What should I do to look appealing on personal statement?

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Hiro2468
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#1
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#1
In year 12 and the whole plan was to just do internships, work experience etc to gain more experience in what I'm thinking of doing in the future and to show Unis that I'm interested.

That plan has gone down the drain and now I'm worried that I have nothing to talk about in my personal statement since the whole virus situation happened. I was thinking of doing those free online courses for the degree I was thinking of, but would that be fine to do? I mean I can't do work experiences/internships so that's the next best thing I could think of.

Any advice please?
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PetitePanda
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#2
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#2
Unless it’s vocational courses, work experience and internships aren’t really great for personal statements because what you did is practical aspects rather than academic but you could talk about them I guess in why you want to do that degree as a long term goal. However, Further reading, online lectures, TED talks, subject competitions, EPQ, moocs, academic reports are things you could also do. Online courses are fine to do as long as you can talk about it in your personal statement.
Last edited by PetitePanda; 2 years ago
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Hiro2468
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#3
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#3
(Original post by PetitePanda)
Unless it’s vocational courses, work experience and internships aren’t really great for personal statements because what you did is practical aspects rather than academic but you could talk about them I guess in why you want to do that degree as a long term goal. However, Further reading, online lectures, TED talks, subject competitions, EPQ, moocs, academic reports are things you could also do. Online courses are fine to do as long as you can talk about it in your personal statement.
Thank you so much for your advice! I thought work experience/internships would look good on your ucas because I thought it'd showed that you're actively putting yourself in what your interested in? I thought I could've talked about my experiences or what I'd learned. What is wrong about mentioning practical aspects please?

I'll take advantage of this lockdown and try do everything you mentioned, although my EPQ is not about the course I'm thinking of doing in Uni. Would that be a problem?

Thank you again for your advice!
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PetitePanda
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#4
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#4
(Original post by Hiro2468)
Thank you so much for your advice! I thought work experience/internships would look good on your ucas because I thought it'd showed that you're actively putting yourself in what your interested in? I thought I could've talked about my experiences or what I'd learned. What is wrong about mentioning practical aspects please?

I'll take advantage of this lockdown and try do everything you mentioned, although my EPQ is not about the course I'm thinking of doing in Uni. Would that be a problem?

Thank you again for your advice!
It does look good but it depends on how you use that. Yes talking about your experiences and what you learn is great but you should always make sure it links to the course, especially if its an academic course. I just don't see why one would talk about the practical aspects unless it was for science or a vocational subject. I put this in the perspective of myself as someone who wants to do social science, which is an academic subject so take the law, work experience would be good to why I would want to do a law degree but I shouldn't focus on the lawyer aspects because practising law is different to study law since practical law is more experience and procedures you have to go through and etc (may be wrong in this because I'm not a lawyer) than academic law which looks at the theories and more controversial law (also not sure exactly but they are different). So if you know how you can link in your personal statement its good if you still have a focus on what kind of course it is. I just, in my personal statement, would rather put further reading or whatever I will do in than work experience since I want to focus on the modules I want to do at uni; I would only want to do work experience if I wanted to do law as a job rather to help with my personal statement. No it wouldn't be a problem because you can still talk about the skills you've gained through it and how that makes you a good candidate for your course
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Hiro2468
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#5
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#5
(Original post by PetitePanda)
It does look good but it depends on how you use that. Yes talking about your experiences and what you learn is great but you should always make sure it links to the course, especially if its an academic course. I just don't see why one would talk about the practical aspects unless it was for science or a vocational subject. I put this in the perspective of myself as someone who wants to do social science, which is an academic subject so take the law, work experience would be good to why I would want to do a law degree but I shouldn't focus on the lawyer aspects because practising law is different to study law since practical law is more experience and procedures you have to go through and etc (may be wrong in this because I'm not a lawyer) than academic law which looks at the theories and more controversial law (also not sure exactly but they are different). So if you know how you can link in your personal statement its good if you still have a focus on what kind of course it is. I just, in my personal statement, would rather put further reading or whatever I will do in than work experience since I want to focus on the modules I want to do at uni; I would only want to do work experience if I wanted to do law as a job rather to help with my personal statement. No it wouldn't be a problem because you can still talk about the skills you've gained through it and how that makes you a good candidate for your course
Honestly thank you so much!! I understand now what you mean. I too want to apply for a social science (accounting&finance) so by further reading, what do you mean? Or like what sort of books should I read if I have no proper knowledge of what accounting is?

Would you also recommend I look at the type of modules the Unis will teach and try do my further reading basee around that?
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The University of Law Students
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#6
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#6
Hiro2468

Hi,

I would suggest reading a book about your degree of interest- you can simply google or go on Amazon and search Accounting & Finance book and pick one of the recommended/ best sellers! Then in your personal statement, say that you’ve read it and what it has done for you e.g. furthered your interest in the subject (you can be more specific and give an example in the book). Universities also love to know that you are interested in the career as well as the subject itself as it shows your dedication.

