Table of Contents
- What is a statement of purpose?
- Statement of purpose (SOP) format
- How to write a statement of purpose | Writing tips!
- How to write a statement of purpose | The don’ts
- How to write a statement of purpose | Bonus tips
- What if a tool could help you write your statement of purpose?
- Summarizing the blog
What is a statement of purpose?
A statement of purpose or SOP is an admission or application essay written by an applicant applying to a college, university, or a graduate school abroad. As a matter of fact, a well-written statement of purpose plays an essential role in getting you admission to your dream university. Keep reading to know how to write a statement of purpose, its format, and more.
Statement of purpose (SOP) formatWhile writing your statement of Purpose may seem like a very monumental task right now, it won’t be the case once you start writing. The most common problem most students face is editing their SOP after they’ve written it. You can save yourself some major trouble by following these SOP format suggestions –
- Write your statement of purpose (SOP) in a paragraph format with not more than 1000 words or one to one and a half pages.
- Make sure you mention your full name and the program you want to apply for at the top of each page.
- To make sure that your SOP is the easiest to read, use a Times New Roman font (12 points) with 1-inch margins on all sides.
- The SOP format and the number of words vary according to each university.
- Try and maintain a conversational yet, friendly tone while writing your SOP.
- The SOP format and the number of words vary according to each university.
How to write a statement of purpose | Writing tips!
Your statement of purpose is what sets you apart from all the other candidates that apply for the same spot as you do. So making sure that you write a powerful and convincing statement of purpose is of utmost importance. Here are a few tips to help you along:
#1. Make sure it’s structured
While there is no specific order of writing an SOP, it’s ideal to have a structure to your text to make sure your SOP is easy to read. Start with a basic introduction, your details, program and career details, etc., and then talk about your experiences.
#2. Break out your writing skills
Along with your IELTS or TOEFL, your SOP is also a direct reflection of your English language skills. So be careful not to make any grammatical mistakes, use proper vocabulary, and have someone proofread the SOP for you.
#3. Research, don’t copy!
One of the worst things you could do while writing your SOP is to copy a template or sample SOP from the internet and use it as it is. Your content is what makes the SOP unique and convinces the university to let you in. So do your research about the SOP writing format, but always make sure that you put your own original words inside the Statement of Purpose (SOP).
How to write a statement of purpose | The don’ts
To help you overcome the pressure of writing your SOP and avoid making any mistakes, we have a few tips on the top 5 mistakes to dodge while writing your SOP:
1) Boasting and Bragging
You need to know the delicate balance between informing and boasting. Your essay should be a reflection of the confidence you have. You need to keep in mind that boasting about achievements shows a great deal of insecurity. Bragging about your achievements also gives an impression of self-importance and conceit. This is not the kind of impression you want a selection committee to have of you.
2) Beating around the Bush
The one thing that all selection committee members despise is candidates not coming to the point. Many candidates needlessly focus on elaborating on the fine details that they forget to put a persuasive reason that keeps the reader hooked. Create an outline containing the experiences and achievements you want to talk about and then structure the essay accordingly. Carry on fine-tuning the essay until you feel that the SOP does not beat around the bush and is perfect for presentation.
This is the one thing that happens when students try to present and carve an image of themselves rather than showcasing their true selves. For example, your SOP might state that you love sports; however, the resume does not mention your sporting activities. Such tactics will send confusing and contradicting signals to the committee.
4) Weak Introduction
A strong introduction sets the tone of your essay. An introduction that does not gain the attention of the reader renders the SOP useless. To ensure that you have a gripping introduction, connect your personal background with the academic goals you want to achieve. Avoid providing irrelevant background information and making unclear statements about your future goals.
5) Writing an SOP at the Eleventh Hour
It is easy to differentiate a hurriedly written SOP from one that is well thought-out and engaging. Therefore, the art of how to write a statement of purpose is a gradual process; good SOPs are a result of days of introspection and hard work. Therefore, it is advised that you take the SOP seriously and write with a clear state of mind. If you want your SOP to stand out from the other SOPs, it is imperative that you don’t make mistakes like the ones mentioned above.
How to write a statement of purpose | Bonus tips
After you’ve finished collating all the paras and added them to your SOP, it’s time to work on your second draft –
- The first thing you should do is take out all the unnecessary sentences. If a statement doesn’t serve your goal, edit it out.
- Share your SOP with friends, colleagues, teachers, and mentors to know what changes you should make.
- Take in all their suggestions and rewrite your SOP.
- I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m saying it again – double-check for any grammatical errors. Even your friends might have missed some, so it’s best to use an online tool.
What if a tool could help you write your statement of purpose?
Knowing all the things you are supposed to write in your SOP and actually including all aspects in your SOP, is an entirely different matter. It can be very confusing. To help you write a well-rounded and impressive SOP, iSchoolConnect has an AI-based SOP-writing tool. It will guide you and help you cover all aspects such as:
- Sentence StructureGrammar Check
- Plagiarism Detection
- Readability Scoring, and more!
1) Get immediate and detailed content suggestions and tips to write the perfect SOP
2) Correct all your grammatical, punctuation, and language-related errors with the help of the instant tips given by the tool
Summarizing the blog
Anyway, I hope you found this information on how to write a statement of purpose for grad school helpful. And in case you get stuck while writing your SOP, you can always drop a comment or get in touch with us. We would be very happy to help. Until then, happy writing!
Liked this blog? Then read Idioms | All you need to know about 5 top idioms comprehensively!
Question 1: Is a statement of purpose necessary?
Answer: As a matter of fact, yes! It is one of the most important documents you need to have while applying for colleges or universities abroad.
Question 2: Can I get assistance in writing my SOP?
Answer: Absolutely! Various online tools help students write their SOPs. You can check out our online SOP writing tool here!
Question 3: What are the top three things to remember while writing my SOP?
Answer: The top three things to remember while writing your SOP are – 1) Don’t brag. 2) Don’t beat around the bush. 3) Don’t copy someone else’s SOP, even if it is on Google!