PERSONAL STATEMENT

I am enthralled by analysing problems and reaching a conclusion; and so I have chosen my University course to be Accounting. For quite some time now I have wanted to enter this field, as it requires a multiplicity of skills including a high level of reasoning and logic. I believe that I would be suitable for this course as I encompass all of these skills. This course is going to assist in elevating me, into the world of financial accounting. I would like to move into a possible career as a professional accountant as I believe doing this course with a scientific background like mine would aid me to be a success, as years of science and empirical knowledge have moulded me into a determined, persistent and an extremely hard working student.

– Words like ‘enthralled’ are unnecessarily over-the-top.
– We know you have chosen accounting, so rephrase that first sentence to something more specific about accounting; analysing and solving problems applies to most degree courses.
– Admissions tutors do not like vague statements such as ‘For quite some time now I have wanted to enter this field’ – instead use your personal reason for wanting to study the degree, such as a current news story, personal trigger or how it relates to society.
– It is not clear why a scientific background would help with accounting.
– Do not make claims such as ‘I encompass all of these skills’, instead demonstrate them throughout your statement.
– You repeat that you want to become an accountant.
– Watch out for overly long sentences – the last one in this paragraph (beginning ‘I would like to move into a possible career…’) is far too long.

When I undertook work experience at the Central Claims Group, I worked alongside the company accountant when running the books and also on keeping tabs on company income, expenditure and profit. I also dealt with customers, who were keen to receive a substantial amount of compensation. I came to realise that if I kept a cool head and analysed the situation I would often get more success with clientele and I would be less likely to make a mistake in the running of the account balancing.

– Mentioning relevant work experience in your personal statement is good but add in more detail about how this will help the academic study of accounting.
– Talk about what you learnt whilst on placement with regards to ‘company income, expenditure and profit’ rather than customer service.
– You imply that you found the work experience stressful, and that you needed to keep a cool head; you should rephrase this.
– Also, do not mention the likelihood of you making mistakes! Instead talk about the importance of accuracy.
– This is the only relevant experience related to accounting in the entire statement, so you need to expand on it.

I am currently studying Biology which has made me think with an open mind when confronted with facts and figures. I am also studying A-Level Chemistry which will aid me in mathematical and complex areas of the accounting degree. The third A-Level I am studying is Theology and Philosophy which will assist me in comparing and contrasting numerous logical outcomes; facilitating me to choose the most suitable one. I have gained various skills such as problem solving in Chemistry, to analytical skills in Theology and Philosophy, and reasoning skills.

– We already know from your UCAS form which subjects you are studying, so if you are going to mention them and link them to skills you are gaining, you have got to make sure it is highly relevant to your chosen degree, not just generic skills, eg why, for example, will the facts and figures encountered in a Biology A-Level be helpful for studying accounting?

Attending the Pure Potential programme at Manchester University gave me detailed interview skills which are greatly significant. I have also been participating in the Manchester Access Programme held by Manchester University, which has given me a preview of University life, teaching me how to use extensive sources such as University libraries when acquiring background knowledge on the academic essay MAP assigned me to complete. Having helped out with college open days and also attending the philosophical debate club regularly I am an active member of Holy Cross College. I am also part of a group of 20 students who are going to go to Morocco in the summer of 2009 as part of a post college trip organised by the biology department. In my free time, I have a part time job in a call centre from which I have learnt vital communications skills and also taught me to balance a part time job with AS and A-Level studies. I have also been attending karate classes for over 10 years and as a result achieved a black belt 3rd Dan and the status of a sensei which is basically an instructor. Having been a member of St John’s Ambulance for over decade I have completed an impressive 100 hours of voluntary work on various duties including football matches, carnivals and parades. Because of my long term commitment I have been given the title of Cadet Sergeant and am a respected and valued constituent.

– This paragraph is too long, you should split it into two, one on experiences relating to university life, and one on non-relevant extra-curricular activities.
– You are trying to cram too much in, it reads like a check list instead of prose.
– Remove ‘sensei which is basically an instructor’ and replace with just ‘sensei’.
– The word ‘impressive’ sounds boastful, let the figure of 100 speak for itself.

Overall I believe I have the aptitude and drive to pursue a degree in accounting and an eagerness to further my knowledge and understanding on the subject I have a great affinity for. I would be delighted if I were able to continue to study this discipline at your prestigious institution.

– Be careful about using phrases like ‘your prestigious institution’ – the universities know that you have applied to five and that consequently you are unable to make a tailored application to each one.

This personal statement has some good aspects but needs work; to improve it you need to dedicate much more of it to your chosen degree course, and much less on your extra-curricular studies. Including any recent developments in the world of accounting, a demonstration of commercial awareness or how accounting relates to current affairs would be impressive. Also, you could make your language a bit tighter, less floral and avoid very long sentences.

The financial market is one of the most influential in the world today and of great importance for both the international success and competitiveness of the UK and for the continued success of the financial services sector as a major UK export. I have sustained a keen interest in finance since an early age and this has been developed and strengthened by my study of mathematics and economics. My ambition to become a Chartered Accountant in the future was further strengthened after recently attending an open day at Pricewaterhouse Coopers, at which I was given an insight into the accounting profession and the various areas of accountancy. Additionally, my work experience placement at HSBC working in a variety of departments has given me an experience of the financial world and how it functions. Studying economics has further developed my enthusiasm to study accounting and finance at degree level.

– This introduction is too long and includes lots of things in not enough detail, it is better to pick one or two things, and expand on others later in the statement.
– The first sentence is merely a factual statement, and you do not demonstrate your understanding of it – admissions tutors do not want to see their subject described, they want to see your understanding of it.
– Admissions tutors do not like vague phrases such as ‘since an early age…’
– You mention that you study economics currently twice.
– The first sentence should read ‘The UK financial market…” being specific is important, don’t lose your reader straight away by not being clear!

– You should not be squeezing your two highly relevant and excellent work experiences here in your introduction.

In economics, I particularly enjoy analysing and evaluating the successes, failures and consequences of various macro-economic policies. The other subjects that I study at A2 level are Maths, History and Biology. History like Economics has refined my ability to research a topic, select key information and use it to make focused evaluations. The study of Mathematics and Biology have improved my research and number skills and presented me with the kind of problem solving challenges I enjoy.

– Admissions tutors already know what you are studying because they can see your UCAS form, so listing them is a waste of precious space.
– Give an example, preferably outside the curriculum, of a failure and consequence of macro-economic policy.
– Don’t forget that all your competitors for a university place will be studying A-Levels or equivalent, so have a think about how you are going to make your current studies stand out – linking them to your chosen degree more specifically is a good way to do this.

Additionally I am participating in the Young Enterprise group, which is running at college this year. These achievements demonstrate my motivation and commitment to study.

– Seeing as you have chosen Accounting & Finance as a degree, you should be expanding on the Young Enterprise much more and linking this to your course; perhaps your current studies of economics have helped you refine the business plan? This should have an entire paragraph dedicated to it.

Outside of academic life I participate in and enjoy a range of sporting activities. Football and Cricket has helped me develop my commitment to teams and my fitness programme leading to ‘The Race for Life’ raising money for Cancer Research has helped me to persevere and succeed in a challenge. As a member of St John Ambulance, I completed the ‘Young Lifesaver Plus’ award, attended public events on a volunteer basis such as the Bristol Half Marathon and also gave time to organising and leading events as a cadet corporal. Furthermore, I was also  named ‘Cadet of the Year’ at my division. Again I need to have good communication skills and show emotional intelligence when dealing with a variety of people and situations. As deputy head girl at my secondary school I was able to not only hold a position of responsibility but also debate matters with peers and take issues to staff and governors. I have part-time employment in a retail store where I have been able to improve my communication skills acquiring knowledge of customer service and the retail business; through experiences such as accounts targets and the importance of individual performances to the company. Furthermore, I am currently working towards my standard level award within the company.

– It is far better to discuss your activities and let this be evidence of your skills and attributes than to tag ‘and this shows my XXX skills’ after each one.
– Avoid repetition, one example that demonstrates a specific skill is fine. Space is tight in a personal statement, repeating that you have strong communication skills is not the best use of this space. Instead try to use different examples to demonstrate as many different skills as possible. Again, try and then go on to link these skills back to why they will be useful on the course/as a university student.
– There is far too much detail on your extra-curricular activities, it would be better to expand on the work experience you briefly mention in your introduction.

My interests outside of college have enabled me to work well on my own initiative and as part of a team. They have also aided my organisational and time management skills. I am mature, confident and self-motivated, all qualities that I believe are critical to a successful university experience. I relish the opportunity to study accounting and finance to degree level and hopefully beyond.

– This sounds like a check-list of skills! The first two sentences are superfluous and should be removed.

