4 Structuring Tips for Your College Essay

Your college essay’s structure is one of the most important elements of the piece.

Structure means everything to a college essay. You can have intelligent, well-written content that speaks directly to the university and showcases all your skills, but if it isn’t well-organized, you could wind up compromising your chances at getting accepted. Organization is the foundation of coherence, and with the proper structure, your essay can be elevated to new heights.

Try these four structuring tips when organizing your college essay:

1.       Keep what’s important at the beginning and the end. If you could reduce your main message to one or two sentences, what would they be? Make sure you include the core of these messages in the beginning and end of your essay. They’ll be the first impression and the last word of your piece.

2.       Work general to specific. When you first start your essay, begin in general terms, and gradually work in more specific details. For instance, you can say something general like “I have a strong academic performance history,” and then give examples. Use this as a broad rule, governing your entire essay structure, and as a rule for each paragraph.

3.       Watch for redundancy. While it’s important to reinforce your main message, you also want to avoid repeating yourself too much. Outlining your essay beforehand can highlight areas where you might be redundant.

4.       Construct logical transitions. Don’t write five individual paragraphs and throw them all together at the end. Instead, look for logical transitions that can tie one major idea into the next in one, coherent narrative.

College essays are tough, but don’t let them intimidate you! Maintain your focus, break everything down into smaller pieces, and do the best you can.