How to get your personal statement sorted fast

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In a rush to write your university application? We can help you get a move on

Writing your personal statement can take longer than you’d like – it's easy to spend ages trying to make it the best it can be. 

But it’s possible to write your statement quickly without sacrificing the quality. You can speed up the writing process by having a clear structure and a solid idea of what universities are looking for. 

Here’s our advice for writing an impressive personal statement in no time.

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Is Ucas getting rid of personal statements?

At the start of 2023, Ucas announced plans to replace the current personal statement where applicants are asked to write up to 47 lines (or 4,000 characters) to support their application. 

Instead, applicants would provide written answers to some questions about their plans to study at university.

But the planned changes to the current personal statement stage will not happen until 2025 at the earliest.

So anyone submitting an application to start university in 2024 or 2025 will still need to write a personal statement in the existing format.

You can find out more about the proposed changes to personal statements over on The Uni Guide.

Can you write a personal statement in one day?

While it's probably less pressure to give yourself time to plan your personal statement, you could write it in one day if you wanted to – hopefully not the day before the application deadline though! 

If you’re really pressed for time, head over to The Uni Guide to find out how to write your personal statement in an evening. Following instructions in the article, you can go from start to finish in as little as four hours. 

One of the main tricks for writing a quick personal statement is following a plan. This article on The Uni Guide shows you how to write an excellent personal statement in 10 steps, so you don’t have to spend time wondering what to do next.

What should you write about?

For your personal statement, you’ll basically be explaining why you’d be a great student on the course you’re applying for. But what if you’ve never studied the subject before, or if you don’t have any work experience to talk about? 

Thankfully, universities aren’t expecting you to be an expert – you just need to think about your experience and goals in the right way. This article on The Uni Guide shows you how to write your personal statement when you have nothing interesting to say

Getting started can be tough, but it could help to write some notes about your reasons for choosing the course and why you would be a good fit for it.

After that, you can sort those notes into a rough first draft. For some extra help putting your ideas together, take a look at our tips on writing a personal statement that universities will love.

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What is a good example of a personal statement?

If you’re still struggling to write something, you could get some inspiration by looking at some examples of personal statements – we've got a huge collection of real personal statements written by university applicants.

Looking at examples of personal statements can give you a good idea of what to write about, but it's important to be original. Ucas uses plagiarism software to check the similarity between submitted personal statements – and ones published online.

As applicants have likely had limited experiences so far, some submissions can look identical.

But if you keep an eye on this, it shouldn’t be a problem. You can find out how to avoid plagiarism when writing your personal statement on The Uni Guide.

To get expert advice from universities on writing a subject-specific personal statement, head over to The Uni Guide using the links below.

If you aren’t applying for one of these subjects but you still want insider tips from universities, admissions staff reveal what makes a personal statement stand out over on The Uni Guide.

Also on The Uni Guide, you can find teacher secrets for writing a great personal statement.

Does a personal statement need an ending?

You’re almost done, phew! But there’s just one final hurdle to jump over: how should you finish your personal statement?

It could be worth concluding with why the universities would benefit from having you as a student – but keep it short and simple. How you close your personal statement can leave an impression on admissions tutors.

To help you go out with a bang, experts from universities across the UK shared valuable tips on how to end your personal statement with The Uni Guide.

And once you’re finished, you can add your personal statement to our library – it could help lots of students with their university applications in the future. You can find out how to upload it here.

Make sure you wait until your application is complete and your place confirmed before you share your personal statement though. Otherwise Ucas might see it online and think you've plagiarised.

Got a question about your personal statement?

If there’s still something you’re unsure about, we've gone through some of the most commonly asked personal statement questions and put all the answers on The Uni Guide.

Some of the topics covered in that article include the most important part of your statement, what to do after you’ve written it and if you should mention your qualifications.

And if you can't find an answer to your question there, try posting it on our personal statements forum.

Ask a question in the Personal Statement Advice forum
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