Great ideas to write an effective AMCAS personal statement!

6th November 2018 by Varada A | SOP Writing Guidelines

AMCAS application comes with a clear instruction manual detailing about the essential documents, a candidate should submit for admission in their medical schools. There are a number of papers relating to personal information, one needs to get prepared beforehand, if they intend to apply to AMCAS. One among them is a Personal Comments Essay – given in the eighth section of application of amcas instruction manual. It is the means through which a candidate has to stand out from the rest applicants and answer the whys and wherefores for his decision – 

amcas personal statement

why he wants to pursue a career in medical field. Admission committee assesses this document profoundly and thus one has to be very careful while crafting his amcas personal statement.  It’s not an essay or an answer to the question section; you are actually given a chance to sell yourself. As there a number of alternatives for a single product, to get it sold involves some strategic movements both in presenting the similar qualities in a distinct manner and attracting the customers by a specific unique feature. Similarly, you have to get selected from a thousands of applications, where all of them will be having some common grounds. So the way you detail your story is going to make the difference.

There are certain points to be noted before writing an amcas personal statement.

From my vast experience of aiding candidates in their content writing services, I could say that I always encountered a single question that “how long should the personal statement be?” first. A definite character or word count could be said. But, I used to ask them some counter questions before I answer them. Definitely, the word limit matters, but don’t limit your words for the sake of it.

I always recommend to draft a rough essay without considering the word limit. The major questions I used to ask the candidates are:

personal statement amcas
  1. Why did you choose a career in medical field?
  2. What are your inspirational factors? Is there any personality who had motivated you?
  3. What can you offer the medical school, if they select you for their institution?
  4. Any real life experiences, training or services you have done which is not mentioned in any other documents?
  5. If you had any difficulties or gap during your academic pursuit, if yes then what is the reason?
  6. What skills do you think you have that will help you in the current program? Do you think the program will align with your future aspirations and goals?

First of all, I need to make you clear that drafting your amcas personal statement won’t take place all in a sudden. Take your time and provide well stated and genuine answers for these questions. In your rough draft, you enjoy complete freedom to write these answers in an elaborated way, as you wish. Any information already mentioned can also be added in your rough draft. Remember, we are now speaking about the rough draft alone……

Try to stay positive all along the draft. Even if you are addressing any hardships you had in your life, conclude it with the lesson you learned or the benefit you gained from it. As above, where I had enumerated the questions, you too can list out your relevant skills and achievements in your rough amcas personal statement. After stuffing with all these things, you may feel your essay doesn’t have a logical connection.

Now its turn to put on the cap of a story teller. Arrange them in a sequential order. Turn all the bullets and numbered points to meaningful sentences. Again re-arrange them. Feeling some kind of flow, right? Repeat until the whole document has completely transformed into a nice readable stuff.

Now comes the difficult task. Word count……

You may surely have drafted your rough amcas personal statement in word document, then you can see at the bottom, the character count and the word count. Check it. How much is it? How much is the recommended or general limit? There is a certain character limit of 5,300 characters including spaces. That means you have to write it single-spaced within one page.


best amcas personal statement

Got shocked? Your rough draft may be much more than that. But trust our words, these written ideas are going to help you later in your interview. But, now the amcas personal statement needs to be modified.   Here, you have to be a clear cut censor board member. Start reading and editing the draft. Those which you think are irrelevant or are already stated in your application – cut them. Reading again and again will help you do this editing task much easier.

A space will be provided to enter your details including writing your essay in the AMCAS application. And hence, you must get your amcas personal statement spell-checked and proof-read in order to find any typo or grammatical errors. Going back is not permitted in this application section. Hence, typing in any other text processing software and then copy pasting can help you here, whereas if you wish you can directly type the matter in the space provided.

Something more for the MD-PhD applicants.

Here, you need to submit two more essays.

  1. First – a relatively smaller one, stating about the reasons to pursue the combined course.
  2. Second – longer one (about 3 pages) showing your research activities and interests.

We’ll be discussing about these essays in coming sections.

Hope you have acquired some basic and important ideas about amcas personal statement from this article. If any queries, kindly let me know.

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