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What to include in a Personal Statement

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Personal Statement Tips

Nail your uni application with our personal statement examples.

Discover personal statements by subject, from A to Z. Find inspiration for your own application with these successful personal statement examples from real students.

A-Z of Personal Statements

Learn from previous student personal statements here. We have collated over 700 personal statement examples to help you on your university journey and to help you with how to write a personal statement.

These personal statement examples will show you the kind of thing that universities are looking for from their applicants. See how to structure your personal statement, what kind of format your personal statement should be in, what to write in a personal statement and the key areas to touch on in your statement.

A personal statement is a chance to tell your university all about you - a good personal statement is one that showcases your passion for the subject, what inspired you to apply for the course you’re applying for and why you think you would be an asset to the university.

Our collection includes personal statement examples in Mathematics, Anthropology, Accounting, Computer Science, Zoology and more.

Writing a personal statement has never been easier with our vast collection of personal statement examples.

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Personal Statement Help

What is a personal statement.

A personal statement is an essay written by a student applying to either a college or university. A personal statement is written and then uploaded to UCAS and is then attached to any university applications that the student may then make.

If you need more information check out our personal statement advice articles .

How to write a personal statement

There isn't a clearly defined personal statement template for you to use as each person's statement is different.

When it comes to writing a personal statement for universities, your personal statement should touch on your passions, your interest in the course, why you're applying for the course and why you would be an asset to the university you're applying to.

Talk about the clubs and societies that you belong to, any work experience you may have and any awards you might have won.

If you're still looking for information check out our article on how to write a personal statement .

How to start a personal statement

When it comes to starting your personal statement, the best thing to do is to be succinct and to have enough tantalising information to keep the reader informed and eager for more.

Your introduction should touch on your personal qualities and why you are applying for the subject you're applying for. Keeping things short and sweet means that it also allows you to break your personal statement up, which makes it easier for the reader.

We have plenty of advice for students that are wondering about what to include in a personal statement .

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How to Write a UCAS Personal Statement [With Examples]

personal statement template uk

James is senior content marketing manager at BridgeU. He writes and directs content for BridgeU's university partners and our community of international schools

What are the big challenges students should be aware of before writing their UCAS Personal Statement?

  • The essential ingredients for writing a great Personal Statement
  • How to write the UCAS Personal Statement [with examples]

Final hints & tips to help your students

Join 10,000 other counsellors & educators & get exclusive resources delivered straight to your inbox.

The UCAS Personal Statement can sometimes be a student’s only chance to impress a UK university. Read our in-depth guide to helping your students plan & write a winning application.

There are hundreds of articles out there on how to write a UCAS Personal Statement that will grab the attention of a UK university admissions officer.  

But if you’re working with students to help them perfect their Personal Statement in time for the  relevant UCAS deadlines , we can sum up the secret to success in three words.

Planning, structure and story. 

The UCAS Personal Statement is a student’s chance to talk about why they want to study for a particular degree, course or subject discipline at a UK university. 

As they set about writing a personal statement, students need to demonstrate the drive, ambition, relevant skills and notable achievements that make them a  suitable candidate for the universities they have chosen to apply to . 

But the UCAS Personal Statement requires students to write a lot about themselves in a relatively short space of time. That’s why lots of planning, a tight structure and a compelling story are essential if a student’s Personal Statement is to truly excel. 

As important deadlines for UK university applications grow closer, we at BridgeU have put together a guide, outlining some of the strategies and techniques to help your students to write a personal statement which is both engaging and truly individual.

Handpicked Related Content

Discover the simple steps that will boost the confidence of your native English speaking & ESL students alike in  University Application Essays: The 5 Secrets of Successful Writing .

As they begin to plan their Personal Statement, students may feel intimidated. It’s not easy to summarise your academic interests and personal ambitions, especially when you’re competing for a place on a course which is popular or has demanding entry requirements. In particular, students will likely come up against the following challenges.

Time pressure

Unfortunately, the Personal Statement (and other aspects of university preparation) comes during the busiest year of the student’s academic life so far.

Students, and indeed teachers and counsellors, must undertake the planning and writing of the personal statement whilst juggling other commitments, classes and deadlines, not to mention revision and open day visits!

Because there is already a lot of academic pressure on students in their final year of secondary school, finding the time and headspace for the personal statement can be hard, and can mean it gets pushed to the last minute. The risks of leaving it to the last minute are fairly obvious – the application will seem rushed and the necessary thought and planning won’t go into  making the personal statement the best it can be . 

Sticking closely to the Personal Statement format

The character limit which UCAS sets for the personal statement is very strict – up to 4,000 characters of text. This means that students have to express themselves in a clear and concise way; it’s also important that they don’t feel the need to fill the available space needlessly.  Planning and redrafting of a personal statement is essential .

Making it stand out

This is arguably the greatest challenge facing students – making sure that their statement sets them apart from everyone else who is competing for a place on any given course; in 2022 alone, UCAS received applications from 683,650 applicants (+1.6k on 2021) students. In addition, UCAS uses its own dedicated team and purpose built software to check every application for plagiarism, so it’s crucial that students craft a truly  original personal statement which is entirely their own work .

The essential ingredients for writing a great UCAS Personal Statement 

We’ve already mentioned our three watch words for writing a high quality Personal Statement.

Planning. Structure. Story. 

Let’s dig deeper into these three essential components in more detail.

Watch: How to Write a UCAS Personal Statement with University of Essex

Planning a ucas personal statement.

It might sound like a no-brainer, but it’s vital that students plan their Personal Statement before they start writing it. Specifically, the planning phase could include: 

  • Students thoroughly researching the UK university courses they plan on applying to. 
  • Deciding on what relevant material to include in their Personal Statement (we’ll cover this in more detail later on). 
  • Writing an unedited first draft where they just get their thoughts and ideas down on paper. 

Structuring a UCAS Personal Statement

As we’ve discussed, the UCAS Personal Statement requires students to be extremely disciplined – they will be required to condense a lot of information into a relatively short written statement. This means that, after they’ve written a rough first draft, they need to think carefully about how they structure the final statement. 

A stand out Personal Statement will need a tight structure, with an introduction and a conclusion that make an impact and really help to tell a story about who your student is, and why they are drawn to studying this particular degree. 

This brings us nicely to our third and final ingredient…

Telling a story with a Personal Statement

The UCAS Personal Statement is a student’s opportunity to show a university who they are and how their life experiences have shaped their academic interests and goals. 

So a good Personal Statement needs to offer a compelling narrative, and that means making sure that a student’s writing is well-structured, and that every sentence and paragraph is serving the statement’s ultimate purpose –  to convince a university that your student deserves a place on their subject of choice. 

How to help your students start their UCAS Personal Statement

In order to ensure that a personal statement is delivered on time and to an appropriate standard, it’s essential to plan thoroughly before writing it. Here are some questions you can ask your students before they start writing:

How can you demonstrate a formative interest in your subject?

It may sound obvious but, in order for any UCAS personal statement to have the necessary structure and clarity, students need to think hard about why they want to study their chosen subject. Ask them to think about their responses to the following questions:

What inspired you to study your chosen subject?

Example answer:  My desire to understand the nature of reality has inspired me to apply for Physics and Philosophy

Was there a formative moment when your perspective on this subject changed, or when you decided you wanted to study this subject in more detail?

Example answer:  My interest in philosophy was awakened when I questioned my childhood religious beliefs; reading Blackburn’s “Think”, convinced me to scrutinise my assumptions about the world, and to ensure I could justify my beliefs.

Can you point to any role models, leading thinkers, or notable literature which has in turn affected your thinking and/or inspired you?

