<标题> 1. Start with the purpose: First, take a minute to consider the role of the application essays from an admissions officer’s perspective. Your writing serves to give a human element to your application file, creating a connection between you and the reader who likely hasn’t had the opportunity to meet you in person. Your essays help us understand your voice beyond the academic data and learn about your personality, values, interests, priorities, and background. Essays also help us see your fit for Tufts specifically: does the attitude you showcase in your writing match the “vibe” of our community? That’s our purpose in requiring you to submit all these essays. But you get to have a purpose, too. Each essay you write should have a clear intention behind what you’re communicating, an intention that you can actually identify and articulate. What do we need to know about you to have the fullest picture possible of (a) what you care about and (b) how you will engage academically and socially on our campus? Those ideas and qualities should deliberately align with the essays you send us.


2. Make the most of each essay: By asking you to write two short supplemental essays in addition to your longer personal statement/college essay, we provide you with multiple opportunities to share what matters to you. That means you get multiple chances to showcase the multiple interests and experiences that make you a multifaceted human being. By writing all your essays about a similar theme or overlapping topics, you’ve likely missed out on a chance to share other dimensions of your identity. When a college requires supplemental essays or short answer questions, it can be helpful to think of your writing as a package or a set, the way it will be read by an admissions officer. I’m trying to learn as much as I can about the many things that make you interesting, smart, likable, and engaging. Ideally, your personal statement and supplemental essays will come together to reflect a range of qualities that comprise your voice as a whole.


3. Focus on the details: Now, while your essays as a whole set help paint a broad picture of who you are, each individual essay should tell me something very specific. Rather than trying to squeeze your whole life story into a 650-word essay or writing broadly about your interest in science or your passion for public service, try to keep your topics narrow and go deep with them. Describing a single experience/interaction/memory/source of inspiration with vivid detail and deep reflection can often have the most powerful and original impact. A former colleague used to describe this idea as “letting the micro inform the macro.” Small details – in your storytelling and in the interpretations you offer in your writing – can be representative of the macro-level ideas you want to leave the reader pondering.

<标题>3.專注于細節:現在雖然你的論文作為一個整體有助于描繪出你是誰,但每篇論文都應該呈現出一些非常具體的內容。而不是試圖將你的整個人生故事寫成一篇650字的文章,或廣泛地寫下你對科學的興趣或對公共服務的熱情,可以嘗試讓你的選題范圍縮小,并深入研究它們。用生動的細節和深刻的反思來描述單一的體驗/互動/記憶/靈感來源,通常可以產生最強大和最原始的影響。一位前同事曾經把這個想法描述為“讓微觀通知宏觀。”小細節 – 在你講的故事和寫作中提供的解釋 – 可以代表你想讓讀者出發宏觀層面的思考。

4. Maintain your voice: Let me assure you, from our perspective, your college application essays should not be approached with the same tone as a research paper or book report. While your writing should be grammatically correct and show evidence of care, the language, style, and spirit of your essays certainly can and should be authentic to how you speak in real life. If your friends, family, and teachers would describe you as goofy, outgoing, or relaxed, you probably shouldn’t submit a collection of essays in a formal, subdued tone. If your real-life personality is more subtle, perceptive, and insightful, that can certainly make for a great college essay, too! Whether your communication style is witty, sarcastic, lyrical, pensive, earnest, animated, or sensible, I encourage you to infuse that flavor into your written language to complement the character qualities found in the content of your writing.


5. Be thoughtful in seeking feedback: I’ve seen plenty of students go overboard in their pursuit of essay feedback and I feel pretty confident that sharing a Google Doc with your 20 closest friends and mentors is the surest way to become overwhelmed with conflicting advice and edit your own voice out of your college essays. There are lots of well-intentioned people whose college essay advice can be a bit misguided. Stick to sharing your drafts with just 2-3 people you trust; a former colleague suggests including one person who’s a particularly strong writer and one person who knows you REALLY well and can gauge the authenticity of your writing. Editing to catch typos and incorrect spellings is essential, but I encourage you not to let the editing phase sanitize the creative expression that should make your essays yours.

<标题>5.在尋求反饋時要深思熟慮:我看到很多學生在追求文書反饋時過于苛刻,我非常有信心與20位最親密的朋友和導師分享Google Doc是最可靠的方法,讓他們對沖突的建議感到不知所措 并從你的大學論文中編輯你自己的聲音。有很多好心相助的人,但他們的大學文書建議可能有點誤導。堅持與你信任的2-3人共享你的草稿; 我的一位前同事建議:包括一個特別牛的寫作高手和一個非常了解你的人,并且能夠衡量你寫作的真實性。編輯及檢查拼寫錯誤和語法錯誤是必不可少的,但我建議你不要讓這些編輯過程干擾了你文章的創意性,你的文章就是要體現你的創意表達。

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