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Which Question Should I Choose for the Common App?

Dear Jodi:
Is it better to answer one of the Common App questions or pick “topic of your choice”?
Monica M.

Dear Monica,

And Dear New Seniors Everywhere:  as if having to study for another go at the SAT isn’t enough fun in itself!  Time to organize and submit college applications.

The personal essay is important, so leave yourself a lot of time for several revisions. This is the school’s opportunity to really hear your voice; almost everything else they’re assessing comes in the form of a number or an evaluation based on someone else’s perspective. The personal essay gives you a chance to show who you are, to convey your personality and your point of view, so take advantage of it.  Remember that good writing is specific, visual when possible, and lean.

As you may know, the Common App offers six essay prompts, including “Topic of your choice.”  Any of the six will be as well received as the others if you submit a well written essay that doesn’t sound generic or false.

Click here to see what About.com has to say about each of the options.

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