Overall this statement shows promise but the contents needs to be prioritised. The focus should be on the degree course, so expanding on the excellent work experience opportunities you have been lucky enough to have would greatly improve it. The evidence is there, it just needs to presented differently! You should also demonstrate more clearly that you understand what the course entails.

I consider Financial Management (including accountancy) to be a very fulfilling and rewarding career. The ability to assist businesses in maximising their income and profits as well as stream lining the business processes appeals to me. A week of work experience helped confirm this, and also reinforced my desire to pursue a career in Finance. I was not only able to observe the work in the office, but also to assist, in albeit a minor way. Although I enjoy all my subjects, I particularly enjoy mathematics, and am looking forward to learning in detail how mathematic related areas can help in life. It will undoubtedly help in my chosen career. I participate actively in class discussions, voice my opinion when necessary and am comfortable with raising issues with my teachers on topics that I am unclear about.

– This paragraph has far too much information in not enough detail, it is much better to choose one or two strong reasons to want to study a subject than try and cram lots in the introduction.
– Admissions tutors want to see a focus on the academic study of their subject, not so much your chosen career.
– It would be better to discuss work experience later in the statement, and include far more detail – it is not clear what you did, who you worked for or why it was relevant to your chosen degree.
– The phrase ‘how mathematic related areas can help in life’ is very vague.
– The final sentence does not belong in the introduction!

The ability to interact with people of all ages is an important skill. My part-time job as a shop assistant, as well as my role as a Year 8 form assistant helped me to enhance this skill, especially when dealing with people in unfamiliar situations. I am generally very approachable and have found this has helped me to work well with all age groups. I enjoy Gymnastics and have qualified as an Assistant Gymnastics coach. I have also received the Community Sports Leadership Award. These allow me to regularly coach young children and organise sports activities at school. This gives me a great sense of achievement. Both awards helped to build on my confidence, leadership qualities and communication skills. To help give me a basic introduction to the finance area, I participated in the Young Enterprise Award. Within the award, I was given the role of financial manager and here I had to deal with shares, methods to maximise profit and manage the accounts. The activity helped to influence my career choice. I have received the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze and Silver Awards. The activities involved helped to build and enhance my teamwork and organisation skills. As part of the activity I volunteered weekly at a Brownies club, which I enjoyed thoroughly and this helped further improve communication skills.

– Of all of these extra-curricular activities, participating in the Young Enterprise Award is clearly the most relevant to your proposed degree therefore this should be given more emphasis and more detail in it’s own dedicated paragraph
– You should not discuss anything not directly related to your degree course until the penultimate paragraph.
– Why is working with people of all ages relevant to the degree of Accounting and Finance?

I enjoy meeting and interacting with people of all ages, which is not only important in a career, but also vital in a university environment. I have enjoyed taking part in dance productions and feel that I can work well as part of a team. I particularly enjoyed dancing in formation in the Regional Latin American Championships, in Blackpool Tower. Dancing along with gymnastics is a passion, and I hope to continue with these at university, I am at ease when working with computers. Computers considerably enhance the running of all businesses. I relax by listening to music, reading and exercising. As well as participating in gymnastics and dance, I also run regularly, as I believe it is important to be challenged both physically and mentally.

– There is far, far too much emphasis on your extra-curricular activities and nowhere near enough on your dedication to, and passion for, Accounting and Finance.
– Go into further detail about how ‘Computers considerably enhance the running of all businesses’ and discuss this in specific detail academically because this sentence is very vague.

I am very committed to succeeding at a career in the finance area and I am determined to attain the grades necessary for entry into business school. I am also thoroughly looking forward to an exciting, challenging and successful time at university!

– It should go without saying that you hope to get the grades, and by mentioning this you call into question your ability to get them.
– Do not use exclamation marks in your personal statement, it is a formal document.

Overall, there are some good aspects of this personal statement but you need to focus a lot more on Accounting and Finance; we recommend that at least 2/3 of the statement should be about your proposed subject, while the remaining 1/3 is reserved for extra-curricular activities. Perhaps you could talk about potential modules that you will study whilst at university and highlight any preparatory reading that you done. What recent developments in the world of finance and accounting that are particularly relevant or interesting?

Throughout my life I have constantly changed my goals and aims to try to find the perfect match for my personality. It was only recently, after going on a work experience placement, and taking part in the Young Enterprise scheme that I have finally found that match. It is from these important experiences that I have learnt that I really enjoy the challenges which business and more specifically, finance and accounting present.

– This opening paragraph makes you sound fickle; the admission tutor would be concerned that you would change your mind again.
– This paragraph should be focussed on why you want to study the subject specifically, not how recently you decided; we suggest deleting it completely and starting again.

My most engaging subject at A-Level has been economics because of how extensively economic laws and concepts apply in the real world and especially in industry. For example, recently, there was a lot of talk on America’s trade deficit with China which culminated in Hu Jintao’s visit to the United States. This story was significant for me as I am very interested in the current rapid growth of the Chinese economy and the effects this is having with its trading partners. This is because I believe China is becoming the most important economic power in the world.

– You do not really demonstrate that you understand this news story fully. Why did Hu Jintao visit the US and what was the outcome? Why was the story significant for you personally? What effects does China’s rapid growth has on its trading partners? What evidence is there that China is becoming the most important superpower, and what impact might this have on the world?

In July I organised a work experience placement with Chevron – a large American oil company. My placement was in the credit department which deals with clients who purchase large quantities of oil directly from the company. This experience was so important to me because I was able to see in person how large companies deal with their clients from a financial perspective. Following on from this, I have taken on two more placements at the same company in the ICT department and the BRES (Business and Real Estate Services) department. I decided that by working in multiple areas in the same large corporation, not only could I see the different aspects of a working company, but I could also see the links between each department and how they work together. Last summer, I was able to earn money by tutoring fellow classmates in maths and ICT. This helped them to achieve better grades than predicted and helped me to learn that organisation is even more important when others are dependent on you.

– How does a large company deal with clients from ‘a financial perspective’? You need to make it clear you understand what you are saying by explaining what you mean.
– Similarly, how do each department work together? How does this relate to your chosen degree?
– Your work helping fellow classmates is not related to work experience and therefore shouldn’t be in this paragraph.

I took part in the Young Enterprise scheme in which I was able to perform a varying range of roles from ICT to finance. It was here when I really started to take my interest in business further, and began to read up on the legal side of corporate accounting which helped me to keep on top of the company’s financial situation and to record transactions in the most efficient manner. After completing the Young Enterprise scheme, I decided to take my interest in the legal ramifications of business further, by reading the ‘Companies House’ website, and other websites such as ‘HM Revenue and Customs’ and ‘businesslink.gov’.

– Explain what you read up about that you then directly used for your Young Enterprise company, and don’t be afraid of using accounting jargon.
– What did you discover on these websites, and how does this relate to your chosen degree?

In order to satisfy my urge to organise and take on challenges, I have worked extensively as a member of the audio visual team at school. This has enabled me to be creative as I have had to design sound systems which both work, and meet the specifications of the director. I also had the opportunity to take on the senior role of Deputy Stage Manager for a school play for which I had to liaise between the director, the cast and the crew as well as fix any problems which arose. Recently I decided to take this hobby further and benefit the community at the same time by joining the hospital radio station at Northwick Park Hospital. As well as forcing me to improve my communication skills and charisma, I have also had to address my time management in order to allocate enough time to both the hospital, my academic work and other activities. I also enjoy playing tennis and badminton regularly with friends and I am constantly trying to improve my technique so that eventually I will be able to play in competitions.

-The first sentence in this paragraph reads very strangely!
– This paragraph shows that you have done a lot of things outside the classroom, which is good, but it is not a conclusion in itself. You need to add a separate conclusion to round off your statement.

Overall this statement needs work to prove that you have thoroughly researched the course, and you need to link the excellent work experience you have done to your degree – currently the links are tenuous at best!

1 Corinthians 12:9: to another the gifts of healing by that one Spirit. This biblical quote was read to me when I was 13 and I knew that my future lay with caring for others. I believed it was my chance to have an ethical profession I could be proud of. I looked into several different options including medicine, however while on Medlink I discovered that nursing offered more personal interaction with the patients.

– Starting your personal statement with a quote is only acceptable if you go on to explain why you have used it, however in this case it is not a convincing reason for choosing the degree course.
– You could expand on this and discuss why nurses play such an important role in patient care.
– Expand on your experiences at Medlink in a different paragraph, don’;t try to squeeze it into your introduction. Was it a conference that you attended? What was it on? Go into further detail on why you chose nursing over medicine.

I have spoken to several qualified nurses and students who have given me a wealth of information on the subject. One student’s experiences of working with patients who have renal failure and with patients in post-op care sounded intriguing.

– There is not nearly enough detail given here! What sort of care was required? Why was it intriguing?

