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个人陈述撰写注意事项

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个人陈述撰写注意事项(一)

个人陈述,是我们申请美国研究生的重要材料之一。一份完美的PS有可能使你申请成功的机会大大增加,同时PS也是很好的认识你自己的过程。通过写PS,你将更了解你自己,清楚自己想要什么样的生活,理清自己为什么要去美国,以后将要成为什么样的人。这对申请者来说至关重要,对admission officer来说,PS是你唯一有机会向他们展示一个鲜活的你的材料。成绩单是死的,GRETOEFL分数是死的,而他们要找的是一个活生生的人,是一个有血有肉有思想的人,他们在众多的申请者中寻找最适合他们的那一位,你如何认识你自己?你的motivation来自哪里?你将来如何打算?这些东西都可以帮助他们走进你,了解你,认识你,然后决定是不是接受你。


如何写出吸引人的个人陈述,获得admissionofficer的青睐呢?我将总结出撰写个人陈述的注意事项,希望能帮到大家。


个人陈述的精髓在于将自己的motivation和目objective充分的展现出来,它应该是personaland analytical, 任何 generalization都需要避免,PS的关键在于用specific,personal details来展现你的个人魅力和强烈的motivation


PS时,要尽量完全的真诚。这是诉说一个你自己的故事,你不是在设法创造一个理想的申请者,而just be yourself。任何的伪造都是很容易被识破的,只有完全敞开的真诚,才能真正打动admission officer,也才能真正的认识你自己,才能真正让你选择最适合你的graduate program


specific details来展现你的motivation很重要。这些specific details可以包括研究和工作经历、课程、你跟你所感兴趣的领域的人的交流、你读的书、你参加的学术报告会,以及任何可以展现你为何选择并适合这个研究领域的原因。


你需要明确你未来的方向,至少为自己未来5~10年的事业做一个规划,而这个规划应该很适合你所申请的这个graduate program,那也正是你选择这个领域的原因。


描述为什么这个graduateprogram适合你,不要用一些空洞的赞美性的语言,一定要be specific, be analytical


一定不要出现一些粗心的错误,那只能证明你不够认真对待。


避免说一些空洞无意义的套话,避免陈词滥调。这里可以举个例子。

修改前:In the firstproject I managed, I learned many valuable lessons about the importance ofteamwork.

后:In the first project I managed, I made aneffort to incorporate all my colleagues as equal members of a team, solicitingtheir feedback and deferring to their expertise as needed.

改前的这句话很空洞的讲team work,没有任何details;修改后的话就展开讲了我是怎么展现teamwork的。在写PS的时候一定要注意展开这些细节。最好的方法就是以自己的亲身经历开始,让那些展现你的qualitypersonality的东西自然流露出来,你的那些品质不需要总结性generalities, 人们会从你对自己经历的specific details的描述判断出你有哪些quality


不要企图把你所有的经历都写进PS里,PS追求的不是广度,而是深度。好的PS是深入挖掘一个或两个主题、时间或观点的细节。


注意避免敏感话题,因为你不知道admissionofficer的个人偏见。


不要用冗余的长句。短句更加有力,因为他们更加directto the point。举例:

前:"My recognitionof the fact that theproject was finally over was a deeply satisfying momentthat will forever lingerin my memory."

修改后:"Completingtheproject at last gave me an enduring sense of fulfillment."

the fact that这种词就是完全冗余的。


Brainstorming

1. Performa self-inventory of Your UniqueExperiences, Major Influences, and Abilities.

Long and short term goals

1. 这所学校为什么吸引你

2. 你对哪个faculty的研究最感兴趣?你最想跟谁一起工作?

3. 你具体想从你所申请的program中获得什么?

4. 你的事业抱负是什么?这个graduate program对你实现事业理想有什么帮助?

5. 你理想的工作的是什么?未来的5~10年甚至2030年,你想成为一个什么样的人?


Skills and Characteristics

6. 你有哪些品质有助于你在该领域获得成功?You need to make strong connections between your experiences and thequalities you wish to convey.

