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How to Write an Excellent Admission Essay

Written by Sarina Jones
Posted: August 27, 2021
Last update date: March 22, 2024
8 min read

The period of college admission is undoubtedly very responsible and, therefore, stressful for students. Young people have to go a long way to collect various documents, prepare everything necessary, and write an application essay. In this paper, students need to interest the university commission and convince them that they deserve a place in the college.

  • After reading the article, you will gain a comprehensive understanding of what a college admission essay is and its importance in the college application process.
  • The article delves into the appropriate format for such essays, discussing the nuances of font size, spacing, paragraphing, and other layout details. It also outlines the MLA format specifics for college essays.
  • Practical guidance on crafting a compelling essay is provided, including topics to avoid, the importance of research about the school, and ways to make your essay stand out.
  • Overall, this guide serves as an essential tool for students looking to create an impactful college admission essay.

With plenty of tips and tricks about college application essays and the possibility of sending online applications now, many students still don’t know what college essay format to use. So, PapersOwl has curated this guide on the correct way of writing a college admission essay.

What is a College Admission Essay

When entering a university, college, business school, or other educational institution, writing a so-called admission or application essay is often required. This is a small paper in which the applicant must demonstrate himself in the best way possible, enumerate the skills, and describe the motivation, goals, values, and personal characteristics. The admission committee must understand what exactly makes you unique. Your essay is a chance to show those qualities that are not visible in the other documents of your application.

The college admission essay should be unique and memorable so that the admission committee has no doubt that the student deserves to study at their college. There are always a lot of concerns regarding college essay format that should be obligatory met. This composition should describe the individuality of the future learner without using clichés and banal techniques to ensure interest in reading. Moreover, this creative work often becomes a critical component for assessing the student’s potential by committee.

Proper College Admission Essay Format

College application essay format may be of high difficulty for an applicant. So, let’s plunge into this topic for a bit. There are a lot of criteria that should be included in the paper. Essential items such as font, size, indentation, paragraph, special formatting rules, margins, placement of page numbers, and headings are all considered. In the majority of cases, the conventional requirements are:

  • 12-point Times New Roman
  • 0″ between paragraphs
  • 1″ margin all around
  • double-spaced (275 words/page) / single-spaced (550 words/page)
  • 0.5″ first line of a paragraph

Formatting your college essay structure properly is extremely important as it makes the best first impression. So, what’s the proper format for students to submit their application college essays? The answer to this depends on how you submit your great college essay.

Whether you are submitting sample essays via Word files/PDF format, or text box, the college application essay format will vary. But don’t hesitate, if you’re struggling with formatting, you can hire 24/7 professional essay writers to help you.

Another crucial question about how to write a college admission essay is: “How long should a college application essay be?” It’s usually required around 500 words to write college admission essay. This means you have one page to convincingly and confidently express your thoughts, ideas and highlight your strengths and motivation to study in college. It is an incredibly responsible task that requires concentration and brevity in the presentation of a candidate.

Most Accepted MLA Format for College Application Essay

Basic MLA formatting requirements include using size 12 Times New Roman font all across the essay with paragraphs spaced half an inch, double spacing between lines, and books cited page with a hanging indent. Additionally, the title page should have the student’s name, instructor’s name, course, and date. For proper application formatting, it is crucial to use these guidelines when writing your essay.

Guide on How to Write Excellent Application Essay

After going through the thorny path of collecting documents, passing exams, and choosing the right university, the time has come for the student to write a college application essay. The first step is to familiarize yourself with the requirements for writing this type of work. Requests may differ slightly in detail, but the main criteria are generally the same. The essay should be unique, creative, and innovative, represent the candidate’s personality, and reflect his motivation and goals.

So here is some necessary information on how to write a stellar paper. The candidate should adhere to the requirements, and the topic of the work, if any. It is also worth making a layout plan of what you would like to display in the essay. Find a zest for your work that will help you stand out from other candidates. Imagine how many papers are submitted to the college admissions committee – these are hundreds and thousands of essays. It would be best if you took care that the teachers remember you so you can get the coveted place. To do this, you need to come up with an original idea. At the same time, it is crucial to refrain from exaggerating your accomplishments because outright lies will not be encouraged.