I am interested in surgery, which has stemmed from an early memory of having an operation on my neck. I had to stay overnight and come back to have the stitches taken out. Since then medical programmes on television that involve surgery have fascinated me. One that was remarkable involved a liver transplant, another one I remember clearly was the removal of a brain tumour; the balance between life and death is a humbling thing. However neither of these compares to seeing live surgery from a lecture hall at Nottingham teaching hospital; I was able to ask the surgeon questions as he preformed surgery on a woman’s spine to alleviate the pressure on her vertebra which was causing sciatica.

– Try not to use television programmes or early memories as evidence of your interest, or at least galvanize these with further academic research.
– The second half of this paragraph is much more impressive; you have demonstrated initiative in exploring your proposed subject by undertaking work experience, however you should link it directly to nursing. What sort of after-care would these patients require? How would one patient’s care differ from another?

Over several years I have volunteered at a Level one sheltered housing complex for the elderly. This involves helping at social functions such as afternoon teas and coffee mornings; I do small tasks as well as chatting to residents. Some of the residents lack family contact and enjoy being able to have a conversation with a younger person. I have also helped the manager with paperwork.

– Link this experience to nursing. How could chatting to elderly residents be useful? What skills did you pick up? Did it make you more aware of sensitivities that nurses face?

I sometimes baby-sit for young children ranging between 4 months and 4 years. This is a responsible job which I enjoy as it is always varied. For two weeks I did work experience in an office doing chores including filing and sorting mail. I can see how necessary correct documentation is, as all files will need to be checked if a problem arises, this is not unlike keeping hold of patient records so that they can be checked effortlessly.

– Again, link the baby-sitting experience to nursing.
– You have linked the importance of accurate filing to nursing which is good.

I love to be challenged; this can be seen in my current part-time job. I applied to Sainsbury’s and was given the job of working on the meat counter. As a vegetarian this is one of the worst jobs, however I do not like to give up and took it on with a relish. I do not regret my decision as I have made many good friends and love the interaction with customers. I am now referred to as ‘The Vegetarian Butcher’ by both colleagues and customers. This means I cannot be squeamish, which will be useful in consideration to the things I may have to deal with as a nurse!

– Beware of using humour in your statement, many admissions tutors would rather this document was kept formal.
– This section is longer than it needs to be, reduce it to one or two sentences.

I have always enjoyed group participation. I belong to the Rangers; which do a number of different activities. I also have a passion for dancing; since I was six years old I have attended classes and taken exams in Latin American, Ballroom and disco. I danced competitively which involved solo and team work, and I have helped young students at my dance school.

– Be careful of grammar and punctuation here.
– You will need to expand on what sort of activities the Rangers do.
– You have demonstrated dedicated and commitment through your dancing, which is good.

I attend prayer meetings daily and Christian Union at school. I have taken part in a programme designed to get young people into science called S.P.L.A.T.S. This involves sixth formers teaching science to middle school aged children through practical experiments. I underwent two days of training before taking on the role of teacher. Although it was hard work I found it both fun and satisfying seeing the children’s delight at some of the things they managed to achieve.

– How did teaching sciences to younger years help your understanding?
– How did this experience help you with your career goal?
– This is a weak and rather abrupt ending to the personal statement as it does not focus closely enough on the proposed course of adult nursing.

Overall, the statement is quite good as it demonstrates that you have the right skills to succeed in this line of work, but more links back to the chosen field would improve it significantly. You clearly researched the proposed subject through undertaking several work experience placements, and extra-curricular activities prove your resilience. You could also focus more clearly on demonstrating a wide knowledge of the issues affecting a job in adult nursing; reading about contemporary ethical issues could be very impressive to the admissions tutor. 

1 Corinthians 12:9: to another the gifts of healing by that one Spirit. This biblical quote was read to me when I was 13 and I knew that my future lay with caring for others. I believed it was my chance to have an ethical profession I could be proud of. I looked into several different options including medicine, however while on Medlink I discovered that nursing offered more personal interaction with the patients.

– Starting your personal statement with a quote is fine as long as you explain why it has inspired you, but it is not clear.
– Your second sentence doesn’t quite work; it implies you were given a chance to choose career aged 13.
– It would be good if you could expand on your experiences at Medlink? What did you do and why do you prefer more personal interaction with patients?

I have spoken to several qualified nurses and students who have given me a wealth of information on the subject. One student’s experiences of working with patients who have renal failure and with patients in post-op care sounded intriguing.

– Why was it intriguing? What did they tell you? This paragraph is too short.

I am interested in surgery, which has stemmed from an early memory of having an operation on my neck. I had to stay overnight and come back to have the stitches taken out. Since then medical programmes on television that involve surgery have fascinated me. One that was remarkable involved a liver transplant, another one I remember clearly was the removal of a brain tumour; the balance between life and death is a humbling thing. However neither of these compares to seeing live surgery from a lecture hall at Nottingham teaching hospital; I was able to ask the surgeon questions as he performed surgery on a woman’s spine to alleviate the pressure on her vertebra which was causing sciatica.

– You are cramming a lot into one paragraph! You could go into more detail about your own operation; have you since read up on the medical procedure you had?
– TV is generally considered weak evidence of your passion for the subject, but if you have seen documentaries then mention their names here, and go into detail about what you watched rather than the brief mentions you have provided.
– You should expand your experience at Nottingham considerably; what questions did you ask the surgeon? What did you learn about medical procedures generally, and sciatica specifically? Consider dedicating an entire paragraph to this highly relevant procedure! What role did the doctor play, and what role did the nurse play? Why are both roles essential?

Over several years I have volunteered at a Level one sheltered housing complex for the elderly. This involves helping at social functions such as afternoon teas and coffee mornings; I do small tasks as well as chatting to residents. Some of the residents lack family contact and enjoy being able to have a conversation with a younger person. I have also helped the manager with paperwork.

– This is highly relevant experience! Talk about the importance of patient / carer relationships, what you learnt about developing rapport, patient confidentiality, any difficult situations that arose etc.

I sometimes baby-sit for young children ranging between 4 months and 4 years. This is a responsible job which I enjoy as it is always varied. For two weeks I did work experience in an office doing chores including filing and sorting mail. I can see how necessary correct documentation is, as all files will need to be checked if a problem arises, this is not unlike keeping hold of patient records so that they can be checked effortlessly.

– Do not put your baby-sitting experiences with your office work, discuss this in a separate paragraph about patient records and accuracy.

– Consider combining the volunteering at the elderly home with the baby-sitting; compare working with the elderly to working with babies and toddlers. What skills are required for each audience? What challenges did you face?

I love to be challenged; this can be seen in my current part-time job. I applied to Sainsbury’s and was given the job of working on the meat counter. As a vegetarian this is one of the worst jobs, however I do not like to give up and took it on with relish. I do not regret my decision as I have made many good friends and love the interaction with customers. I am now referred to as ‘The Vegetarian Butcher’ by both colleagues and customers. This means I cannot be squeamish, which will be useful in consideration to the things I may have to deal with as a nurse!

– Although this is an interesting anecdote, it is not quite right for a personal statement. Try rephrasing it, and talking about it in a more serious way to demonstrate your determination and commitment.

I have always enjoyed group participation. I belong to the Rangers; which do a number of different activities. I also have a passion for dancing; since I was six years old I have attended classes and taken exams in Latin American, Ballroom and disco. I danced competitively which involved solo and team work, and I have helped young students at my dance school.

– Be clear what the Rangers are, and explain briefly what activities you take part in

I attend prayer meetings daily and Christian Union at school. I have taken part in a programme designed to get young people into science called S.P.L.A.T.S. This involves sixth formers teaching science to middle school aged children through practical experiments. I underwent two days of training before taking on the role of teacher. Although it was hard work I found it both fun and satisfying seeing the children’s delight at some of the things they managed to achieve.

– This is a weak ending to the personal statement as it does not focus closely enough on the proposed course of adult nursing.
– Combine the two paragraphs above and add a completely separate conclusion.

Overall, the statement is a good start as it demonstrates that you have the right skills to succeed in this line of work. You have clearly researched the proposed subject through undertaking several work experience placements, and extra-curricular activities prove your resilience. To improve it, you could focus more clearly on demonstrating a wide knowledge of the issues affecting a job in adult nursing; reading about contemporary ethical issues could be very impressive to the admissions tutor.

The exploration into ancient civilisations is a journey into a world unknown to most. Yet the ancient customs and achievements of these people have shaped the outline of humanity. Edgar Allan Poe once defined classical antiquity as “the glory that was Greece, the grandeur that was Rome!” Let’s not forget the Egyptians, whose advanced architectural structures and revolutionary methods of irrigation, created an empire that would be remembered for thousands of years.