Example answer :  The search for a theory of everything currently being conducted by physicists is of particular interest to me and in “The Grand Design” Hawking proposes a collection of string theories, dubbed M-theory, as the explanation of why the universe is the way it is.

Asking your students to think about the “why” behind their chosen subject discipline is a useful first step in helping them to organise their overall statement. Next, they need to be able to demonstrate evidence of their suitability for a course or degree. 

How have you demonstrated the skills and aptitudes necessary for your chosen course?

Encourage students to think about times where they have demonstrated the necessary skills to really stand out. It’s helpful to think about times when they have utilised these skills both inside and outside the classroom. Ask students to consider their responses to the following questions. 

Can you demonstrate critical and independent thinking around your chosen subject discipline?

Example answer :  Currently I am studying Maths and Economics in addition to Geography. Economics has been a valuable tool, providing the nuts and bolts to economic processes, and my geography has provided a spatial and temporal element.

Are you able to demonstrate skills and competencies which will be necessary for university study?

These include qualities such as teamwork, time management and the ability to organise workload responsibly.

Example answer:  This year I was selected to be captain of the 1st XV rugby team and Captain of Swimming which will allow me to further develop my leadership, teamwork and organisational skills.

How have your extracurricular activities helped prepare you for university?

Students may believe that their interests outside the classroom aren’t relevant to their university application. So encourage them to think about how their other interests can demonstrate the subject-related skills that universities are looking for in an application. Ask students to think about any of the following activities, and how they might be related back to the subject they are applying for.

  • Clubs/societies, or volunteering work which they can use to illustrate attributes such as teamwork, an interest in community service and the ability to manage their time proactively.
  • Have they been elected/nominated as a team captain, or the head of a particular club or society, which highlights leadership skills and an ability to project manage?
  • Can they point to any awards or prizes they may have won, whether it’s taking up a musical instrument, playing a sport, or participating in theatre/performing arts?
  • Have they achieved grades or qualifications as part of their extracurricular activities? These can only help to demonstrate aptitude and hard work. 

How to write the UCAS Personal Statement [with examples] 

If sufficient planning has gone into the personal statement, then your students should be ready to go!

In this next section, we’ll break down the individual components of the UCAS Personal Statement and share some useful examples.

These examples come from a Personal Statement in support of an application to study Environmental Science at a UK university. 

Watch: King’s College London explain what they’re looking for in a UCAS Personal Statement

Introduction.

This is the chance for an applying student to really grab an admission tutor’s attention. Students need to demonstrate both a personal passion for their subject, and explain why they have an aptitude for it .  This section is where students should begin to discuss any major influences or inspirations that have led them to this subject choice. 

Example :  My passion for the environment has perhaps come from the fact that I have lived in five different countries: France, England, Spain, Sweden and Costa Rica. Moving at the age of 15 from Sweden, a calm and organized country, to Costa Rica, a more diverse and slightly chaotic country, was a shock for me at first and took me out of my comfort zone […] Also, living in Costa Rica, one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, definitely helped me realize how vulnerable the world is and how we need to take care of it in a sustainable manner. 

This opening paragraph immediately grabs the reader’s attention by giving the reader an insight into this student’s background and links their academic interests with something specific from the student’s personal backstory. 

Discussing Academic Achievements 

The next paragraph in this Personal Statement discusses the student’s academic achievements. Because this student has had an international education, they frame their academic achievements in the context of their personal background. They also cite useful examples of other curricula they have studied and the grades they have achieved. 

Example : 

Throughout my academic life I have shown myself to be a responsible student as well as a hard working one, despite the fact that I have had to move around a lot. I have achieved several other accomplishments such as a high A (286/300) in AS Spanish at age 15, and also completed a Spanish course of secondary studies for ‘MEP’(Ministerio de Educacion Publica), which is a system from Costa Rica.   

You’ll notice that this student doesn’t just list their achievements – their strong academic performance is always linked back to a wider discussion of their personal experiences. 

Showcasing Extracurricular Activities

As well as discussing academic achievements, a good Personal Statement should also discuss the student’s extracurricular activities, and how they relate back to the student’s overall university aspirations. 

By the third/fourth paragraph of the Personal Statement, students should think about incorporating their extracurricular experiences, 

Another valuable experience was when my class spent a week at a beach called ‘Pacuare’ in order to help prevent the eggs of the endangered leatherback turtle from being stolen by poachers who go on to sell them like chicken eggs. We all gained teamwork experience, which was needed in order to hide the eggs silently without scaring the mother turtles, as well as making it more difficult for the poachers to find them. 

When the poachers set fire to one of the sustainable huts where we were staying, not only did I gain self-awareness about the critical situation of the world and its ecosystems, I also matured and became even more motivated to study environmental sciences at university.

This is a particularly striking example of using extracurricular activities to showcase a student’s wider passion for the degree subject they want to study. 

Not only does this Personal Statement have a story about volunteering to save an endangered species, it also illustrates this applicants’ wider worldview, and helps to explain their motivation for wanting to study Environmental Science. 

Concluding the UCAS Personal Statement

The conclusion to a UCAS Personal Statement will have to be concise, and will need to tie all of a student’s academic and extracurricular achievements. After all, a compelling story will need a great ending. 

Remember that students need to be mindful of the character limit of a Personal Statement, so a conclusion need only be the length of a small paragraph, or even a couple of sentences. 

“ After having many varied experiences, I truly think I can contribute to university in a positive way, and would love to study in England where I believe I would gain more skills and education doing a first degree than in any other country.  “

A good Personal Statement conclusion will end with an affirmation of how the student thinks they can contribute to university life, and why they believe the institution in question should accept them. Because the student in this example has a such a rich and varied international background, they also discuss the appeal of studying at university in England. 

It’s worth taking a quick look at a few other examples of how other students have chosen to conclude their Personal Statement. 

Medicine (Imperial College, London) 

Interest in Medicine aside, other enthusiasms of mine include languages, philosophy, and mythology. It is curiously fitting that in ancient Greek lore, healing was but one of the many arts Apollo presided over, alongside archery and music.   I firmly believe that a doctor should explore the world outside the field of  Medicine, and it is with such experiences that I hope to better empathise and connect with the patients I will care for in my medical career. 

You’ll notice that this example very specifically ties the students’ academic and extracurricular activities together, and ties the Personal Statement back to their values and beliefs. 

Economic History with Economics (London School of Economics)

The highlight of my extra-curricular activities has been my visit to Shanghai with the Lord Mayor’s trade delegation in September 2012. I was selected to give a speech at this world trade conference due to my interest in economic and social history. […] I particularly enjoyed the seminar format, and look forward to experiencing more of this at university. My keen interest and desire to further my knowledge of history and economics, I believe, would make the course ideal for me.

By contrast, this conclusion ties a memorable experience back to the specifics of how the student will be taught at the London School of Economics – specifically, the appeal of learning in seminar format! 

There’s no magic formula for concluding a Personal Statement. But you’ll see that what all of these examples have in common is that they tie a student’s personal and academic experiences together – and tell a university something about their aspirations for the future.

Watch: Bournemouth University explain how to structure a UCAS Personal Statement

personal statement template uk

Know the audience

It can be easy for students to forget that the person reading a personal statement is invariably an expert in their field. This is why an ability to convey passion and think critically about their chosen subject is essential for a personal statement to stand out. Admissions tutors will also look for students who can structure their writing (more on this below). 

Students should be themselves

Remember that many students are competing for places on a university degree against fierce competition. And don’t forget that UCAS has the means to spot plagiarism. So students need to create a truly honest and individual account of who they are, what they have achieved and, perhaps most importantly, why they are driven to study this particular subject.

