How Parents Can Help with College Essays

Unveiling the Importance of Essays

Essays, the true gems of college applications, offer your teen a unique opportunity to stand out in the highly competitive admissions landscape. In this week’s blog post, we'll explore three essential tips to guide your teen through the essay-writing process, ensuring they maximize this golden opportunity.

Tip #1: Collaborative Brainstorming

Parents, you hold a wealth of knowledge about your teen's experiences, aspirations, and uniqueness. Seize this knowledge by delving into the essay prompts during relaxed moments, perhaps during a long drive or over dinner. Initiate discussions illuminating aspects of their lives, helping them identify compelling stories to share. Your role as a collaborator in this brainstorming process can be a game-changer, making the essay-writing journey more insightful and impactful.


Tip #2: Seek Constructive Feedback

Writing is a craft that matures with guidance. Encourage your teen to seek feedback from trusted sources—a school counselor, an English teacher, or a professional in college admissions. Constructive criticism is the cornerstone of improvement. It refines ideas, structures, and content, ensuring that the final essay resonates with authenticity and excellence. Remember, an extra set of experienced eyes can be the key to unlocking the full potential of your teen's narrative.


Tip #3: Elevate with Proofreading Tools

In the digital age, leveraging technology is essential. Equip your teen with proofreading tools like Grammarly or other AI-based applications. These tools go beyond mere spell checks, addressing grammatical errors in sentence structures, and enhancing overall coherence. A polished essay reflects a commitment to excellence and leaves a lasting impression on admissions committees. Embrace the assistance of these tools to refine and elevate your teen's writing to the highest standards.


Looking Beyond the Common Application

As your teen embarks on this essay-writing journey, it's crucial to look beyond the Common Application. While most schools use these common prompts, understanding the nuances of school-specific applications is equally important. Stay proactive in anticipating potential changes to supplemental essays and guide your teen in crafting responses that resonate with each institution's unique ethos.


If you find yourself in need of further assistance, Strategic Admissions Advice is here to help. We specialize in guiding students through the complexities of the admissions process, ensuring they present their best selves on paper. Consider scheduling a free Discovery Call to explore how our services can be tailored to meet your teen's unique needs.


The power of essays in the college admissions process cannot be overstated. Your involvement, collaborative brainstorming, seeking feedback, and leveraging proofreading tools will pave the way for an essay that captivates and resonates with admissions committees. 


We look forward to connecting with you and assisting in this transformative process.


Shereem Herndon Brown

President and Chief Education Officer

Strategic Admissions Advice

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