Does the wording of the PS question matter?

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
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walterwhite
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Joined: Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:31 pm

Does the wording of the PS question matter?

Postby walterwhite » Thu Oct 24, 2013 5:09 pm

DO all schools word their personals statements the same (tell us sometime that would be of use to the admissions committee)?

I'm still not sure which schools I am applying to so I'm trying to figure out if I'll be able to use 1 general essay for all my schools.

Also what are some tips to brainstorm some ideas? I struggle with open-ended questions like this and I can't think of anything to write about.

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RCO2012
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Re: Does the wording of the PS question matter?

Postby RCO2012 » Thu Oct 24, 2013 7:34 pm

walterwhite wrote:DO all schools word their personals statements the same (tell us sometime that would be of use to the admissions committee)?

I'm still not sure which schools I am applying to so I'm trying to figure out if I'll be able to use 1 general essay for all my schools.

Also what are some tips to brainstorm some ideas? I struggle with open-ended questions like this and I can't think of anything to write about.


No, all schools do not use the same generic question, but they're usually similar enough that, if done properly, one PS can fulfill the needs of most schools.

For brainstorming...what I did was ask the people that have known me the longest (parents, grandparents, partner, best friend) which of my experiences stand out most to them. Also, professors that you have worked closely with or that mentored you may be able to give you an idea of what they see unique about you. Overall, you want an experience that shows your character and personality to the admissions committee while demonstrating your maturity level and that you're a well-rounded individual that has something unique to bring to the entering class.

Best of luck to you! PS drafting can be a grueling process, but you'll get through it.

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Ramius
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Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 12:39 am

Re: Does the wording of the PS question matter?

Postby Ramius » Fri Oct 25, 2013 7:37 am

Figuring out the right topic for you is no cookie cutter process. It's a period of introspection where you figure out your strongest qualities and how you can best showcase them.

First thing you need to do is ask yourself: what positive quality do I think I'll bring to the law school? Think of things like intelligence, ingenuity, work ethic, leadership, determination, perseverance, compassion, vision, drive...the list goes on and on. Basically, if it's a positive quality that will ultimately make you look like a quality future lawyer, it's a good quality to focus on. Once you've picked the quality/qualities you want to highlight, look into your past and find something that shows those qualities most clearly. Only you can really know what that is, but you might be able to get help from close family, friends and colleagues (as the poster above mentioned). Once you figure out how you're going to show those qualities, make a strong effort to SHOW those qualities vice TELLING the reader about them. The best way to do that in my opinion is try to avoid ever using the word "XXXXX quality" in the statement. If you can demonstrate the quality without ever saying it, you've won. If you can't, at least you've done the upfront effort of avoiding it and can then use it sparingly where it is necessary.

I always tell people to look at it this way: you're an item for sale. Your GPA/LSAT is the price on the label, the PS/resume is the words underneath the price enticing the buyer to buy you. Make the price as attractive as possible and use the PS/resume to make the reader think, "damn, I really need this walterwhite."

Good luck writing!




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