Proof-read (then proof-read again!)

Time pressures mean that students can easily make mistakes with their Personal Statements. As the deadline grows closer, it’s vital that they are constantly checking and rechecking their writing and to ensure that shows them in the best possible light. 

Meanwhile, when it comes to giving feedback to students writing their Personal Statements, make sure you’re as honest and positive as possible in the days and weeks leading up to submission day. 

And make sure they remember the three key ingredients of writing a successful Personal Statement. 

Planning, structure and story! 

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UCAS personal statement examples

Having managed successfully to navigate through the 370,000 courses at over 370 providers across the UK, it is now time to make a start at drafting your personal statement.

Students often find this the most daunting of tasks within the application process. This guide will help you through putting together the statement that is going to help get you a place on your ideal course.

Knowing where to start and what to say to when setting out your reasons for applying and convincing the admissions tutor to offer you a place can be a challenge. Looking at examples of how other students have approached this can sometimes be helpful.

Example one

Things to consider when reading this example.

  • Consider the structure – what are your thoughts around this?
  • Think about spelling, grammar, and punctuation– how does this fare?
  • What course do you think this personal statement may have been for?

“The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others.” Mahatma Ghandi

From a young age this quote has inspired my chosen career path to become a children’s nurse. Being one of many siblings I have the role of supporting my nieces and nephews when they become ill and providing comfort. Working with children in my family has motivated along this career path as it has taught me to take responsibility in life, become more organised and mature.

I am currently undertaking a health and social care course. This course has given me insight into the different aspects of health care and its overarching infra structure. Caring for children and young people helped me gain an understanding of the risk that children and young people may be put in and the exploitative and abusive behaviour that they may encounter. We focused on the tragic case of Victoria Climbie. This brought home the significance of multi agency working.

I am committed to ensuring that children and young people in my care are safe,healthy, enjoying and achieving, economic well being and putting in a positive contribution. A core element of the course has been work placement, working with children. This came in very useful for me because it taught me how to deal with children at different ages and what I need to do in order to meet their needs. During this work experience I was responsible for supporting and maintaining the children’s hygiene needs and encouraging them with their speech. I learnt different approaches to meeting the needs of children; for example I was taught to talk the children in a calm, but stern tone of voice when they misbehaved and to use very positive gestures and praise when children listened and kept to task.

I consider myself as having very good communications skills I am able to reassure people positively in any circumstance, I am the committed to ensuring that children and young people in my care are safe and healthy and I am confident when dealing with both children and parents, For example when a child injured herself in the nursery I shadowed one of the senior staff while they administered first aid, it was then my responsibility to explain to the caregiver exactly what had occurred.

I take part in many activities which are helping me to become independent ad preparing me for my course that I want to take part in, in university; I presently volunteer in a nursery. I take part in planning and creating activities and I have a duty to observe the children throughout the day and then give feedback to the parents and carers.

I have many qualities which will be ideal for my future career path I am honest, patient and a reflective individual, this is something that I feel is most important when dealing with children and adolescents.

I have many hobbies that I carry out in my spare time. I have taken part in being a team leader to raise money for a charity that supports children who have been abused because I believe strongly in the cause. We raised awareness, held a campaign, fundraising and protest.

I also enjoy travel, I have visited countries such as Egypt, Eritrea, Holland, Germany and Italy - this has allowed me to explore the outside world and has given me a taste of different cultures and traditions; and ultimately giving me a better understanding of diversity.

I would like to be given the opportunity to study at university because I believe it will be the perfect platform to launch my career. Having the chance to study Paediatric Nursing at university will allow me to fulfil my career path and make a change to my life as I will feel that I am achieving new things on a day to day basis with what I am able to offer children and young people when it comes to having a positive impact on their health.

Being given the opportunity of Working in an environment with children daily would be my dream goal in life that I wish to achieve.

Example two

  • Thinking about the experiences gained from a gap year, how has this applicant drawn on these transferrable skills?
  • How does experience both in and outside the classroom environment relate to the chosen subject area?

I am a hardworking, talented and motivated young woman looking forward to studying at degree level and taking an active part in university life.

I have a keen interest in the world around me, and enjoy taking part in a variety of activities for example: volunteering at my local brownies, volunteer marshal at Brighton Marathon; textile and weaving classes; completion of the Trinity Guildhall award at both Bronze and Silver level; and a Stand Up Paddle board instructor. These activities, coupled with part time work whilst at sixth form college, have not only been enjoyable but have also helped me to develop skills in communication, organisational, leadership and interpersonal skills.

Although having been accepted to start university in 2014 (Primary Education) I realised that I was not ready to fully commit to the course and took the decision to gain some real life experience and reflect on what I really want from university and my future career.

Since leaving sixth-form college I have been working full time as a waitress/ bar assistant at a local hotel, which has been hard but interesting work demanding stamina, patience and an open mind. I have also secured 3 weeks work at a trade exhibition in New York, where I will have the chance to attend networking dinner and I plan to go inter-railing across Europe in Summer 2015. As a result of these experiences I am more self-assured and resilient. I am ready to commit to full time study and have much to contribute to university life.

I realise that I am most interested in people, what makes them the people they are and how this manifests in their behaviour and opinions.

I enjoyed studying sociology at A level and gaining an insight into how the study of sociology helps us to understand how society works. This coupled with my recent experience in the hospitality world and observation of the behaviour of those who use and manage the service, has fuelled my desire to study Sociology in depth at degree level. I am completely fascinated by the behaviour of others and why we act the way we do. I believe that studying sociology at degree level will allow me to begin to explore and understand aspects of human social behaviour, including the social dynamics of small groups of people, large organisations, communities, institutions and entire societies.

I believe that the skills and knowledge that I will accrue whilst studying will be applicable to a wide variety of careers and that is why I have chosen to study the topic at degree level.

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How to write a great personal statement

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Your personal statement is your opportunity to tell us more about yourself and why you are interested in studying your chosen subject. In this article, we offer you some tips and advice on how to start building your personal statement and make the best impression with your application.

Where to start

Don’t let the blank page put you off. Just start writing and try not to overthink it - you can always change and refine your statement later.

You might want to begin by thinking about the following questions to help you make a list of what to include:

  • What do I know about the course and its modules?
  • Why do I want to study the subject?
  • What do I like about the subject?
  • What do I already know?
  • What have I read, watched or attended that is relevant to the subject?
  • What excites me about the subject?
  • What are my academic strengths?
  • What makes me a good fit for studying this course?

Start turning your list into sentences. Think about how each thing in your list relates to your subject, and start to form concise sentences. Aim to organise the sentences into paragraphs and form a logical structure to make a case for your suitability for the course.

Aim for one idea per sentence, and one major theme per paragraph. If you can, try to tie it all together with common themes and ideas. For example, you may have learned a topic during your A Levels, then read a book about it and independently researched more about the theory, which sparked some ideas and questions of your own. You may have read a number of books on a similar theme - think about any parallels or contrasts between them.

Image captions

personal statement template uk

Draft, draft, draft

Get everything down on paper first. Then go back to draft and start to rework it. Don’t let your personal statement become a long list of ideas – that was your starting point. Think about the most important points you’ve made, and work on developing those. Remember that sometimes, less is more. At this point, you may have to delete whole sections, so don’t become too attached to what you have written.

When working on your draft, try to be clear and concise – remember, you only have limited space.

personal statement template uk

The beginning at the end

Often it’s easier to write the main body of your statement first, and come back to the opening later. The first sentence should really show your enthusiasm for the course, so talk about something that excites you.

