A degree from a good foreign university is perhaps the most coveted thing for any student. Not only is it a matter of pride to make it to such an institution, graduating from such a place increases one’s chances of landing a dream job. That is why parents are often seen to put aside a lifetime of savings to make this dream of graduating from a foreign university a reality.
The monetary arrangements put aside, foreign universities receive thousands of applicants every session and only a selected few make it. The multi-tier selection process lays a lot of importance to the statement of purpose (SOP). This helps them gauge your language skills and understand how keen you are in joining the university. The way you write your SoP will play an important role in deciding whether you make it to your dream course.
So, what exactly is a SOP?
A statement of purpose or SOP is an essay briefing about your qualifications, project work, professional experience and other educational endeavours. It is a personalized draft depicting your wish to study in the desired course and institute. The goal of an SOP is to depict your learning journey to your choice of institute for future studies.
An ideal SOP highlights all these parameters with great skill. It clearly justifies why you choose to study, what you choose to study and how you plan to achieve your future goals. Remember, there can be several applicants for your desired course or institute and an SOP is a strong decider as to which applicant deserves the seat more than the other.
Having established the importance of a good SOP on your career, let us now take a look at how you can make your statement of purpose stand out.
Write stories instead of statements
As human beings, all of us connect to stories more than that of simple statements. The selection committee of your dream university is no different and if your SOP can tell a story that touches on their human feelings, you increase your chances of making it to the institution. To understand this, let us consider an example.
Statement: “I have three years of experience as an iOS developer in a multinational organization. After three years of doing the same thing, I realized that I did not have anything to look forward to in the office. That is when I decided that I had to get out of the loop. I am applying to your esteemed organization to upskill myself and land a better job.”
Story: “Post three years of the daily commute to my south Bandra MNC office, one Friday night I found myself (yet again) struck with thousands of lines of iOS code. With an emptied life beyond office and caffeine fuelling me, I realized that my life has been reduced to mere code and computing. That was a turning point for me as I decided that I will not let machines feed on me and that college will be my salvation.”
I am sure that you agree that the second one was much more interesting to read. Also, notice that it has a similar number of words as that of the first. Thus, if you know how to write, a story does not use more words than statements.
Use the correct tone and quantify your stories
Writing your SOP in the form of a story will allow you to get the interest of the reader. But this does not give you the luxury of using floral language to evade facts. Make sure you mention measurable quantities in your SOP. For example, if you have volunteered at an outreach program to teach illiterate women, mention how long you were engaged in the program and how many women you have empowered.
In case you have any confusion about your tone of SOP, read it aloud. If you think that this is appropriate to say in front of the dean of the university, then go for it. Try to picture this: The dean would have spoken to hundreds of other students before you got your turn. Now, you would not want to go over formal and bore the dean to death with your speech. Neither is your dean looking for a stand-up comedy show while talking to you. Hence, cut out on the parts that make your SOP over formal or over-friendly. Try to say something that will make your dean lightly chuckle while asserting how you are a serious candidate for the course.
Don’t create stories while telling your story
While writing the story of their lives, many amateurs lose track of what is real and what they wish was real. Do not make that mistake. Understand that the people who will review your SOP have been doing so for years and they are expert psychologists. It will take them not more than a second to spot a false applicant. These people have a knack for looking for relevant evidence in your story.
No not matter what you do, do not mention anything that has not happened to you in your SOP. Just because you think that you will enjoy learning new languages does not give you the license to write ‘I have a flair for learning new languages’ in your resume.
Address your problems in the story
No one is perfect and all of us learn some of our most important life lessons the hard way. The admission committee of any university is well aware of this and appreciates students who have the galls to rise to their flaws. Be it a gap in your academic life or a sudden stoop in your grades on a particular semester, dedicate a few lines in your story to explain what happened there.
Be honest when you tell your problem. Things like an emotional setback, loss of a family member or physical ailments are all valid reasons. Try to explain in a couple of lines how you overcame those challenges. This will project you as a mature induvial and increase your chances of bagging the coveted university seat.
Keep it straightforward
While drafting your SOP make sure you keep it to the point focussing on what is important in terms of your application to study abroad. In the process of personalizing the SOP avoid making it too exhaustive or inputting unnecessary details. Remember to keep your SOP straightforward and simple to attract the eye of the admission committee.
By now you would have realized that for a good statement of purpose, how you say things is just as important as what you say. Understanding the importance of an SOP in one’s academic career, you would not want to take chances with its quality.
Drafting a good SOP that shows up your learning journey, focuses on crucial points and does not miss out on anything critical along with being easy to read and error free requires a great level of commitment. Taking help from professional writers to write your SOP for application to study abroad is a wise decision.
Looking for the best & professional SOP writing firm?
Connect with Write Right – the leading SOP writing service provider in the country with over 1000+ SOPS successfully delivered. Its founder, Bhavik Sarkhedi personally engages with each client to understand what his or her core strengths and weakness are, that can help draft a perfect SOP. His team then coordinates and writes a compelling SOP that is unique to the individual and catches the attention of the university admission committee chosen for the application.