Watching your teen struggle through a college essay can be difficult. What to write about? Where to start? How to differentiate from other applicants? One of our coaches compiled the top five tips for you and your teen on how to write a successful essay for college applicants. BONUS: these can be used for really any assignment!

  1. Practice writing your college admission essay. Princeton Review has examples of some essay topics that you can use to practice writing a college admission essay.
  2. Read your essay out loud to yourself and a family member, teacher or friend. This practice will allow you to include any important missing information for your essay. This will also help you find any errors!
  3. Proofread….proofread…proofread! Make sure that you ask an English teacher, guidance counselor or another teacher to help proofread your essay. Proper grammar is very important when writing your essay as well as not having any typos. Your college application essay is also used to assess your writing skills.
  4. Don’t procrastinate! Don’t wait until the very last minute to work on your essay. Give yourself enough time before the admission deadlines to write your essay and have it proofread. If you wait until the last minute, this will leave room for error and mistakes.
  5. Be yourself. Use your own voice. This essay is a chance for the college or university to learn more about you as an applicant and for you to show a little personality! Make sure it sounds uniquely you.

That’s it! If you follow these five tips, we know your teen will produce something that is authentic, powerful and thought-provoking. Above all else, practice makes perfect and the more your teen writes and follows these steps, the better he or she will be at it.

Following the essay, your teen may be selected for an interview. Help them prepare with these five tips!