In conclusion…

Don’t forget your conclusion. Try to tie everything together at the end, and finish on a positive note that leaves the admissions tutor with a positive impression. If you approach your personal statement as a short academic essay about yourself and your motivations, we should be left with a clear sense of where your passion lies and your suitability for the course.

Check before you submit

Before you submit your application, it’s a good idea to carefully proof your personal statement and to share it with someone else – that could be a family member, friend or teacher. You don’t always have to follow their advice, it’s personal after all, but you may find that they have some good ideas and they might spot mistakes you’ve missed.

personal statement template uk

  • Show your passion, don’t just tell us.
  • Be yourself and sound like yourself – you don’t have to use the thesaurus for every word!
  • Make sure you can talk about everything in your personal statement in detail, as you’ll be asked about it at your interview.
  • Link any extra-curricular activities to your study – maybe your part time job taught you time management or communication skills.
  • Make sure it relates to the course you have applied for.
  • Check your spelling and grammar, and use clear, plain English.
  • Avoid sweeping, general statements, make every word count.

Watch this video from UCAS for some more great tips to get you started:

If you choose to apply to cambridge, we can’t wait to find out all about you.

personal statement template uk

The information in this article is correct at the time of publishing. Last reviewed July 2023. For more information about applying to the University of Cambridge, visit our website .

British Council

How to write a personal statement for a uk university, by kathryn abell, 19 october 2015 - 05:11.

'Your opening paragraph could start in a variety of ways of course, but the fundamental purpose is to grab the reader’s interest.' Photo (c) Mat Wright

Kathryn Abell of  Edukonexion  shares some tips.

When applying to a UK university, the discovery that school grades alone are not enough to gain entry onto the programme of your choice can come as an unwelcome surprise. This is especially true for international students, many of whom see the words 'personal statement' for the first time when starting their university application.

But far from being a barrier, the personal statement is, in fact, one of the stepping stones to achieving your goal of studying at a UK university.

A personal statement can help you stand out

If you have selected your study programme well – that is to say, you have chosen something that you are truly excited about that matches your academic profile – then the personal statement is simply a way to communicate to admissions tutors why you are interested in the programme and what you can bring to it. And given the fact that many universities receive multiple applications for each available place, and that most do not offer an interview, your written statement is often the only way you can express your personality and say 'choose me!'.

The 'personal' in 'personal statement' suggests that you should be allowed to express yourself however you want, right? Well, to a certain extent that is true: admissions tutors want to get a picture of you, not your parents, your teachers or your best friend, so it has to be your work. However, the purpose of the statement is to persuade academic staff that they should offer you one of their highly sought-after university places; although there is no strict template for this, there are specific things you should include and certain things you should most certainly leave out.

The importance of the opening paragraph

The online Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) undergraduate application form allows a total of 4,000 characters (around 700 words), meaning that you need to craft the statement carefully. The most important part is unquestionably the opening paragraph, as it acts as an invitation to continue reading. If you are not able to catch the attention of the admissions tutor, who has hundreds of statements to assess, then it is highly unlikely they will read through to the end.

The best advice here is to avoid much-used opening lines and clichés such as 'I have wanted to be an engineer since I was a child'. This kind of thing is not the invitation readers are looking for. Instead, try using an anecdote, experience or inspirational moment: 'Although tinkering with engines had always been a childhood hobby, it was the vision of the fastest car on earth, the Bloodhound, at an exhibition in London, that roused my desire to learn everything I could about automotive engineering'. Really? Tell me more!

Of course, your opening paragraph could start in a variety of ways, but the fundamental purpose is to grab the reader’s interest.

Provide evidence of your commitment and skills

Following on from that, you have to provide evidence of your passion and commitment to your chosen programme, and highlight the specific and transferable skills you possess to study it successfully. You can do this by following the  ABC  rule.

Action:  Include examples of what you have done, experienced or even read that have helped you in your choice of degree and boosted your knowledge of the subject area.

Benefit : By doing these things, explain what you learned or gained; in the case of a book or article, put forward an opinion.

Course : The most successful applicants ensure that the information they include is relevant to their course in order to highlight their suitability. Flower-arranging may allow you to realise your creative potential, but will it help you study astrophysics?

It is perfectly acceptable to base this ABC rule on school-based activities, as not all students have opportunities outside the classroom. However, if you can link extra-curricular pursuits to your desired programme of study, you are further highlighting your commitment. As a general rule of thumb, the information you include here should be around 80 per cent academic and 20 per cent non-academic. So, for example, as a member of the school science club – a non-curricular, academic activity – you may have developed the ability to analyse data and tackle problems logically. Taking part in a work placement falls into the same category and could have helped you develop your communication, time-management and computer skills. You get the idea.

Non-academic accomplishments may involve music, sport, travel or clubs and can lead to a variety of competencies such as team-working, leadership, language or presentation skills. A word of warning here: it is vital that you sell yourself, but arrogance or lies will result in your personal statement landing in the 'rejected' pile. Keep it honest and down-to-earth.

Provide a memorable conclusion

Once you have emphasised your keen interest and relevant qualities, you should round off the statement with a conclusion that will be remembered. There is little point putting all your effort to generate interest in the opening paragraph only for your statement to gradually fade away at the end. A good conclusion will create lasting impact and may express how studying your chosen course will allow you to pursue a particular career or achieve any other plans. It can also underline your motivation and determination.

Use a formal tone, stay relevant and be positive

As you have to pack all this information into a relatively short statement, it is essential to avoid the superfluous or, as I like to call it, the 'fluff'. If a sentence sounds pretty but doesn’t give the reader information, remove it. In addition, the tone should be formal and you should not use contractions, slang or jokes; remember, the statement will be read by academics – often leaders in their field.

Referring to books is fine but don’t resort to using famous quotes as they are overused and do not reflect your own ideas. Also, while it's good to avoid repetition, don't overdo it with the thesaurus.

Negativity has no place in a personal statement, so if you need to mention a difficult situation you have overcome, ensure you present it as a learning experience rather than giving the reader an opportunity to notice any shortcomings. Also, bear in mind that your personal statement will probably go to several universities as part of a single application, so specifically naming one university is not going to win you any favours with the others.

Get some help but never copy someone else's work

Checking grammar, spelling and flow is essential and it is perfectly OK to ask someone to do this for you. A fresh pair of eyes and a different perspective always help, and, as long as the third party does not write the content for you, their input could be of vital importance. And while you may get away with not sticking to all of the above advice, there is one thing that you absolutely must not do: copy someone else’s work. Most applications are made through UCAS, which uses sophisticated software to detect plagiarism. If you are found to have copied content from the internet, or a previous statement, your application will be cancelled immediately. Remember, it is a  personal  statement.

Get your ideas down in a mind-map first

Finally, I will leave you with my top tip. If you understand all the theory behind the personal statement and have an abundance of ideas floating in your head, but are staring blankly at your computer screen, take a pen and paper and make a simple mind map. Jot down all your experiences, activities, skills, attributes and perhaps even include books you have read or even current items that interest you in the news. Then look for how these link to your course and highlight the most significant elements using arrows, colours and even doodles. Capturing thoughts on paper and making logical deductions from an image can give structure to your ideas.

Get more advice on your application from our Study UK site .

You might also be interested in:

  • How to use a learner's dictionary of academic English
  • Five ways UK students can improve their career prospects
  • Ways of saying 'darling' in the UK

View the discussion thread.

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How to write a UCAS personal statement

A student writing a personal statement on a laptop

Writing a great personal statement

Read our guide on what it is, what to include, how to start, length and what makes a good personal statement 

Once you've decided which universities and courses to apply for, completing your application is pretty simple – until it comes to how to write your UCAS personal statement.