这里列举一些admissionofficer认为很重要的qualities

Seriousness of Purpose (to pursue graduate education)

 Intellectual Ability (to handle graduatestudy)

 Intellectual Curiosity (about the field youwish to enter)

 Creativity (as reflected in the way your mindaddresses issues in the field of your choice)

 Open-Mindedness (to ideas, people, andcircumstances different from your own)

 Maturity (as demonstrated by being responsibleand trustworthy)

 Concern for Others (either by devoting timeto social service activities such as tutoring or by being considerate andempathetic to others' feelings; the latter is more difficult to pull off in anapplication essay)

 Initiative (as in the ability to start a project or take on aresponsibility on your own)

 Enthusiasm (as demonstrated by your eagernessto engage in activities)

Confidence (inyour ability to handle difficult situations and novel challenges)

Being Organized(as in the ability to stay on top of multiple tasks)

 Sense of Humor (as in your ability to findhumor in difficult situations; in many ways this is an index of maturity)

 Diligence/Persistence (as demonstrated byyour ability to stay with a task until you complete it; this is particularlyrelevant for programs requiring a dissertation)

 Leadership (as shown in your ability toinspire others to work together to reach a mutual goal)

 Risk Taking (as shown in your ability to dealwith uncertainty in order to reach your goal)

Insight (asreflected in your ability to use introspection to understand aspects ofyourself, such as your preferences and your motivations)

 Optimism (as reflected in your ability tofind positive aspects in seemingly negative situations)

Compromise (asin your ability to be flexible in negotiating with others; at a more abstractlevel this can mean the ability to reconcile ideological opposites ordialectical pairs among others or within yourself)

 Overcoming Adversity (as demonstrated by yourresourcefulness in dealing with serious problems such as divorce, death,illness, etc.)

7. 你所拥有的skills(比如communication,leadership, analytical),注意用specific details来展示你的这些skills

8. 你比其他申请者的优势在哪里?

9. 你可以贡献给你所申请的学校哪些东西?(给你的fellow students,你的faculty,你的broader community)

10. 你认为你为什么会在这个program的申请中胜出?

11.admission officers对你感兴趣的最compelling的原因是什么?


Background/Accomplishments: Personal

12. What's special, unique, distinctive, orimpressive about you or your life story? What details of your life (personal orfamily problems/history, any genuinely notable accomplishments, people orevents that have shaped you or influenced your goals) might help the committeebetter understand you or help set you apart from other applicants?   些人影响了你的选择?

13. Have you had to overcome any unusualobstacles or hardships (e.g., economic, familial, physical) in your life? 你所必须克服的困难?

14. Have you borne significant care- givingresponsibilities for family members? For an ailing parent, a sibling, adisabled or aging relative, a child? How has this impacted your academics? Yourprofessional life? Your goals and values? 从小就需要照顾什么人吗?囧,这点对独生子女不利哎。。。

15. (If you live in U.S. but are not anative- born American) How did you deal with the challenges of moving to theU.S. from your home? Did you experience culture shock? How did you adapt? Whatwas most difficult for you? What aspects of your new home did you enjoy themost? 美国如何适应的问题,看来美国交流经历还在这个personal方面可以起到一些作用~

16. If work experiences have consumedsignificant periods of time during your college years, what have you learned(leadership or managerial skills, for example), and how has the workcontributed to your personal growth?


Background/Accomplishments: Academic

17. When did you originally becomeinterested in this field? What have you since learned about it- and aboutyourself- that has further stimulated your interest and reinforced yourconviction that you are well suited to this field? What insights have you gained?如何对这个领域感兴趣的?

18. How have you learned about thisfield-through classes, readings, seminars, work or other experiences, orconversations with people already in the field?

