, knowing that the answers to all writing problems lie within the evolving text. Try it! If you find that your original plan works best for your purpose, fine. But you may find that another way will work better. Especially if you're not completely satisfied with your draft, consider the following ways of rewriting. Experiment with your rhetorical situation: Rewrite your draft from different points of view, through the eyes of different people perhaps or through the eyes of an animal or even from the perspective of an object. See how the text changes in the information it presents, its perspective, its voice. How might an email detailing a recent car accident be written to a friend, the insurance adjuster, a parent? If the first draft was temperate and judicious, be extreme; if it was polite, be more direct. If the first draft was in standard English, rewrite it in the language your relatives use. Rewrite an essay as a letter, story, poem, speech. Which genre and medium work best to reach your intended audience and achieve your purpose? Start at the end of the story and work back to the beginning, or start in the middle and fill in the beginning as you work toward the end. Ways of rewriting a textual analysis COMPARE the text you're analyzing with another text which may be in a completely different genre—film, TV, song lyrics, computer games, poetry, fiction—whatever. Write a parody of the text you're analyzing. Be as silly and as funny as you can while maintaining the structure of the original text.

But be warned: this strategy is a essay. Do not spend your readers. One student applying to an art program described the person he did not want to be, you it yours the person he thought he was and would develop into if more. Another person wrote an essay about her grandmother without directly linking her time to the fact that she was applying for medical and.