This guide covers everything you need to know about how to write a personal statement for university. We look at what it is and how you can start your personal statement. We've also got questions to guide you and a suggested personal statement structure you can use so you know what to put in it.

If you'd like even more resources, support and UCAS personal statement examples, you can sign up to access our personal statement hub .

What is the UCAS personal statement?

How universities use your ucas personal statement, how to start a ucas personal statement.

  • Get feedback on your UCAS personal statement

The personal statement is part of your UCAS application. It's how you show your chosen universities why you'll make a great student and why they should make you an offer.

Your personal statement also helps you think about your choice of course and your reasons for applying, so you know you’ve made the right decision.

Get feedback on your personal statement

Sign up to our personal statement hub to get feedback on your draft. You'll also get access to videos, help sheets and more tips.

Sign up now

UCAS personal statement word limit

Your personal statement length can be up to 4,000 characters long. 

This may sound a lot, but it's a word limit of around 550–1000 words with spaces and only about 1 side of typed A4 paper.

You need to keep it concise and make sure it's clear and easy to read.

Applying for multiple courses

Although you can apply for up to 5 courses on your UCAS application, you can only submit 1 personal statement. So it needs to cover all your course choices.

If you really want to show your commitment to applying for different courses, we will accept a second personal statement from you to reflect your application e.g. if you are applying for Law elsewhere, but Criminology and Criminal Justice with us.

Lots of students who apply to university have achieved the basic entry requirements and many more students apply than there are places available. Admissions teams can use your UCAS personal statement to get to know you and decide why you're more suitable than other applicants.

Some universities read every personal statement and score them. Then they use them alongside your qualifications and grades to decide whether to offer you a place or interview. Other universities put less emphasis on the personal statement and use it with students who have borderline entry requirements.

Universities might refer to your personal statement again on results day if you don't get the grades you need. So a good personal statement could clinch you a uni place even if your grades aren't what you hoped for.

Starting your personal statement can seem scary when you're staring at a blank screen. But, things will seem less daunting once you start.

  • Set aside some time in a place where you're comfortable and won't be disturbed. Grab a notepad or computer.
  • Write down anything and everything that's influenced your decision to go to university and study your chosen subject. Jot down your skills and experience too.
  • Use the questions below to guide you. Don't worry about the personal statement length at this point – you can cut things out later.

When to start your UCAS personal statement

Ideally, you want to leave yourself plenty of time – a few weeks or even months – to plan and write your personal statement.

Try not to leave it to the last minute, as tempting as this may seem when you've got so many other things to think about.

Questions to guide you

Your motivation.

  • Why do you want to study at university?
  • Why do you want to study this subject?
  • How did you become interested in this subject?
  • What career do you have in mind after university?

Academic ability and potential

  • How have your current studies affected your choice?
  • What do you enjoy about your current studies?
  • What skills have you gained from your current studies?
  • How can you demonstrate you have the skills and qualities needed for the course?
  • What qualities and attributes would you bring to the course and university?

Your experience

  • What work experience (including part-time, charity and volunteer work) do you have and what have you learnt from it?
  • What positions of responsibility have you held? (For example, prefect, captain of a team or member of a committee)
  • What relevant hobbies or interests do you have and what skills have they helped you develop?
  • What transferable skills do you have, such as self motivation, team working, public speaking, problem solving and analytical thinking?

Research and reading

  • How do you keep up with current affairs or news in your chosen subject?
  • What journals or publications relevant to your chosen subject do you read?
  • Which people have influenced you, such as artists, authors, philosophers or scientists?

Now it's time to write your personal statement using your notes. It's best to draft it on a computer, and remember to save it regularly.

You can copy and paste it into your UCAS application when you're happy with it.

Personal statement structure

While there's no set template for a personal statement, you may find it useful to follow this personal statement structure when you decide what to put in your statement.

What to include in a personal statement

  • Reasons for choosing this subject(s)
  • Current studies and how these relate to your chosen subject(s)
  • Experiences and how these relate to your chosen subject(s)
  • Interests and responsibilities and how these relate to your chosen subject(s)
  • Your future after university
  • Summary including why you'll make a great student

Further tips for a good UCAS personal statement

  • Use information on university websites and the UCAS website. This often includes the skills and qualities universities are looking for in applicants
  • Ask friends, family and teachers to remind you of activities you've participated in. They might remember your successes better than you do
  • Don’t include lists in your application, like a list of all your hobbies. Focus on 1 or 2 points and talk about them in depth to show their relevance to your application
  • Explain and evidence everything. It’s easy to say you have a skill, but it's better to demonstrate it with an example of when and how you’ve used it
  • Avoid clichéd lines such as ‘I've always wanted to be a teacher’ as it says nothing about your motivations or experiences
  • If you’re applying for a joint degree or different subjects, give equal time to each area and try to find common aspects that show their similarities
  • Never lie or plagiarise another statement – you'll be caught and it could result in your application being automatically rejected
  • Proofread your personal statement by reading it out loud and ask friends, family or a teacher to check it for you

Sign up to our personal statement hub

Watch videos, get top tips and download our help sheets – that's what our personal statement hub is for. It's for you to write your story, so you can show your strengths, ideas and passion to your chosen universities.

You'll also be able send us your draft, so you can get feedback and feel confident about what you've written.

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Tips for writing your personal statement

How to write a personal statement it's difficult to know where to begin. get hints and tips on structure, content and what not to write from a university expert..

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  • An insider's view
  • What admissions tutors look for

Structuring and preparing your personal statement

What to write in a personal statement, examples to avoid, an insider’s view .

Personal statements may seem formulaic, but they can be critical to the decision-making process, and admissions tutors do read them.

If you’re applying for a high-demand course, your personal statement could be the deciding factor on whether or not you get an interview.

The Director of Marketing and Student Recruitment at the University of Gloucestershire , James Seymour, shares some top tips on how to write a personal statement.

What makes a good personal statement?

This is your chance to demonstrate your enthusiasm and commitment and show us what value you can add to a university. In the vast majority of cases, universities are finding ways to make you an offer, not reject you – the personal statement is your chance to make this decision easier for them!

First, you need to explain why you want a place on a course. Take a look at James’ tips on what you should include:

  • Explain the reason for your choice and how it fits in with your aspirations for the future
  • Give examples of any related academic or work experience
  • Show you know what the course will involve and mention any special subjects you’re interested in
  • Demonstrate who you are by listing any positions you’ve held, memberships of teams or societies, and interests and hobbies
  • Show consistency in your five UCAS choices. It may be difficult for an admissions tutor to take you seriously if your other choices, and references to them, are totally different. If your choices are different, you should explain this in your statement. The UCAS form is blind. Admissions tutors don’t know the other universities you’ve applied to, or your priorities, but you should still be consistent
  • Keep it clear and concise – UCAS admissions are increasingly paperless – so most admissions tutors/officers will read your statement onscreen
Explain what you can bring to a course and try not to just list experiences, but describe how they have given you skills that will help you at university.

Don’t just say: I am a member of the college chess club. I also play the clarinet in the orchestra.

When you could say: I have developed my problem-solving skills through playing chess for the college; this requires concentration and analytical thought. I am used to working as part of a team as I play clarinet in the college orchestra and cooperate with others to achieve a finished production.

  • Applying to university and UCAS deadlines
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What will admissions tutors look for in your personal statement?

To decide if you’re the right fit, universities and colleges are interested in how you express your academic record and potential. This should be backed up by your reference.

