Essay Scoop: How to Write Stanford Essays

Natalie Thompson
Natalie Thompson

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Stanford is one of the most selective colleges in the country. The beautiful campus is located in California’s Bay Area, near the Silicon Valley. There are seven different schools within the university, four of which are for undergraduate study. Because Stanford is so highly selective, your essay needs to show the qualities about you that make you stand out from the rest. Let’s discuss how to write Stanford essays that will boost your chances of admission to this competitive school.

The Admissions Process

In the admissions process, the admissions board will include only those who have high grades and high test scores. If you make it past that process, then you are evaluated on whether you could significantly impact the world in a positive way.

Because the top areas of study are Computer and Information Sciences, as well as Biological and Biomedical Sciences, having strengths in STEM boosts your chances of getting in. As part of the application process, you can use the Common App or the Coalition App.

The Coalition App is used by fewer schools (just over 90) than the Common App and is geared towards students who are lower income and would be helped in a school with higher graduation rates. The Common App is a great tool because it is used by over 700 schools.

Required essays

Both college application forms have a required essay question. In addition, Stanford has 3 college essay questions, you choose from, specific to the university. Choose one of the following for your 100-250 word essay:

  1. The Stanford community is deeply curious and driven to learn in and out of the classroom. Reflect on an idea or experience that makes you genuinely excited about learning.
  2. Virtually all of Stanford’s undergraduates live on campus. Write a note to your future roommate that reveals something about you or that will help your roommate—and us—know you better.
  3. Tell us about something that is meaningful to you, and why?

Clearly, all three questions ask you to give a well thought out answer that tells about your particular strengths or personality instead of a short list of your likes and dislikes. The phrases “deeply,” “reflect,” “know you better,” and “meaningful” ask for your inner qualities.

Writing Your Essay

Remember, if you are interested in a STEM major, include a connection to science, engineering, or math. Write your essay in a way that includes your voice and lets the application committee get to know you.

Structure your Stanford essays with strong points that connect to strong examples. Of course, active verbs and clear support for your ideas are important to all of your college essays. For example, you could write about how your part in an engineering competition helped you see your strengths in planning.

Most importantly, your essay needs to reflect a unique person who is bright and ready to make an impact. Empowerly can help you prepare for college. We even have experts in essay writing to help you through the difficult writing stages! Book your consult today to learn more.

Questions? Let us know!