Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
sven
Posts: 133
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 8:11 am

Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby sven » Wed Oct 26, 2011 7:16 pm

I was a teacher and in my PS, I discuss in detail how I worked with a particular student. I used the student's real first name (it's not an exotic name, but it's pretty unique) and submitted the PS to a couple of schools already. I have since begun to feel a bit uncomfortable about this and feel like I should probably invent a pseudonym. If I do use a fake name for the rest of my applications, should I indicate that it isn't the real name? Is it assumed that these names are not real anyway?

Also, I have heard that state bars get a copy of your law school application. They only get a copy of the school you attended, right? Because I'm afraid that it would look a little sketchy if my applications used 2 different names in the same story.

sven
Posts: 133
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 8:11 am

Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby sven » Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:59 pm

anyone?

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Tim0thy222
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Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby Tim0thy222 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:04 pm

I don't necessarily have any authority on this, but since no one else is chiming in I'll offer my opinion.

Firstly, it seems pretty unlikely to me that it will ever come back to haunt you or the student that you used that student's real name. Secondly, if you change it now, and half of the apps use one name and the other half use the other name, I don't think anyone would ever care. If they did ask (which seems extremely unlikely), you could just be honest that half way in you realized you should use a pseudonym.

Basically, it seems to me that you're worrying about nothing (which is understandable, considering what a big deal this whole process is), and that no matter what direction you go with this you'll be fine.

But again, I don't really have the evidence or experience, I'm just offering how it seems to me.

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Yeshia90
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Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby Yeshia90 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:06 pm

Use a blatantly fake name. Like John.

sven
Posts: 133
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 8:11 am

Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby sven » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:52 pm

Thanks, Yeshia and Tim0thy!
I have decided to just change the name from now on. I strongly doubt that anyone would compare my essays for different schools anyway. I'm wondering, though, if I need to note somewhere that the new name is made up. I can't use obviously fake names like "John" or "Jane" because this was taking place abroad.

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Yeshia90
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Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby Yeshia90 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:54 pm

sven wrote:Thanks, Yeshia and Tim0thy!
I have decided to just change the name from now on. I strongly doubt that anyone would compare my essays for different schools anyway. I'm wondering, though, if I need to note somewhere that the new name is made up. I can't use obviously fake names like "John" or "Jane" because this was taking place abroad.


I was actually being sarcastic.

sven
Posts: 133
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 8:11 am

Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby sven » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:01 pm

:D well that's embarassing. Anyway, do you have a recommendation? Or are you implying that this is such a minor thing that I should stop thinking about it?

critterkln
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:48 pm

Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby critterkln » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:23 pm

It's a minor thing and you should stop thinking about it, in mine I'm writing about a class I had with inmates and I call them by their names. As long as you don't use the last name it's fine.

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theadvancededit
Posts: 315
Joined: Sun Aug 28, 2011 1:31 pm

Re: Pseudonyms and Consistency in the PS

Postby theadvancededit » Thu Oct 27, 2011 12:20 am

This is minor. So long as you didn't provide the student's last name and their place of residence, you're fine. You're also not a social worker, so don't worry about breaching client confidentiality of any kind.




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