How to Write a Personal Statement

Writing your UCAS personal statement is not an easy task. It is your opportunity to stand out from other applicants, offering a vital, personal touch to your application. You are aiming to give the admissions tutor a picture of the type of person you are, your passions, what you will bring to the course, and what you are hoping to personally gain from the course. And all that within a strict character limit.

You should detail your achievements so far, your interests and the motivations for your choice of course and career. It is also your opportunity to show your enthusiasm and passion for the course that you have chosen to apply for.

You only get 4000 characters so plan what you want to say and how you are going to say it. Make your statement structured, positive and easy to follow. Using headings can aid readability. Get someone else to read it through for you before you submit and make sure you have checked it for spelling and grammar mistakes.

You should detail your achievements so far, your interests and the motivations for your choice of course and career. It is also your opportunity to show your enthusiasm and passion for the course that you have chosen to apply for.

  • Show how your interest in your subject has developed and what are your ultimate goals.
  • Be enthusiastic about your chosen course and show how you have researched the area.
  • Explain why the courses you have chosen are the best options for you.
  • Mention any job, placement, work or voluntary experience you have and what you gained from it. In particular mention relevant experience, skills, motivation, insight and knowledge.
  • Include details of any non-accredited skills and achievements that you have gained through activities such as Duke of Edinburgh, volunteering, etc.
  • Indicate those areas of school life that you find particularly interesting.
  • Mention the qualities you can bring to the course and to the university or college.
  • Outline your social, sports or leisure interests.
  • Wherever possible use real examples of how your personal qualities have come to the fore.
  • If you have applied for sponsorship, mention it here.
  • If you are planning a year out, explain how this will benefit you and your future studies.