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The 10 Most Important Tips for Writing the Perfect Common App Essay

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TELL A STORY

Given that the most compelling, pleasing, and entertaining way for a college admissions officer to take in information is through a story, use your essay to tell one colorful, lively story with a beginning, middle, and ending that is filled with tension, conflict, humor, ups and downs, surprises, and vibrant detail. Use your story to illustrate your resilience and ability to change. Colleges want to know what they’ll get if they accept you, so tell a story that paints a vivid picture of how you’ll engage in if you get onto their campuses: curiously learning, actively participating, and contributing in ways that only you can.

Topics: Life
Tags: personal statements, common app, applying to college, college admission essays, sparknotes college, college 101, crushing the common app, common app essay, common app essay prompts

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About the Author
Chelsea Dagger

Since 2010, Chelsea Dagger (known in real life as Chelsea Aaron) has been SparkLife's sweatiest editor. She's currently working on a how-to-kiss guide for teens, and when she's not conducting smooch-related research on her life-size Joseph Gordon-Levitt cardboard cutout, she's eating pancakes, stocking up on industrial-strength deodorant, and destroying everyone at Harry Potter trivia. (EXPECTO PATRONUM!)

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