Importance of the Stanford statement of purpose
The Stanford statement of purpose is one of the most important parts of the application package if not the most important. Virtually every program at Stanford is extremely competitive to get into. The statement of purpose Stanford applicants submit need to make them stand out from all of the other applicants and show why they should be accepted instead of some other applicant. The Stanford SOP may be your only chance to directly address admissions and make your case for acceptance into the program, and you should take advantage of the opportunity it provides.
How to write the Stanford statement of purpose
There is no one correct way to write the Stanford statement of purpose. It is up to the individual applicant to decide their approach.
The following is one approach for writing the SOP for Stanford in 9 steps:
- Brainstorm: come up with lists for the following that the SOP is expected to touch on:
- Why you want to study the particular subject you are applying for?
- What have you done that qualify you to study this subject and makes you a better choice than others?
- What are your short and long term career goals in the field?
- What is this the right step for you at this time?
- Why Stanford and not some other program?
- Select the best ideas from each of your lists.
- Write your introduction. Discuss what you intend to study and why. Include what initiated your interest in the field of study and your future career goals in the field
- Write one or two paragraphs on your relevant experiences. Include work experience, research and any volunteer work. Use specific example that display qualities that will benefit you in the particular field you have chosen.
- Explain why this is the right step for you at this time and what you intend to accomplish while in the program.
- Discuss what it is about Stanford’s program that attracted you. Why Stanford and not someplace else? Give specific reasons.
- Write your conclusion. Tie all your points together and restate your interest and your unique qualifications
- Revise your statement of purpose. Go back through and make sure you have stated everything in the best possible way. Have you followed instructions, is your writing clear and concise, did you provide examples to back up statements? It may take several revisions to get everything just right
- Final proofreading to ensure all spelling mistakes and grammatical errors have been eliminated. If possible have somebody proofread for you also as a way to double check for mistakes.
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