College Application Essay/Personal Statement Rubric

In order to evaluate these factors, admissions officers use a “rubric” as a guide.

Rubrics are not one-size-fits-all and differ from school to school, but most evaluate these core components of an applicant’s profile (in no particular order): In most rubrics, each factor is evaluated against the admissions standards for the school, and whether it is above, equal to, or below the standard outlined in the rubric.

Help from your college counselor is most valuable for these components.

How The “Points” Are Used Gaining admissions isn’t as simple as getting the highest marks in all rubric categories. Analysis on yield from last year, budgets, departmental needs, and more are all taken into consideration when determining the threshold students have to meet in order to be qualified for admission to the university.

The Admissions Rubric Most US universities use the “holistic review” process when evaluating college applications.

This means admissions officers place emphasis on the applicant as a whole person, not just his or her academic achievements, so soft factors may be given just as much consideration as the empirical data present in hard factors.For more information no how Ivy Wise can help you prepare for the college admissions process, contact us today.Picture this before you plop yourself down in front of your computer to compose your college application essay: A winter-lit room is crammed with admissions professionals and harried faculty members who sit around a big table covered with files.A stand-out essay in which the reader learns a lot about the applicant can earn top marks, while a well-written essay that reveals little about the applicant can earn middle-of-the-road marks, and a poorly written essay where the reader learns nothing new about the applicant can get a low mark.Evaluating the strength of your extracurricular activities, course load, essays and other soft factors against the admissions standards of the college or university, however, isn’t as simple as checking the information on the school’s website.– that will make you a shoo-in for your top-choice colleges.Everything is taken into consideration – including factors that are outside of your control like budgetary restrictions, departmental needs, and more.If the subject doesn’t matter to you, it won’t matter to the reader. It might be why you don’t believe in evolution or how you think kale must have hired a PR firm to get people to eat it. In school, you were probably encouraged to write papers that took a side. “I love my mom even though she makes me clean my room, hates my guinea pig and is crazy about disgusting food like kale” could lead somewhere While the personal essay has to be personal, a reader can learn a lot about you from whatever you choose to focus on and how you describe it.That’s fine in academic work when you’re being asked to argue in support of a position, but in a personal essay, you want to express more nuanced thinking and explore your own clashing emotions. One of my favorites from when I worked in admissions at Duke University started out, “My car and I are a lot alike.” The writer then described a car that smelled like wet dog and went from 0 to 60 in, well, it never quite got to 60.This is why in addition to the “hard factors” (GPA, grades, and test scores) of a student’s application, colleges also place great weight on the “soft factors” (essays, extracurricular activities, recommendations, and demonstrated interest) in order to gain a full picture of applicants.How these components are evaluated, however, can be confusing to families and make the college admissions process somewhat mysterious.


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