Your college essay is your opportunity to personalize your application and make yourself stand out from the other applicants.
Select your topic for the essay from the choices of prompts listed here, or use one from an application you obtain during the summer when you visit colleges. This assignment should be practical. Therefore, if you know a specific topic on an application for a college to which you are applying, feel free to use that topic. At the top of the essay, type the topic you have chosen from our list or from your application. The teacher needs to see the prompt to which you are responding, so she can evaluate how well you are addressing it. These essay prompts listed here have appeared on the common application and on applications from individual colleges. The essay you write in the summer may be adjusted and revised to fit other similar topics.
2017-2018 Common Application Essay Prompts (Some New and Some Revised) from 2016-2017
1. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story. [No change]
2. The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? [Revised]
3. Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome? [Revised]
4. Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution. [No change]
5. Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others. [Revised]
6. Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more? [New]
7. Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you've already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design. [New]
VERY IMPORTANT!!! - The essay will demonstrate to the admissions staff your ability to organize your thoughts and express yourself. It presents you in a way different from the way courses, grades, test scores, and other objective data can. You must proofread carefully and revise the essay very well. A well-written essay may make a major difference in your being accepted and possibly receiving scholarships. Careless errors will make a poor impression, may cost you admission, and may eliminate a chance for a scholarship. A weak essay will jeopardize your grade in English for the first semester.
2.) PERSONAL RESUME:
Create a personal resume in Family Connection. Provide information through junior year. If you know what your senior activities (clubs, offices, sports, employment, volunteer work, etc.) will be, include that information also.
3.) REFLECTION PARAGRAPH:
Describe in a reflective paragraph (150-200 words) which of the activities or awards holds the most meaning for you. THIS REFLECTIVE PARAGRAPH IS WORTH 25 POINTS.