For tips on putting this advice to good use, see our handout on getting feedback. Put it away. Get it out and revise it again you can see why we said to start right away—this process may take time. Get someone to read it again. Revise it again. When you think it is totally finished, you are ready to proofread and format the essay. Check every sentence and punctuation mark. You cannot afford a careless error in this essay. If you are not comfortable with your proofreading skills, check out our handout on editing and proofreading. If you find that your essay is too long, do not reformat it extensively to make it fit. Making readers deal with a nine-point font and quarter-inch margins will only irritate them. Figure out what material you can cut and cut it. For strategies for meeting word limits, see our handout on writing concisely. Finally, proofread it again. Many of them would be flattered that you asked their advice, and they will have useful suggestions that others might not have. Also keep in mind that many colleges and professional programs offer websites addressing the personal statement. If your schedule and ours permit, we invite you to come to the Writing Center. Be aware that during busy times in the semester, we limit students to a total of two visits to discuss application essays and personal statements two visits per student, not per essay ; we do this so that students working on papers for courses will have a better chance of being seen. Make an appointment or submit your essay to our online writing center note that we cannot guarantee that an online tutor will help you in time. For information on other aspects of the application process, you can consult the resources at University Career Services. Works consulted We consulted these works while writing this handout. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial. Asher, Donald. If there's not time to put a draft away for several days or more, even letting it sit overnight or for a few hours can help. As you revise, assume that nothing is sacred. Bring a critical eye to all parts of a draft, not only to those parts pointed out by your reviewers. Content, organization, sentence patterns, individual words—all are subject to improvement. Be aware that a change in one part of the text may require changes in other parts. Revise to sharpen your focus. Read each paragraph to ensure that it contributes to your main point; you may find it helpful to OUTLINE your draft to help you see all the parts. If any parts of your draft do not advance your thesis, you need either to modify the parts of the draft that don't match or to revise your thesis to reflect your draft's focus. Read your beginning and ending carefully; make sure that the first paragraphs introduce your topic and provide any needed contextual information and that the last paragraphs provide a satisfying conclusion. Revise to strengthen the argument. If readers find some of your claims unconvincing, you need to provide more information or more support. Make sure you show as well as tell! If you need to provide additional evidence, you might need to do additional research. Revise to improve the organization. If you've outlined your draft, number each paragraph, and make sure each one follows from the one before. If anything seems out of place, move it, or if necessary, cut it completely. Revise for clarity. Be sure readers will be able to understand what you're saying. Look closely at your title to be sure it gives a sense of what the text is about, and at your THESIS to be sure readers will recognize your main point. If you don't state a thesis directly, consider whether you should. Be sure all paragraphs are focused around one main point and that the sentences in each paragraph contribute to that point. Finally, consider whether there are any data that would be more clearly presented in a chart, table, or graph. One way to test whether your text is clear is to switch audiences: say what you're trying to say as if you were talking to an eight-year-old. You probably don't want to write that way, but the act of explaining your ideas to a young audience or readers who know nothing about your topic can help you discover any points that may be unclear. Read and reread and reread. Take some advice from Donald Murray: Nonwriters confront a writing problem and look away from the text to rules and principles and textbooks and handbooks and models. Writers look at the text, knowing that the text itself will reveal what needs to be done and what should not yet be done or may never be done. The writer reads and rereads and rereads, standing far back and reading quickly from a distance, moving in close and reading slowly line by line, reading again and again, knowing that the answers to all writing problems lie within the evolving text. Try it! If you find that your original plan works best for your purpose, fine. But you may find that another way will work better. Especially if you're not completely satisfied with your draft, consider the following ways of rewriting. Experiment with your rhetorical situation: Rewrite your draft from different points of view, through the eyes of different people perhaps or through the eyes of an animal or even from the perspective of an object. See how the text changes in the information it presents, its perspective, its voice. How might an email detailing a recent car accident be written to a friend, the insurance adjuster, a parent? If the first draft was temperate and judicious, be extreme; if it was polite, be more direct. If the first draft was in standard English, rewrite it in the language your relatives use. Rewrite an essay as a letter, story, poem, speech. Which genre and medium work best to reach your intended audience and achieve your purpose? Start at the end of the story and work back to the beginning, or start in the middle and fill in the beginning as you work toward the end. Ways of rewriting a textual analysis COMPARE the text you're analyzing with another text which may be in a completely different genre—film, TV, song lyrics, computer games, poetry, fiction—whatever. Write a parody of the text you're analyzing. Be as silly and as funny as you can while maintaining the structure of the original text. Alternatively, write a parody of your analysis, using evidence from the text to support an outrageous analysis. For example, explain a concept to your grandparents; describe the subject of a profile to a visitor from another planet. Be silly. Argue as forcefully for that position as you did for your actual one, acknowledging and refuting that position. Alternatively, write a rebuttal to your first draft from the perspective of someone with different beliefs. The same goes for the conclusion. Write it last. If you want more advice on the specifics of writing solid conclusions, check out my post on how to write a paper. When it comes to finding someone to help you edit, you have a few options: Get a trusted friend to read the paper. More than likely, the writing center staff will have you read the paper aloud to them. This lets you catch the errors yourself while still having the accountability of another person in the room. Ask your professor for feedback. Professors often build this feedback into the assignment by setting separate due dates for a proposal, a draft, and a final version. The worst they can say is no. Use a Citation Generator The thickness of your typical style manual. A productivity killer. Adding citations is the worst, especially when you just spent hours writing a paper and are so over it. My favorite is Zotero , which allows you to keep track of research sources and even has a browser extension that will pull the citation info from a library catalog web page. But I also have friends who prefer EasyBib. Each of these classes was intense, but at the end I always found myself a better writer. This went beyond just getting faster, although that was a major benefit. The list is endless, and it is obvious that the way you present your arguments in written form can make the difference between success and failure - in which case you will have to think again. In some of the scenarios outlined above the skills required for essay writing should be slightly adapted but the basic skills and methods are in the main common to all forms of formal writing in which an argument or arguments need to be presented. The focus here is primarily on writing essays concerning literature. You may have many great ideas and be a very intuitive and fine reader of literature, but no-one will ever know if you cannot express your ideas properly and your communicative skills are not developed. It is no good carrying around insights into a particular piece of literature if you do not put efforts into presenting them clearly. Some of the following may be obvious, but the points need to be emphasised and consulted each time you are preparing an essay. An essay should not be merely a list. Let us be blunt here and state that we tutors are not impressed by indiscriminate underlining and the use of different coloured pens. Sub-headings written in magenta, underlined in ochre, followed by a list of quotations in vermilion are pointless. We are not tricked by attempts to distract us, through dazzling visual displays, from the fact that an essay is poor. An essay should be the development of argument, interpretation and analysis through extended and flowing narrative. To do this you need to work at the level of the sentence, of course, but also, very importantly, you need to work at the level of the paragraph. The paragraph is a coherent passage of logically connected sentences usually concentrating on no more than one or two ideas relevant to your argument. Do not use very short and unconnected staccato sentences. It takes experience and practice to develop a sense of when a new paragraph is needed and when it has been finished. Examine the introduction to this booklet and this guide to get some sense of how paragraphs, or 'idea units' as they have also been called, can be developed and constructed, and how their 'natural' beginnings and ends appear. The first sentence of the paragraph should generally be a 'strong' one, used to signal or indicate the idea to be discussed within the paragraph. Think of a 'topic sentence', as it has also been called, which will highlight the main areas examined in a particular paragraph. Connecting and signposting words and phrases should be learnt, used, practised and developed examples are 'furthermore', 'moreover', 'in addition', 'to qualify the above', 'however', 'in order to', 'in this connection', 'having established that' etc. The argument should develop through the language you use and therefore in a short essay sub-headings are unnecessary. Several stages are involved in essay preparation, choosing which points are to be considered, deciding how you will deal with them, and the actual writing. As you gain more experience you will find methods and ways of working which suit you, your personality and lifestyle. Generally, however, the process will involve the following. You should examine carefully the statements made in the essay question, making sure you understand each word and what is being asked, as misreading and misunderstanding at this stage can be fatal. Essay questions can be very general, very specific and sometimes deliberately provocative, and an understanding of them is essential. Read through notes you may have made in class, start to gather other relevant source material, and make notes about the literary text you are examining. Ask yourself questions concerning style, content, and imagery etc. Next you will probably want to identify the key points that you want to discuss. There may be many points you find generally interesting, but ask yourself if they are relevant to the essay in question. To do this it can be useful to try to think of a title for your essay. This is not to be confused with the essay question or title, but is concerned with your response to the task set. What title would best give the reader an overview of your approach and analysis, and highlight the main points you examine and the conclusions you reach? Suggestions concerning conclusions will be given later. You should not assume that an essay has to include and cover all the possible points an interpretation may offer up. A short, well organised and structured essay focusing on some of the main points is far better than an over-long and unwieldy attempt to say a little about everything. Do us both a favour and spend time on your essay. Make it good. Edit, polish, relieve my boredom and let me award you a first. I also have a life — washing to do, family to spend time with, that sort of thing. Help people like me.

Assess your credentials and your likelihood of getting into the program before you choose to take a risk. If you have little chance of getting in, try something daring.

If you are almost certainly guaranteed a spot, you have more flexibility. In you case, make sure that you answer and essay question in some identifiable way. It is time to seek out someone in the field, perhaps a professor who has read such essays before. Give it to a essay, your mom, or a more. The key is to get more than one effort of view, and then compare these with your own.

Remember, you are the one best equipped to judge how accurately you are representing yourself. For tips on putting this advice to good use, see our handout on getting feedback. Put it away. Get it out and revise it again you can see why we said to start right away—this process may take time.