Obviously a great way to add to your personal statement would be work experience but it is probably very difficult right now! I think universities will bare this in mind.

Maybe try and think of other ways in showing your interest in the subject, for example are there any talks you can attend (maybe online ones?), are there any published articles or day courses (again could possibly be online ones) that you can do... it’s all about showing your interest in the topic.

I study law, and when writing my personal statement, I included that I had read a book and how it gave me a better understanding of how the law works. I also attended courts and sat in on cases, and I had some work experience at a free legal advice centre. But don’t over stress yourself; universities don’t expect you to have tons of work experience already!

I hope this has helped :-)
Tasha
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PetitePanda
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#7
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#7
(Original post by Hiro2468)
Honestly thank you so much!! I understand now what you mean. I too want to apply for a social science (accounting&finance) so by further reading, what do you mean? Or like what sort of books should I read if I have no proper knowledge of what accounting is?

Would you also recommend I look at the type of modules the Unis will teach and try do my further reading basee around that?
By further reading, I mean books about accounting/ finance. I suggest you make a post on the forum on accounting/ finance uni courses. Yes I defo recommend after you have a basic understanding of the course and it also shows you have researched about the course. Maybe essay competitions unless they aren't your thing - tbh I havent found some but I'll tag you if I do
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Hiro2468
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#8
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#8
(Original post by The University of Law Students)
Hiro2468

Hi,

I would suggest reading a book about your degree of interest- you can simply google or go on Amazon and search Accounting & Finance book and pick one of the recommended/ best sellers! Then in your personal statement, say that you’ve read it and what it has done for you e.g. furthered your interest in the subject (you can be more specific and give an example in the book). Universities also love to know that you are interested in the career as well as the subject itself as it shows your dedication.

Obviously a great way to add to your personal statement would be work experience but it is probably very difficult right now! I think universities will bare this in mind.

Maybe try and think of other ways in showing your interest in the subject, for example are there any talks you can attend (maybe online ones?), are there any published articles or day courses (again could possibly be online ones) that you can do... it’s all about showing your interest in the topic.

I study law, and when writing my personal statement, I included that I had read a book and how it gave me a better understanding of how the law works. I also attended courts and sat in on cases, and I had some work experience at a free legal advice centre. But don’t over stress yourself; universities don’t expect you to have tons of work experience already!

I hope this has helped :-)
Tasha
Thank you so much for your help! You've really helped! I've searched up some accounting&finance books for beginners if that would be okay since I'm not knowledgeable in the course. Would reading beginner books be okay?

I've read from some on the internet that IT skills are important in accounting jobs especially if you're good at excel. Should I do an online course on how to use excel for accounting? Or can I mention on my personal statement that I've been watching videos about excel and how vital learning how to use excel is?
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PQ
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#9
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#9
(Original post by Hiro2468)
Thank you so much for your help! You've really helped! I've searched up some accounting&finance books for beginners if that would be okay since I'm not knowledgeable in the course. Would reading beginner books be okay?

I've read from some on the internet that IT skills are important in accounting jobs especially if you're good at excel. Should I do an online course on how to use excel for accounting? Or can I mention on my personal statement that I've been watching videos about excel and how vital learning how to use excel is?
Don’t get too tied up in buying books - your local library or looking at websites/blogs is a better bet than spending money on a book that you might find boring!

Before you get too tangled up in anything specific your FIRST piece of reading is to read the details of the course content, modules and topics for each of your universities. Make some notes about which topics are covered by all of them and which topics you think sound interesting then read up more about those specific topics. Try to find online lectures or moocs on those topics or podcasts or documentaries about them.

Follow your interests. And take a few notes about everything you read or listen to or watch. Note down things that are interesting, things you want to find out more about, things that surprise you and things you don’t quite understand yet.

Your PS needs to show your PERSONAL interests and understanding of what the degree you’re applying to involves and staff are looking for genuine enthusiasm and motivation for the subject. That’s hard to fake but easy to demonstrate if you’re genuine interested and happy to find out more about your subject in your free time.
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The University of Law Students
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#10
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#10
Hiro2468

No worries at all! One book would be plenty, and yes a beginners one would be ideal! It’s just to show your interest and that you’re going the extra mile than others.

An online IT course would probably make you stand out even more so is a very good idea! Have a look at free online courses. If there aren’t any, you can just teach yourself from youtube and figuring it out on your own etc., it doesn’t have to be expensive

You sound very determined already and I’m sure it will come across in your personal statement :-)
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