What happens if my common app essay is over 500 words


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  • Common App Essay: Size Does Matter!
  • The Length Limit for the Common Application Essay.
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  • Can you go over the Common App length limit? How long should your essay be?.
  • Admissions What an Essay Word Limit Really Means | Veritas Prep.
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You won't be allowed to enter anything over words. Note that there is also a minimum length—CA4 won't accept any essay under words. Also realize that the word limit includes your essay title and any explanatory notes you might include. If you are applying to a college that does allow you to go over the limit, or if you have a supplemental essay with a recommended word count that isn't enforced by the application software, you still should not go over the limit. Here's why:. The Common Application and other college applications ask for relatively short essays because college admissions officers don't want to waste time reading long, rambling, unfocused, poorly edited essays.

Not all colleges, however, are fans of the shorter length. Some colleges like a longer essay because they can get to know their applicants better, and they get to see how well applicants can sustain focus in a longer piece of writing a valuable college skill.


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However, for any application essay you write, follow the directions. If a college wants a long essay, the directions will ask for it. While the maximum length for the Common Application essay is words, the minimum length is words. I've heard counselors advise students to keep their essays on the shorter end of the spectrum because college admissions offices are very busy, and they will appreciate short essays.

Admissions 101: What an Essay Word Limit Really Means

While this advice may be true for some colleges, for many others it will not be. If a college requires an essay, it is because it has holistic admissions and wants to get to know its applicants as more than a list of grades and standardized test scores. The essay is typically the most powerful tool you have for conveying who you are and what you care about. If you've chosen the right focus for your essay—one that reveals something meaningful about you—you're going to need far more than words to provide the type of detail and self-reflection that makes an essay effective.

Common App Essay: Size Does Matter – Admissions Blog

Sure, the admissions folks might be glad to get through a short essay quickly, but a beautifully crafted word essay is going to make a more meaningful and lasting impression than a good word essay. The length limit on the Common Application went from words to words in for a reason: That said, if you've said all you have to say in words, don't try to pad out your essay to words with filler and redundancy. Instead, ask yourself why you hit a wall at words. Was your focus too narrow?

Did you fail to dig into your topic deeply enough? The length of your essay isn't as important as the content.

Ideal College Application Essay Length

To make a good impression, be sure to check out these five tips for a winning essay , and if you're writing a Common Application essay, take a look at the tips and sample essays for each of the seven options. Share Flipboard Email. Allen Grove is an Alfred University English professor and a college admissions expert with 20 years of experience helping students transition to college. Updated October 15, Here's why: But the difference between words and words, or words and words, will go completely unnoticed. Admission officers do notice, however, the clarity of your thought and the effectiveness with which you convey your ideas.

Learn About the Maximum Word Count for Your Personal Statement

If your message was well-said in words but the maximum was , so you added 50 words of fluff, those 50 words are diluting the strength of your message. For those of you still concerned about the literal word count: College Essays.

College Essay Tips - How to Tell a Unique Story to Admissions

September 8, by Becky Leichtling. Search for: The Insider: College Admissions Advice from the Experts is where College Coach experts weigh in on the latest college admissions topics. We cover everything from application timelines and strategies to tips on financing your child's education. Welcome to The Insider! Avoiding College Application Myths and M.