Learn what a medical school admission essay is, and its purpose; how to persuade the admission committee to accept you, the common mistakes you should avoid.
How to Write a Winning Medical School Admission Essay
“I love medicine, and I want to become a doctor.” – if this is about you, it’s not enough for entering a medical school.
It’s a long way, and the sooner you start it, the better. Applicants should provide a package of the required documents for the admission committee.
Subjects, courses, and grades confirm your academic knowledge, diligence and intensity of your studying. Volunteer work, practice in a clinic or other work related to medicine demonstrates your experience and involvement in the healthcare sphere. Nevertheless, even if you have significant academic achievements and you have followed the shadow of outstanding doctors, an important criterion for selecting students is the medical school admission essay because it helps to tell about yourself in your own voice.
A doctor is a person who expresses his thoughts clearly, concretely and directly. Similarly, the admission essay has the main goal to disclose you as a person who is worthy of being a doctor. This essay is not about creativity and diversity; it’s not about the ability to use intricate turns of speech or to surprise with shocking details of your personal life. The purpose of the essay is to explain in a simple and clear language what kind of person you are, what values are important to you and what qualities you possess.
The basis of your essay should be the answer to the question of why you want to practice medicine. All facts, actions and your thoughts should help the reader understand why it is important for you, what led you to medicine, how your life experience affected you and why you decided to devote yourself to medicine.
The admission committee offers a typical prompt for writing an essay. It is very vague and gives freedom to write about anything. However, do not undercut it, because the first thing that is asked is “why?”.
It is important to give a broad argument to convince the reader of your dedication to medicine. Being a doctor is a calling. Write about how you found your way to the healthcare sphere, how you realized that this calling is for you. The reader is captivated by the passion with which the author sets out the meaning and purpose of his or her activity. Passion conveys the applicant’s personality. The more specifically you describe why healthcare is important to you, the more sense of purpose and motivation there is.
An essay is a story about you as a person and not a bunch of things you did. The admission committee can get acquainted with all kinds of your activities, achievements and biographical statements. Your essay is a way to attract attention, so that your application will be examined more deeply. Look back and choose only the experiences that influenced you the most.
A medical school admission essay is a narrative essay. You compose a story on the most significant moments of your life. Choose the experience that affected you the most and reveal what you have learned. Don`t glorify yourself; let the reader form an opinion about you by himself or herself. Provide evidence or facts from your life and explain what kinds of characteristics you have to become a doctor.
Writing and Flow:
As with any essay, a medical school admission essay has the structure:
The introduction tells who you are and why you are applying. This is the main statement. Many students are thinking of how to stand out from other applicants. A successful and intriguing introduction will cope with this task.
The following hooks attract attention:
A Rhetorical Question
Sensations (involve the reader in the proper atmosphere)
The body is the main part where you disclose what led you to the decision to enter a medical school. Create a list of your best qualities and describe situations when they were manifested the best way. Always pay attention to how each part of the evidence confirms that you want to become a doctor, your main goal.
A conclusion is a summary of your journey. It includes everything that you have done and passed, the experiences that transformed you. At the end of your essay, give your presentation a broader view that will be easily remembered.
Mistake: I want to become a doctor to help people. Any socially responsible person wants to help people, and this does not necessarily make him or her a doctor. Possessing such qualities as compassion, patience, participation in the destiny of another person are typical for people of other professions. So be as specific and detailed as possible in your argument to explain why you should become a doctor.
Mistake: I’m interested in biology, the human body, science, etc. The profession of a doctor involves communication with patients. Many professions are associated with science especially research-oriented ones. You can mention your interests but with a connection to a real doctor`s work.
Mistake: Include overly personal experiences. Don’t share with the admission committee your experiences of breakups, illness or family troubles. You describe situations where you are a victim of circumstances and speculate on this.
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