Remember that paragraph you learned to write in middle school? The one with the topic sentence, 3 supporting sentences, and a concluding sentence? Well, guess what– it never died.
The proper paragraph is alive and well.
More importantly, it is ABSOLUTELY what you should be using to write your personal statements for college.
I know what you’re thinking– those kinds of paragraphs are so constraining. Hell, at least one person is eyeing this very blog post and thinking: “But you’re not following the paragraph rules! That last chunk of text only has one sentence in it!”
Well, sorry my friend, but I’m writing a blog post, not a personal statement. Nobody is grading me on this post and, certainly, nobody is going to keep me from furthering my education because of it. You, on the other hand, need to follow the rules.
We tend to forget about the paragraph sometime either late in high school or in college.
Teachers suddenly stop caring if you indent. Students with non-traditional essay formats begin to make good grades. You also have to cite stuff and, you know, it gets tricky to cite things and still maintain a rigid format. I get it.
But your personal statement for college is an academic pursuit.
Some rules can be bent, but not all of them.
For example, the first sentence doesn’t have to be the topic sentence. You can have more than 5 sentences. You can even leave off the concluding sentence occasionally. But other rules cannot be bent…
Here are your basic, personal statement ground rules of paragraphs:
All the sentences should relate to the same idea.
You should have at least 3 sentences in every paragraph.
You should organize your sentences in some sort of logical manner.
If your paragraphs contain sentences that are not even related to each other… you’re in trouble.
If the paragraph starts with “I became passionate about ponies because of my dad” and ends “I hope to eat a lot of sushi in Paris”… you’re also in trouble.
If your paragraph, quite frankly, just doesn’t even make any sense… yeah, big trouble.
If you cannot follow those ground rules, please don’t contact me. Some essays are exhausting to edit. That said, if all you need is a little help, check out my editing services.