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RoD
10-25-2002, 03:44 PM
Ok i had to write a college admission essay about why i think i am right for their Computer Science courses: Let me have it!


//edit: some formatting messed up copying to cprog, but in word its all setup fine. the " should be bullets btw.


Computer Technology is a passion I have had since as long as I can remember. I got my first computer when I was six years old and since that time, my passion has been fed through the constant use of computers. I am fluent in many areas of Computer Technology, such as;

" Microsoft Windows - I am highly adept in the following Windows operating systems: Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows CE, Windows NT 4.0 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 Server, Windows XP Professional, and Windows XP Corporate.
" Networking - I have successfully and efficiently designed, built, and maintained several Windows-based networks on the following Windows Operating systems: Windows 98, Windows NT 4.0 Server, and all versions of Windows 2000 and Windows XP.
" Programming - As a second-year Computer Science student I feel confident in my abilities with what I have learned thus far. During my junior year of high school I studied in the Visual Basic programming language. In this study we covered the importance of commenting, developing algorithms, and many other fundamental aspects of programming. Now, in my senior year of high school, I am studying the C++ programming language.
" Computer Construction - In my twelve years that I have been working in the field of Computer Technology, I have built more then forty-five computers for myself, friends, and relatives. It is imperative, in my opinion, that anyone looking to study in Computer Science needs to possess these skills. I am fluent in the way each element of a computer system works, and why it works. The technology I have worked with varies all the way from older to the newest types.

These are merely a few of the areas in which I have studied through the course of my life. My main goal, both in and out of class, is to become the programmer I aspire to be. I have not yet decided whether I want to be a game or software developer, but my personal opinion is that knowledge of both fields is beneficial.
I feel that I would be an excellent addition to your educational community. I will devote every ounce of effort to my goal, and to my work. I feel that the force I put forth is a reflection on me, and I will settle for no reflection short of perfection. I ask that you consider my qualifications in relation to the Computer Science degree, and that you demand no less of me than any other aspiring student.

Thank you,

Steven Billington

salvelinus
10-25-2002, 04:01 PM
What kind of input do you want, grammatical, stylistic, content?
Style examples: You studied Visual Basic, not in the Visual Basic language.
Content examples: Be specific, what programs have you actually developed, what type and size of networks did you set up?
Grammatical examples: Grammar seems ok, although some sections don't make sense ("...settle for no reflection short of perfect"). I know what you're trying to say there, but it doesn't work. Also, never write something like "in my opinion" in an essay like this.
Your experience sounds fine, but the essay could use some work. Have you shown it to any teachers/counselors/employers? If you want more help PM me, I'll look at it in more depth.

RoD
10-25-2002, 04:13 PM
I haven't had a chance to show it to them yet. Hmm, the imo outake sounds like a good idea. I am thinking that includeing programs i have made from both C++ and VB with the essay and citing them may be a good idea.

Thanks for the suggestions.

TechWins
10-25-2002, 04:21 PM
What grade are you in, R-o-D? IIRC, I thought you said you were a freshman, or am I mistaken? If you're not a Senior I don't really see much reason for you to send this essay to a college, personally.

Yeah, I'm going to have to attend a community college for at least a semester, because I sort of have a problem doing my homework. Eh no big deal.

RoD
10-25-2002, 04:24 PM
*Senior*

TechWins
10-25-2002, 04:28 PM
oh sorry:)

RoD
10-25-2002, 04:38 PM
honest mistake:

Revision!

Computer Technology is a passion I have had since as long as I can remember. I got my first computer when I was six years old. Since that time my passion has been fed thought the constant use of computers. I am fluent in many areas of Computer Technology, such as;

• Microsoft Windows – I am highly adept in the following Windows operating systems: Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows CE, Windows NT 4.0 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 Server, Windows XP Professional, and Windows XP Corporate.
• Networking – I have successfully and efficiently designed, built, and maintained several Windows-based networks on the following Windows Operating systems: Windows 98, Windows NT 4.0 Server, and all versions of Windows 2000 and Windows XP. The sizes of these networks vary from just a few computers, to over fifty computers with dedicated servers.
• Programming – As a second-year Computer Science student I feel confident in my abilities with what I have learned thus far. During my junior year of high school I studied in the Visual Basic. In this study we covered the importance of commenting, developing algorithms, and many other fundamental aspects of programming. Now, in my senior year of high school, I am studying C++. I also have experience with other languages such as PASCAL, HTML, ASP, and PHP.