19. Are there any gaps or discrepancies inyour academic record that you should explain?

20. Can you recall a specific incident thatconvinced you that you had chosen the right career path?用一个具体的事例来证明你为何选择了正确的道路


2. Consult Friends, Relatives, Colleagues,or Professors for Ideas

别人往往可以看到你性格特征中你自己没有注意到的地方,所以向别人请教可以帮助你更好地了解自己。不妨来做一个调查问卷,向了解你的请教~


I am applying to _________ and must preparea personal statement as a part of that process. I want to be sure to includeall relevant data about myself and my background, so I am solicitinginformation from various individuals who know me and whose judgment I value.Thank you for

your help.

1. What do you think is most important forthe admissions committee to know about me?

2. What do you regard as most unusual,distinctive, unique, and/or impressive about me (based on our association)?

3. Are you aware of any events orexperiences in my background that might be of particular interest to thoseconsidering my application to graduate school?

4. Are there any special qualities orskills that I possess that tend to make you think I would be successful ingraduate school and in the field to which I aspire to become a part?




个人陈述撰写注意事项(二)


Topic Selection

上边我们讲了通过brainstorming的方式来挖掘自己,现在你手上应该有一大把的经历想要来诉说。你可以深入描述一段经历,也可以写多个经历,但是写的事情越多,每件事情可能就不能做到非常深入了。下面给出一些指导来帮助你narrow down your topic.


Finding the pattern that connects

一定要寻找那些跟你申请的program相关的经历

Conveying something meaningful

一定要找到一个能展现你独一无二personality的经历

Painting a complete portrait

一定要全面展现出你的能力,如果你只说自己的一段经历,这段经历应该能全面展现你的各方面能力;如果你要说自己的多种经历,这些经历之间应该互为补充。

Standing out

一定要突出的unique的地方,如果你觉得实在很难做到unique,那就be more specific and personal.

Keeping your readers interest

从别人的角度来思考,如果你是读者,你读这篇文章的时候会想要了解更多吗?

Staying grounded in detail

一定要用事实说话,一切言语都要建立在事实证据的基础之上。

Answering the question

每个学校针对PS提的问题可能不一样,一定要保证你选的topic能回答大部分学校的大部分问题,PS也要根据学校的问题进行适当调整。


What to avoid 一下几点千万要避免!

Resorting to gimmicks 不要用那些小花招,小伎俩,咱还是应该严肃点

Focusing on negative 应该重点突出你的positive attribute

Repeating information that's listedelsewhere in the application 千万别重复那些你在简历里已经展现出来的东西,需要展现你更加personal的东西

Being too controversial

Seeking pity

You can describe misfortunes or adisadvantaged background, but do not use them as an excuse for bad performancesor to seek pity. Doing so not only could sound manipulative, but also meansthat you haven't emphasized your strengths sufficiently. Thus, as in the caseof weaknesses, you should bring up obstacles in your past only to show how youhave overcome them.

想要通过PS来解释自己某方面不足的同学请特别注意上面第二点和第五点。注意表现你positive的一面,表现你如何克服困难的一面,少些negative的东西,也不要刻意去解释什么。



个人陈述撰写注意事项(三)


Graduate statement themes:

你必须搞清楚的几个问题:

Why have Ichosen to attend graduate school in this specific field, and why did I chooseto apply to this particular school's program?

What are myqualifications for admission?

What is special,unique, or impressive about my life story?


The future over the past

admission officer想要从PS看三点:你来自哪里?你想从我们的program中得到什么?你未来的打算是什么?

你的PS应该重在未来的职业规划,而不是重复过去的荣耀。如果你过去的经历确实很出彩,一定要多一些分析,不要罗列你的成绩


Why Graduate School?

Early exposure to your field: 避免用一些陈词滥调,比如“I have always wanted to..."

Do not rely solely on your initial reasonand forget to justify your choice with more recent experiences.

讲一些你小时候的事情可能可以吸引读者,一些小时候的兴趣爱好如何发展成为学术喜好的呢?

Goals 明确自己未来的职业发展目标。很多人可能会说自己会进入学术界,那么为了使你的goals显得与众不同一些,你必须突出自己特殊的research interest; 对于想要到学术之外的领域发展的人,必须identify a specific issue and explain the origin and evolution ofyour interest.