– This is a good opening. It immediately captures the admissions tutor’s attention and demonstrates very well your enthusiasm for your proposed degree.
– Avoid using phrases like ‘let’s not forget’ – they are too informal and make the personal statement come across as too chatty. Forgetting the Egyptians, as one of the most famous of ancient cultures, is something that anyone is unlikely to do.
– If you are going to quote someone like Edgar Allan Poe, try to think a little more about what his purpose in saying this was. The nineteenth century’s obsession with all things Greek and Roman, especially the ideas of Empire and culture that are associated with these two ancient civilisations, clearly informed his opinion. Is there any difference between what people in the nineteenth century thought about ancient Greece and Rome, and what we think about them now? The first and second world wars had a huge impact on the way that the classical civilisations were thought of.

I want to study ancient history at university because I have been deeply fascinated by the subject for a number of years since hearing stories of Greek mythology at Primary school. The tales of the Minotaur in the labyrinth, Daedalus and his son Icarus flying too close the sun with their wax wings were just the door to a new world of discovery. The beliefs and cultures of these ancient people are a massive contrast to that of today’s society yet in some aspects we could be thought of as very similar.

– A weaker paragraph; try to avoid talking about your interests at primary school. The admissions tutors are interested in what you are like now, and not what you liked reading aged six. Talking about mythology from a child’s perspective is not very impressive and in no way related to your proposed university degree.

My sixth form does not currently offer Ancient History as part of the syllabus; however I have not let this deter me. For my work experience in year 12 I travelled down to Swansea University where I volunteered for a week at the distinguished Egypt Centre, which is based upon items from the collection of Sir Henry Wellcome. Here I learned about the two main aspects of Egyptian time; life and death. I was shown how to mummify a mummy and then perform this in front of the public, and taught ancient Egyptian games including my particular favourite, Senet.

– This paragraph is a lot better since it deals with recent experiences that are highly relevant to the  proposed degree course and demonstrate your interest in the subject outside of the school curriculum.
– To improve it, you should give a little more information about the collection at the Egypt Centre, and to discuss how these ancient artefacts could be used to gain a deeper understanding of the past. Studying ancient history is of course a very different discipline to studying more modern history because the source material is both scarce and particularly biased. Archaeological evidence is therefore a lot more relevant to the study of ancient history and sometimes can give us an idea about the life of ordinary humans that we wouldn’t otherwise get from the historical documents, since they are written by the rich and privileged.
– You should also make this paragraph a little more academic-sounding; whilst being able to mummify a mummy is of course interesting, it is not as relevant to a university degree and makes it sound a little bit like a school trip rather than an academic work experience placement.

I hope to re-visit the Egypt Centre over the forthcoming year as I gained invaluable knowledge and experience from my visit. As part of my sixth form life I feel it is important to be involved in external activities, for example I am entering the Duke of Edinburgh at Gold award. This will involve strenuous activities, determination and a constant amount of effort from my self. I hope this will increase my confidence, organisation skills and help me to meet a variety of new people. Another way I am trying to improve these skills is through my part-time job at Blacks; an outdoor shop which caters for outdoor enthusiasts. It has helped me to appreciate the money I earn and encourage me to use it wisely. Having a part time job has also helped to increase my personal skills and sharpen my memory.

As a year 12 student I enjoyed the opportunity of taking part in a reading scheme with younger students with learning disabilities. I found that playing an active role in various charity fundraising events greatly improved my communication skills, organisation and leadership qualities. These along with other hobbies require good time management and dedication on my part.

Undertaking a sign language course further developed my communication skills, to the extent that I am currently enrolled in a higher level course at the local college. As a volunteer for the British Red Cross, I thoroughly enjoy learning and practicing new skills and working with the public.

For two years I have been studying the shukokai style of karate at John Lynn’s black belt karate academy and I am currently on brown belt tabs. As well as learning self defence, I have learnt self-control, concentration, respect, courtesy and a number of other defining qualities.

– These last few paragraphs are well-written, but not directly relevant to the study of ancient history, and therefore too long. There should be more focus on the proposed university degree in this statement, and the extra-curricular paragraphs should be condensed into one.

A degree in Ancient History would open up many possibilities including staying on at university and applying for a postgraduate degree. After this I hope to pursue a career as a historian or a job where I can continue to explore and delve into the past and eventually become a lecturer in my chosen field. History may be a thing of the past but it is always defining our future.

– This is a good conclusion. Mentioning any career aspirations (especially if they are relevant to your proposed subject) can be extremely beneficial, since they demonstrate your long-term enthusiasm for the subject.

All in all, this is a good statement and your enthusiasm comes across very well. What needs to be improved on is the balance between extra-curricular achievement and proposed degree subject; at least 2/3 of the statement should be dedicated to ancient history.

It would be lovely to see more evidence of wider reading, and some more details about particular aspects of ancient history that you find interesting. Ancient history is not limited to the Greeks, Romans and Egyptians, and it is a shame that the student has chosen to focus on the most obvious parts of the course. Try to make your statement stand out by talking about, for example, Ancient Mesopotamia. It will demonstrate that you have researched the course content carefully and that you know what to expect at degree level.

Animal Behaviour is a subject I want to study because I find the natural world highly fascinating. I have been involved with animals for most of my life, having a range of pets at home. During my work experience, I originally aspired to be a vet, and worked in a Veterinary Practice and at a Hedgehog Rescue Centre. This gave me a good understanding of what measures are needed to care for them.

– This is a weak introduction; citing pets as your inspiration for studying a subject at degree level is not what admissions tutors are looking for.
– You have not made it clear why you changed your mind from aspiring to be a vet, so it’s not worth mentioning.
– You are vague and unclear about ‘what measures are needed’

I carried on Biology to AS-Level and found that I enjoyed the physical side of the subject, as it allows me to understand the anatomy of animal life. Biology limits the amount of study that focuses on animals, hence why I decided to choose Animal Behaviour, as it only revolves around them. Animals are a subject that younger people enjoy. I have developed this love as I have grown up and have also found a more scientific path connected to them.

– The admissions tutor knows what AS-Levels you are studying from the rest of your UCAS form so don’t waste precious space repeating this information.
– Go into detail about an aspect of animal anatomy that you found interesting, and talk about what you have learnt as a result.
– It is not a good idea to speak negatively about Biology as a subject, instead talk about what you have done outside the curriculum to further your interest.
– The phrase ‘animals are a subject that younger people enjoy’ is confusing, and makes you sound immature.
– Discuss this ‘scientific path’ you speak of in some detail, give examples.

For a part time job, I joined up with a dog kennels nearby, where I walked and cleaned the dogs, and sometimes, helped out in the cattery. Again, this helped me develop skills with animals, because I had a lot of interaction with them.

– This section is very vague, what skills did you develop? How will this be useful to the degree course? Did you notice anything different between the treatment (and behaviour) of dogs and animals from your work experience? Is there a specific species or genus of animals that you would like to look at in particular? Or that you find particularly fascinating?

I want to study Animal Behaviour because I would like to carry on my interest for animals, and become a professional within the subject. It would be fascinating to be in a job that will help me interact with them, and share my skills with the public.

– The placing of this paragraph is odd, it would be better as your conclusion.

My Duke of Edinburgh Award has taught me many skills. I have completed both my Bronze and Silver awards. It taught me to be a good leader, as after completing my Silver Award, I was also awarded the Ranger of the Year Award, for taking almost full control and successfully guiding my group to our destination. Also, I feel that this helped me to plan my time well and meet deadlines, as part of the award is to meet time limits. Problem solving is also a skill I gained from the experience, during the walk. In situations, where the group either couldn’t work out where to go, or could not decide among each other, I kept a calm tone and managed to discuss my reasoning in a mature manner. Obviously, this award means that teamwork is a major skill to learn. This shows that not only can I been an individual worker, but also can work in a team.

– The first two sentences of this paragraph are very short! Merge them into one that flows better.
– You should demonstrate you understand what makes a good leader and time planner, rather than simply state that you have these skills.
– This paragraph is very wordy and doesn’t flow well at all. Use the STAR method of describing what you did (Situation, Task, Action, Relevance).

I am a Young Leader with a Girl Guide unit in Middleton. I have been doing this for about 2 years and feel that I have become a good role model and someone to talk to. My job is to help the guide leader and organise events for each session. I have taken part in many charity events, such as concerts and fairs, and have also organised some fun events, all of which have been a major success. This shows that I can be consistent and dedicated at all times. I can come up with some ideas when placed on the spot, and can also develop on other people’s ideas.

– Like the previous paragraph, it is important to highlight the skills that you have picked up from extra-curricular roles, but the experience of working as a Young Leader could have been grouped with the Duke of Edinburgh section.
– It is far better to talk about skills you are developing rather than using statement such as ‘I feel that I have become…’ and ‘this shows I can be…’.
-Again, we suggest rewriting this section.

