THE TOP 10 DO’S AND DON’TS FOR WRITING PERSONAL STATEMENTS 撰写个人陈述时的“十要”和“十不要”

TOP 10 RULES TO WRITE BY

  1. DO strive for depth rather than breadth: narrow your focus to one or two themes, ideas, or experiences.
  2. DO tell the reader what no other applicant will honestly be able to say.
  3. DO provide the reader with insight into what drives you – i.e., what make you “tick.”
  4. DO be yourself rather than pretending to be the “ideal” applicant.
  5. DO get creative and imaginative, particularly in your opening remarks.
  6. DO address the particular school’s unique features that attract you.
  7. DO focus on the affirmative in the personal statement itself; consider an addendum to explain deficiencies or blemishes.
  8. DO evaluate your experiences rather than merely recounting them.
  9. DO enlist others to proofread your essay for grammar, syntax, punctuation, word usage, and style.
  10. DO use a highly readable typeface with conventional spacing and margins (on paper-based applications).

TOP 10 PERSONAL STATEMENT PITFALLS

  1. DON’T submit an expository resume; avoid merely repeating information already provided elsewhere in your application.
  2. DON’T complain or whine about the “system” or about your circumstances in life; however, constructive criticism is fine as long as it relates directly to your career goals.
  3. DON’T get on a soapbox and preach to the reader; while expressing your values and opinions is fine, avoid coming across as fanatical or extreme.
  4. DON’T talk about money as a motivating factor in your plans for the future.
  5. DON’T discuss your minority status or disadvantaged background unless you have a compelling and unique story that relates directly to it.
  6. DON’T remind the school of its ranking among the various programs of its type.
  7. DON’T waste your personal statement opportunity with a hackneyed introduction or conclusion.
  8. DON’T use a gimmicky style or format, and keep your writing formal as opposed to casual or bloglike.
  9. DON’T submit supplemental materials or refer to online supplements unless the school requests that you do so.
  10. DON’T get the name of the school wrong.

//原文摘自 HOW TO WRITE THE PERFECT PERSONAL STATEMENT (4th Edition), PETERSON’S.

//以下是本人提供的中文翻译:

「十条基本规则」

  1. 追求深度而非广度:把你的重心放在一到两个主题、想法或是经历上。
  2. 你需要告诉读者的,应当是(你独有的而)其他申请者不能够表达的信息。
  3. 向读者展示为你提供动力的源泉。
  4. 做好你自己,而不是假装成为一个“理想化的”申请者。
  5. 试图更具有创造力和想象力,尤其是在开放式的个人陈述中。
  6. 陈述该学校吸引你的理由,可以谈谈它的独到之处。
  7. 在个人陈述中着重强调正面的部分;至于缺点和不足,如果有必要,可以在附录中体现。
  8. 审慎地评估你的经历,而不是仅仅把它们列举出来。
  9. 让别人帮助你校对文章的语法、格式、标点符号、遣词造句和行文风格。
  10. 使用可读性高的字体,以及符合传统的字符间距和边距。(对纸质申请而言)

「十条潜在的错误」

  1. 不要让你的个人陈述变成一本流水账;如果某一方面的内容在申请材料的其他部分已经有所体现了,你就没有必要在个人陈述中重复。
  2. 对生活环境的抱怨,甚至无病呻吟,是毫无意义的。不过,只要环境对你的职业规划有直接影响,那么建设性的批判是允许的。
  3. 避免对读者喋喋不休;尽管我们鼓励你表达自己的价值观和个人想法,但是言辞太极端的话会适得其反。
  4. 不要把金钱归为你未来规划中的关键因素。
  5. 除非你在克服某个困难的过程中有让人眼前一亮的故事,否则没有必要花大篇幅讨论自己背景上的缺陷。
  6. 不要在陈述中提到该学校的专业排名。
  7. 文章的开头和结尾,尽量避免各种套话,否则对个人陈述而言是一种极大的浪费。
  8. 新颖的行文风格和排版格式有时候效果并不好,最好让你的陈述显得很正式,而不是像博客体那样随便。
  9. 如果学校没有要求你递交额外的背景资料,你就没有必要这么做。
  10. 千万别把学校的名字搞错了。

 

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Posted on 2011年08月1日, in 渡僧桥. Bookmark the permalink. 留下评论.

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