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What makes a successful personal statement? (October 2018)

Content type

Webinars

Audience

Resource for teachers and their learners

Description

This webinar was delivered at the Advancing Access virtual conference on 16th October 2018.

It was presented by staff from the University of Nottingham, the University of York, Newcastle University and Advancing Access.

This session provides an overview of what admissions tutors are looking for in a personal statement. It has been designed to help teachers and advisers supporting learners with university applications.

Guidebook

How do I help my students apply to university?

Information sheets

Developing your students’ skills and knowledge prior to application
Supporting personal statement writing - top tips
Academic reference writing - top tips
Admissions tests - quick reference sheet

Presentations

Presentation notes - how to write a good academic reference
Presentation slides - how to write a good academic reference

Activity sheets

Supporting personal statement writing - activity for students

Teacher and adviser reflection sheets

Teacher and adviser reflection - helping students apply to university

Webinars

Applying to Oxford and Cambridge (May 2017)
Writing effective UCAS references (October 2018)
Interviews and additional admissions tests (October 2018)
Contextual admissions at Leading Universities (October 2018)
What makes a successful personal statement? (October 2018)
Successful UCAS applications for competitive courses (June 2019)

Conference presentations

Russell Group Teachers' Conference 2018 - Academic References
Russell Group Teachers' Conference 2018 - Supporting Students with Research and Study Skills
Russell Group Teachers' Conference 2018 - The impact of Widening Participation initiatives (King's College London and York)
Russell Group Teachers' Conference 2018 - Personal statements for competitive universities/courses
Russell Group Teachers' Conference 2018 - Writing an effective UCAS reference
Russell Group Teachers' Conference 2018 - The importance of the Personal Statement

Weblinks:

Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing is part of the University of Cambridge. They produce admissions tests for higher education institutions and government ministries worldwide. Their assessments support selection and help to enable fair access to higher education and the workplace, measuring applicants’ potential for success.

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The Medical Schools Council has published a series of booklets for teachers and careers advisers who are supporting students with medical school applications.

The series is called A journey to medicine. It starts with the considerations to make before application, including work experience and course types. From there it goes through the processes of the application itself and how to understand entry requirements. Finally it offers advice for the interview and on what to do when results are received, whether it is good news or otherwise or time to think of alternatives. 

The five booklets in A journey to medicine are: 

This is practical and accurate information designed especially for teachers and careers advisers. It has been produced with the heads of admissions from Medical Schools Council members, which includes every publicly funded medical school in the UK. This makes it the only guide which is endorsed by those who are responsible for selection to the medical degree. 

The series is particularly aimed at those schools and colleges which have limited experience of supporting students in their application to medicine. It stems from the Medical Schools Council’s commitment to widening participation and the work undertaken by the Medical Schools Council Selection Alliance. 

Click here to view the full set of resources.

 

This website provides information and advice from the Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing service on the BMAT.

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Bright Knowledge is a guide to careers, education and student life. Bright Knowledge aims to help students work out what they want to achieve and how they can get there. The website is updated with the latest news and new resources every day.

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This website provides information and advice from the Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing service on the ELAT.

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Future Learn offers a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one-step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop.

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This is a Government website providing information and advice on how to find volunteer placements.

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This is an article published by the Guardian providing a range of tips and advice on preparing for interviews.

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This is the official LNAT website providing information and advice about the test. The website includes guidance on how to prepare for the test including hints and tips, a preparation guide, sample essays and a practice test simulator.

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This website provides information and advice from the Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing service on the Mathematics Admissions Test.

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This website provides information and advice from the Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing service on the STEP test.

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This is an interesting TED talk by social psychologist Amy Cuddy on how using body language, and particularly ‘power posing’, can affect the brain and our chances of success.

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This website provides information and advice from the Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing service on the Thinking Skills Assessment.

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A reminder of some of the key dates in the UCAS application cycle.

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​​​​​​This is the official UCAT website providing information and advice about the test. The website includes practice tests and questions, a tour tutorial providing insight into the format of the test and a question tutorial that takes you through example questions and offers strategies on how to approach and answer them. This website also provides the Official UCAT Practice App, this is a free preparation tool to help students prepare for the test.

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Interview tips provided by some of our Advancing Access university partners are listed below. Please note this is not an exhaustive list and you should check individual university websites for further information.

 

​​​​​​This interesting article summarises some useful information and advice about how to prepare for interviews.

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