Bird watching is a hobby I have discovered myself. My house is situated in an area where I can see many birds, mainly Starlings and Sparrows, and study how they act. I enjoy watching BBC’s ‘Springwatch’ and ‘Autumnwatch’. I take in a lot of information from this and enjoy the variety of animal life involved. These programs actually helped me to discover what I desired to carry on in life, as it viewed some jobs that involved animals; therefore I decided to take Animal Behaviour.

– This extra-curricular activity is much more relevant to the degree and therefore should be moved further up the statement, before DofE
– Give us an example of animal behaviour that you have observed.

I will be successful with this course because I take enjoyment from the subject and wish to carry on my hobby to degree level. This would then make a future job much more enjoyable rather than just an occupation, which would be a good benefit. All my hobbies and relevant experience revolve around animals which have not only taught me a few things about the animal world, but have encouraged my interest in them. Animal Behaviour seems the perfect choice, because I think I will do well, and at the same time will be able to take enjoyment from my studies, helping me to learn with ease.

– You shouldn’t make statements such as ‘I will be successful…’
– Don’t refer to your academic degree choice as a hobby, it sounds trivial!
– We suggest deleting this entire paragraph and replacing it with the previous paragraph which is a better conclusion.
– Add something about how much you are looking forward to university life outside of academia.

Overall this is a weak statement that needs work. You have done plenty of things which can be used as evidence of your interest in the subject, but you don’t write about them in a way that really makes the reader understand why you are so interested in the subject. You need to show you understand what the course involves; at the moment the emphasis is more on a general fondness for animals rather than an interest in studying them. You should also reword the way you describe your non-academic achievements to sound more like a mature and independent student.

From an early age art has been part of my life, from drawing family Christmas cards and designing gardens to doodling on every piece of paper within reach. This is why Animation appeals to me as a career. I am fascinated at the amount of expression that can be put into a character that is created from human imagination, and has the capacity to stir an audience into laughter or tears at the merest movement.

– It would be better to include a more concrete early experience as your reason for wanting to study the subject.
– Change ‘career’ to ‘degree’.
– The last sentence is excellent.

My interest increased further after viewing an exhibition of work from computer animation students at The Russell Coates museum locally. I was amazed at the incredible effects they managed to achieve through using the computer packages, not only this but the wide variety of animation styles meant that each of the clips was individual to the creator. Since then I have been more and more aware of animation in the media and I really want to create my own.

– By going to a museum in your spare time to see a relevant exhibition you demonstrate genuine interest in your subject.

Currently I attend evening courses in life drawing at the Arts Institute in Bournemouth and will soon start another in animation. This will give me valuable experience and also complement my A level subjects. My A level studies involve creativity, initiative, technical understanding and adaptability. Unfortunately my AS grades in Physics and History are not what I and my teachers think I am capable of achieving so I will be retaking some unit exams.

– Mentioning your life drawing classes is excellent, try to link it to animation, what specific skills apply to both?
– Do not talk about any negative points in your personal statement. The admissions tutor will already know that you are retaking some units so don’t waste your characters talking about this. Focus on the positives!

Of all my subjects I feel Art has developed my skills the most. By researching and emulating styles of established artists I have been able to use their influence in my own work. Emphasis on evaluating what works and what does not has encouraged me to be more adventurous in the size and style of my art. Being a detailed worker, this has been invaluable in broadening my horizons and not being afraid to try something different. I plan to develop my skills further next year with an Art Foundation course.

– An excellent link between the skills gained from your current studies and how they will help at degree level.

Although being adventurous is important I think the very best results in any subject come from knowledge of technical aspects in order to use that as a basis for development. Studying product design has shown me that a number of issues have to be brought together to achieve something worthwhile, for example; material properties, manufacture methods, aesthetics and ergonomics combine to create a product that works. This has to be put into consideration with an understanding of the culture and beliefs of the user. Studying Modern History has linked with this; as well as encouraging me to make my own judgement on issues and factors which lead to a major event, it has made me aware of how the slightest action made by one person can affect so many different people.

– You have demonstrated the link between your current studies and your future studies well by talking about how subjects like product design, and even history, has shaped your understanding of design.

I spent my Year 10 work experience at Bournemouth University’s design department and used CAD programs to model my ideas for products. This was the first time I had combined creativity and computing and I loved it, especially manipulating small aspects of the design to make what I was drawing more personal. My part-time job as a cleaner may not be as much fun but has made me much more responsible and less dependent on my parents financially. This year I was also given a valuable opportunity to work as a designer for my headteacher updating the school map. Working as his client allowed me to be original and inventive for a real project.

– Your work experience at Bournemouth was highly relevant, and it should not be in the same paragraph as your cleaning job.
– You can combine the design of the school map with the Bournemouth experience because these are highly relevant to each other.
– For both of the relevant experiences it would be good to go into further detail about the software you used and the end result of your tasks.

A big part of my life outside school is archery. I am currently on the Olympic Development scheme for 2012 which involves daily training and frequent visits to Lilleshall National Sports Centre. Most of my weekends are spent travelling around the country to compete which requires dedication, commitment and hard work to fit in school work and other activities. So far it has paid off as I have represented my country as part of the Great Britain team in six events internationally. It has given me the most amazing experiences and allowed me to meet wonderful people from other nations and within the very supportive team. From being a naturally quiet person this experience has made me a more confident and aware individual.

– This is an excellent experience and you are right to include it and go into detail, however it could be a bit shorter, and it does not serve as a conclusion.
– Finish your personal statement with a strong closing sentence or two! Your summary will be the last thing the tutor will read so it needs to be punchy and concise.
– Be careful of saying ‘ a naturally quiet person’ because this infers you lack confidence, just focus on what a positive experience it has been.
– You should add the cleaning job to this paragraph, then add a conclusion in a separate paragraph consisting of 2 sentences.

Overall this is a very good, well-written statement that provides plenty of evidence for why you have chosen the subject, and you demonstrate a clear interest through activities and work experience outside of school.

I became enthralled by Anthropology and Archaeology as I gained a deeper insight into each discipline during an enrichment course studied alongside my AS Levels. I was drawn to unearth the subjects as thoroughly as possible, reading around the area, visiting museums, attending talks, studying countless documents in various media and undertaking additional study outside of college to complement my A-levels. I felt compelled this was the field I wanted to study at university. Although the majority of my conviction is for Anthropology, I am also very eager to delve thoroughly into its relationship with its material aspect, Archaeology.

– You to explain exactly what this ‘enrichment course’ was.
– Don’t state that the majority of your interest in in Anthropology!! When applying for combined honours you must treat each subject equally.
– You use rather over the top language, the admissions tutor would rather just see concrete evidence of what you’ve done, seen or read, rather than sentences like ‘I felt compelled this was the field I wanted to study at university’.
– Be specific about all the excellent activities you claim you have done; which museums, books, talks etc.

I believe that my A-level choices of English Literature, Modern History, Maths and Geology provide an excellent mix of strengths relevant to the degree. I will be able to write fluent, analytical essays while also demonstrating incisive logical reasoning and meticulous practical skills. I am also undertaking an Extended Project related to Cultural Anthropology, which has helped me prepare for the independent research proficiency required at university. My project is linked to a two-week expedition to Nepal which took place in August. I organised this trip independently and lived with Nepali people, toured Kathmandu, Chitwan, and the villages of the Himalayan foothills surrounding Pokhara and witnessed many displays of the colourful, distinct culture. In addition I have taken the initiative to undertake an Open University course: ‘Archaeology: The Science of Investigation’ which is developing my scientific techniques as well as allowing me to investigate sites across the world, deciphering long lost living environments and the significance drawn from the most humble artefacts. The level of learning is equivalent to that at the first stage of higher education study.

– You don’t need to state which subjects you are studying; the admissions tutor will see this from the rest of your UCAS form, and therefore it is a waste of precious word count.
– Beware of using your current studies as a reason for making you a suitable candidate; don’t forget that every single one of your competitors will be doing the same or similar qualifications!, so you won’t stand out!
– Your trip to Nepal is excellent experience; this should be the focus of this paragraph, adding as much relevant detail as possible that relates back to your degree course.

At A-level I have greatly valued the opportunity to explore topics such as the rise and fall of communism in History, and I was curious to learn about how this political system has succeeded and failed in very small and large societies. For example, isolated peoples such as those of the tiny island Anuta, which I studied for a short time during my Enrichment course, manage to share and equally contribute to the community whilst working in harmony with the environment. The study of poetry and novels such as Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart in English Literature helped me develop a sense of perspective regarding the effect of colonialism, for example on the Igbo people of Nigeria. My essays on other literary works have also all allowed me to scrutinize the human phenomena of class, gender, death and relationships. Geology is giving me the scientific basis which will be required at university and the extensive study on fossils this year is helping me research objects, and become comfortable with the terminology of biological classification.