College Essay Topics Which to Use and Which to Avoid

Unless you’re a professional troll or want to rub your teachers and peers the wrong way, keep your papers on PC. While you may have strong opinions on religion, politics, or cultural differences, such topics are better avoided. Even if you’re studying political science, don’t rock the boat too hard, or the teacher may very well throw you off the edge with a bad grade. Most teachers are published authors and it’s a good tip to Google their work to get an idea of what their sensitive areas are. Writing papers can be an involved process that has your head spinning, especially if you’re a new student. But with our helpful guidance and tips, you can breeze through the process and even buy a college essay to get you started in the right direction. Be sure to format your admission essay correctly and ask the right questions, and your academic years will be some of the best experiences in your life. With the correct tools and a bit of extra effort, you can achieve academic success and ensure yourself a bright future.

  1. Avoid discussing highly sensitive personal matters like faith, religion, politics, culture, and controversial topics. Your college essay should focus on you and your experiences rather than delving into these private topics. Moreover, discussing these matters will likely alienate some readers since they come from differing backgrounds and can be controversial.
  2. Be careful with personal tastes. Still, it is one of the college application essay topics to avoid, but it is more relaxed. Don’t write about everyday life and privileged life, and cliche topics.
  3. Anything that violates the law. Do not tell stories (if you have them), and do not ask questions or write arguments about the laws, their use, and their application. Laws are absolute for all, and you need to keep your reputation.

Good college application essay topics

There is a multitude of different subjects you can choose from. Not all college papers for sale have a great topic, however. This is why you need to be selective about the process and get the title right before anything else. The following are 10 examples of college application essay topics:

  1. Have your views of the world and society ever been challenged? If so, how and why?
  2. Describe an important view or event that you have changed your mind upon recently
  3. Not all inventions are good – which invention would you prevent from happening and why?
  4. Why do you feel that X college is the perfect fit your goals and education?
  5. What is your main strength, and how will that help you at college?
  6. On completion of college, what is the thing you desire to achieve the most?
  7. What do you feel is the most important quality or feature a college can provide to you?
  8. Why did you choose to apply for X college?
  9. Describe one of your most important achievements in life and how it changed you.
  10. Tell us about a time that you solved a problem – what did you do, and what skills did you use?

Common application essay topics

When you are researching your paper subjects, you will undoubtedly come across a myriad of common topics. There are various subjects that are suitable for a college essay application. What you can write will help showcase your own personality and abilities. The following are 10 examples of college admission essay titles:

  1. If time travel were possible, what year would you travel back to, and what would you do?
  2. What part of your personal identity makes you unique and is paramount to your being?
  3. What has been your biggest failure in life, and how did you learn from this experience?
  4. Tell us about an important life lesson you have learned and how it has developed your person.
  5. Share a random essay topic of your choice – it can be on any subject of your choosing
  6. What do you do in a pressured situation, and how do you cope with the obstacles?
  7. What are the main influencing factors that have shaped your personality today?
  8. What is the most valuable and important moral standard that you try to live by, and why?
  9. Have you completed any charity or volunteer work? What did you learn from the experience?
  10. If you could be remembered for one thing, what would that be and why?

Overused college essay topics

There is a thin line between common and overused. Whilst some college essay ideas are common, others are simply used too often. You have to try and inject a little creativity and use informative essay topics that haven’t been written by thousands of other students too. The following are 10 essay questions that have been used too often – try and avoid these:

  1. What is the best piece of advice you have ever received, and do you follow or ignore it?
  2. If you could spend 30 minutes with a famous person (Living or dead), who would it be?
  3. What is your favorite movie of all time, and which was your favorite scene?
  4. Describe the most embarrassing experience you have ever had, and how did it impact you?
  5. What are your views on religion?
  6. Describe your worst personality trait
  7. Describe a moment in your life where you felt you developed as a person
  8. What is one contribution you have made to a team or organization?
  9. Describe how you have helped someone through a trailing situation
  10. If you could run your own business, what would it be and why?

