2 years ago
Admissions Advice

Is it a bad idea to use option 7 on the Common App for the writing response?

I wrote my application essay for the Common App and I don't think it fits well with any of the possible prompts except the last prompt, where you make your own. I got feedback on the essay saying that it stayed on topic well but I'm worried that admissions officers would prefer to see me write to one of the pre-existing prompts. Is it okay to use option 7 or should I use one of the others if possible?

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@spicytonkatsu2 years ago

I knew someone who used that prompt, and wrote about taylor swift. I think there is no problem picking the last prompt, but I suggest tying the essay up with how it relates to your study, or to you somehow. take taylor swift, if that's what the essay is about, maybe throw in a part where she is a huge influence in the way you write your newspaper articles, or your stories, or even songwriting. hope that makes sense! :)

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2 years ago

Whatever writing option you use wouldn't matter; you have the option to choose which prompt fits what you want to write best. What I'd say is reread each of the other prompts and think about what they are asking you to write about. Maybe your essay doesn't exactly fit one particular option, but it might fit more than one. For example, maybe there was an obstacle you faced that led you to realize something about yourself, combining options 2&5. Therefore, combining pieces of at least one of the prompts can help you create an essay that showcases who you are; that's what colleges want to see.

You could also write another essay that fits a different prompt and compare that essay with your original. You can even show this essay to your friends and family, but don't tell them you wrote it. Let them figure out if they could tell it was you that wrote it. That can ultimately tell if your essay is personalized or is similar to other college applicants.

There are many possibilities that can lead you to writing the best essay for you. Overall, I wouldn't stress about it too much. If your original essay is solid and displays who you are, that's all that matters. Don't try to fit into some type of mold that you think colleges are looking for; be yourself no matter what!

2 years ago

It is not at all a bad idea. My essay didn't fit into any of the prompts either and my essay coach said that was totally fine. Don't worry!

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