– This paragraph is a far better explanation of how your current studies will help you at degree level than the previous section.
– You can improve this by adding a few texts you have read outside the curriculum as a result of being inspired in the classroom.

I am a member of the Royal Anthropological Institute and I enjoy having free access to Anthropology Today. I am proficient in IT which has been fundamental in my part-time job of one year as a customer service representative, where I deal diplomatically with a large variety of different people, problems and opinions. My interests outside of academia include athletics, travel and cooking. Last year I completed a course at the Cambridge Cookery School where as well as learning to cook dishes from alternate cultures, I learned about the health and ethical issues associated with food. The anthropology of food is also a rewarding topic I touched upon in my Extended Project and would like to revisit.

-Tell us a bit more about what you have read in Anthropology Today!
– Anything directly relevant to your chosen degree should not be in the same paragraph as your more general work experience and hobbies.
– Otherwise this is a good paragraph, brief but well-rounded, and with a final link back to one of your chosen subjects.

I believe that the degree is the perfect meeting point for my skills. I look forward to reading Archaeology and Anthropology in a most challenging and stimulating academic environment and then to advancing my knowledge through postgraduate research, and beyond that careers in media or authoring offer fulfilling possible career routes.

– This is a good conclusion – you have demonstrated how his or her skills are best suited to studying this degree, and given some indication as to what she or he would like to do after graduating.

Overall this is a good start at your personal statement, but needs tweaking before it can be submitted. Avoid long sentences and the repetition of words in the same sentence. As a subject that requires a great deal of essay writing, you will need to demonstrate your ability to write coherently and elegantly.

I have always been fascinated by the way in which people across the world live out their lives. I have often wondered why bigamy is acceptable in some places and forbidden in others, or why women are seen as leaders within certain cultures and are inferior in others. As an anthropologist, I would hope to gain knowledge of why and how our cultures mould us and why we differ on a global scale in terms of the rules we abide by. I have endeavoured to explore various aspects of the subject by reading relevant books such as “Introducing Anthropology” (M. Silvers) and “The Solomon Islands” (B. Burt).

– You shouldn’t say ‘I have always…’ in your personal statement; try to remember the trigger that got you interested.
– Otherwise this is a good introduction.

I completed work experience in a company that made and sold costumes with influences from many different cultures. At the time of work experience, a number of orders were being taken for the Notting Hill Carnival, which takes its influence from the Caribbean. I was asked to initiate ideas as part of a group for a headpiece for carnival, which required research and careful consideration for those wearing the piece. It was vital to keep the design in line with the Caribbean style and the high standard that the company expected, and when the task did not go to plan, it was up to the group as a whole to target the problem and provide a suitable solution. It was also beneficial for me to create a headpiece that was not at all associated with my own culture, and enabled me to implement ideas that were slightly unusual.

– The link between this work experience and anthropology in tenuous; if you are going to use this example try discussing what you discovered about Caribbean culture or history.

My A-level subjects this year have given me the skills I need to become a successful student of anthropology at university. Having studied English, I have gained the analytical skills needed to study anthropology, as well as the ability to put forward ideas and discuss them in depth. I have also learnt to accept other peoples’ ideas irrespective of my own, something vital when studying anthropology. Studying French has not only given me the ability to talk with other French-speaking people around the world, but has also given me an insight into French culture and how it differs from my own. This has been especially so when studying French literature and having discussions about politics, environmental issues and social issues such as drugs. Studying Biology has helped me to understand how our bodies function on a practical basis. As well as this, I have been introduced to some of the evolutionary theories that endeavour to explain our existence, helping me immensely in terms of the physical aspect of anthropology. Psychology, being a social science, has put demands on both my critical abilities and my awareness of the wider world in terms of social influence, abnormalities, human memory, attachment and stress. Studying Psychology has shed a new light onto the social and cultural factors affecting human behaviour, which is the key component upon which anthropology is based.

– Remember that all your competitors for this course will also have studied A-Levels (or equivalent) and therefore citing them as reasons for making you a successful student will not make you stand out.
– You should also talk about any skills as being in development, not that you have acquired them already.
– This paragraph is far too long and covers only what you learn in school. Pick a couple of relevant topics and talk about this has led you to investigate anthropology further, being sure to use examples from outside the school curriculum.

I believe that it is important to balance both academic learning and extra-curricular activities. I have been playing the violin for 6 years and am at a grade 7 standard. This has shown my commitment and determination to excel and also gives me a sense of achievement. I was a co-organiser of the school gospel choir for a year, which displays both my organisational skills and my ability to lead and be part of a team, as involvement of the whole choir was crucial. In addition, I was a volunteer at the North London Hospice charity shop in Golders Green. This was a valuable experience, as I learnt the importance of time management and communication skills, as well as the ability to use my initiative and take responsibility. Last year, I had the opportunity to help organise a charity fashion show helping to raise over £500 for Water-Aid on behalf of Envision. This encouraged me to use many skills including teamwork, time management and task supervision. I am an enthusiastic and dedicated student and feel that I would gain an immense amount whilst studying anthropology.

– Let the admissions tutor draw their own conclusions from your activiites, rather than tell them that this shows your commitment and determination. You have taken part in an impressive array of extra-curricular activities, which will speak for itself.
– You need to have a separate conclusion from the rest of the paragraph where you summarise the attributes that make you a suitable candidate and express enthusiasm for university life.

Overall this is a well-written statement that just needs a bit of tweaking and prioritising to make it excellent, with much more of a focus about what you have done and read outside of the classroom.

My passion for designing and making started when I was 8 years old. I was always very involved in making things out of paper and card. It felt very rewarding after finishing a long project that it made me want to feel that sense of accomplishment again and again. This I think steered me into studying Graphics at GCSE then Design & Tech at A level.

– Although it can be a good idea to include a personal trigger, it needs to be more specific than this.
– This is not a convincing reason to dedicate years of study to a subject such as architecture, in fact this same principle would apply to many degree disciplines.
– The admissions tutor will already know what you chose for GCSE and A-Level so it is pointless to repeat this information.
– Using the phrase ‘I think’ is not a good idea as it makes you come across as unsure.

I have chosen to do Architecture because it is very diverse and allows me to make my own mark. I believe it is all about what you personally make of it and I’m strongly motivated to excel. I am looking forward to studying the module on humanitarian architecture, and have recently read ‘Design Like You Give A Damn’ by Cameron Sinclair and Kate Stohr. I particularly enjoyed reading about a project in Kosovo that exhibited the power of design to improve lives.

– This is a formal document, use ‘I am’ not ‘I’m’.
– The reasons given for studying architecture are weak and vague.
– Develop details on what you read in the book or about the Kosovan project much more; you could give a more concrete example of how design can improve lives.
– You need to make sure you have properly researched the courses at each of your chosen universities – will the module on, humanitarian architecture, be available at all of them? Your statement needs to match to all five choices, not just one.

I was fortunate enough to visit Granada, Spain to see the palaces of ‘La Alhambra’, which was an amazing experience, as I had a knowledgeable tour guide and was able to learn a lot about them.

– You must provide more detail; how is the visit to Granada relevant to an Architecture degree? Did the trip prompt any further reading or research? What aspects of the local architecture did you admire? Why?

Being half an hour away from London, I am able to take day trips to admire the stunning buildings and I am enjoy visiting the V&A Museum and the Science Museum on a regular basis. I am also a big fan of the ‘Wonderworks’ building in Florida on International Drive which I had the pleasure of visiting on a family holiday.

– What makes a building ‘stunning’?
– What exhibitions have you seen at the museums that are relevant to architecture?
– What are the key differences between the designs of these two museums?
– Why, specifically, are you a fan of the Wonderworks building?

The other two A-levels I study are both very relevant in preparing me for University. In Mathematics I have improved considerably in terms of logical reasoning, critical thinking and problem solving and Chemistry enables me to apply my knowledge to facts on a larger scale to make an accurate prediction about a problem. All of which will be helpful to me. I’ve always been a very able Mathematician and it has been an interest of mine from a young age, consequently I have entered the ‘UK Junior Mathematical Challenge’ and was very proud to have received bronze award.

– Architecture involves precision and a great deal of mathematics, try to connect the subjects in a far more specific way; the skills you have given could apply to any degree.
– In a similar way, can you describe how your understanding of chemicals might help you understand materials used in buildings? Again, you have been too vague.
– It would be good to include examples in this section.
– The last sentence could be removed.
– Mentioning any prizes that you have won is good.
– Remove the entire last sentence up until, ‘I have entered…’ .

