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How to write a personal statement? It's difficult to know where to begin. Get hints and tips on structure, content and what not to write from a university expert.

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  • An insider's view
  • What admissions tutors look for

Structuring and preparing your personal statement

What to write in a personal statement, examples to avoid, an insider’s view .

Personal statements may seem formulaic, but they can be critical to the decision-making process, and admissions tutors do read them.

If you’re applying for a high-demand course, your personal statement could be the deciding factor on whether or not you get an interview.

The Director of Marketing and Student Recruitment at the University of Gloucestershire , James Seymour, shares some top tips on how to write a personal statement.

What makes a good personal statement?

This is your chance to demonstrate your enthusiasm and commitment and show us what value you can add to a university. In the vast majority of cases, universities are finding ways to make you an offer, not reject you – the personal statement is your chance to make this decision easier for them!

First, you need to explain why you want a place on a course. Take a look at James’ tips on what you should include:

  • Explain the reason for your choice and how it fits in with your aspirations for the future
  • Give examples of any related academic or work experience
  • Show you know what the course will involve and mention any special subjects you’re interested in
  • Demonstrate who you are by listing any positions you’ve held, memberships of teams or societies, and interests and hobbies
  • Show consistency in your five UCAS choices. It may be difficult for an admissions tutor to take you seriously if your other choices, and references to them, are totally different. If your choices are different, you should explain this in your statement. The UCAS form is blind. Admissions tutors don’t know the other universities you’ve applied to, or your priorities, but you should still be consistent
  • Keep it clear and concise – UCAS admissions are increasingly paperless – so most admissions tutors/officers will read your statement onscreen
Explain what you can bring to a course and try not to just list experiences, but describe how they have given you skills that will help you at university.

Don’t just say: I am a member of the college chess club. I also play the clarinet in the orchestra.

When you could say: I have developed my problem-solving skills through playing chess for the college; this requires concentration and analytical thought. I am used to working as part of a team as I play clarinet in the college orchestra and cooperate with others to achieve a finished production.

  • Applying to university and UCAS deadlines
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What will admissions tutors look for in your personal statement?

To decide if you’re the right fit, universities and colleges are interested in how you express your academic record and potential. This should be backed up by your reference.

Those working in admissions look for evidence of:

  • Motivation and commitment
  • Leadership, teamwork and communication
  • Research into your chosen subject
  • Any relevant key skills

Admissions tutors aren't seeking Nobel laureates. They’re looking for enthusiasm for the course being applied for, and self-reflection into why you’d be suitable to study it. What value could you add to the course? Where would you like to go once you graduate?

Ben, the Admissions Manager for Law at the University of Birmingham , shared with us what he expects applicants to tell him in their personal statement:

The personal statement is not only an excellent opportunity to showcase applicants individual skills, knowledge, and achievements, but it also provides us with an insight into the type of student they aspire to be and how they could fit into the academic community. Ben Atkins, Law Admissions Manager at University of Birmingham

Real-life example: the good

Good personal statement

Real-life example: the not-so-good

Not so good personal statement

  • How to make your personal statement stand out

You could have excellent experiences, but if they’re arranged in a poorly-written statement then the impact will be reduced. So, it’s important to plan your statement well.

A well-written personal statement with a clearly planned and refined structure will not only make the information stand out, but it’ll demonstrate you have an aptitude for structuring written pieces of work – a crucial skill needed for many university courses.

You can use it for other things too, such as gap year applications, jobs, internships, apprenticeships and keep it on file for future applications.

There's no one ‘correct’ way to structure your personal statement. But it’s a good idea to include the following:

  • A clear introduction, explaining why you want to study the course
  • Around 75% can focus on your academic achievements, to prove how you’re qualified to study it
  • Around 25% can be about any extracurricular activity, to show what else makes you suitable
  • A clear conclusion
  • How to start a personal statement

Your personal statement is your chance to really show why you deserve a place on your chosen course. 

Remember to keep these in mind:

  • Be clear and concise – the more concentrated the points and facts, the more powerful
  • Use positive words such as achieved, developed, learned, discovered, enthusiasm, commitment, energy, fascination…
  • Avoid contrived or grandiose language. Instead use short, simple sentences in plain English
  • Insert a personal touch if possible, but be careful with humour and chatty approaches
  • Use evidence of your learning and growth (wherever possible) to support claims and statements
  • Plan the statement as you would an essay or letter of application for a job/scholarship
  • Consider dividing the statement into five or six paragraphs, with headings if appropriate
  • Spelling and grammar DO matter – draft and redraft as many times as you must and ask others to proofread and provide feedback
  • For 2022 – 23 applications, refer to the challenges you've faced during the pandemic in a positive way

Don’t 

  • Over-exaggerate
  • Come across as pretentious
  • Try to include your life history
  • Start with: "I’ve always wanted to be a..."
  • Use gimmicks or quotations, unless they're very relevant and you deal with them in a way that shows your qualities
  • Be tempted to buy or copy a personal statement – plagiarism software is now very sophisticated and if you're caught out you won’t get a place
  • Make excuses about not being able to undertake activities/gain experience – focus on what you were able to do positively, e.g. as a result of coronavirus

For further details, read our detailed guide on  what to include in a personal statement  and the best things to avoid.

Note that if you decide to reapply for university the following year, it's a good idea to consider making some changes to your personal statement. Mention why you took a year off and talk about what skills you've learnt. If you're applying for a completely different subject, you'll need to make more changes.

James gives us real-life examples of things to avoid:

I enjoy the theatre and used to go a couple of times a year. (Drama)
I am a keen reader and am committed to the study of human behaviour through TV soaps!
I have led a full life over the last 18 years and it is a tradition I intend to continue.
I describe myself in the following two words: 'TO ODIN!' the ancient Viking war cry. (Law)
My favourite hobby is bee-keeping and I want to be an engineer.
My interest in Medicine stems from my enjoyment of Casualty and other related TV series.
I have always had a passion to study Medicine, failing that, Pharmacy. (A student putting Pharmacy as her fifth choice after four medical school choices – Pharmacy can be just as popular and high status as Medicine.)

Some final advice

Above all, remember that a personal statement is your opportunity to convince a university why it should offer you a place. So, make it compelling and there’s a much higher chance they will.

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How to write a personal statement for a uk university, by kathryn abell, 19 october 2015 - 05:11.

'Your opening paragraph could start in a variety of ways of course, but the fundamental purpose is to grab the reader’s interest.' Photo (c) Mat Wright

Kathryn Abell of  Edukonexion  shares some tips.

When applying to a UK university, the discovery that school grades alone are not enough to gain entry onto the programme of your choice can come as an unwelcome surprise. This is especially true for international students, many of whom see the words 'personal statement' for the first time when starting their university application.

But far from being a barrier, the personal statement is, in fact, one of the stepping stones to achieving your goal of studying at a UK university.

A personal statement can help you stand out

If you have selected your study programme well – that is to say, you have chosen something that you are truly excited about that matches your academic profile – then the personal statement is simply a way to communicate to admissions tutors why you are interested in the programme and what you can bring to it. And given the fact that many universities receive multiple applications for each available place, and that most do not offer an interview, your written statement is often the only way you can express your personality and say 'choose me!'.

