Additional Tips on How to Write an Essay for College

Most of your college essays will be formal except for your entrance essay. Your application essay will provide insight into what kind of person you are and what you can contribute to the university or college.

Admissions Essay

The admissions essay should sell you to the school. It should tell a story of when you were at the best or at the worst. The lesson learned must be included. While this essay is a narrative, you still need to remember your audience. Admission’s directors at the colleges you want to attend will read your paper. Use your best grammar and writing style.

If you are given a prompt or set of instructions, follow those instructions exactly. Please also make sure the essay is submitted by the deadline.

Class Essays

After you are accepted to the college, you will still have jobs to complete. Your work is not over just yet. All majors will require you to write essays. Most of these essays will be formal. They may be submitted hard copy or a drop box. Professors do not usually accept late essays.

Make a checklist that you refer to for every essay you write. As you advance in your academic career, these essays will be more relative to your field of major. On your checklist always include the following items:

  • Spelling check
  • Sentence structure check
  • No fragment or run on check
  • Transition check
  • Vocabulary check
  • Clarity check
  • Paragraph check
  • Thesis statement check
  • Assignment check
  • Due date check

Grade Weighting

You may have only two or three essays assigned during the semester or quarter term. Because the ability to communicate is so important in today’s society, writing skills are important. This skill is greatly stressed at colleges and universities. Those two or three essays in the marking period could weigh 50-60% of your grade.

You should also expect at least one essay or several short answers on your exam. You cannot afford to make mistakes on your essays. Plan ahead, have a strong outline, do your research, follow the MLA or APA rules, and meet your deadline. You must give 100% effort. If you mess up on one essay, it will drastically impact your grade. You may not be able to recover.

Use this writing checklist and these guides each time you are assigned an essay in college. You will have success!

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