What Do Colleges Want To See In An Essay

What Do Colleges Want To See In An Essay

If you are in high school and wondering what do colleges want to see in an essay, read on for some helpful insights and tips!

Going to the college of your choice must be a dream of every high school student. However, the process is not that easy.

Writing a college entrance essay might be a daunting task for an average student. This article will shine light upon some tips to write the perfect college essay.

Write About Yourself

Most students make a big mistake while writing a college admissions essay. They add extra information that is untrue. Everyone wants to show that they have a great life full of experiences. However, while showing this to the reader, you lose the main reason for the essay. Even though you were taught to create meaningful and detailed essays, this does not mean that you don’t need help with college paper writing.

Make sure that everything that you write in your college essay is a 100% representation of your life.

Write about yourself. Add your hardships through life and make the essay an interesting one.

Writing about yourself does not mean that you should share too much information in detail about your life. The reader is least interested in your day-to-day work. Share things that had a huge impact on your life and completely changed your perspective.

For instance…

It might be advisable to share an accident that led to a near-death experience. Show how the little things in your life have made you into a rational individual.

Lastly, it is essential that what you write is believable. Adding stories that make no sense is foolish. Know that the reader has been through hundreds of college essays. He knows when a student is making up his own fantasy stories and telling the truth. Fake experiences are a big turn-off when it comes to writing a college essay. If your college essay is authentic, it will automatically be appreciated by the reader. 

If you are still unable to produce a decent college essay, don’t worry. There are several writing services on the internet just one click away. For instance, you can find essay samples at EssayZoo to get an idea of writing an essay. You might also hire a writer to assist you with the writing process for a small fee. These writers are professional individuals who will take your college essay to the next level.

Engage The Reader From The Start

writing college essaysEngagement is one of the essential things that your essay must have. Most students write plain and uninteresting college essays. It is your job to motivate the reader to read the entire essay. Try using vocabulary that is short and captivating. Always avoid using long sentences because that might make the essay mundane. Try to use short sentences with strong vocabulary that make the essay a fascinating one.

The first part of the college essay is the introduction.

It is the most crucial paragraph because first impressions always last. Try to use a hook in this part of the essay to be motivated to read further. Always remember that the introductory paragraph must not be extended. It should be 10% of the entire essay.

After the introduction, you can start with the body paragraphs. 

Try to divide your college entry essay into different paragraphs. Each paragraph must tell a different story of your life experiences. This will make it easier for the reader to navigate the essay, and the document will achieve clarity. 

Here are some pointers that will help you write an engaging essay:

  • Try to start your essay with a hook
  • Never use wordy sentences in the introduction
  • Try to come up with ways to motivate the reader into reading the entire essay
  • Use strong vocabulary
  • Try to avoid using complicated vocabulary
  • Be creative

Diversify Your Vocabulary

Whenever someone asks me what colleges look for in essays, I always tell them to focus on the vocabulary. Having a good vocabulary is essential, but the diversity of your vocabulary also plays an important role. Avoid using the exact words in your essay. Repeating words can hurt your essay.

A professional writer knows how to place words that make sense while also diversifying the vocabulary in the right amount and right way.

Make sure that you don’t use super fancy words.

Fancy words mostly lead to unclarity in the document. If you want to write good, write. If you want to avoid using the exact words, you might look up synonyms from the internet. Doing this will diversify your vocabulary, and the essay won’t look mundane.

Avoid using slang and inappropriate words.

They reflect poorly on your college applicant essay.

Always check your grammar and spellings after writing the essay. A single mistake in your grammar might lead to your essay being rejected. There is a specific grammar software like Grammarly that might help you check your text for errors. Grammarly scans your document for clarity, engagement, delivery, grammar, and spellings. You can identify these mistakes and correct them after crafting the entire essay.

Include Diversity Of Experiences

Whenever someone asks me what to include in a college essay, I always tell them that the reader is looking for diverse experiences in their life. Try to add events that happened in different stages o your life and how these events have changed you.

The evaluator is looking for the drive and motivation in your personality to make you an ideal student in the college. Try to show a proactive approach in your essay and show excitement towards new opportunities.

Another thing to make sure of is: Research what you write.

Whenever you are stating a fact in the college essay, try to ensure its authenticity. Doing this will tell the reader that you are thorough in your research, which is an ideal college student’s ideal quality.

Keep It Real

Colleges Want To See In An EssayNo matter what happens, always tell the truth. College essays are a documented representation of your life.

If you add in fake stories, the reader will immediately identify them and discard your essay.

You should also play it safe. If the university finds out that you lied on your college application, you will almost definitely get a rejection.

Stick to the truth, and your college essay will be great.

Cause and effect in your essay are also significant. For instance, if you are writing about an event in your life, try to highlight the event’s cause and outline its effect on your life.


Writing a college essay might become a difficult task, but if you follow the tips above, the chances are that you can quickly produce an outstanding college application essay. Try to keep a clear head in the writing process and avoid all distractions. Happy Writing!

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