The 'personal' in 'personal statement' suggests that you should be allowed to express yourself however you want, right? Well, to a certain extent that is true: admissions tutors want to get a picture of you, not your parents, your teachers or your best friend, so it has to be your work. However, the purpose of the statement is to persuade academic staff that they should offer you one of their highly sought-after university places; although there is no strict template for this, there are specific things you should include and certain things you should most certainly leave out.

The importance of the opening paragraph

The online Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) undergraduate application form allows a total of 4,000 characters (around 700 words), meaning that you need to craft the statement carefully. The most important part is unquestionably the opening paragraph, as it acts as an invitation to continue reading. If you are not able to catch the attention of the admissions tutor, who has hundreds of statements to assess, then it is highly unlikely they will read through to the end.

The best advice here is to avoid much-used opening lines and clichés such as 'I have wanted to be an engineer since I was a child'. This kind of thing is not the invitation readers are looking for. Instead, try using an anecdote, experience or inspirational moment: 'Although tinkering with engines had always been a childhood hobby, it was the vision of the fastest car on earth, the Bloodhound, at an exhibition in London, that roused my desire to learn everything I could about automotive engineering'. Really? Tell me more!

Of course, your opening paragraph could start in a variety of ways, but the fundamental purpose is to grab the reader’s interest.

Provide evidence of your commitment and skills

Following on from that, you have to provide evidence of your passion and commitment to your chosen programme, and highlight the specific and transferable skills you possess to study it successfully. You can do this by following the  ABC  rule.

Action:  Include examples of what you have done, experienced or even read that have helped you in your choice of degree and boosted your knowledge of the subject area.

Benefit : By doing these things, explain what you learned or gained; in the case of a book or article, put forward an opinion.

Course : The most successful applicants ensure that the information they include is relevant to their course in order to highlight their suitability. Flower-arranging may allow you to realise your creative potential, but will it help you study astrophysics?

It is perfectly acceptable to base this ABC rule on school-based activities, as not all students have opportunities outside the classroom. However, if you can link extra-curricular pursuits to your desired programme of study, you are further highlighting your commitment. As a general rule of thumb, the information you include here should be around 80 per cent academic and 20 per cent non-academic. So, for example, as a member of the school science club – a non-curricular, academic activity – you may have developed the ability to analyse data and tackle problems logically. Taking part in a work placement falls into the same category and could have helped you develop your communication, time-management and computer skills. You get the idea.

Non-academic accomplishments may involve music, sport, travel or clubs and can lead to a variety of competencies such as team-working, leadership, language or presentation skills. A word of warning here: it is vital that you sell yourself, but arrogance or lies will result in your personal statement landing in the 'rejected' pile. Keep it honest and down-to-earth.

Provide a memorable conclusion

Once you have emphasised your keen interest and relevant qualities, you should round off the statement with a conclusion that will be remembered. There is little point putting all your effort to generate interest in the opening paragraph only for your statement to gradually fade away at the end. A good conclusion will create lasting impact and may express how studying your chosen course will allow you to pursue a particular career or achieve any other plans. It can also underline your motivation and determination.

Use a formal tone, stay relevant and be positive

As you have to pack all this information into a relatively short statement, it is essential to avoid the superfluous or, as I like to call it, the 'fluff'. If a sentence sounds pretty but doesn’t give the reader information, remove it. In addition, the tone should be formal and you should not use contractions, slang or jokes; remember, the statement will be read by academics – often leaders in their field.

Referring to books is fine but don’t resort to using famous quotes as they are overused and do not reflect your own ideas. Also, while it's good to avoid repetition, don't overdo it with the thesaurus.

Negativity has no place in a personal statement, so if you need to mention a difficult situation you have overcome, ensure you present it as a learning experience rather than giving the reader an opportunity to notice any shortcomings. Also, bear in mind that your personal statement will probably go to several universities as part of a single application, so specifically naming one university is not going to win you any favours with the others.

Get some help but never copy someone else's work

Checking grammar, spelling and flow is essential and it is perfectly OK to ask someone to do this for you. A fresh pair of eyes and a different perspective always help, and, as long as the third party does not write the content for you, their input could be of vital importance. And while you may get away with not sticking to all of the above advice, there is one thing that you absolutely must not do: copy someone else’s work. Most applications are made through UCAS, which uses sophisticated software to detect plagiarism. If you are found to have copied content from the internet, or a previous statement, your application will be cancelled immediately. Remember, it is a  personal  statement.

Get your ideas down in a mind-map first

Finally, I will leave you with my top tip. If you understand all the theory behind the personal statement and have an abundance of ideas floating in your head, but are staring blankly at your computer screen, take a pen and paper and make a simple mind map. Jot down all your experiences, activities, skills, attributes and perhaps even include books you have read or even current items that interest you in the news. Then look for how these link to your course and highlight the most significant elements using arrows, colours and even doodles. Capturing thoughts on paper and making logical deductions from an image can give structure to your ideas.

Get more advice on your application from our Study UK site .

You might also be interested in:

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  • Five ways UK students can improve their career prospects
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How to write a UCAS personal statement

A student writing a personal statement on a laptop

Writing a great personal statement

Read our guide on what it is, what to include, how to start, length and what makes a good personal statement 

Once you've decided which universities and courses to apply for, completing your application is pretty simple – until it comes to how to write your UCAS personal statement.

This guide covers everything you need to know about how to write a personal statement for university. We look at what it is and how you can start your personal statement. We've also got questions to guide you and a suggested personal statement structure you can use so you know what to put in it.

If you'd like even more resources, support and UCAS personal statement examples, you can sign up to access our personal statement hub .

What is the UCAS personal statement?

How universities use your ucas personal statement, how to start a ucas personal statement.

  • Get feedback on your UCAS personal statement

The personal statement is part of your UCAS application. It's how you show your chosen universities why you'll make a great student and why they should make you an offer.

Your personal statement also helps you think about your choice of course and your reasons for applying, so you know you’ve made the right decision.

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Get feedback on your personal statement

Sign up to our personal statement hub to get feedback on your draft. You'll also get access to videos, help sheets and more tips.

Sign up now

UCAS personal statement word limit

Your personal statement length can be up to 4,000 characters long. 

This may sound a lot, but it's a word limit of around 550–1000 words with spaces and only about 1 side of typed A4 paper.

You need to keep it concise and make sure it's clear and easy to read.

Applying for multiple courses

Although you can apply for up to 5 courses on your UCAS application, you can only submit 1 personal statement. So it needs to cover all your course choices.

Lots of students who apply to university have achieved the basic entry requirements and many more students apply than there are places available. Admissions teams can use your UCAS personal statement to get to know you and decide why you're more suitable than other applicants.

Some universities read every personal statement and score them. Then they use them alongside your qualifications and grades to decide whether to offer you a place or interview. Other universities put less emphasis on the personal statement and use it with students who have borderline entry requirements.

