University Essay Tips for the Universal University Application | College Coach Weblog

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On Saturday, we shared the first set of guidelines for students who wish to get a jump start on their programs by registering for the Universal University Application (UCA). If you’re unfamiliar with the UCA, look no further than our blog. Today all of us share three more steps to help you produce the most of your UCA, which can help you save time and stress as you start filling out your applications this summer. Be sure to check back here next week when we round out our top 10 steps designed for users of the UCA!

Step 5:

Complete the required short extracurricular essay. (It’s located at the bottom of the “extracurriculars and work experience” web page. ) The prompt is, “Tell us about one of your extracurricular, you are not selected, or employment activities. ” Although you’re given a maximum of 6000 personas to draft your response, this particular really just needs to be a basic paragraph between 100-200 words.

Step 6:

Should you be applying to the college that requires the submission of a personal declaration, you’ll see a red asterisk alongside “write your essay” on the “personal statement” page. The prompt can be, “Please write and/or upload a good essay (650 words or fewer) on a topic of your choice that demonstrates your ability to organize your ideas and express yourself. Some ideas include writing about: a person you admire; a life-changing experience; or your viewpoint on the particular current event. ” From this article you can see, it’s a pretty open ended question. Check out our methods for writing standout personal statements for your college application.

Nice change from the Common App: I can’t even begin to tell you how many parents contacted us along with concerns over their child’s essay’s formatting on the Common App a year ago. Italicized words were increased in size; spaces between paragraphs were occasionally deleted; and indenting paragraphs was simply impossible. On the UCA, you are able to an upload your essay being a PDF if you want to preserve your formatting preferences, or you need to go over 6000 character maximum.

    ✔ Tip: If you have a YouTube video, on the internet portfolio, or other digital hyperlink you wish to share with the admissions committee, you can include a link to it on the “personal statement” page under “multimedia details. ”


Action 7:

Finished? For the aptly named “finished? ” web page, you can view any possible errors or omissions in your application. With a fast click of the mouse, you will be used directly to the section that requires your own attention.

Nice change from the Common App: Rather than forcing you to click through multiple tabs on each page, the UCA allows you to effortlessly scroll down each page till you’ve reached the bottom of that section. With no tabs to contend with, it’s easy to see all of the required pages of the application.

Another nice change from the Common Application: Interested to find out how your application might look as soon as it’s submitted, even if your application isn’t complete yet? At the top of the application web page, simply click the “print preview for” box and select the school you’re thinking about. Below is an example of my model application to Brandeis.


We hope you’ve enjoyed part 2 of our tips for the Universal University Application. For all of our Universal University Application tips, be sure to check out the remaining posts in this series:

Elyse Krantz is part of College Coach’s team of college admissions experts . Prior to joining College Coach, Elyse worked well in admissions at Barnard University and Bennington College.

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