Unique college essay topics

Creating a unique title is essential for your college and university work. Part of how to make a good essay is being unique and thinking outside the box. These 10 subjects could help you do this:

  1. What is your definition of the meaning of life?
  2. Do you believe there is life on other planets?
  3. Describe one major world event that we can learn from
  4. How does family upbringing shape our personality and mindset?
  5. How do we stop corruption in politics?
  6. Why is democracy preferable to a dictatorship?
  7. Why does racism still exist in today’s society?
  8. Do you choose your sexuality, or are you born with it?
  9. Why are renewable energy sources important?
  10. Is solar power a viable means of powering our world?

Interesting college essay topics

What would your reaction be if you picked up a paper and the title was boring? One of the best college essay tips we can give is to make your paper interesting! A catchy title will always grab attention, as seen below:

  1. What are the things that make you angry, and how do you control this anger?
  2. What would you do if someone confronted your beliefs?
  3. Is nuclear energy dangerous or the answer to our energy problems?
  4. How can music improve our brain function?
  5. Should children be taught a second language at school?
  6. Is social media addictive?
  7. Can video games cause violent behavior?
  8. Should parents have the right to spank their children?
  9. Nature vs Nurture
  10. Are sporting professionals paid too much?
  11. If you had the power to change one thing in the world, what would it be, and how would you do it?
  12. What is your favorite novel, and which character resonated with you the most?
  13. Name 10 of your favorite historical figures and gives reasons why you chose them?
  14. What is the thing you are most passionate about in life and why?
  15. If you could become a teacher, what subject would you teach, and how would you teach it?
  16. What would be your ideal profession, and why?
  17. How is global warming affecting our planet and what needs to be done to prevent it?
  18. How has social media changed the way we communicate with others?
  19. The negative impact of the internet and the rise of cyber criminals
  20. How business has changed in the modern world

Do Research

Become familiar with the school, program, or department to which you are applying. Use specific facts or experiences in your essay to demonstrate why your application should be accepted.

Inspire with Successful Application Essay Examples

When preparing to write an admissions essay, you should actively seek out and study examples of successful essays from previous applicants. Reviewing these samples provides valuable insights into the desired tone, structure, and content that resonates with admissions committees. By understanding what has worked well for others, you can tailor your essays better, highlighting unique strengths and experiences, and increasing your chances of making a memorable impression.

Craft an Outline

Create an outline of your essay’s essential ideas before you begin writing. A well-written outline lies at the heart of every good college paper. It acts as a road map for your essay, offering a clear framework and direction for your ideas.

  • Organizes Your Thoughts: An outline helps you arrange your ideas in a logical order. It allows you to see the overall structure of your essay and how each section or point connects to the next.
  • Ensures a Coherent Flow: By outlining your essay, you can ensure that your ideas flow smoothly from one paragraph to the next. This helps your essay read more coherently and makes it easier for the reader to follow your argument.
  • Prevents Information Overload: It’s easy to get overwhelmed with ideas, especially when you’re passionate about a topic. An outline helps you filter out unnecessary information and focus on the most relevant points.
  • Helps with Time Management: Planning your essay in advance with an outline can save you time in the long run. You’ll have a clear roadmap, so you won’t waste time trying to figure out what to write next.
  • Ensures Inclusion of Key Points: With an outline, you can make sure that you cover all the important aspects of your topic. It’s a way to double-check that you’ve included all the necessary information.
  • Facilitates Revision and Editing: If you’ve already outlined your essay, it’s much easier to revise and edit. You can see the big picture and make adjustments to improve the overall coherence and effectiveness of your essay.
  • Helps Avoid Writer’s Block: Having a clear outline can help combat writer’s block. If you’re unsure of what to write next, you can refer to your outline for guidance.
  • Provides a Sense of Direction: Writing without a clear plan can lead to meandering and off-topic essays. An outline provides a clear sense of direction, helping you stay on track and focused.



You would agree that a captivating introduction will make you glue to a movie until it ends. The approach is the same with your application essay. The introduction should be the beginning of your thrilling story.

Your introductory paragraph has three major parts. They include:

  1. The hook – to get the reader’s attention.
  2. The main points – to fully express the introductory paragraph and other important highlights. They include background information, thesis statement, and scope and structure.
  3. Transition – to navigate to the purpose of the work.

These major parts are always relevant for every academic piece.

Body Paragraphs

After a well-crafted introduction, body paragraphs are the next big deal. It contains the comprehensive details of your content, basically how you’ve prioritized personal growth.