Universities might refer to your personal statement again on results day if you don't get the grades you need. So a good personal statement could clinch you a uni place even if your grades aren't what you hoped for.

Starting your personal statement can seem scary when you're staring at a blank screen. But, things will seem less daunting once you start.

  • Set aside some time in a place where you're comfortable and won't be disturbed. Grab a notepad or computer.
  • Write down anything and everything that's influenced your decision to go to university and study your chosen subject. Jot down your skills and experience too.
  • Use the questions below to guide you. Don't worry about the personal statement length at this point – you can cut things out later.

When to start your UCAS personal statement

Ideally, you want to leave yourself plenty of time – a few weeks or even months – to plan and write your personal statement.

Try not to leave it to the last minute, as tempting as this may seem when you've got so many other things to think about.

Questions to guide you

Your motivation.

  • Why do you want to study at university?
  • Why do you want to study this subject?
  • How did you become interested in this subject?
  • What career do you have in mind after university?

Academic ability and potential

  • How have your current studies affected your choice?
  • What do you enjoy about your current studies?
  • What skills have you gained from your current studies?
  • How can you demonstrate you have the skills and qualities needed for the course?
  • What qualities and attributes would you bring to the course and university?

Your experience

  • What work experience (including part-time, charity and volunteer work) do you have and what have you learnt from it?
  • What positions of responsibility have you held? (For example, prefect, captain of a team or member of a committee)
  • What relevant hobbies or interests do you have and what skills have they helped you develop?
  • What transferable skills do you have, such as self motivation, team working, public speaking, problem solving and analytical thinking?

Research and reading

  • How do you keep up with current affairs or news in your chosen subject?
  • What journals or publications relevant to your chosen subject do you read?
  • Which people have influenced you, such as artists, authors, philosophers or scientists?

Now it's time to write your personal statement using your notes. It's best to draft it on a computer, and remember to save it regularly.

You can copy and paste it into your UCAS application when you're happy with it.

Personal statement structure

While there's no set template for a personal statement, you may find it useful to follow this personal statement structure when you decide what to put in your statement.

What to include in a personal statement

  • Reasons for choosing this subject(s)
  • Current studies and how these relate to your chosen subject(s)
  • Experiences and how these relate to your chosen subject(s)
  • Interests and responsibilities and how these relate to your chosen subject(s)
  • Your future after university
  • Summary including why you'll make a great student

Further tips for a good UCAS personal statement

  • Use information on university websites and the UCAS website. This often includes the skills and qualities universities are looking for in applicants
  • Ask friends, family and teachers to remind you of activities you've participated in. They might remember your successes better than you do
  • Don’t include lists in your application, like a list of all your hobbies. Focus on 1 or 2 points and talk about them in depth to show their relevance to your application
  • Explain and evidence everything. It’s easy to say you have a skill, but it's better to demonstrate it with an example of when and how you’ve used it
  • Avoid clichéd lines such as ‘I've always wanted to be a teacher’ as it says nothing about your motivations or experiences
  • If you’re applying for a joint degree or different subjects, give equal time to each area and try to find common aspects that show their similarities
  • Never lie or plagiarise another statement – you'll be caught and it could result in your application being automatically rejected
  • Proofread your personal statement by reading it out loud and ask friends, family or a teacher to check it for you

Sign up to our personal statement hub

Watch videos, get top tips and download our help sheets – that's what our personal statement hub is for. It's for you to write your story, so you can show your strengths, ideas and passion to your chosen universities.

You'll also be able send us your draft, so you can get feedback and feel confident about what you've written.

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what to write in personal statement uk

How to write a great personal statement

Student Admissions & Access

what to write in personal statement uk

Your personal statement is your opportunity to tell us more about yourself and why you are interested in studying your chosen subject. In this article, we offer you some tips and advice on how to start building your personal statement and make the best impression with your application.

Where to start

Don’t let the blank page put you off. Just start writing and try not to overthink it - you can always change and refine your statement later.

You might want to begin by thinking about the following questions to help you make a list of what to include:

  • What do I know about the course and its modules?
  • Why do I want to study the subject?
  • What do I like about the subject?
  • What do I already know?
  • What have I read, watched or attended that is relevant to the subject?
  • What excites me about the subject?
  • What are my academic strengths?
  • What makes me a good fit for studying this course?

Start turning your list into sentences. Think about how each thing in your list relates to your subject, and start to form concise sentences. Aim to organise the sentences into paragraphs and form a logical structure to make a case for your suitability for the course.

Aim for one idea per sentence, and one major theme per paragraph. If you can, try to tie it all together with common themes and ideas. For example, you may have learned a topic during your A Levels, then read a book about it and independently researched more about the theory, which sparked some ideas and questions of your own. You may have read a number of books on a similar theme - think about any parallels or contrasts between them.

Image captions

what to write in personal statement uk

Draft, draft, draft

Get everything down on paper first. Then go back to draft and start to rework it. Don’t let your personal statement become a long list of ideas – that was your starting point. Think about the most important points you’ve made, and work on developing those. Remember that sometimes, less is more. At this point, you may have to delete whole sections, so don’t become too attached to what you have written.

When working on your draft, try to be clear and concise – remember, you only have limited space.

what to write in personal statement uk

The beginning at the end

Often it’s easier to write the main body of your statement first, and come back to the opening later. The first sentence should really show your enthusiasm for the course, so talk about something that excites you.

In conclusion…

Don’t forget your conclusion. Try to tie everything together at the end, and finish on a positive note that leaves the admissions tutor with a positive impression. If you approach your personal statement as a short academic essay about yourself and your motivations, we should be left with a clear sense of where your passion lies and your suitability for the course.

Check before you submit

Before you submit your application, it’s a good idea to carefully proof your personal statement and to share it with someone else – that could be a family member, friend or teacher. You don’t always have to follow their advice, it’s personal after all, but you may find that they have some good ideas and they might spot mistakes you’ve missed.

what to write in personal statement uk

  • Show your passion, don’t just tell us.
  • Be yourself and sound like yourself – you don’t have to use the thesaurus for every word!
  • Make sure you can talk about everything in your personal statement in detail, as you’ll be asked about it at your interview.
  • Link any extra-curricular activities to your study – maybe your part time job taught you time management or communication skills.
  • Make sure it relates to the course you have applied for.
  • Check your spelling and grammar, and use clear, plain English.
  • Avoid sweeping, general statements, make every word count.

Watch this video from UCAS for some more great tips to get you started:

If you choose to apply to cambridge, we can’t wait to find out all about you.

what to write in personal statement uk

The information in this article is correct at the time of publishing. Last reviewed July 2023. For more information about applying to the University of Cambridge, visit our website .

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How to Write a UCAS Personal Statement [With Examples]

what to write in personal statement uk

James is senior content marketing manager at BridgeU. He writes and directs content for BridgeU's university partners and our community of international schools

What are the big challenges students should be aware of before writing their UCAS Personal Statement?

  • The essential ingredients for writing a great Personal Statement
  • How to write the UCAS Personal Statement [with examples]

Final hints & tips to help your students

Join 10,000 other counsellors & educators & get exclusive resources delivered straight to your inbox.

