After noticing she had been 'stuck' for some time, I asked her the following questions:
What inspired you to study this subject?
What motivates you about learning this subject?
What does it feel like to be learning about/ doing ...?
At a talk given by Andy Gardner last night, he was saying that you should demonstrate a 'nerdy enthusiasm' for your subject. I like that expression, as it's exactly what admissions tutors are looking for, and it starts in the opening paragraph, so remember to sound excited when describing it! I would highly recommend his book, by the way: 'University Interviews Guide' by Andy Gardner and Barbara Hamnett MBE. Here is the website: www.prospectseducationresources.co.uk. It's packed full of useful information on university courses and their entry criteria. Invaluable reading, really.
Everybody finds the opening paragraph the hardest, and quite rightly so, as it puts you in either a favourable or unfavourable light for the rest of the statement, but if you are really passionate about your subject, then plug in to that passion and transmit it in the opening - without using the word, 'passionate', of course, because that's now become a cliche!
I shall be adding to this blog to help you along the way, but if you would like further help, then feel free to email me, or come along to one of my workshops in the summer holidays - there's one a week - where we'll be concentrating on the personal statement in the morning, and interview skills in the afternoon. Happy Friday! :D