A personal statement is an essay meant to explain your personal and professional goals, as well as the influences and means to achieving these goals. It is also a tool used by the selection committee in assessing an applicant’s suitability to their school’s program. In law school, the application essay helps measure a candidate’s analytical and writing abilities. The key to writing a good essay is to turn this challenge into an opportunity. As you apply for admission, your objective is not only to present a well-written essay but to take the opportunity to share information about yourself, which are not reflected through your grades and LSAT score. Here are some tips to help you get started:
Important details to include in your application essay
The essay format and length prescribed by law schools vary accordingly. However, authenticity, conciseness, and coherence are all desirable characteristics for admissions essays. For this reason, it is important to focus your essay on these critical elements: accomplishments, interests, and motivation. While there is no fool-proof formula to an effective essay, adhering to essay-writing rules for personal statements will give you an advantage. An important rule is to present your own views regarding your choice in career and university. For brevity, another rule is to prioritize details that are not indicated in other application documents.
Reading a law school sample admission essay as a guide
Different schools have different needs and preferences, so it is important to know what the law school of your choice is looking for. When writing personal statements, a number of admission officers advise that applicants should avoid using cookie-cutter or generic essays, and be more evaluative instead. To find out the kind of students that a particular law school wants, read admission essay samples of successful candidates. You may access them on the law school’s website or career assistance office. The best thing about using these samples as reference is that they have already gotten the selection committee’s nod of approval.
The admission essay is your chance at sharing what drives you and showing your potential to succeed in law school. Write about essential information that explains why and how your experiences have shaped your goals. To learn what the admissions board is looking for, read sample admission essays of successful applicants.
- What is a personal statement?
- What essential elements should you include to write an authentic, concise, and coherent essay?
- How can you find out what kind of students a law school wants?