The UCAS Personal Statement can sometimes be a student’s only chance to impress a UK university. Read our in-depth guide to helping your students plan & write a winning application.

There are hundreds of articles out there on how to write a UCAS Personal Statement that will grab the attention of a UK university admissions officer.  

But if you’re working with students to help them perfect their Personal Statement in time for the  relevant UCAS deadlines , we can sum up the secret to success in three words.

Planning, structure and story. 

The UCAS Personal Statement is a student’s chance to talk about why they want to study for a particular degree, course or subject discipline at a UK university. 

As they set about writing a personal statement, students need to demonstrate the drive, ambition, relevant skills and notable achievements that make them a  suitable candidate for the universities they have chosen to apply to . 

But the UCAS Personal Statement requires students to write a lot about themselves in a relatively short space of time. That’s why lots of planning, a tight structure and a compelling story are essential if a student’s Personal Statement is to truly excel. 

As important deadlines for UK university applications grow closer, we at BridgeU have put together a guide, outlining some of the strategies and techniques to help your students to write a personal statement which is both engaging and truly individual.

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As they begin to plan their Personal Statement, students may feel intimidated. It’s not easy to summarise your academic interests and personal ambitions, especially when you’re competing for a place on a course which is popular or has demanding entry requirements. In particular, students will likely come up against the following challenges.

Time pressure

Unfortunately, the Personal Statement (and other aspects of university preparation) comes during the busiest year of the student’s academic life so far.

Students, and indeed teachers and counsellors, must undertake the planning and writing of the personal statement whilst juggling other commitments, classes and deadlines, not to mention revision and open day visits!

Because there is already a lot of academic pressure on students in their final year of secondary school, finding the time and headspace for the personal statement can be hard, and can mean it gets pushed to the last minute. The risks of leaving it to the last minute are fairly obvious – the application will seem rushed and the necessary thought and planning won’t go into  making the personal statement the best it can be . 

Sticking closely to the Personal Statement format

The character limit which UCAS sets for the personal statement is very strict – up to 4,000 characters of text. This means that students have to express themselves in a clear and concise way; it’s also important that they don’t feel the need to fill the available space needlessly.  Planning and redrafting of a personal statement is essential .

Making it stand out

This is arguably the greatest challenge facing students – making sure that their statement sets them apart from everyone else who is competing for a place on any given course; in 2022 alone, UCAS received applications from 683,650 applicants (+1.6k on 2021) students. In addition, UCAS uses its own dedicated team and purpose built software to check every application for plagiarism, so it’s crucial that students craft a truly  original personal statement which is entirely their own work .

The essential ingredients for writing a great UCAS Personal Statement 

We’ve already mentioned our three watch words for writing a high quality Personal Statement.

Planning. Structure. Story. 

Let’s dig deeper into these three essential components in more detail.

Watch: How to Write a UCAS Personal Statement with University of Essex

Planning a ucas personal statement.

It might sound like a no-brainer, but it’s vital that students plan their Personal Statement before they start writing it. Specifically, the planning phase could include: 

  • Students thoroughly researching the UK university courses they plan on applying to. 
  • Deciding on what relevant material to include in their Personal Statement (we’ll cover this in more detail later on). 
  • Writing an unedited first draft where they just get their thoughts and ideas down on paper. 

Structuring a UCAS Personal Statement

As we’ve discussed, the UCAS Personal Statement requires students to be extremely disciplined – they will be required to condense a lot of information into a relatively short written statement. This means that, after they’ve written a rough first draft, they need to think carefully about how they structure the final statement. 

A stand out Personal Statement will need a tight structure, with an introduction and a conclusion that make an impact and really help to tell a story about who your student is, and why they are drawn to studying this particular degree. 

This brings us nicely to our third and final ingredient…

Telling a story with a Personal Statement

The UCAS Personal Statement is a student’s opportunity to show a university who they are and how their life experiences have shaped their academic interests and goals. 

So a good Personal Statement needs to offer a compelling narrative, and that means making sure that a student’s writing is well-structured, and that every sentence and paragraph is serving the statement’s ultimate purpose –  to convince a university that your student deserves a place on their subject of choice. 

How to help your students start their UCAS Personal Statement

In order to ensure that a personal statement is delivered on time and to an appropriate standard, it’s essential to plan thoroughly before writing it. Here are some questions you can ask your students before they start writing:

How can you demonstrate a formative interest in your subject?

It may sound obvious but, in order for any UCAS personal statement to have the necessary structure and clarity, students need to think hard about why they want to study their chosen subject. Ask them to think about their responses to the following questions:

What inspired you to study your chosen subject?

Example answer:  My desire to understand the nature of reality has inspired me to apply for Physics and Philosophy

Was there a formative moment when your perspective on this subject changed, or when you decided you wanted to study this subject in more detail?

Example answer:  My interest in philosophy was awakened when I questioned my childhood religious beliefs; reading Blackburn’s “Think”, convinced me to scrutinise my assumptions about the world, and to ensure I could justify my beliefs.

Can you point to any role models, leading thinkers, or notable literature which has in turn affected your thinking and/or inspired you?

Example answer :  The search for a theory of everything currently being conducted by physicists is of particular interest to me and in “The Grand Design” Hawking proposes a collection of string theories, dubbed M-theory, as the explanation of why the universe is the way it is.

Asking your students to think about the “why” behind their chosen subject discipline is a useful first step in helping them to organise their overall statement. Next, they need to be able to demonstrate evidence of their suitability for a course or degree. 

How have you demonstrated the skills and aptitudes necessary for your chosen course?

Encourage students to think about times where they have demonstrated the necessary skills to really stand out. It’s helpful to think about times when they have utilised these skills both inside and outside the classroom. Ask students to consider their responses to the following questions. 

Can you demonstrate critical and independent thinking around your chosen subject discipline?

Example answer :  Currently I am studying Maths and Economics in addition to Geography. Economics has been a valuable tool, providing the nuts and bolts to economic processes, and my geography has provided a spatial and temporal element.

Are you able to demonstrate skills and competencies which will be necessary for university study?

These include qualities such as teamwork, time management and the ability to organise workload responsibly.

Example answer:  This year I was selected to be captain of the 1st XV rugby team and Captain of Swimming which will allow me to further develop my leadership, teamwork and organisational skills.

How have your extracurricular activities helped prepare you for university?

Students may believe that their interests outside the classroom aren’t relevant to their university application. So encourage them to think about how their other interests can demonstrate the subject-related skills that universities are looking for in an application. Ask students to think about any of the following activities, and how they might be related back to the subject they are applying for.

  • Clubs/societies, or volunteering work which they can use to illustrate attributes such as teamwork, an interest in community service and the ability to manage their time proactively.
  • Have they been elected/nominated as a team captain, or the head of a particular club or society, which highlights leadership skills and an ability to project manage?
  • Can they point to any awards or prizes they may have won, whether it’s taking up a musical instrument, playing a sport, or participating in theatre/performing arts?
  • Have they achieved grades or qualifications as part of their extracurricular activities? These can only help to demonstrate aptitude and hard work. 