This is the heart of your admission essay, where you provide detailed information and supporting evidence for the points you’re making. The body paragraph is known as the narrative structure of your application. It comes in three sections. Every paragraph explains its unique message.

The rules are simple:

  1. Have a topic sentence with a focus for each paragraph.
  2. Strengthen every topic sentence with a thorough yet concise explanation.
  3. Ensure your research points are consistent throughout.
  4. If not stated, do not use a subheading for a paragraph.


Writing the conclusion of your college essays is the trickiest part. Just like your introduction and body paragraph, a well-structured conclusion carries much significance to the success of your paper. It revises the entire content with major key takeaways and a summary of the essay’s major points. It should end with much optimism, which you expect from the admissions officers.

With careful planning and creative thinking, you can write your college essays in a way that will help you stand out from the crowd and make a lasting impression on the admissions committee.

Choose Your Personal Story

This type of essay is like a personal statement because of its story. Since this story is peculiar to you, you need to make it captivating. The major problem many students face here is that they are trying to be too dramatic—no, you don’t need to be.

A captivating story is real. You want the reader to feel the genuineness of what you are saying. It expresses a little passion and makes anyone see more reasons to admit you into their institution.

See the example below:

“Studying medicine was not a dream for me until the last COVID-19 pandemic era. Seeing the daily increment in the death toll was saddening for me. It was more traumatizing because every news channel in the world has a terrible video to show the inhumane condition of the patients. This motivated my desire to study medicine and improve the global health of humanity.”

Ensure your story is captivating. However, don’t be carried away and exceed the word limit.

Prove Your Worthiness

In order to compose a good student essay, it’s vital to use your knowledge, wit, and ingenuity. It is important to show that you are comprehensively developed, interested in many things, and willing to learn. Write about your hobbies and achievements in this area and your future goals. You can also add life stories that taught you something or meant a lot to you. Why not talk about something or someone that inspires you? For example, some historical figure, a character in a book, or a movie hero who changed your outlook on life. Or, for instance, a quote that brings new colors to your perception of the world. All this will help you to open up as a person on the scale of the paper, which will allow the admission committee members to get to know you better and appreciate your candidacy. Remember that the style of your essay should be informal but not too familiar. Try to keep your writing upbeat, but spice it up with a dose of respect.

Group Related Ideas

Another important tip is to group your ideas together. This is known as thematic structuring. It can help anyone read your paper and get a hold of the message in each paragraph. Since there is coherence, it is easy for the reader to comprehend your content from the introduction to the conclusion.

Use Subheadings

Imagine this content was written without any subheadings; you would have given up before you were halfway through. The purpose of subheadings is to retain the reader’s attention. Rather than being discouraged because of how clumsy your piece looks, subheadings can be the signposts for your important points.

Subheadings help to streamline your points to the signpost and help readers easily navigate through the content.

Pay Attention to Submission Requirements

Submission requirements are the real test for most colleges. Since they are not doing any interviews, they can check if you followed their submission requirement or otherwise.

It is not enough to write the best content without following the proper submission requirements. There are important details to consider when drafting a college paper or writing any academic piece. Things you may want to look out for include:

  • Word count,
  • Double-spacing,
  • Alignment type and formatting guidelines
  • Number of paragraphs

Paying attention to the submission requirements is highly important.

Write Several Drafts

For your college application essay, always write multiple drafts. Begin with your main ideas in the first draft. Then, refine and improve in the next ones. This helps in making sure your final piece is clear, polished, and impactful. Remember, practice makes perfect!

Ask Someone to Read it Over

After writing several drafts, be sure to proofread and ask someone else to read it, and check for errors or inconsistencies before sending your college application package. Give due attention to text editing. Check the text for all sorts of spelling, punctuation, lexical, and stylistic errors.

Wrapping Up

When working on your college application process, you must submit either a personal statement or a college admission essay. This guide helps you write a well-formatted general college essay to complete your online application form. Remember: the main point of an admission essay is to convince the admission committee.

Now that you are aware of the format to incorporate in your essay writing process, you can start early so you can have enough time to double-check your whole essay before submission. Students who use our admission writing services must complete essay prompts at this crucial stage to being admitted to the colleges of their choice. We wish everyone success in entering college and are ready to help all applicants stuck in writing an application essay.

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