skip to Main Content

Two Essays NOT to Send Colleges

Today I want to tell you about two essays not to submit as your Common App essay.

The Common App is going to give you seven prompts from which you can choose to write about one for your essay. But #7 says you can write an essay on a topic of your choice or submit an essay you’ve already written. That last part’s a trap: under no circumstances should you turn in an essay you’ve already submitted for a grade in history class or psychology class. 

This essay may be your only opportunity to show this college who you are as a whole person. But all you’re showing them by submitting a pre-written essay is who you are as a student: the kind of student doing the bare minimum work to get into their college, and who is, therefore, more likely to do the bare minimum work as a student there. That’s someone who is less likely to succeed in college and not the kind of student they’re looking to admit.

The other essay you should not submit for your Common App—and I know I’m going to get a lot of heat for this—is the college essay you wrote as an English class assignment. Your English teacher is probably a really great English teacher. I couldn’t do that job. But that teacher may not necessarily be an expert at college admissions and may not know what common mistakes to steer you clear of in writing this essay.

We’re going to have more posts all this month about college essays, including Good Essay Topics (June 11), Bad Essay Topics (June 18), and College Essay Do’s & Don’ts (June 25), so stay tuned. But if you need more help, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 732-556-8220. We are here to help.

Back To Top