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    (Original post by blissy)
    What was it? Purely out of interest!
    It was an indirect quote from Bertrand Russell's autobiography, where he was advising future philosophy students. He basically made two points (paraphrasing):

    1) To always follow the logic, wherever it take you.
    2) To never be put off by those who disparage you; if anything it shows you're onto something really good.

    I kinda wove it in, trying not to make a big "look at my clever, fancy quote" type thing. I took it as a basis for a lot of my PS, linking it to a lot of my other points about the specifics of the disciplines (I applied for PPE).

    I thought it worked out alright, but that said, I didn't get in!
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    (Original post by trev1122)
    To make your personal statement stand out, you should say about how much you like the subject and your outside of school activities.
    But doesn't everyone do that?
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    If everyone does it, then surely that's a reason to write about those things too? Love of the subject you're applying for and what you do other than studying seem to be fairly central to a Personal Statement, and other than letting the Admissions Tutor know that you broke your neck and back saving a puppy from the wheels of a 10-tonne lorry the day before your AS exams but still got 5 As / insert relevant special situation here, what else is there to talk about?
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    (Original post by Miss_Tiddly)
    If everyone does it, then surely that's a reason to write about those things too? Love of the subject you're applying for and what you do other than studying seem to be fairly central to a Personal Statement, and other than letting the Admissions Tutor know that you broke your neck and back saving a puppy from the wheels of a 10-tonne lorry the day before your AS exams but still got 5 As / insert relevant special situation here, what else is there to talk about?
    Yes, those things are central and you should definitely write about them. However, you aren't going to "stand out" because of them because, well, as you say, everyone does them.
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    Why not shove in Martin Luther King's speech?
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    That'd be good too, but it might take up your 47 lines, and that would be a shame. Someone's probably already done it, anyway. Whilst mentioning how they spent one summer holiday as a volunteer in Mother Teresa's convent

    Who would have guessed that the world of Personal Statements would be such a goldmine for cynics?!

    Anyway, to give a verrrrrry generalised response it's not just what you say, it's how you say it that will make you stand out.
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    While applying to Psychology I decided to include a study which I thought would be appropriate to include in describing my interest in the subject.

    'My area of most interest is Developmental Psychology. A specific study which made an impact on me in Developmental Psychology is Bandura, Ross and Ross’s study (1961) on transmission of aggression through imitation of aggressive models. Learning through imitation as looked at in this study is a concept many people would want to take into account. Studying Psychology can clearly make you much more aware of not only personal responses but how and why others respond and behave in our society.'

    I got 6 offers - so i hope this para made some difference!
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    Ugh quotes.

    I was going to use one, but then thought that admissions officers have to read the most inane quotes sometimes, and that it would be fresher just to include my own quotes...

    "Adaptability, creative thinking and the application of technology are now intrinsic to managing businesses. I have developed these principles and enjoyed the spectrum of sixth form study that has taught me to approach problems from different political, economical and psychological perspectives."

    For example. Being able to automatically link a phrase/quote is important.
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    (Original post by PublicSchoolAnn)
    Did you have anything in your personal statement that really stood out in particular and made you really confident about it?
    Thanks
    The tutor at Durham asked if I wrote my personal statement myself, because it was one of the best he had ever read.
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    and from this we learn?
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    (Original post by hornblower)
    The tutor at Durham asked if I wrote my personal statement myself, because it was one of the best he had ever read.
    What a nice compliment :-)
    And if you don't mind my asking - what exactly did you write to make it so outstanding?
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    (Original post by PublicSchoolAnn)
    Did you have anything in your personal statement that really stood out in particular and made you really confident about it?
    Thanks
    I wrote it in the blood of the last admissions tutor to reject me....
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    (Original post by Pemberley_1813)
    What a nice compliment :-)
    And if you don't mind my asking - what exactly did you write to make it so outstanding?
    I blew my own trumpet. I wanted to stand out, so I sold myself as well as I could. I told the truth - about my academic strength and my all-roundedness, in a literary piece that was well put together.
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    I re-read mine the other day. Twas quite impressed with myself too
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    Yeah me as well funnily enough
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    i cant even remeber what i finally put in mine!!!! that'll be funny to read in a few years time!!!!
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    (Original post by hornblower)
    The tutor at Durham asked if I wrote my personal statement myself, because it was one of the best he had ever read.
    Same here in all the places I went including my college. Though all the people from my college that apply are foreign and don't have as much grasp at English as I do (I don't mean that in a bad way, I have to make hand gestures and most assume you speak cantonese etc).

    I also used a quote in mine, however it related back to what I first said,

    It’s all about the headline. It’s about getting your point across in the most direct way you can. These personal statements are very good example of this, in just a few lines I have to get my message of why I want do a degree in Journalism across to my prospective universities. That is one of the reasons why I love to write, the challenge of putting over a complex thought or concept to a large audience of people and convey it in such a way everybody will understand it. As the great writer Hemingway once said, “My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way.”

    that's my first paragraph, and with 5 outta 6, four of which unconditionals, I think it worked
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    (Original post by PublicSchoolAnn)
    Did you have anything in your personal statement that really stood out in particular and made you really confident about it?
    Thanks
    personally i think mine was rubbish compared to some others i read by friends, but i managed to get offers so i guess it was ok.

    as other people have suggested, i also used a quote, but it was really short & at the beginning in italics, to make it stand out. i wanted a snappy start.
    it was something like :
    geog is essential as it is ultimately 'the study of the world in which we live' - professor somebody or other.
    sounds a bit naf, i know, but what i kept writing to say how great geog was sounded worse.

    you do have to 'blow your own trumpet' as they say, i know its difficult & you cringe when you read it through, but it has to be done!
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    I used "History is the propaganda of the victors" then went on to say how I am interested in the historical movement to redress the balance (i.e. feminism really but was too woosy to say it straight). I cringe at a typo I made when saying about playing netball.
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    I wrote about how much I loved the subjects, rather than following the UCAS formula. It was just me, rather than an exercise in ticking boxes and that was what I loved about it. I didn't do badly, either - offers from Oxford, Warwick, Bath, Durham, York and Bristol. Don't write anything you feel embarrassed by.
 
 
 

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