Table of contents
- What You Need to Know Before Writing a College Admission Essay
- How to Choose the Best College Admission Essay Topic
- Top 10 College Admission Essay Topics in 2020
- The 2020-2021 Common Application Essay Prompts
- College Admission Essay Topics Key Takeaway
What You Need to Know Before Writing a College Admission Essay
College admission essay topics offer you an opportunity to compete with other equally, if not more qualified students for enrollment into your preferred college. Undoubtedly, top colleges receive numerous applications from students every year, and being able to stand out from the crowd is the surest way to securing yourself enrollment in top tier institutions.
Getting insights on some of the most common college application essay topics as well as what admission officers expect for each prompt is inevitable. As a result, we took time to research what the best college admission essays entail and what admission officers scan for in your essay. From our search, we found that a college admission essay is relevant if it offers a lens through which college admission officers get to find out the following about you:
- Who are you?
- Why are you currently where you are, and how does your current position relate to your interest in the particular college?
- What is unique about you that makes you stand out from the massive crowd of equally qualified applicants?
- What matters to you as a person?
An understanding of the above requirements will guide how you structure your college admission essay. Importantly, you want to focus on yourself while giving the admission officers a clear snippet of yourself, without being too general. Due to the meager word limit in college admission essays, which ranges between 250 and 500 words, your creativity in selecting the best topic for your college admission essay will be your means to telling your audience about yourself.
How to Choose the Best College Admission Essay Topic
We agree, generating a creatively non-generic topic for your essay can be an uphill task. Nonetheless, our research shows that to get your ideas flowing, you need to be specific. Given the limited number of words, you have to bring out your best self, being particular will help you get started and move. So, how do you choose a topic for your college admission essay? Here are five ideas that will get your ball rolling:
1. Be honest.
Frankly, it is a lot easier to write about something genuine than to make up a story. Think about it. Have you ever lied, and had to retell your lie repeatedly? Wasn’t it too much work trying to be consistent? Well, the same applies to your college admission essay. While creating your topic, be real. Tell about something that happened or someone that exists and how they relate to who you are and what drives you.
2. Write about a moment.
The temptation to try to summarize your whole life story is pressing. However, do you think summarizing your life into 500 words at most will show who you are? You can bet it won’t. As such, try to focus on a moment in your life and tell it comprehensively. Draw the admission officers into the moment. Make them feel the emotions of the moment and why it matters or why it has shaped you and motivated you to apply to the particular college.
3. Be current.
You can be sure about one thing – 90% of applicants will write about something that happened in their first year in high school or even earlier. As such, why don’t you focus on current college admission essay topics? For example, the current Covid-19 pandemic has caused pain and suffering among many. Hence, show the admission officers the Covid-19 impact on your life, including its lessons.
4. Write about your childhood.
Every one of us developed some intrinsic attributes during childhood. Most of our passions and tendencies stem from childhood. Hence, why not show the admissions officer something they won’t see in the other college application documents? Remember details about things like the classes you took in high school and your extracurricular activities are clearly elaborated in your resume. Therefore, you can for instance write about a moment in your childhood that developed your exploratory attribute.
4. Stand out!
Understand that you are not the only one that participated in community service, is talented in some sport, or is excellent in playing a musical instrument. Tons of other applicants will be writing on common college admission essay topics. Be different. Be unique and write something the admission officer has not read before. Something only you experienced.
Top College Admission Essay Topics in 2020
1. Personal essay topics for college admission
A personal essay topic shows your intent to take the admissions officer through a personal experience that shaped who you are and how you view things. You want to use the personal story to tell the officer that the desire to join the college is motivated by only you. Some topics that may work if you want to write a personal essay for your college admission include:
- Where I consider home.
- Inspiration from my fears.
- My motivation.
- My Dream.
You will note that the titles are short and create suspense. You want to make the admissions officer interested in reading your story because it tells about you.
2. Funny college admission essay topics
Think about it; how many of your peers believe that being serious shows maturity or intelligence? You may even be among those who think the same. However, put yourself in the shoes of the admissions officer. How would you feel reading scripts marred with seriousness end to end? It is boring. Hence, try to stand out by writing something interesting, yet relevant to why you are fit for enrollment in the college. Some topics you may write about include:
- Matching mismatched socks.
- The hate-love affair.
- Sad? Not me.
- My love for dog kisses.
The topics give you a chance to tell funny stories. However, you must remember that you are not in a comic show. As a result, focus on tying your jokes to telling a story about you – your motivation, your dreams and goals, your current place, and what is unique about you.
3. Best college admission essay topics
From my research on what characterizes the best college admission essays, I have come to realize that easy but creative topics and themes are more effective than jargon-filled essays. Not only do easy college admission essays make your writing more fun than work, but they also limit the chances of projecting yourself as fake. While what determines if a college admission essay is best or not is not the topic but the content, the following topics can guide you to writing the best content in your admission essay:
- A life of instinct.
- A Life A Day.
- Unlimited imagination, unlimited opportunities.
- Everything is not for everyone.
I consider topics in the above style to be effective in sailing you towards a specific conclusion. Through such topics, you already hint to the admissions officer what your perceptions are. However, the officer is left wondering how you derived those perceptions.
Your work, therefore, would be to tell a story about a unique moment in your life that made you draw particular conclusions. Do not forget to elaborate on why the findings are relevant and how they may help you get enrolled in the college.
The 2020-2021 Common Application Essay Prompts
Numerous colleges use the Common App college admission essay prompts as a tool for offering prospective college students options in selective college admission essay prompts. According to the Common App, the 2019-2020 essay prompts remain applicable for 2020-2021.
So, how do you respond to the Common App admission essay prompts? Giving thoughtful essay responses to the common app essay prompts is easy if you take into account what we have advised herein. As a reminder, ensure that you allow the admissions officer to know you through your story.
College Admission Essay Topics Key Takeaways
While developing your college admission essay topic, you want to stand out while maintaining your intelligence image. While you may get a plus for breaking essay rules, the chances of you losing an enrollment opportunity due to a careless essay originating from a not-so-thoughtful college admission essay topic are higher. Therefore, make your college admission essay topic creative and suspense-inducing.
Entice the admissions officer into wanting to find out not only your story but also its relevance to getting admission. Remember that you must come out as a motivated individual who has the grit to overcome challenges and accomplish goals in your college application. If you get stuck, you can always hire a professional to help you. All the best in your college application.