Those working in admissions look for evidence of:

  • Motivation and commitment
  • Leadership, teamwork and communication
  • Research into your chosen subject
  • Any relevant key skills

Admissions tutors aren't seeking Nobel laureates. They’re looking for enthusiasm for the course being applied for, and self-reflection into why you’d be suitable to study it. What value could you add to the course? Where would you like to go once you graduate?

Ben, the Admissions Manager for Law at the University of Birmingham , shared with us what he expects applicants to tell him in their personal statement:

The personal statement is not only an excellent opportunity to showcase applicants individual skills, knowledge, and achievements, but it also provides us with an insight into the type of student they aspire to be and how they could fit into the academic community. Ben Atkins, Law Admissions Manager at University of Birmingham

Real-life example: the good

Good personal statement

Real-life example: the not-so-good

Not so good personal statement

  • How to make your personal statement stand out

You could have excellent experiences, but if they’re arranged in a poorly-written statement then the impact will be reduced. So, it’s important to plan your statement well.

A well-written personal statement with a clearly planned and refined structure will not only make the information stand out, but it’ll demonstrate you have an aptitude for structuring written pieces of work – a crucial skill needed for many university courses.

You can use it for other things too, such as gap year applications, jobs, internships, apprenticeships and keep it on file for future applications.

There's no one ‘correct’ way to structure your personal statement. But it’s a good idea to include the following:

  • A clear introduction, explaining why you want to study the course
  • Around 75% can focus on your academic achievements, to prove how you’re qualified to study it
  • Around 25% can be about any extracurricular activity, to show what else makes you suitable
  • A clear conclusion
  • How to start a personal statement

Your personal statement is your chance to really show why you deserve a place on your chosen course. 

Remember to keep these in mind:

  • Be clear and concise – the more concentrated the points and facts, the more powerful
  • Use positive words such as achieved, developed, learned, discovered, enthusiasm, commitment, energy, fascination…
  • Avoid contrived or grandiose language. Instead use short, simple sentences in plain English
  • Insert a personal touch if possible, but be careful with humour and chatty approaches
  • Use evidence of your learning and growth (wherever possible) to support claims and statements
  • Plan the statement as you would an essay or letter of application for a job/scholarship
  • Consider dividing the statement into five or six paragraphs, with headings if appropriate
  • Spelling and grammar DO matter – draft and redraft as many times as you must and ask others to proofread and provide feedback
  • For 2022 – 23 applications, refer to the challenges you've faced during the pandemic in a positive way

Don’t 

  • Over-exaggerate
  • Come across as pretentious
  • Try to include your life history
  • Start with: "I’ve always wanted to be a..."
  • Use gimmicks or quotations, unless they're very relevant and you deal with them in a way that shows your qualities
  • Be tempted to buy or copy a personal statement – plagiarism software is now very sophisticated and if you're caught out you won’t get a place
  • Make excuses about not being able to undertake activities/gain experience – focus on what you were able to do positively, e.g. as a result of coronavirus

For further details, read our detailed guide on  what to include in a personal statement  and the best things to avoid.

Note that if you decide to reapply for university the following year, it's a good idea to consider making some changes to your personal statement. Mention why you took a year off and talk about what skills you've learnt. If you're applying for a completely different subject, you'll need to make more changes.

James gives us real-life examples of things to avoid:

I enjoy the theatre and used to go a couple of times a year. (Drama)
I am a keen reader and am committed to the study of human behaviour through TV soaps!
I have led a full life over the last 18 years and it is a tradition I intend to continue.
I describe myself in the following two words: 'TO ODIN!' the ancient Viking war cry. (Law)
My favourite hobby is bee-keeping and I want to be an engineer.
My interest in Medicine stems from my enjoyment of Casualty and other related TV series.
I have always had a passion to study Medicine, failing that, Pharmacy. (A student putting Pharmacy as her fifth choice after four medical school choices – Pharmacy can be just as popular and high status as Medicine.)

Some final advice

Above all, remember that a personal statement is your opportunity to convince a university why it should offer you a place. So, make it compelling and there’s a much higher chance they will.

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personal statement template uk

  • How to write a personal statement
  • Newcastle University
  • Undergraduate
  • Applications & Offers
  • UG Application Advice

A personal statement is your chance to convince universities they should offer you a place. So it’s natural that writing one comes with a lot of pressure.

Even applicants who enjoy writing often find their personal statement intimidating. Striking the right tone, the perfect amount of detail, knowing what’s relevant to put in and what isn’t, are just a few of the things you may be worried about.

In our guide, you will find:

  • how to start and end your personal statement
  • how to structure your personal statement
  • how to make sure your personal statement is typo-proof

Watch our simple five step guide to your perfect personal statement

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We understand that the university applications can come with a lot of stress. But, try to trust the process and remember that whatever happens, there is always a space for you to grow and learn in higher education. For more information on writing your personal statement, download our Personal Statement eBook . 

How to write your personal statement

Download your complete guide to planning, writing and submitting an undergraduate personal statement.

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Writing a personal statement

Here is our advice on how best to show us what you have to offer and give us a sense of who you are as an individual. 

What are we looking for?

We are looking for excellent writing and a statement that is personal and unique to you. We want to understand:

  • Your passion for your subject
  • How you are a good fit for your chosen programme
  • What you will bring to the university community

Before you start

Read the programme description and the modules offered.

Think about what skills, qualities, and experiences might be needed for a programme like this. 

Think about examples from your life that demonstrate these skills, qualities and experiences.

  • Academic studies
  • Extra-curricular activities
  • Personal interests
  • Achievements
  • Exhibitions visited
  • Competitions
  • Work experience
  • Taster days 
  • Field trips
  • Volunteering experience
  • Were you inspired by the experience? What was inspiring about it?
  • Did it make you want to learn more about something? 
  • What did you learn through this experience about the subject? 
  • Did you learn anything about yourself through this experience?
  • Did you gain transferable skills through this experience? For example, teamwork, communication, or leadership skills? 

Your main focus should be on demonstrating your interest in, and describing your engagement with, the subject itself. The majority of your statement, around 75-85%, should focus on this subject, with the remaining 15-25% on extra-curricular activities or career aspirations. 

First draft

From all of your examples, and bearing in mind the structure, choose a few that are most relevant, and write about them in a detailed, specific, and reflective way. Relate these back to the skills, qualities, and experiences that you have identified are relevant to your chosen programme. 

Don’t forget: 

  • Allow your passion for the subject to shine
  • Show why are a good fit for your chosen programme
  • Show what you will bring to our UCL community

Before you submit

Ask a teacher, advisor, friend or family member to read your statement and support you to think of other examples that you might have missed. Ask them to do a final spelling and grammar check.

Read your statement aloud to check that it flows well.

Make sure it is truthful and honest; some courses have an interview element so the admissions selector may ask you to expand further on something you wrote in your statement. 

Make sure it is applicable to all five of your UCAS choices; remember you can only submit one personal statement with your UCAS form.

Proofread for a final time. 

Our top tips

  • 75%-85% of the statement must be about the subject
  • Select only your best examples
  • Reflect on your experiences
  • Stay focused and relevant
  • Let your passion for your subject shine
  • Avoid clichés and bland, vague statements
  • Proofread before submitting

More information

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Writing a personal statement for your CV

CV personal statements are like the sales pitch of your CV, but not everyone thinks they're useful. Discover if they're really necessary, how to write a CV personal profile and templates for inspiration

What is a CV personal statement?

A CV personal statement is a concise paragraph or summary, which details what you can bring to a job or company. It's also known as an opening statement, personal profile, personal summary or executive summary.

Sitting at the top of your CV, it's your opportunity to sell yourself to employers and to highlight the relevant skills and experience you possess.