In school I am part of the choir and orchestra. Through it I have met people who like myself excel in music and make it a very different environment to socialise in as well as learn something new. I help contribute to the orchestra by playing the flute. I have been playing the flute since I was in year 3 so music has always been an interest of mine. Within this time I have achieved ‘The ABRSM – Grade 2’. I have recently taken an interest in the drums too. I have received awards for ‘Services to the school’ three years running for all my in school efforts.

– You use unusually short sentences in this section, turn it into prose that flows better.
– Mentioning these extra-curricular activities shows you are well-rounded – do you intend to continue to play at university?
– A little detail on why you won awards for services to the school would be interesting.

Out of school, I have worked in a charity shop ‘Banardos’ and have taken part in a work experience programme in ‘Lewisham Hospital’ assisting in Radiology. They both have given me insight into working life and have taught me a range of skills such as handling money, talking to customers and patients and to feedback to superiors, hence improving my communication skills. I found that I was good at meeting deadlines, working without supervision for long periods of time and carrying out tests accurately and quickly. During the holidays I baby-sit a younger sibling for usually 7-8 hours on weekdays. This helped me to understand younger children and has given me experience on how to handle and talk to them.

– This demonstrates roles of responsibility outside of school and is good, but could be shorter.

Upon finishing my degree I hope for not only academic achievement, but also personal development such as leadership skills, taking roles with higher responsibility, interpersonal skills and using initiative. This course will let me do exactly that and give me a sound foundation to becoming a successful architect.

– The candidate links their conclusion back to the course, which is good.

Overall, this statement needs work. The introduction is particularly weak, and sets the tone for the rest of the statement which is not nearly academic enough, nor does it demonstrate an understanding of the skills and knowledge required on such a rigorous course as architecture. There is also too much emphasis on non-relevant extra-curricular activities, the focus must be on the degree course!

From its conceptual beginnings, to the physical outcome, the design process involved in the architectural disciplines is one that intrigues me – both in its breadth and complexity. A sense of creativity and vision, yet grounded by a sound technical ability is what the architectural course would enable me to develop. Motivation, stemming from a natural curiosity, has encouraged me to pursue this interest in design, from an urban and environmental perspective.

– This is a rather lofty introduction which could be made clearer by linking it to an example.
– What do you mean by ‘urban and environmental’ perspective? Some detail here would help.

Articles from “Architecture Today” and “Materia” have supplemented my interest, for example increasing my understanding of the geometric uniqueness of Norman Foster’s “radical” Swiss Re building from a critical perspective. Furthermore, in order to broaden my visual understanding of design, I have found “The Photographer’s Eye – Composition and Design” by Michael Freeman an absorbing insight into principles that are arguably widely applicable to other areas of design including architecture, allowing me to gain a deeper understanding of the foundations that make a composition effective, in the same way that shapes and structures can make a building unique and impressive.

– Demonstrating wider reading and additional research is good and you have conveyed this by talking about how the books you read have helped you to increase your understanding of the subject area.
– Overuse of the word ‘understanding; ‘increase my understanding’, ‘broaden my visual understanding’ and ‘gain a deeper understanding’!
– Examples would benefit this paragraph.

My passion stems from a grounding sense of responsibility for both the urban and physical environments in which we live. Buildings can create and influence the sense of space and identity for society as well as have an impact in terms of environmental considerations, in a world where climatic implications are becoming increasingly important. This links significantly to the instinctive dependence I feel society has on the environments in which it lives – demonstrated through my positive involvement with the Conservation Volunteers and in my undertaking of the Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award. Furthermore, I have gained, on a smaller scale, an idea of the processes involved in the architectural career (including surveying, discussion, planning, and computer-aided as well as manual design) through involvement with a local primary school to design and create an environmental garden, incorporating scientific concepts such as solar power. This has enabled me to become more visually aware and has indirectly strengthened my interest in the environmental design module.

– An example of a building you admire for its environmental considerations would be better.
– It is not clear why your involvement with the Duke of Edinburgh Award is relevant to architecture.
– Good links between work experience at the primary school to your chosen field.

The multi-disciplinary and dynamically evolving nature of architecture attracts me, and this is reflected in the broad range of A-level subjects I have chosen. In Art and Design I have carried out an investigation into perspective – the way in which building and other structures (such as bridges) can capture this dynamic sense is intriguing, as they function to draw the viewer into the composition. Particularly interesting are architectural and structural elements that allow, through geometric repetition, for this visual process to occur effectively. A trip to Paris, involving visits to innovative art galleries like the Palais de Tokyo or the fascinatingly juxtaposed Louvre, alongside visits to several Norman Cathedrals in England have heightened my visual perception, appreciation of aesthetic and practical aspects of buildings, as well as my photography skills. In Geography, activities ranging from glacier model making to considering the concept of sustainability or gentrification have increased my awareness of the environment.

– This is a good paragraph which draws on your current studies, extra-curricular research and real-life examples.

My dedicated role in school life can be seen in my responsibilities as a Geography prefect, Form prefect and member of the school’s Fairtrade Steering Group, which include organising display boards and assemblies. As an enthusiastic member of Senior Choir, I have participated in a variety of concerts including performances of St Nicholas, Schubert’s Mass and Cathedral services. I have academic drive and dedication, rewarded with winning Speech Day prizes regularly, and enrolling in NAGTY. I look forward with anticipation to a stimulating course entitled ‘The World in Crisis’ in which I hope to reflect on the global economic, ecological, social and political challenges facing the world. Most intriguing, will be the visit to the “Hockerton Housing Project”, through which I hope to gain an insight into the architect’s responsibility within the context of the Government’s move towards attaining sustainability on an individual basis.

– It would be better to rephrase the opening line, it currently sounds rather boastful; it is better to let the facts speak for themselves.
– Good link of future experience to architecture and sustainability.

I believe that my broadened understanding of the urban and physical environment, complimented with the ability to move from the macro to micro perspective, will stand me in good stead as I look forward to challenging my creative instinct and furthering my understanding of architectural design.

– A strong ending to sum up the passion and the dedication shown by the student for the course and the industry.

Overall this is a good statement that just needs a few tweaks to make it excellent. you are clearly passionate about your course, but need to demonstrate more clearly this through examples.

My favourite childhood book was set in a parallel world and described a city based on Venice. I remember pouring over maps of modern day Venice to find any similarities. I have always found Venetian architecture intriguing – not just the impressive St Mark’s Cathedral, but also the bridges, the houses and the maze of streets. Whilst modern buildings are striking, I also have an interest in the style and craft of older buildings which have gained a warmth and presence over the years due to their traditional building techniques. It is in the past year that I have realised I could take this interest further through restoring similar buildings. This thought process led me to consider a future in architecture.

– Admissions tutors have told us that using childhood memories or fantasies as a motivation for studying a subject are not a good idea.
– Vague phrases such as ‘I have always…’ are not recommended.
– Good description of why older buildings appeal more.
– The phrase ‘consider a future’ should be changed to be much more emphatic and decisive.

I have always been curious about how and why things work and lessons in maths and physics feed this curiosity. Every year I compete in a Maths Challenge and have participated in many DT challenges throughout my school years, winning first prize in a competition sponsored by Laing O’Rourke.

– Again, vague phrases such as ‘I have always…’ are not recommended.
– The first sentence is child-like and not academic enough, nor does it relate specifically to the chosen degree course; discuss specifically how maths and physics are used everyday by architects and how.
– What did you make during the DT challenges, and what did you learn that could help with your degree?
– You must mention details of this competition, Laing O’Rourke are a construction engineering firm so this could be highly relevant, but we won’t know unless you tell us!

After becoming an architect, my ideal career path would be to specialise in restoring historical buildings. I would appreciate the challenge of preserving the past within an ever-changing modern world.

– You have already mentioned this career aspiration; remove it from the introduction and discuss it for the first time here, or in perhaps your conclusion if it going to remain brief.
– You could improve by mentioning any famous old buildings that have been restored. Do you know anything about the care and precautions that must be taken?
– Pointing out your career aspirations (if they are relevant to your course) can be a good idea. You should develop this point further; how exactly will the course give you the skills needed for a career in restoration? Have you done any wider reading on the subject or work experience?

Recently I went on an expedition to Stok Kangri, one of the Himalayan peaks in India. Working closely with a team from a nearby mountain village, I learnt a great deal about the people and their culture. Community work in Shey school was especially memorable as the children were a delight to interact with. During the trip, my confidence grew and I felt a more mature person on my return. We passed many remarkable religious monuments – a Buddhist Palace, a Pagoda and numerous temples. On a visit to Agra, standing in front of the Taj Mahal, who could fail to be impressed by the magnificence of the building? I yearn to understand the building process and techniques which made this possible during the 17th century.

