Can you give me some tips on drafting a statement of purpose for my PhD application?
A statement of purpose is an essential part of every Ph.D. application. Most universities will ask you to submit one at the time of application to a program. This document can be a deciding factor of your Ph.D. candidature. Therefore you need to invest significant amount of thought, time and effort into putting this document together. The following tips can be used to write an impactful and meaningful statement of purpose for your Ph.D. application.
- Always write a new statement of purpose for every application that you make. Refrain from using a standard one across applications. You need to tailor the letter to suit the position that you are applying for.
- Talk about your suitability for the program. Do not emphasize on why the university is good for you. Emphasize on why you would be good for the university. Also talk about your motivation to pursue this degree.
- Demonstrate your thirst for research. State what excites you about research. Talk about your research experience and skill set.
- Don’t simply state, demonstrate what you want to convey by giving examples. Just saying that you are motivated is not enough.
- Avoid focusing on experience that my not really be essential such as teaching experience. Some programs may require you to work as a teaching assistant, but that is not the focus of your program. You may mention any experience that you may have, but do not emphasize on it.
- Keep it concise and clear. Do not beat around the bush.
- Seek advice from experienced individuals if possible. You could consult your college professor or a senior who is currently pursuing their Ph.D. and has gone through this process. You could run your initial draft by them and ask for suggestions to improvise on it.
- Lastly, do a thorough proof reading before you send it out. You could also request someone else to proof read it for you, so that mistakes that escape your eye are noticed by someone else.