• Computer Construction –In my twelve years that I have been working in the field of Computer Technology, I have built more then forty-five computers for myself, friends, and relatives. I am fluent in the way each element of a computer system works, and why it works. The technology I have worked with varies all the way from older to the newest types.

These are merely a few of the areas in which I have studied through the course of my life. My main goal, both in and out of class, is to become the programmer I aspire to be. I have not yet decided whether I want to be a game or software developer, but my feeling is that knowledge of both fields is beneficial.
I feel that I would be an excellent addition to your educational community. I will devote every ounce of effort to my goal, and to my work. I feel that the force I put forth is a reflection on me, and that is not something I take lightly. I ask that you consider my qualifications in relation to the Computer Science degree, and that you demand no less of me than any other aspiring student.

Thank you,

Steven Billington

Nick
10-25-2002, 05:39 PM
I would try to concentrate on one field of study interest
you most in computer science. Your essay shouldnt' read
like a resume---it's not about what you already know.



Computer Technology is a passion I have had since as long as I can remember.

This doesn't sound too good. They probably get 100s of
essays starting out with something similiar.



It is imperative, in my opinion, that anyone looking to study in Computer Science needs to possess these skills.

Let them decide what is important.



I am fluent in the way each element of a computer system works, and why it works.

You can't possibly understand everything about the physics of transitors, gates, the cpu, and the assembly language of the processor.



These are merely a few of the areas in which I have studied through the course of my life.

This is kind of wordy and sounds like you are bragging.

[qoute]
I feel that the force I put forth is a reflection on me, and I will settle for no reflection short of perfection.
[/quote]
This also sounds wordy.

salvelinus
10-25-2002, 06:11 PM
Originally posted by Ride -or- Die
Computer Technology is a passion I have had since as long as I can remember. I've been working with computers since I was six years old. Since that time my passion has been fed thought the constant use of computers. I am skilled in many areas of Computer Technology, such as;

• Microsoft Windows – I am adept in the following Windows operating systems: Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows CE, Windows NT 4.0 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 Server, Windows XP Professional, and Windows XP Corporate.how about dos?
• Networking – I have designed, built, and maintained several Windows-based networks on the following Windows Operating systems: Windows 98, Windows NT 4.0 Server, and all versions of Windows 2000 and Windows XP. The sizes of these networks vary from just a few computers, to over fifty computers with dedicated servers.what about peer to peer, client-server, ethernet, wireless, sites, gateways, subnets, etc?
• Programming – I've taken two years of programming in high school.During my junior year I studied Visual Basic, covering topics such as the importance of commenting, developing algorithms, and many other fundamental aspects of programming. I'm currently learning more advanced topics in[/i] C++, and have experience in other languages such as PASCAL, HTML, ASP, and PHP.give examples, even if they're projects from a book
• Computer Construction –In the twelve years I've been working in the field of Computer Technology, I have built more then forty-five computers for myself, friends, and relatives. I am fluent in the way each element of a computer system works, and why it works. The technology I have worked with varies all the way from older to the newest types.like what? be specific: floppies, 286 mb cpu's, DVD-RW's, motherboards, etc

These are merely a few of the areas in which I have studied through the course of my life.hopefully that goes w/o saying My main goal, both in and out of class, is to become the programmer I aspire to be.so? and that could hurt you, they might want someone a bit more well rounded I haven't decided whether I want to focus on game or software developmentaren't games software?, but my feeling is that knowledge of both fields is beneficial. why is that? your feeling doesn't count
I feel that I would be an excellent addition to your educational community. I feel that the force I put forth is a reflection on me, and that is not something I take lightly.??? I ask that you consider my experience, dedication and commitment when considering my application.

Thank you,

Steven Billington

Ideas in italics...

kermi3
10-25-2002, 08:45 PM
Ok, here's my take....

I don't know what you're shooting for here, or where you're applying but. I would loose the whole list of technical specs.

Here's what you have to remember, the admissions people are going to read literally thousands of these. You have to make yours stand out somehow, especially if it's a smaller school. If it's a large one (ie a massive state school) where the essay doesn't matter as much becuase they recieve so many then you can get away with the tech specs but...I would list the tech specs else where, make your essay creative. It should involve technology of course, and should somehow answer the question, but make it intresting. Your goal is for them to remember yours out of the thousands they read.

If you don't get where I'm coming from let me know and I'll clarify, or put up examples (though not technical ones)


Kermi3

Mister C
10-25-2002, 09:36 PM
I agree with the above- your essay sounds like an resume.

Check on the internet for some site on how to write CS essays.

Also, check to see if you high school english or counselor can give you a better idea on what to right about.

While you are at it. Why don' t you write a resume as well!!!