How to write the UCAS Personal Statement [with examples] 

If sufficient planning has gone into the personal statement, then your students should be ready to go!

In this next section, we’ll break down the individual components of the UCAS Personal Statement and share some useful examples.

These examples come from a Personal Statement in support of an application to study Environmental Science at a UK university. 

Watch: King’s College London explain what they’re looking for in a UCAS Personal Statement

Introduction.

This is the chance for an applying student to really grab an admission tutor’s attention. Students need to demonstrate both a personal passion for their subject, and explain why they have an aptitude for it .  This section is where students should begin to discuss any major influences or inspirations that have led them to this subject choice. 

Example :  My passion for the environment has perhaps come from the fact that I have lived in five different countries: France, England, Spain, Sweden and Costa Rica. Moving at the age of 15 from Sweden, a calm and organized country, to Costa Rica, a more diverse and slightly chaotic country, was a shock for me at first and took me out of my comfort zone […] Also, living in Costa Rica, one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, definitely helped me realize how vulnerable the world is and how we need to take care of it in a sustainable manner. 

This opening paragraph immediately grabs the reader’s attention by giving the reader an insight into this student’s background and links their academic interests with something specific from the student’s personal backstory. 

Discussing Academic Achievements 

The next paragraph in this Personal Statement discusses the student’s academic achievements. Because this student has had an international education, they frame their academic achievements in the context of their personal background. They also cite useful examples of other curricula they have studied and the grades they have achieved. 

Example : 

Throughout my academic life I have shown myself to be a responsible student as well as a hard working one, despite the fact that I have had to move around a lot. I have achieved several other accomplishments such as a high A (286/300) in AS Spanish at age 15, and also completed a Spanish course of secondary studies for ‘MEP’(Ministerio de Educacion Publica), which is a system from Costa Rica.   

You’ll notice that this student doesn’t just list their achievements – their strong academic performance is always linked back to a wider discussion of their personal experiences. 

Showcasing Extracurricular Activities

As well as discussing academic achievements, a good Personal Statement should also discuss the student’s extracurricular activities, and how they relate back to the student’s overall university aspirations. 

By the third/fourth paragraph of the Personal Statement, students should think about incorporating their extracurricular experiences, 

Another valuable experience was when my class spent a week at a beach called ‘Pacuare’ in order to help prevent the eggs of the endangered leatherback turtle from being stolen by poachers who go on to sell them like chicken eggs. We all gained teamwork experience, which was needed in order to hide the eggs silently without scaring the mother turtles, as well as making it more difficult for the poachers to find them. 

When the poachers set fire to one of the sustainable huts where we were staying, not only did I gain self-awareness about the critical situation of the world and its ecosystems, I also matured and became even more motivated to study environmental sciences at university.

This is a particularly striking example of using extracurricular activities to showcase a student’s wider passion for the degree subject they want to study. 

Not only does this Personal Statement have a story about volunteering to save an endangered species, it also illustrates this applicants’ wider worldview, and helps to explain their motivation for wanting to study Environmental Science. 

Concluding the UCAS Personal Statement

The conclusion to a UCAS Personal Statement will have to be concise, and will need to tie all of a student’s academic and extracurricular achievements. After all, a compelling story will need a great ending. 

Remember that students need to be mindful of the character limit of a Personal Statement, so a conclusion need only be the length of a small paragraph, or even a couple of sentences. 

“ After having many varied experiences, I truly think I can contribute to university in a positive way, and would love to study in England where I believe I would gain more skills and education doing a first degree than in any other country.  “

A good Personal Statement conclusion will end with an affirmation of how the student thinks they can contribute to university life, and why they believe the institution in question should accept them. Because the student in this example has a such a rich and varied international background, they also discuss the appeal of studying at university in England. 

It’s worth taking a quick look at a few other examples of how other students have chosen to conclude their Personal Statement. 

Medicine (Imperial College, London) 

Interest in Medicine aside, other enthusiasms of mine include languages, philosophy, and mythology. It is curiously fitting that in ancient Greek lore, healing was but one of the many arts Apollo presided over, alongside archery and music.   I firmly believe that a doctor should explore the world outside the field of  Medicine, and it is with such experiences that I hope to better empathise and connect with the patients I will care for in my medical career. 

You’ll notice that this example very specifically ties the students’ academic and extracurricular activities together, and ties the Personal Statement back to their values and beliefs. 

Economic History with Economics (London School of Economics)

The highlight of my extra-curricular activities has been my visit to Shanghai with the Lord Mayor’s trade delegation in September 2012. I was selected to give a speech at this world trade conference due to my interest in economic and social history. […] I particularly enjoyed the seminar format, and look forward to experiencing more of this at university. My keen interest and desire to further my knowledge of history and economics, I believe, would make the course ideal for me.

By contrast, this conclusion ties a memorable experience back to the specifics of how the student will be taught at the London School of Economics – specifically, the appeal of learning in seminar format! 

There’s no magic formula for concluding a Personal Statement. But you’ll see that what all of these examples have in common is that they tie a student’s personal and academic experiences together – and tell a university something about their aspirations for the future.

Watch: Bournemouth University explain how to structure a UCAS Personal Statement

what to write in personal statement uk

Know the audience

It can be easy for students to forget that the person reading a personal statement is invariably an expert in their field. This is why an ability to convey passion and think critically about their chosen subject is essential for a personal statement to stand out. Admissions tutors will also look for students who can structure their writing (more on this below). 

Students should be themselves

Remember that many students are competing for places on a university degree against fierce competition. And don’t forget that UCAS has the means to spot plagiarism. So students need to create a truly honest and individual account of who they are, what they have achieved and, perhaps most importantly, why they are driven to study this particular subject.

Proof-read (then proof-read again!)

Time pressures mean that students can easily make mistakes with their Personal Statements. As the deadline grows closer, it’s vital that they are constantly checking and rechecking their writing and to ensure that shows them in the best possible light. 

Meanwhile, when it comes to giving feedback to students writing their Personal Statements, make sure you’re as honest and positive as possible in the days and weeks leading up to submission day. 

And make sure they remember the three key ingredients of writing a successful Personal Statement. 

Planning, structure and story! 

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what to write in personal statement uk

Five top tips for writing your personal statement

This article was last updated 14 December 2021.

With applications for UK undergraduate uni courses due in January, it's all starting to feel pretty real. The deadline is on 26 January 2022 for a majority of courses.

Whilst it might feel a bit overwhelming, your personal statement is a great chance to tell your chosen universities all about yourself and why you're passionate about the course you're applying for. But how do you know what makes a good statement? We caught up with StudyTuber and second-year student, Fran Tchapdeu (aka Simply Fran) , to get her top tips.

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Video transcript video transcript.

University is such a massive personal and financial investment, so it's so important to pick the right subject for you. I can assure you that, once you have, writing your personal statement will become less so of a chore and you'll actually start to enjoy it a lot more cos you're writing about a subject you really enjoy and you're expressing those interests.