Research interests 有些学校会让你写个statement of purpose来表明你的研究兴趣,你可以认为你的读者是一个faculty,但是一个不是专家的人应该也能津津有味地看下去

Addressing the school(在我们写每一个学校的PS的时候,都要做大量的搜索工作!)

You should do this research for your ownsake, of course, but discussing your discoveries in your personal statement canhelp convince the admissions committee that you are a good fit. Avoid mistakeslike discussing the school's rank or prestige, or simply offering genericpraise. Instead,mention faculty members by name and indicate some knowledge oftheir work. Discuss your interest in becoming involved in a particular studentorganization or activity. Consider contacting faculty members first anddiscussing their current research projects and your interest in studying underthem. Then refer to these contacts in your essay.(套磁的作用就出来了哦!) You may also want to discuss yourinterest in becoming involved in a particular student organization or activity.

mentioning several professors is not aseffective as describing one in further depth


Why qualified?


Details about the process are paramount.What we mean by the "process" is the path to achievement. The rest ofthe application has already summarized your accomplishments and activities.Show the reader what you did in concrete terms, and most importantly, highlightyour active roles.

research experience

Remember to keep the discussion personal.Do not become bogged down in minute details and jargon. Ultimately, the focusof the story should remain on you and your growth or success.

field experience

unrelated work experience

Extracurricular Activities


Why Unique


这里给大家举几个unique的例子:


This applicant starts by noting thediversity of his ethnic and religious background. When mentioning such points,you should not assume that such diversity is an end in itself. Rather, youshould show how your background and culture have shaped your perspective andgiven you something unique to offer. This applicant does a good job of notinghow Zoroastrianism has given him guiding principles, but he never followsthrough to discuss concrete examples.This essay would have benefited from moredetails to show his diversity in more tangible terms.


This applicant's story is fascinating, attimes harrowing, and ultimately triumphant. From committed social activism todrug and alcohol addiction to a reengagement with the world, the author pullsno punches in telling his unique tale. While he does not whitewash hisexperience with drugs and alcohol, notice how he situates it in a largercontext, showing both how it made him oblivious to the things he really caredabout (Third World injustices) and how his reintroduction to those thingshelped him pull himself out of his downward spiral. In doing so, hedemonstrates both a strong social conscience and a dedication to his beliefs.Additionally, his story makes him very hard for an admissions committee toforget. Just be careful that any discussion of past mistakes or difficultiesleads to an indubitably positive conclusion.


This applicant shows that you do not needto be a true one-of-a-kind to demonstrate uniqueness in the admissions process.In fact, what sets him apart is a rather typical job in the computer industry.What makes his application unique, however, is that he is applying to ageological sciences program. His interest in mathematical modeling gives him anovel area of specialization to offer to the intellectual diversity of theprogram.


(原来跨专业申请也算unique


Finally, this applicant shows that apersonal, revealing story can be enough to set someone apart. By recounting aparticular episode that sparked her epiphany as a writer, she gives us anin-depth look at her unique approach to her craft. Again, this essay does notdiscuss exotic experiences, but instead succeeds by painting a detailed, deeplypersonal portrait that no one else could have written.


Explain Blemishes


Staying up late the night before the GRE isnot a legitimate reason for a bad performance, whiledocumented sickness couldbe. A particularly bad semester could be explained by a death or illness in thefamily. If you lack research experience, you might point out the number ofhours you had to work to make college more affordable for you and your family.


Your best approach might be to try totransform such blemishes into something positive bypointing out particularcourses in which you performed well, especially those that were more advanced,more relevant to your intended career path, or more recent.


make sure that you do not take acontentious tone. Don't accuse your teachers of unfair grading standards orcomplain about lack of extracurricular opportunities at your school. Be clearthat you're not trying to excuse yourself of responsibility, but emphasize thatyou simply want the schools to have the complete picture.