RoD
10-26-2002, 08:12 AM
Very good points; I was in fear of it sounding too much like a brag but i was really stuck as how to begin/write it.

Kermi any examples would be appreciated, and as for searching up a format, well i hadn't thought of that, thank you.

//edit: is it, in your opinion, a good idea to include examples of code? Not basic code but say when my chat bot is done and docuemtned?

kermi3
10-26-2002, 09:02 AM
Here's one I wrote, it has nothing to do with programming but...

It's on 9/11, which a lot of people wrote about. Therefore it would be bad to use because there were so many of them being sent in...BUT I took a very diffrent take on it then most people, hopefully it was intresting too...



I was sitting on the cool steel on a warm October morning, looking down on the field as 7th and 8th grade boys crashed into each other as hard as they could. As I sat and watched my former campers who I had come to see play I couldn’t help but hear what the two men seated below me in the bleachers were saying. “There should be off duty cops on all flights,” “They need to secure the cockpit doors,” nothing unusual, just the same thing that everyone’s saying, and I guess that the fact that we now have to talk about this at all should be important, however that’s not what gets me. I was struck by one thing that one of these men said: “The bastards ruined my birthday forever.” They ruined his birthday. This is the greatest and worst thing I think I’ve every heard.

It was the worst in that man could be so selfish that on a day when thousands die his birthday was the most important. However, just because this very fact, that this is what the man was thinking about, give new hope and lifted my spirit. I was sitting there, under a clear blue sky, watching children, boys play. The only thing that those boys were thinking about was smashing into each other and moving a small brown American icon down a grassy field. Further down the field girls of similar age in skirts of red, white, and blue waved pom-poms and cheered “Go Saints go! Beat the Greenies.” So we sat there. As bombs fell on the other side of the world, as construction crews clear debris in New York, and as inspectors comb the capital for anthrax, we sat there watching boys of two arch rival schools proudly pound each other.

To me this was the greatest triumph of our nation, the greatest thumb of the nose at those who wish to see us destroyed. Even after they land the first attack on US soil hundreds of years, I was sitting under blue skies while young men carried out American rituals and way of life, girls sitting behind me were gossiping and giggling about “their William” and the other boys on the field, and a man sitting below me was mad at “the bastards” who ruined his birthday. This is our greatest triumph. We were not scared into submission, we instead throw our pigskin and worry about how bad our future birthdays will be, because we know there will be future birthdays. They will come, and the footballs will still fly under blue skies.

This isn't my favorite (another one is), but I think it illistrates the point best. Take a diffrent take. I have another one I can post later if you want.

RoD
10-26-2002, 09:09 AM
Thats really good man. I found a site, collegeboard.com, that offers a step by step from beginning to end take on how to write this, and what you should(n't) say. I'll post a revision in about an hour i predict.

P-Morphy
10-26-2002, 10:14 AM
Ride or die. I agree with everyone else, your essay sounds more like a resume.

If you wanted to make this essay stand out more, I would write something describing your plans in the future related to your technology skills.

Tell them your aspirations. What you want to do with what you learn at college.

Like me, I'd write something about how I plan on starting my own software company. I'd like to make software that does this, or does that (I'm not going to say what my business plans are, b/c they're a secret :D)

But anyways, you could maybe fit some of those things into your essay, but I wouldn't just stick them in there if they don't fit.

I'm sure you have some future aspirations in hardware/software, just write about that. But make it interesting :)

RoD
10-26-2002, 10:18 AM
hey p-morph, i jus got done this rough draft, seems were thinking on the same page : )

Ok, the new draft:

Computer Science is a field that I will dedicate my life too. It's not just a class, it's my career. I want to build my future on a degree in Computer Science. It's with this knowledge that I hope to design software that not only raises the bar for software capabilities, but that I can pride myself on.

As a second-year Computer Science student, I have gained a great understanding of the concepts of the field. These last two years have taught me the importance of not only developing efficient code, but well documented code. I have acquired the ability to create powerful and logical algorithms to support my software.

Computer Science has always been of great importance to me. This subject has not only opened doors for me, but has pushed me to think more clearly in my every day life. Programming is a passion I have held since I was six years old, when I began working with computers.

Over the course of my high school years, I have created many goals for myself. I intend to graduate from a good University, such as yours, and become a software developer for a large corporation, or for my own. I hold a strong desire to be more than any employer or I could ask for, and it is this driving force that gives me the confidence I need to achieve my dreams.