We have to remember that, at the end of the day, these admissions tutors are reading through hundreds of personal statements every single day of students who are probably going to say they have a similar set of skills, such as communication and organisation. So we want our personal statements to stand out with unique examples of when we demonstrated those skills. Also, avoid just listing work experiences that you did. I really recommend reflecting upon what you actually learnt from each individual work experience and why that furthered your passion and interest in the degree that you want to do.

Now my third tip for your personal statement is to be yourself. The personal statement is very much that – your personal reasons for wanting to do that subject. A really good way of conveying this is that, when you're proofreading or redrafting your statement, look at it line by line and ask yourself: "does this sentence convey my personal passions and reasons and enthusiasm for doing this subject?" If it doesn't, maybe consider rewording it so it does.

Now my fourth point is to remember that your personal statement is almost like an essay. It's so important to remember that your personal statement must have a really good flow to it. As I said before, admissions tutors are probably spending hours reading through statements and it's so important that we try to make it easier for them by making our statements enjoyable to read, easy to read and also grammatically correct. A really good tip that I got from some of my teachers is to open all of your paragraphs off with a key sentence – a sentence that your whole paragraph will focus on and develop. Integrating your personal experiences with bursts of knowledge of the subjects you've been studying at A-levels can be a really nice way of structuring your statement.

Now my fifth tip is to be aware of the ratio of extracurricular activities to academic and super-curricular activities that your universities expect from your personal statement. Extracurricular activities are anything that you gain skills from but isn't directly related to your school work. Now super-curricular activities are things that are almost a development of the stuff you're learning at school. So books that you've read that relate to your History class, documentaries that you've watched that relate to what you were doing in GCSE Biology. For your more academic universities or science courses, they may expect a lot more super-curricular activities and academic activities. For more vocational courses, they may expect you to have more extracurricular activities and this may demonstrate that you have a lot of transferable skills.

There's no right or wrong way of writing your statement. As long as you're able to express yourself in a unique, creative way, this is absolutely fine. Don't think that you need to fit any kind of stereotypical mould. Universities want you to be yourself – they celebrate diversity and they want to see students from all walks of life with a range of experiences and interests.

Don't feel that you need to fit any stereotypical mould… universities want you to be yourself – they celebrate diversity and they want to see students from all walks of life.

More on Fran's top tips

1. make sure it's the right course for you.

As Fran explains, making sure you've picked the right course for you is essential for keeping motivated both in writing your personal statement and once you get to uni! She recommends asking yourself the following three questions to suss out if you've made the right decision:

  • Which subjects or topics do I actually enjoy revising for?
  • Which subjects or topics do I find myself wanting to know more about? For example, you might find yourself reading about them or watching documentaries
  • What are my top skills and character traits and do they overlap with a profession that relates to that course? You could ask a parent, friend or teacher for some extra input if you're not sure.

2. Don't just list skills – give examples

Giving really solid examples of how you've demonstrated different skills or what you've learnt from different experiences will show the admissions tutors that you mean business. Here's a handy example from Fran's personal statement showing the difference between just listing skills versus demonstrating those skills:

  • Listing skills: "I have good communication and time management skills"
  • Demonstrating skills: "As Head Girl, I have enjoyed delivering various presentations and assemblies which have challenged my ability to confidently communicate. Also, balancing Head Girl duties alongside the workload of Year 13 demanded an increase in my time management skills."

3. Be authentic. Don't try to be someone else!

Getting your own voice, personality and passions across is really important, so your prospective universities can get a sense of what makes you tick. It's also important not to fall into the trap of accidentally copying bits of other people's statements, such as example statements you've seen online. They might be worded particularly nicely but be aware that the UCAS system has plagiarism software to make sure your work is original, so keep it true to you!

4. Get the details right. Grammar and structure count

OK, OK, we all know grammar is important, right? But what if it's just not your strong point? Fran suggests seeing if your teachers at school can help out, such as English teachers and subject teachers for the course you're hoping to study. If your school or college has a UCAS applications administrator, they could also be a good person to ask. Bear in mind that they may be getting requests from a lot of students so try to approach them early if possible! Or you could always call on a grammar-savvy friend or relative to help you dot the i's and cross the t's.

5. Balance academic and non-academic activities

As Fran says, different courses and universities may require different ratios of academic (super-curricular) to non-academic (extracurricular) activities to be discussed in your personal statement. To find out what your chosen universities expect, Fran suggests checking on their website for the information. If you're struggling to find it, she recommends seeing if there is a contact listed for their admissions team, who should be able to point you in the right direction.

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what to write in personal statement uk

UK Personal Statements: Everything You Need To Know

what to write in personal statement uk

When it comes to university applications, the UK has very specific requirements regarding the content of a personal statement and the systems used to submit it.

That shouldn’t stop you from writing a perfect personal statement!

If you are not sure of the basics surrounding UK personal statements, you can find out everything you need to know right here…

Personal statements are a required element for every UK university application. This process is managed by UCAS, and applicants must write a single personal statement that covers all course choices for undergraduate study. It should evidence your suitability for the course and be well-written.

But what exactly does UCAS do and what should be in your personal statement?

You can find the answers to these questions below , along with a wide range of free resources to help you write a good personal statement and to make your personal statement successful.

Are you after some great personal statement examples ? Check out my free personal statement examples here …

Personal Statements and the UCAS Process

So, where does the personal statement stand in getting into university?

Well, UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) is the independent organisation that manages the application process for almost all students applying to higher education in the UK. Regardless of where in the world you are applying from or the particular course you’re interested in, it is highly likely that your application will be submitted via the UCAS platform.

Both undergraduate applications (or bachelor’s degrees) and postgraduate applications (master’s degrees) are managed this way, as are many doctoral applications.

If you are applying for an Art Foundation course, you may need to complete direct applications for some places and UCAS applications for others, but individual institutions will make this clear to you. In any case, all systems of application require some form of personal statement as a core element. Conservatoire applications for Music and Drama almost all run through UCAS as well.

When you make a UK undergraduate application via UCAS, you will need to upload a digital version of your personal statement, which can be no longer than 4000 characters (including spaces) or 47 lines. If you want to get started with this process, you can check out my post here, or you can double check your statement is the best it can be by using these powerful strategies .

With so few characters available to you, and with the value of a compelling personal statement so high, I usually recommend to students that they use software like Grammarly to help them write an accurate and concise application. Most do, and if you want to join them, just check out the free package here , or hit the banner.

what to write in personal statement uk

You can set up a UCAS account for free here . You don’t have to pay any fees to UCAS until you formally submit your application. If you don’t end up sending it off, you don’t ever need to pay.

what to write in personal statement uk

What is the Point of a Personal Statement?

UK universities require candidates to submit a personal statement. The point of this request is clear; writing a successful personal statement is challenging, and the quality and effectiveness of each attempt offers valuable insights into the strengths and weaknesses of individual applicants.

