How Long Should a College Essay Be? College Essay Word Limit
The 2019-20 version of the Common Application has an essay length limit of 650 words and a minimum length of 250 words. This limit has remained unchanged for the past several years. Learn how important this word limit is and how to make the most of your 650 words.
A former college admissions officer who has read more than 3,000 essays for each admission cycle, emphasizes that students should consider quality rather than quantity when preparing an essay for college. The big picture here is to tell your own story as clearly and concisely as possible. Gaps in any direction were immediately noticed – although spelling 250 words when it fits 650, or 2-3 pages when one page is requested, may give a bad first impression. But the difference between 290 words and 314 words, or 515 words and 623 words, will go completely unnoticed. However, admissions officers notice the clarity of your thoughts and the efficiency with which you convey your ideas. If your message was correctly spoken in 250 words, but the maximum was 300, so you added 50 words of fluff, these 50 words weaken the strength of your message.
How Strict Is the College Essay Word Limit?
Many people wonder if they can go beyond, at least with just a few words. What if you feel you need more space to convey all your ideas? 650 words is not a lot of space in which to convey your personality, passions, and writing ability to the people in admissions offices—and the title and any explanatory notes are also included in this limit. The holistic enrollment process in most schools proves that colleges want to know the person behind your results and grades. Since the essay is one of the best places to demonstrate who you are, is it worth reviewing? Most experts recommend adhering to the word limit. The Common Application will even prompt its applicants if they exceed the word count to prevent them from going over. Most admissions officers have stated that, while they will read all essays in their entirety, they are less inclined to feel that essays over 650 accomplish what they set out to do. In short: any of the prompts can and should be answered in 650 words or fewer.
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Choosing the Right Length of Your College Essay
As it has already been mentioned, college essays should count up to 650 words maximum. As for the minimum, it is 250 words. In some educational establishments, they recommend making essays as short as possible because admissions officers are overloaded with papers. They will appreciate it if you write 250-300 words instead of 650 if you’re able to express all the ideas to the fullest extent. But take into account that it is not everywhere.
While some college admissions consider shorter essays more valuable, others think that it is not enough to demonstrate your personality. The main aim of a college essay writing is to get acquainted with the student’s dreams, interests, etc. The task is to prove college admissions that you deserve a chance to get an education in their college. Due to the high competition, it may be difficult to accomplish this task by writing 250 words.
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There are no doubts that college admissions experts will be glad to read a well-structured story of 500-600 words. It is exactly the length that allows both to meet the requirements and to tell why college admissions should consider choosing you among hundreds of other students.
Because college admissions officers have a practiced eye, they can usually tell whether you’re being personal and true to yourself or merely rewriting themes and ideas from essays for other schools. Although you, of course, can read sample essays to understand how they should be written, you will want to highlight your own unique style, points of view, and achievements. Remember to use proper grammar and appropriate language that is centered around the purpose of the essay, while maintaining a conversational tone. When you stay original and personal, you’re more likely to stand out and impress an admissions officer, whether your essay is on the short or long side.
Now you know why, when you go to college, you need to write an essay within certain limits. Want to make a good impression and get a scholarship? You should not feel stressed. Just tell a unique story about yourself. A well-written application opens up a ton of great opportunities. Therefore, you are advised to check the quality college essay samples for you to create a powerful document. In addition, you can subscribe to an insider blog to read posts from candidates who share their valuable essay writing experience. If it is difficult for you to create reliable paper yourself, you can always contact the experts and they will help you help.
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