How do I write a good personal statement to apply to study Veterinary Medicine?

Personal statements are the initial point of contact between you and the University of your choice. Although they have your predicted grades or results, it is through the personal statement that they get to know you as an individual, and decide whether you sound like someone they would like to get to know more at interview. For this reason, it is really important that your personal statement does you justice. There are 5 really important points:

1. Every sentence and word should be useful. Say something new in every paragraph to avoid repetition which is a waste of valuable characters.

2. Try and not write about things that you think many other students have done. Write about something that you think will set you apart and most importantly make you a memorable applicant.

3. Make your sentences as useful as possible. Introduce a case study from your work experience and say how it inspired you to do some further reading or some reflection- do not dedicate a full sentence to books you have read.

4. Avoid lists. Despite being caught short for character count, make sure you're writing in an enjoyable manner and not just squeezing in loads of information with no mind to grammar or continuity in the prose.

5. Do not write about something that you cannot explain or talk about in great detail. Unlike other subjects, you will be interviewed for Veterinary Medicine and your personal statement will be picked apart. Make sure you have read around the subjects you write about in a critical manner as well. Think of questions interviewers may ask you and prepare for them!

Aside from the points above, for the general content of the personal statement I would have 4 main paragraphs. But firstly, grab the readers attention by introduce yourself/ your personal statement with a striking sentence. This should be unique and not 'cheesy'- it is an invitation for them to read on.

Then launch right into the body of the personal statement.  This should be 2 or 3 pararaphs on 2 or 3 points of particular interest to you- whether this is a case study from work experience or a lecture that you have attented, that you can write about in great detail and include examples of critical thinking, reflection, reading and application of skills you will use as a Vet.

The last paragraph in the body of your essay should be non- academic-  unique volunterring/ sports teams/ hobbies you do that you can relate back to Veterinary Medicine and being a good surgeon.

Dedicate only a sentence to closing your personal statement. Reaffirm your desire to be a vet, but again, be unique and not cliche, and then you will seem like a much more realistic applicant.

Gerda B. GCSE Biology tutor, IB Biology tutor, GCSE Chemistry tutor, ...

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