If you are looking for some outstanding ideas for personal statements, you can check out the free guide I’ve put together here . In the meantime, here are the 8 elements that make a great personal statement so effective:

  • Evidence of writing capability and foundational skills. A well written, structured and proofread personal statement is a strong indicator that the applicant will have the skills to manage the broader demands of study in higher education.
  • Evidence of academic suitability for the course or subject. Alongside your achieved or pending qualifications, an effective statement should show that your understanding of your field of study is at a suitably high level.
  • Evidence of wider subject knowledge. A great personal statement demonstrates a level of knowledge and insight gained by reading and researching beyond the formal school curriculum.
  • Evidence of relevant practical experience. Outlining relevant high-level practical skills you already possess is extremely valuable, especially when the course you are applying for demands them. Don’t dismiss their value.
  • Evidence academic research skills. Degree study is built on the ability to complete detailed academic research independently of the lecture hall. You should not simply outline that you know how to do this, but you must evidence the ways in which you have applied this skill in practice.
  • Evidence of transferable skills. All personal statements are strengthened by the inclusion of relevant transferable skills, illustrated with genuine context. If you are a great team player, explain why.
  • Evidence of academic and professional ambition. Sharing your achievable and appropriate goals, both for the course and your progression beyond it is essential. It shows that you understand the value of the course and that you are the right fit for it.
  • Evidence of individuality and character. A personal statement that provides a snapshot of your energy, personality and unique voice is far more likely to be successful. Just don’t write too informally, and do not bend the facts.

Bearing this last point in mind, if you are unsure just how original a personal statement should be, you can read all about getting the balance right here .

what to write in personal statement uk

If you’re in need of a bit more help, check out my Personal Statement Template eBook below…

what to write in personal statement uk

Top Tips for Writing Your Personal Statement

Admissions tutors aren’t seeking Nobel laureates. They’re looking for enthusiasm for the course being applied for, and self-reflection into why you’d be suitable to study it. What value could you add to the course? Cicely Oliver

When it comes to advice for writing the best personal statement you can, it is easy to make a list of suggestions along the lines of ‘be yourself’ or ‘do your research’. However, UK personal statements do not offer applicants any room for content that doesn’t earn its place, and these top tips are similarly direct and purposeful:

what to write in personal statement uk

One of the best ways to ensure that your personal statement is exceptional is to get 1-1 personal support. As a professional personal statement writer UK, I work with applicants from all over the world, helping them develop their content into compelling and successful personal statements.

I won’t write it for you, but I will help you to write the very best statement you can. After all, a well-written personal statement speaks volumes. Why not check out my service here ?

Good luck on your journey, and don’t forget to contact me if you’d like to work together. You’ve got this! D

Research and content verified by Personal Statement Planet.

David Hallen

I've worked in the Further Education and University Admissions sector for nearly 20 years as a teacher, department head, Head of Sixth Form, UCAS Admissions Advisor, UK Centre Lead and freelance personal statement advisor, editor and writer. And now I'm here for you...

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What to include in a Personal Statement

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Personal Statement Tips

Nail your uni application with our personal statement examples.

Discover personal statements by subject, from A to Z. Find inspiration for your own application with these successful personal statement examples from real students.

A-Z of Personal Statements

Learn from previous student personal statements here. We have collated over 700 personal statement examples to help you on your university journey and to help you with how to write a personal statement.

These personal statement examples will show you the kind of thing that universities are looking for from their applicants. See how to structure your personal statement, what kind of format your personal statement should be in, what to write in a personal statement and the key areas to touch on in your statement.

A personal statement is a chance to tell your university all about you - a good personal statement is one that showcases your passion for the subject, what inspired you to apply for the course you’re applying for and why you think you would be an asset to the university.

Our collection includes personal statement examples in Mathematics, Anthropology, Accounting, Computer Science, Zoology and more.

Writing a personal statement has never been easier with our vast collection of personal statement examples.

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Personal Statement Help

What is a personal statement.

A personal statement is an essay written by a student applying to either a college or university. A personal statement is written and then uploaded to UCAS and is then attached to any university applications that the student may then make.

If you need more information check out our personal statement advice articles .

How to write a personal statement

There isn't a clearly defined personal statement template for you to use as each person's statement is different.

When it comes to writing a personal statement for universities, your personal statement should touch on your passions, your interest in the course, why you're applying for the course and why you would be an asset to the university you're applying to.

Talk about the clubs and societies that you belong to, any work experience you may have and any awards you might have won.

If you're still looking for information check out our article on how to write a personal statement .

How to start a personal statement

When it comes to starting your personal statement, the best thing to do is to be succinct and to have enough tantalising information to keep the reader informed and eager for more.

Your introduction should touch on your personal qualities and why you are applying for the subject you're applying for. Keeping things short and sweet means that it also allows you to break your personal statement up, which makes it easier for the reader.

We have plenty of advice for students that are wondering about what to include in a personal statement .

undergraduate Universities

Undergraduate uni's.

