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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
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Stanford questions: How do I effectively answer them?

I need some advice on how to effectively answer Stanford's application questions. Should I focus on showcasing my academic strengths, extracurriculars, or my personality? I'm struggling to find a balance between maintaining authenticity and highlighting my achievements.

7 months ago

To effectively answer Stanford's application questions, it's essential to strike a balance between showcasing your achievements and maintaining authenticity. Here are some tips to help you achieve that balance:

1. Be genuine: Honesty is crucial when answering these questions. Let your true personality shine through, and focus on aspects of yourself that are unique, interesting, or distinctive. Admissions officers are looking for students who will contribute to the campus community, so demonstrate your individuality and the value you can bring.

2. Show, don't tell: Instead of stating your qualities directly, use examples and anecdotes to illustrate them. For instance, if you want to convey your leadership skills, share an experience where you took charge of a project or led a team. This approach helps admissions officers form a more vivid image of your character.

3. Balance academics and extracurriculars: It's essential to highlight your academic achievements and intellectual curiosity, but also give equal weight to your extracurricular activities. Discuss your involvement in various clubs, organizations, or hobbies and how they have shaped your interests or aspirations.

4. Demonstrate your fit with Stanford: Research the university and understand its values, goals, and programs. Mention specific opportunities or resources available at Stanford that you are excited about and explain why they align with your interests or goals. This shows that you've put thought into why Stanford is the right choice for you and that you understand what it has to offer.

5. Be concise and focused: With word limits, it's important to stay focused on the question and avoid going off on tangents. Ensure each sentence contributes to the overall message you want to convey and adds value to your response.

6. Think about your application as a whole: Consider your application in its entirety when crafting your responses. Each part should complement the others and provide a coherent picture of who you are as a student and an individual. If you've already discussed a specific achievement in another part of your application, focus on a different aspect in your Stanford questions.

7. Edit and revise: After writing your responses, take some time to step away from them and then come back with fresh eyes. Revise your writing by checking for clarity, accuracy, and flow. Ensure your responses are well-structured, concise, and free from grammatical errors.

In summary, the key to effectively answering Stanford's application questions is to balance showcasing your achievements and conveying your authentic personality. Be genuine, use examples to illustrate your points, and demonstrate how you would be a valuable addition to the Stanford community.

7 months ago

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