Thank you,
Steven Billington

salvelinus
10-26-2002, 10:45 AM
Kind of an aside, but if you're applying for college, do you need to apply to the CIS department now? Most of your classes the first year or two are likely to be general ed with a tilt toward math & science (at least that's how it worked when I went to college). The core courses, at least the degree ones, were generally reserved for juniors and seniors. Maybe it's different where you're applying. I went through about nine or ten majors.
As for your revised essay, it's a lot better, but again, be specific and concrete. Not a resume, but not too generic either, and avoid excessive superlative & hyperbole. It rarely works.
Have you thought about just asking the CIS department what they're looking for? It could help you tailor your letter and give you an idea if their focus is what you're looking for. Your letter might also depend on who will be reading it - someone from the department who knows CIS or someone in admissions who calls MIS to minimize their windows, or both?

Mister C
10-26-2002, 02:33 PM
Ride-or-Die

This is much better! It does not sound like a resume.

Also, taylor your answers, like salvelinus, said - it make you look like you did your homework about them.

RoD
10-26-2002, 03:38 PM
Ok i'll take that into consideration. As far as my major i can begin in the freshman year so yea its applicable. Allow me to make some calls and i'll revise again so u can give me input, i really appreciate the help!

Fountain
10-27-2002, 05:03 PM
<I am fluent in the way each element of a computer system works, and why it works. The technology I have worked with varies all the way from older to the newest types.>

Yo ROD, dont say stuff you cant back up! I am not saying you cant, but there is more to a CPU than meets the eye. Other hardware aside, what if they asked you about logic,transistors blah blah..CPU is a NICE thing-if you know how it works. Dont oversell you self-you want IN, not a medal!

RoD
10-27-2002, 06:14 PM
Originally posted by Fountain
<I am fluent in the way each element of a computer system works, and why it works. The technology I have worked with varies all the way from older to the newest types.>

Yo ROD, dont say stuff you cant back up! I am not saying you cant, but there is more to a CPU than meets the eye. Other hardware aside, what if they asked you about logic,transistors blah blah..CPU is a NICE thing-if you know how it works. Dont oversell you self-you want IN, not a medal!

After a few comments just like this i realized my statement got wayyyyyyy to read into, more so then i had intended thats why it was removed. I meant to convey a general understanding of this area, but can see how it was mistaken.

Nick
10-27-2002, 07:04 PM
What exactly was the essay question? It must have been
something like how has technology influenced your life?

Dissata
10-27-2002, 11:45 PM
heres an approach. In essays, emotion is the critical point that needs to be moved. the goal in a good essay, and more so in a personal one, is to not only prove a point, but make someone believe it. It has to appeal to their senses emotionaly. if it is a fact, that doesn't mean they want to believe it, or care for it


What you know isn't very important to them, they want to know why you want to go to that university. They want to know why your special.

Be specific, mabe write of a certain instance that happened while you were working on "technology". don't be wordy, yet don't be broad. keep the sentence style varried.

The most important part of the whole essay is the first sentence, there it'll either stand out or be just another essay. be creative, see what you can come up with.

Ex.

Grabber: my hands flew across the keyboard spewing letters across the screan. Another day in class, and yet another problem solved. Time in its greatest essence stopped so that I could finish, stopped in a way that allowed my mind to race. there was no idea what to do in the last hour or so, but then My mind wasn't time in that past. Now I had all the time I needed. Another problem solved, the Algorithm was complete. Computers had, once again, swept me away, leaving me a feeling of completion. Once again giving me the need and love for technology .



Then explain: Why are you obsessed with technology, what makes it so different to you than anything else, why did you choose ot over another field

Ps. Sorry if there are any mistakes in the intro I wrote, it took me all of 2 min.

Remeber this is only one aproach

kermi3
10-28-2002, 06:13 AM
I agree completely, it's like I was saying before, they are going to be reading thousands of these, you have to make them remember yours. There are two great ways to make them do that...the most important is the openning sentance, you have to make them wakeup from the dreamstate they've slumped into reading essays and apps for two weeks straight and pay attention to you. Then, number two, you have to keep thier attention, and emotion is a great way to do that.

Your opening sentance should say "Hey! Read me! I'm intresting!!!"


Here are my 2:


I was sitting on the cool steel on a warm October morning, looking down on the field as 7th and 8th grade boys crashed into each other as hard as they could.


She looked more like the kind of old woman you’d see in the local supermarket, not in the depths of hell.

Now given I messed up and they don't say "Hey! Read me! I'm intresting!!!" you get the idea.

(Oh I should also note that they arn't programming related, but the question had nothing to do with computers)

RoD
10-28-2002, 12:53 PM
Hmm, thanks for the new suggestions, back to another revision.