Photo of Heriot-Watt Uni

Heriot-Watt Uni

155 courses

Photo of Northeastern Uni

Northeastern Uni

Photo of Uni of Westminster

Uni of Westminster

335 courses

Photo of Uni of Portsmouth

Uni of Portsmouth

371 courses

Photo of UWE, Bristol

UWE, Bristol

251 courses

Photo of Uni of Reading

Uni of Reading

400 courses

Photo of Uni of Chester

Uni of Chester

403 courses

Photo of Uni of Sunderland

Uni of Sunderland

201 courses

Photo of West London IoT

West London IoT

Photo of Escape Studios

Escape Studios

Photo of Writtle Uni College

Writtle Uni College

Photo of Middlesex Uni

Middlesex Uni

316 courses

Photo of Cardiff Met Uni

Cardiff Met Uni

307 courses

Photo of UWTSD

414 courses

Photo of Uni of Law

Uni of Winchester

166 courses

Photo of SOAS

Uni of East London

249 courses

Photo of NMITE

Coventry Uni

448 courses

Photo of Uni of Bedfordshire

Uni of Bedfordshire

357 courses

Photo of Uni of Essex

Uni of Essex

1073 courses

Photo of Leeds Beckett Uni

Leeds Beckett Uni

324 courses

Photo of Staffordshire Uni

Staffordshire Uni

211 courses

Photo of Kingston Uni

Kingston Uni

389 courses

Photo of Uni of Hertfordshire

Uni of Hertfordshire

420 courses

Photo of Uni for Creative Arts

Uni for Creative Arts

329 courses

Photo of Leeds Arts University

Leeds Arts University

Photo of Anglia Ruskin Uni

Anglia Ruskin Uni

457 courses

Photo of UA92

Wrexham Uni

Photo of Uni of C.Lancashire

Uni of C.Lancashire

467 courses

Photo of Goldsmiths, UOL

Goldsmiths, UOL

272 courses

Photo of Uni of Huddersfield

Uni of Huddersfield

455 courses

Photo of Uni of Bradford

Uni of Bradford

200 courses

Photo of Uni of Roehampton

Uni of Roehampton

232 courses

Photo of Bangor Uni

526 courses

Photo of Uni of Brighton

Uni of Brighton

258 courses

Photo of LIBF

378 courses

Photo of Edge Hill Uni

Edge Hill Uni

205 courses

Photo of Uni of Suffolk

Uni of Suffolk

107 courses

Photo of Uni of Leicester

Uni of Leicester

267 courses

Photo of Manchester Met Uni

Manchester Met Uni

313 courses

Photo of Uni of Surrey

Uni of Surrey

439 courses

Photo of Ravensbourne

Ravensbourne

Photo of Uni of Hull

Uni of Hull

279 courses

Photo of Bath Spa Uni

Bath Spa Uni

289 courses

Photo of Uni of Kent

Uni of Kent

430 courses

Photo of Edinburgh Napier

Edinburgh Napier

151 courses

Photo of Nottingham Trent

Nottingham Trent

525 courses

Photo of Queen's Uni

Queen's Uni

409 courses

Photo of Cardiff Uni

Cardiff Uni

436 courses

IMAGES

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VIDEO

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COMMENTS

  1. How To Write Your Undergraduate Personal Statement

    Mature students: five things to include in your personal statement Preparing for study as a mature student - choosing where to study Preparing for study as a mature student - student support Preparing for study as a mature student - your qualifications References for mature students Student finance for mature students

  2. What to include in a personal statement

    What to include in a personal statement Explore this section The five things every student should include on their personal statement. How to stand out With admissions tutors reading hundreds of personal statements, how can you make sure you stand out and are remembered?

  3. How to write an excellent personal statement in 10 steps

    By Nik Taylor (Editor, The Uni Guide) | 18 August 2023 | 22 min read Stand out from the crowd: here's how to write a good personal statement that will get you noticed Share this page Email & Print Your personal statement forms a core part of your university application, and the sooner you get going, the better you can make it.

  4. Tips for writing your personal statement

    Cicely Oliver 09 Aug 2023 CONTENTS An insider's view What admissions tutors look for Structuring and preparing your personal statement What to write in a personal statement Examples to avoid An insider's view Personal statements may seem formulaic, but they can be critical to the decision-making process, and admissions tutors do read them.

  5. How to write a personal statement for a UK university

    As a general rule of thumb, the information you include here should be around 80 per cent academic and 20 per cent non-academic. So, for example, as a member of the school science club - a non-curricular, academic activity - you may have developed the ability to analyse data and tackle problems logically.

  6. How To Write A UCAS Personal Statement

    Express a passion for your subject Start the statement strongly to grab attention Link outside interests and passions to your course Be honest, but don't include negative information Don't attempt to sound too clever Don't leave it until the last minute; prepare ahead of the deadline Have friends and family proofread it

  7. How to write a UCAS personal statement

    UCAS personal statement word limit. Your personal statement length can be up to 4,000 characters long. This may sound a lot, but it's a word limit of around 550-1000 words with spaces and only about 1 side of typed A4 paper. You need to keep it concise and make sure it's clear and easy to read.

  8. How to write a great personal statement

    Draft, draft, draft. Get everything down on paper first. Then go back to draft and start to rework it. Don't let your personal statement become a long list of ideas - that was your starting point. Think about the most important points you've made, and work on developing those. Remember that sometimes, less is more.

  9. How to write a personal statement

    Ideally, your personal statement should be no more than around 150 words (or four or five lines of your CV). Any more than this and you run the risk of rambling and taking up valuable space. Remember: it's a summary, not a cover letter. So keep it concise, pertinent and to the point.

  10. How to Write a UCAS Personal Statement [With Examples]

    The UCAS Personal Statement is a student's chance to talk about why they want to study for a particular degree, course or subject discipline at a UK university. As they set about writing a personal statement, students need to demonstrate the drive, ambition, relevant skills and notable achievements that make them a suitable candidate for the ...

  11. Five top tips for writing your personal statement

    1. Make sure it's the right course for you As Fran explains, making sure you've picked the right course for you is essential for keeping motivated both in writing your personal statement and...

  12. How to start a personal statement: The attention grabber

    Preparing to write your personal statement Start by making some notes. The personal statement allows admissions tutors to form a picture of who you are. So, for the opener, think about writing down things, such as: why you're a good candidate your motivations what brings you to this course

  13. How to write a university personal statement

    Personal statement checklist. Use Arial or Times New Roman. Font size 11 or 12. 4-5 paragraphs. Include why you chose the university. No negative information. Don't duplicate material from your resume. One side of A4, unless the course specifically asks for more/less.

  14. Personal statement advice: English

    specifies the kind of books you enjoy details the specific aspects of literary study that appeal to you and, crucially, why is written in good English (naturally), using correct punctuation and uncomplicated syntax. 'You should be specific about the texts, contexts, and critical tendencies that really excite you.

  15. Personal statement examples

    Free CV Template University personal statement First things first: personal statements aren't just for your CV. They're also a key part of the UCAS application process, and a way to sell yourself to prospective universities. However, they will be much more detailed - and longer - than the one you write for a job application.

  16. 9 winning personal statement examples for a job

    1. Personal statement for a postgraduate programme Joan David Personal statement for master's programme in Public Policy and Administration London School of Policy 'I held my first textbook when I was a 23-year-old undergraduate.

  17. Personal statement examples by subject: complete list

    My TSR University Personal statements Personal statement examples by subject: complete list Take a look at how other students have written their personal statements When you're writing your university personal statement, a little inspiration can be handy.

  18. UK Personal Statements: Everything You Need To Know

    Personal statements are a required element for every UK university application. This process is managed by UCAS, and applicants must write a single personal statement that covers all course choices for undergraduate study. It should evidence your suitability for the course and be well-written. But what exactly does UCAS do and what should be in ...

  19. How To Write an Attention-Grabbing Personal Statement

    Generally, a small paragraph is enough in the body of your personal statement for an employer or recruiter. Related: 10 best skills to include on a CV. 6. Conclude your statement. End with a strong conclusion that summarises what you have already discussed and will leave a lasting impression on your reader.

  20. Personal statement dos and don'ts

    'Do talk about you, why you're a good candidate, your motivations, and what brings you to this course. Don't start with a quote from someone else.' Using AI and ChatGPT with your personal statement If you're not already using ChatGPT or other AI tools, you've probably heard about them.

  21. 500+ Personal Statement Examples

    Universities in Clearing Find Clearing courses at UK Unis. Clearing Hub Your complete guide to Clearing 2024. Clearing Advice. ... When it comes to writing a personal statement for universities, your personal statement should touch on your passions, your interest in the course, why you're applying for the course and why you would be an asset to ...

  22. How To Write Your Postgraduate Personal Statement

    Preparing to write your personal statement Opening your personal statement Work experience and future plans Ending your personal statement Summary What is a personal statement? Your postgraduate personal statement is your chance to get noticed for your expertise and experience you've gathered.

  23. Law Personal Statement

    What should you write in a law personal statement? From wider reading to spot-on spelling and grammar, you'll need a personal statement that makes a convincing case. We asked admissions tutors to share their top dos and don'ts. 'Try to demonstrate that you have a genuine interest in law as a discipline.