While effectively and succinctly convincing recruiters that you're a good fit for the role, a personal statement gives you the chance to show off your strengths and share your career goals.

'The focus of your CV statement should be to target your offer to employers - why should they hire you and how are you different to other graduates? Therefore, making your personal statement as unique as possible is crucial to ensure you stand out from the crowd,' explains Alex Proctor, careers consultant at the University of Bradford.

Do I need a personal summary on my CV?

Traditionally, almost all CV types include a personal statement but there is some debate about whether you actually need to include one.

Some recruiters and careers advisers believe that personal profiles are one of the most important parts of a CV, as they provide an easily accessible overview of a candidate's ability, while others feel that personal statements are a waste of valuable space and time.

The latter belief is often the case with graduate CVs, as some employers feel that those just stepping onto the career ladder don't necessarily have enough knowledge or experience to warrant a personal statement. Because of this, a graduate's personal profile runs the risk of being bland and generic and stating things that should be a given, such as, 'I'm hardworking and organised,' which is why some recruiters believe that they are best suited to more senior CVs.

So while your CV doesn't need a personal statement, employers spend only seconds looking at application documents. With this in mind, a CV personal statement gives you an invaluable opportunity to make your application stand out as quickly as possible.

Alex believes 'that a CV personal statement is a good idea, because employers often have so many CVs to read through and the personal statement, if clear and concise, can elevate your chances of getting through to the next stage of the recruitment process.'

If you'd like to include a personal statement on your CV it might be best, as a graduate, to focus on your educational background and the career path you'd like to embrace. If you have relevant experiences use these to make your personal statement unique. 'If you haven’t got much work experience, focus on what experience you can extract from your degree,' advises Alex. 'If you have taken part in various projects demonstrate what your role was. Alternatively, if you have written a dissertation, showcase your topic and what skills you have developed from this experience. Employers will value your individuality even if you haven't had masses of practical work experience.'

If you're struggling to give it context and get it right, make an appointment with your university's careers or employability service and ask an adviser to help you hone your writing. 

What should I include in my CV personal profile?

In terms of length, a CV personal profile should be no longer than 150 words. 'It should be short, impactful and aligned effectively with the CV content,' explains David Ainscough, careers consultant team lead and deputy director at the University of Cambridge.

'A personal CV profile should include details of your educational background, evidence of work experience, as well as your career aspirations. You ideally need to ensure you are telling the reader what you can offer skill-wise and don't be afraid to also share any accomplishments,' adds Alex.  

If you're struggling with what to write, break your personal statement down into three parts. Focus on:

  • who you are
  • what you can offer
  • your career aims.

Start by introducing yourself. For example, 'A recent graduate with a 2:1 in English literature from the Hillview University' or a 'Highly-skilled physiotherapist with five years’ experience…'

Next, detail what you can offer the company. Ask yourself why you're suited to the role and cover any relevant skills or experience. If you lack practical work experience instead draw attention to your academic achievements, such as contributing to university publications, which developed written communication, attention to detail and teamworking skills. Or how you applied skills learned on your physical therapy degree during your time as a physio assistant for university sport teams.

Conclude your personal statement by highlighting your career goals. For example, 'I am looking to start my career in the exciting world of publishing and to develop the skills learned through my university studies and internships.'

It's up to you how you present this information; there is no hard and fast rule. However, personal statements are generally displayed as a single paragraph, without a title or subheading. You'll need to keep it consistent with the rest of your CV formatting, meaning that the font size and type will need to be the same throughout your document.

Also, consider the voice and tense you'd like to use. Personal statements can be written in either the first or third person, but you'll need to maintain this voice throughout - don't switch between the two.

Take a look at  how to write a CV .

How can I make it stand out to employers?

  • 'Remember that first impressions count so make sure you're giving the recruiter a comfortable reading experience. Layout and clarity are crucial,' says David.
  • Tailor your CV personal statement (and CV in general) to each application.
  • Be honest. Untruths are easy to uncover and lying on your CV is a criminal offence.
  • Provide evidence of skills and experience but remember to keep it brief. For example, 'experienced event manager, who led a team to organise a charity ball for 150 people, raising £5,000 - a 20% increase on previous years.'
  • Use the job description to help form your CV personal profile.
  • Stick to the word limit.
  • Check for spelling and grammar mistakes. The personal summary sits at the top of your CV so any errors will be immediately apparent.
  • 'Keep it fresh. It needs to be reviewed in each application you make so consider something new to say each time,' adds David.
  • Read it aloud once you've finished writing to make sure it flows.
  • Copy and paste from your  cover letter or from online CV personal statement examples. Your personal summary needs to be unique and personal to you.
  • Include unnecessary personal information such as your age, marital status etc.
  • Use clichés, slang or jargon.
  • Use bland, empty statements like 'I work well independently and as part of a team'. This tells employers absolutely nothing about what you’re capable of.
  • Overuse buzzwords.
  • Include quotes from previous employers.
  • Ramble. Recruiters don't have time to read through waffle, so get to the point.

Think about the connotations of the words you use - 'currently studying' implies things might change, 'trying' implies failure, 'might' or 'maybe' sounds like you're not sure. The words you use have power so choose them carefully. You want to sound confident, positive and enthusiastic.

Find out more about the  top 7 CV mistakes .

CV personal statement examples

To help you get started take a look at the following CV personal profile examples.

As a recent graduate from the University of Townville, with a 2:1 honours degree in marketing, I have undertaken internships at industry-leading agencies such as Beyond Imagination and Noah Freemans. These placements have allowed me to develop sector knowledge and gain hands on experience, as well as expand transferable skills such as commercial awareness, communication and negotiation and analytical skills. My career aim is to gain a role which allows me to further my expertise and take on increased responsibility at a market-leading digital marketing agency.

I am a highly motivated 2:1 forensic science graduate from Groveshire University, looking to secure a graduate position that enables me to use and develop my analytical, attention to detail and communication skills. I have gained relevant experience in both scientific and hospital laboratories, which allowed me to build on my problem solving, concentration and team working skills. My career goal is to assume a role that enables me to analyse and interpret forensic data and to eventually move into crime scene investigation.

Remember; avoid copying and pasting ready-made examples. Instead use them as a guide to craft your own, tailored CV personal statement. Take a look at our  example CVs .

Find out more

  • Learn more about  applying for jobs .
  • Get more advice on CVs and cover letters .

Create your Europass CV

The Europass CV builder makes it easy to create your CV online. You can use it to apply for a job, education or training opportunities as well as volunteering.

The best-known CV format in Europe

The Europass CV is one of the best-known CV formats in Europe. It is easy-to-use and familiar to employers and education institutions.

You will first have to create your Europass profile with information on your education, training, work experience and skills. After you complete your Europass profile, you can create as many CVs as you want with just a few clicks. Just select which information you want to include, pick your favourite design and Europass will do the rest. 

You can create, store and share CVs in 31 languages . You can download your Europass CV, store it in your Europass Library share it with employers, with  EURES  or other job boards.

How to create a good CV

Remember that your CV is your first opportunity to communicate your skills and experiences to a future employer. It is a snapshot of who you are, your skills, your educational background, work experiences and other achievements.

Present your experience clearly

Highlight examples of your skills and experiences matching the job you are applying for. Pay close attention to the details published in the vacancy notice.

Tailor your CV

Make sure you update the ‘About Me’ section to highlight why you are the best person for the job. Do not include a full detailed history. Focus on facts and main points that match the job you have in mind.

Make it readable

Make sure your CV is easy to read. Use clear and simple language.  Use strong verbs (e.g. ‘managed’, ‘developed’, ‘increased’).

