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When you’ve finished putting everything together, read all of your essays and responses as one. Take a look at the whole picture and make sure the finer points of your personality are clearly and thoughtfully conveyed. Abigail Anderson is a member of College Coach’s team of college admissions experts.I think about this as a “family” of Stanford essays, each contributing to a bigger understanding of you who you are. Abigail received her bachelor’s in sociology from Colby College.
Intellectual Vitality The Intellectual Vitality essay is the one that gives my students the most trouble, I think because they are asked to think about learning in a different, non-academic way.
When we talk about moments that were important in your intellectual development, we’re talking about moments when you went beyond the textbook, took your learning to the next level, and really pushed to understand something that was fascinating to you.
(250 word limit) As an individual you possess all kinds of habits, hobbies, and personal approaches to social interaction.
Topics and range from social justice beliefs to furniture arrangement preferences.
Stanford’s short essays will require a little more thought and reflection than what you might’ve put into the short responses, and that’s to be expected; a 250 word limit gives much more space to engage an idea.
These essays are all about demonstrating what you’ll bring to the Stanford community as a roommate, as a thinker, and as a member at large.It is important to convey that you have been busy working on something outside of school for the past two summers, hopefully related to your theme and your story. This should add dimension to your persona beyond the aspects already discussed in other prompts.This sheds additional light into awards or significant personal interests. It’s important to be specific about why these are important to you.Did that historical moment/event inspire you to do something, as demonstrated in your extracurriculars?If you had been there at that moment, would you have done anything to change it? Everyone is multifaceted, and the five words should describe distinct parts of you.Eliminate common responses from your planning: we know you care about your family or about your future successes, academic and otherwise.Look for this as an opportunity to share something specific you care about.Don’t only describe yourself with words like “ambitious” or “intelligent” just because you think that is what Stanford wants to read.Include words that genuinely describe your personality outside of academics.Last week we began the discussion of Stanford’s 11-part supplement.We covered the seven questions requiring answers in the form of either a list or 50 words and how to answer the activities essay.