Know All About the Format of Writing a SOP!

25th May 2018 by Varada A | SOP Formats
sop format

Those with a desire of pursuing their higher education abroad may have had heard of a mandatory requisite called Statement of Purpose (SOP). Failing to adhere to the right SOP format could culminate your dream in the onset itself. To learn how to write an sop effectively, you must firstly understand what an SOP is, what purpose it holds and why is it important.

We all are conversant in writing essays right from our school days. Long or short, formal or informal, each and every essay follows a general format with an Introduction, Main Body and a Conclusion. When someone is asked to introduce about himself, it will not be in a well organised form, though they would have incorporated significant points.

To put in a simple way, statement of purpose or sop can be seen as a long essay comprising of about 1000 words, 

statement of purpose

which is a comprehensive life story of a candidate with his/her motivation and genuine interest for the applied post and the future prospects presented to an admission committee. 

There are however certain standard guidelines and rules, the vital idea to succeed in writing a good sop is that, irrespective of the general format, customize your statement for each of the university you apply. Universities are not all alike as on a broader sense. Go an extra mile to know about the university in terms of its vision, mission and system of education. Also have a detailed glance on the research areas of your desired department and try to get a neat perk from the data.

An ideal format of sop is divided into utmost 5 paragraphs of 250 words each. So be wise enough in making use of your language skills. To present your entire story in just 1000 words seems to be tough, but if you are certain with what to include and exclude in a winning sopit’s not painstaking.

Uniqueness is the major constraint of a good SOP; and so has to be void of plagiarism. Write your SOP in a diverse and elite manner.

Even though a document has a well-defined format, there is always a room for customisation. So the general format for sop has to be looked upon only as a map to the destination. You can choose the best possible route as you wish.

Here’s brief list of important aspects encompassed in the sop format, in a broader perspective.

Clarify your goals

Align your goals with the current world prospect and elucidate your goals in the very first paragraph itself. Yet, don’t make it too elaborative with unnecessary nuances. It’s always fine to use quotes or your creative skill to throw light directly on your goals here, but be to the point. As auxiliary documents are submitted along with, an SOP omits a self-introducing part. Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry.and type setting industry. 

account on your academic achievements and work experiences

Opting to keep both of them parted in paragraphs is always a better choice. Someone with work experience can emphasise his career achievements, limiting the academic pursuits. In the very manner, a person applying for his masters soon after graduation, can mention about his curricular and extra-curricular activities as separate paragraphs.


Now here’s the vital part of sop writing method. Instead of merely saying what your goal is, explain the reason as to why you want to achieve it and what is the driving force. What is your motivation and how strong is it, so as to lead you to the current decision. More expressive you are, more impressive they can be. Comprise your curiosity and zeal, as far as possible to convince the committee members as to make them feel that you are a promising candidate.

Future Plans

Last but not the least, present a future plan to convey an imprint of a person with anticipation.  This will also conclude as that you are an organised person with genuine interest in the field.

Be optimistic all along the draft. Use a formal communicative slang and present it so that the reader feels no boredom. Give yourself a second chance to read and make the SOP a fault-less document. Keep a continuity throughout the story. Take your own time to end up in writing an appealing sop rather than just stuffing it with common facts and figures.

statement of purpose

Despite having resemblance in the hard-core format, a sop for phd program cannot be similar to a SOP for master’s program such as MBA or MS. No two SOPs can be the same even if it holds the same purpose of describing a single person. Mould each of your sop in the general format but accommodating particulars of the course and institution to which you seek admission.

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