Use reverse chronological order

Always list the most recent experience on the top followed by previous ones. In case of long gaps in working or learning, include an explanation.

Polish and fine-tune

Check for spelling and grammar mistakes, provide a professional e-mail address, and add a professional photograph of yourself.

Your Europass profile

Your Europass profile is the place to keep a record of all your skills, qualifications and experiences. If you keep your Europass profile up-to-date then you will always have all the information you need to create tailored CVs and job applications quickly.

Good luck with your applications!

Find support through EU services

Eures the european job mobility portal, working abroad in other eu countries, education and training in other eu countries, you may be interested to read.

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Create your Europass Cover Letter

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Develop your skills through volunteering

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Managing your personal information in Europass

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COMMENTS

  1. How To Write Your Undergraduate Personal Statement

    Just start by showing your enthusiasm for the subject, showcasing your knowledge and understanding, and sharing your ambitions of what you want to achieve. Avoid cliches! Remember, this opening part is simply about introducing yourself, so let the admissions tutor reading your personal statement get to know you. Keep it relevant and simple.

  2. 500+ Personal Statement Examples

    A-Z of Personal Statements. Learn from previous student personal statements here. We have collated over 700 personal statement examples to help you on your university journey and to help you with how to write a personal statement.

  3. Writing your personal statement

    Writing your personal statement: carers, estranged students, refugees or asylum seekers. Everyone is individual, but certain life circumstances provide an opportunity to showcase the unique qualities and experiences you can bring to university life. Here you'll find everything you need to know about writing your personal statement.

  4. How to Write a UCAS Personal Statement [With Examples]

    The character limit which UCAS sets for the personal statement is very strict - up to 4,000 characters of text. This means that students have to express themselves in a clear and concise way; it's also important that they don't feel the need to fill the available space needlessly. Planning and redrafting of a personal statement is essential.

  5. Personal statements for university applications

    University personal statement examples. While you can find some examples online - from the likes of Reed.co.uk and King's College London - it's important to use your own words and not copy them directly. Indeed, the UCAS personal statement worksheet can prove just as useful when it comes to helping you decide what to put in your own personal ...

  6. How to write an excellent personal statement in 10 steps

    Use your closing couple of lines to summarise the most important points in your statement. 9. Check your writing thoroughly and get someone else to check it, too. 10. Give your brain a rest by forgetting about your personal statement for a while before going back to review it one last time with fresh eyes.

  7. UCAS personal statement examples

    UCAS personal statement examples. Having managed successfully to navigate through the 370,000 courses at over 370 providers across the UK, it is now time to make a start at drafting your personal statement. Students often find this the most daunting of tasks within the application process. This guide will help you through putting together the ...

  8. How to write a great personal statement

    Draft, draft, draft. Get everything down on paper first. Then go back to draft and start to rework it. Don't let your personal statement become a long list of ideas - that was your starting point. Think about the most important points you've made, and work on developing those. Remember that sometimes, less is more.

  9. How to write a personal statement for a UK university

    A word of warning here: it is vital that you sell yourself, but arrogance or lies will result in your personal statement landing in the 'rejected' pile. Keep it honest and down-to-earth. Provide a memorable conclusion. Once you have emphasised your keen interest and relevant qualities, you should round off the statement with a conclusion that ...

  10. How to write a UCAS personal statement

    UCAS personal statement word limit. Your personal statement length can be up to 4,000 characters long. This may sound a lot, but it's a word limit of around 550-1000 words with spaces and only about 1 side of typed A4 paper. You need to keep it concise and make sure it's clear and easy to read.

  11. Introducing the personal statement builder

    The personal statement builder breaks down the content you need for your statement into three key areas: Writing about the course. Skills and achievements. Work experience and future plans. Within each of those sections there are questions to help you think of what to write. For example, in the first section - writing about the course ...

  12. Personal statements for postgraduate applications

    Personal statement examples. The style and content of your postgraduate personal statement depends on several variables, such as the type of qualification that you're applying for - such as a Masters degree, a conversion course or teacher training. Here are some postgraduate personal statement templates to help you get started:

  13. 9 winning personal statement examples for a job

    Here are some examples of personal and professional statements: 1. Personal statement for a postgraduate programme. Joan David Personal statement for master's programme in Public Policy and Administration London School of Policy 'I held my first textbook when I was a 23-year-old undergraduate.

  14. Tips for writing your personal statement

    Avoid contrived or grandiose language. Instead use short, simple sentences in plain English. Insert a personal touch if possible, but be careful with humour and chatty approaches. Use evidence of your learning and growth (wherever possible) to support claims and statements. Plan the statement as you would an essay or letter of application for a ...

  15. How to write a personal statement

    Watch our simple five step guide to your perfect personal statement. We understand that the university applications can come with a lot of stress. But, try to trust the process and remember that whatever happens, there is always a space for you to grow and learn in higher education. For more information on writing your personal statement ...

  16. Personal statement examples

    Some possible examples could include parental leave, caring for a family member, plans to travel or long-term illness. However, whatever the reason for your own break, it's never something you should feel the need to justify to a prospective employer. In fact, knowing how to explain a gap in your CV is mostly about confidence.

  17. How To Write A UCAS Personal Statement

    Tips for writing a Personal Statement. Express a passion for your subject. Start the statement strongly to grab attention. Link outside interests and passions to your course. Be honest, but don't include negative information. Don't attempt to sound too clever. Don't leave it until the last minute; prepare ahead of the deadline.

  18. How To Write Your Postgraduate Personal Statement

    Just start by showing your enthusiasm for the subject, showcasing your knowledge and understanding, and sharing your ambitions of what you want to achieve. Avoid cliches . Remember, this opening part is simply about introducing yourself, so let the admissions tutor reading your personal statement get to know you. Keep it relevant and simple.

  19. Writing a personal statement

    75%-85% of the statement must be about the subject. Select only your best examples. Reflect on your experiences. Stay focused and relevant. Let your passion for your subject shine. Avoid clichés and bland, vague statements. Proofread before submitting.

  20. Writing a personal statement for your CV

    Tailor your CV personal statement (and CV in general) to each application. Be honest. Untruths are easy to uncover and lying on your CV is a criminal offence. Provide evidence of skills and experience but remember to keep it brief. For example, 'experienced event manager, who led a team to organise a charity ball for 150 people, raising £5,000 ...

  21. PDF Personal Statement Worksheet

    person reading your statement. > Do be enthusiastic - if you show your interest in the course, it may help you get a place. > Do expect to produce several drafts of your personal statement before being totally happy with it. > Do ask people you trust for their feedback. Don'ts when writing your personal statement

  22. PDF How to write a Personal Statement in the UK Civil Service

    Personal Statement, usually, is a free-form 'pitch' for a Civil Service job. It may be as short as 250 words or, especially for Senior Civil Service appointments, as long as 1250 words (say 2 pages of A4). Usually, it calls for applicants to address a list of "Essential Criteria" listed in the job advert with evidence and examples of ...

  23. Create your Europass CV

    The best-known CV format in Europe. The Europass CV is one of the best-known CV formats in Europe. It is easy-to-use and familiar to employers and education institutions. You will first have to create your Europass profile with information on your education, training, work experience and skills. After you complete your Europass profile, you can create as many CVs as you want with just a few ...

  24. How to start a personal statement: The attention grabber

    Top tips on how to write your statement opener. We spoke to admissions tutors at unis and colleges - read on for their tips. 1. Don't begin with the overkill opening. Try not to overthink the opening sentence. You need to engage the reader with your relevant thoughts and ideas, but not go overboard. Tutors said: 'The opening is your chance ...