What are your chances of acceptance?
Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
+ add school
Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Common App personal statement word limit?

I'm starting to work on my Common App essay, and I was curious about how strictly applicants are held to the word limit? Is it a hard limit or is there some wiggle room?

7 months ago

The Common App personal statement has a word limit of 650 words. It's important to adhere to this limit, as the Common App system will not allow you to submit an essay that exceeds it. When you paste your essay into the text box, the system will automatically truncate any text beyond the 650-word mark, which could lead to an unfinished or confusing essay.

It's best to aim for around 600-650 words to ensure you're using the available space effectively while also following the guidelines. The purpose of the word limit is to help colleges evaluate your ability to express yourself succinctly and convey meaningful information within the allotted space. Staying within the word limit demonstrates your ability to follow instructions and present your thoughts coherently.

When editing your essay, focus on trimming any unnecessary information, and adjust your language to convey your ideas more succinctly. Remember that the content of your essay is more important than using the maximum word count. If you can effectively communicate your ideas in fewer words, that's perfectly acceptable too. Good luck with your personal statement!

7 months ago

About CollegeVine’s Expert FAQ

CollegeVine’s Q&A seeks to offer informed perspectives on commonly asked admissions questions. Every answer is refined and validated by our team of admissions experts to ensure it resonates with trusted knowledge in the field.