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Yes they had four questions that they want to know the answers too. I just wonder what more they want to know. When I try to tell them about myself and answer those questions, it's hard to keep it under 3 pages. It's supposed to be 2-3 pages. I am nervous because they say the essay is your chance to show them who you are. I don't want to ramble on about things they don't care about.
Advice? -- Follow the directions they gave you. Part of the point of the essay is to see how well you attend to and follow directions. Answer the questions they asked you to answer, and keep within the limit they gave you for length. Don't make the mistake of thinking you will impress them, or stand out from the other applicants, by getting creative and "thinking outside the box."
Also, get someone who really knows what s/he is doing to proofread for you before you submit.
I will be watching this thread closely as I also am needing to write the same (type of) essay. The questions in mine are something to the affect of " tell us about the train of thought that lead you to this career/school choice" I.e... what in the past made you want to do this in the future. So vague yet so specific. And UP to 2 pages DOUBLE SPACED of course, as you can see from this one post I am a rambler. hehehe
Oh and how do you find someone credible to proof read?
A good English teacher or professional editor (I am one) could do that for you. I think it likely that the program's admissions committee specifies how to answer because it wants comparable essays. I doubt that it wants to read rewrites by a professional, though-- it wants to evaluate your ability to express yourself and your objectives for your graduate education. They tell you they want to know who you are; take them at their word.
However: Am I the only one who is asking why an adult learner who is ready to apply to a graduate level program feels the need to ask this question? When I made out my application for grad school it never would have occurred to me to ask someone to help me interpret the directions and craft an answer.
Help me out here-- why would someone old enough for graduate school not feel competent or self-aware enough to do this unaided? Especially when they TELL YOU WHAT THEY WANT? Is this evidence of readiness for advanced education and, presumably, resulting autonomy in a profession?
A long time ago I was at the library looking at a book on essays for medical school thinking I wanted to become a MD. From that book I got great ideas on creative writing and ways to stand out from the other applicants. Basically, I wrote an essay that told a story about how I was a secretary for a burn unit and the experience I got watching the NPs work and what an inspiration they were to me. I got such positive responses from the schools on my essay and was accepted all over. I think that the more creative you are with your essay the better off you are. That's just my experience. Good luck!