– It is only really the second half of this paragraph that deals directly with architecture. Whilst it is good to demonstrate your maturity, focusing on your chosen subject is the most important thing.
– You should not be discussing your maturity here, save it for the penultimate paragraph.
– Give some examples of the building processes involved in constructing something like the Taj Mahal.
– To improve this section compare the structures of the buildings you mentioned, and perhaps discuss the differences between buildings built in hot climates as opposed to cold.
– Avoid words like ‘yearn’.

Cardiff has many innovative buildings, for instance the newly constructed City Stadium and the Millennium Stadium where I have a part-time job. Though the buildings are modern, I find their structure fascinating. My job has helped me to develop my communication skills as I interact with customers regularly.

– You need to be clearer – what is it about the structure of the buildings that makes them innovative? What new methods have been applied? Have you seen them applied elsewhere?
– You should not be discussing your part-time job here, save it for the penultimate paragraph

I do many things which help younger pupils in the school. I am a member of a school counselling group, where communication skills and discretion are essential. Every year I assist with school activities such as the Eisteddfod and school fairs. In addition, I was one of a handful of sixth formers chosen to go on a school trip to North Wales, supervising year 6 pupils. We worked as a team to organise events throughout the week ensuring its success. Last year, I helped in an after-school club for year 6 pupils, planning activities for them.

– You have shown that you are involved in many aspects of school life, which is good. Focus more on the skills that these various activities have equipped you with, and how they will be relevant at university.

Undertaking the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme involved setting and achieving goals. Having completed the expedition and residential project for Gold, I regularly attend yoga classes which are truly relaxing. I am curious about alternative therapies such as aromatherapy and massage and work experience in a Chinese Herbalist broadened my knowledge in this area.

– Whilst this work experience is interesting, it is not relevant to an architecture degree.
– It would be better to condense all non subject-specific experiences into one paragraph, instead of spread across four.

I believe university life will prepare me for the real world so that after finishing the degree, I will be a well-rounded character with a bright future ahead of me.

– Your concluding paragraph should be about your chosen subject, as well as the more general benefits of going to university.

Overall, this statement has some good ingredients, but you are not expressing your passion for architecture in the best way. By using real-life examples, more academic language and doing some in-depth reading you could quickly improve this statement significantly.

My budding interest in Architecture stems from a fascination with the complex and demanding nature of Mathematics, coupled with the creativity and visual intelligences that are conveyed through Art; I knew from a very young age that my ideal career would be one that encompassed these disciplines. A course such as Architecture, that combines beauty with functionality, will encourage me to achieve my potential in order to make a worthwhile contribution to the changing environment. I am particularly interested in the history and development of Architecture, and its impact on our changing society.

– This is a strong opening: the candidate has demonstrated their motivation behind applying for the subject, and pointed out the part of the course that they find most interesting.
– Do not use vague phrases such as ‘from a very young age’, it is much better to try and think of an actual event that triggered this interest.

The subjects I am currently studying prepare me thoroughly to read Architecture; I think that several elements of A-level Law will be extremely helpful in a career, in relation to planning applications, negotiation with contractors and generally gaining a better understanding of the legal aspects of Architecture. I also feel that this subject has allowed me to develop a meticulous approach to detail, which is hugely beneficial in several other subject areas. Maths and Chemistry have also given me relevant analytical skills through various practicals and theory testing. I am intrigued by the intricacies of these subjects and enjoy them due to their varied and challenging content that allows me to become more responsible for my own learning. My participation in various other roles, such as Treasurer in my Student Union and Volunteer Youth Advisor, has helped me to develop team working and leadership skills, and demonstrates my willingness to participate in other college activities.

– Excellent links from current studies of law to very specific areas of their chosen degree course.
– Going into similarly specific detail about how maths and chemistry will be useful to architecture would be better.
– The sentence about work experiences in the Student Union and as Youth Advisor should not be in this paragraph.

As well as providing me with practical work experience in the construction industry, my time spent shadowing a blacksmith and a plasterer have helped me to gain valuable communication skills, whilst discovering the different aspects of careers surrounding Architecture. I was also offered a week’s work experience placement with StrideTreglown, an architectural practice based in Bristol, where I was set the task of designing a client’s ‘Dream House’ by implementing various skills in project management and Computer Aided Design programs such as Revit and AutoCAD. During my placement I was given the opportunity to attend a meeting that addressed several issues of inclusive design in the proposed MyPlace centre, a multi-million pound government project that aims to deliver world-class facilities to young people in Bristol. The meeting made me much more aware of the difficulties that need to be overcome before a design can truly be accessible to everyone. I really enjoyed every aspect of the placement, and my experience has only reaffirmed my decision to pursue a career in Architecture.

– This is an excellent paragraph outlining various highly relevant experiences.
– Focus on the subject-specific skills and knowledge rather than generic skills such as ‘communication’; we can look at these skills in the penultimate paragraph.
– This is a good example of how you should describe work experience: tell the admissions tutor what you did, what you learnt, and how this changed the way you think about and approach the subject.

Outside of college I enjoy team sports such as netball and rounders, which have improved my ability to think strategically and utilize my strengths in order to adapt to the requirements of the team or position I am playing. These are skills that I think are invaluable not only now, but also when working on future projects with both clients and colleagues. In my spare time I play the piano, am learning to play the guitar, and update my art book regularly, which consists of both traditional and digital designs. I feel that this has greatly improved my ability to convey my ideas creatively. I also volunteer for Young Bristol, an organisation that aims to inspire and assist young volunteers throughout their placement. Through this, I have gained a Platinum Youth Achievement Award and a v50 award; these are given to volunteers who demonstrate commitment to a leadership role beneficial to their community.

– Another excellent paragraph showing that you are a well-rounded individual, and demonstrating the skills you have picked up along the way.

I strive to be challenged to the absolute best of my ability, and know that my passion for both the sciences and creative arts, combined with my growing appreciation of the physical environment will help me to do this through a course in Architecture.

– A strong conclusion that outlines the key points.
– You conclude by giving another reason why you want to study the subject which is very good.

This is a very good personal statement. Everything that you have written can be linked back to architecture and demonstrates your suitability for the course. One thing that you could do to improve it even further would be to go into detail about any wider reading that you have done, particularly since in the first paragraph you mentioned that the history and development of architecture is what you are most interested in.

Architecture holds something quite profound for me in that it is an extremely powerful form of expression. I understand that the architecture in any place, at anytime reflects the culture and people of that society. This is a subject I would very much like to be a part of. I want to study this course as I have something new to offer and will take what I learn onto a worthwhile profession.

– The meaning of your first sentence is not entirely clear and should be rephrased.
– The second sentence is better and would be helped by adding examples.
– The last two sentences are vague and should be replaced with examples of why architecture is such a powerful form of expression, and what that means to you.

I love the fact that we have come to a pluralistic stage in today’s Architecture, leaving the canvas bare for different thought processes to form designs on. While wanting to be a part of the modernist style common today, I also highly appreciate the classical works of Architecture of the past. I feel that history holds an uncountable number of treasures that I love and would like my own work to have a sense of. As part of my art projects within GCSE and A Level I have focused on combining elements of Eastern and Western architecture to come up with works that are quite individual. This interest in merging cultures to form something wholly unique has been a main point in much of my art work. This is the reason why I love the Venetian Gothic style of Architecture so much – where I can see traces of Western influence as well as geometric shapes and arches reminiscing Arabic buildings, and structures within the East. I have found examples of this on the internet, and in books showing Venetian Gothic works such as Ca’ d’Oro in Venice designed by architects Giovanni Bon and his son Bartolomeo Bon.

– This is a very good paragraph. You have linked your A-Level subjects to architecture and demonstrated your interest in the course through wider reading.
– Be careful of saying that you have done research ‘on the internet’; it is important to be more specific than this. Are there any particular websites or online journals that you have found particularly useful? What about the Royal Institute of British Architects, for example?

I am of ethnic origins and have seen and been a part of different communities, so am appreciative of changing cultures as well as one’s history. This awareness has been fed by reading books and often researching history on the internet that I feel is relevant to me. This shows my nature as a deep thinker, as also reflected in my passion for reading novels and spending spare time painting, drawing and writing. Described as hardworking and conscientious by my teachers, I know they would also agree that I am determined and thorough. Therefore any tasks I take on I am able to put my mind towards and complete to great standards.

– This paragraph is too vague. It would be better if you could give some more concrete examples of exactly what you have read.
– Again, do not say that you have done research ‘on the internet’.
– Feedback from your teachers should not be in your statement, it should be provided by the teachers themselves in the separate teacher reference!
– We suggest removing the last three sentences altogether.

During my GCSE’s I took part in an enterprising challenge with Ryder HKS and pupils from other schools. The challenge was to work in small groups in the redevelopment of a building in town that the public can use. The course covered skills such as teamwork and communication, creative thinking and dec