A statement of purpose — popularly known as an SOP — is an integral part of your international admissions process. While your academic certifications quantify your credentials, an SOP gives universities a glimpse into your personality and helps them gauge your interests and strengths. Basically, it’s your chance to convince them to accept your application.
Now, there are different ways to go about writing an SOP – primarily because the process varies with the country you choose to study in. For example, Australian and New Zealand universities require your SOP only during the visa process, while UK, USA and Canadian universities require it during the admission stage.
Regardless of what your study destination is, we have experts to guide you on how to write an SOP.
Guidelines on how to write a SOP :
What are the points to be included in an SOP?
1) Purpose of choosing this programme
2) Your family background – only if it influenced your academic/career plans
3) Brief academic background – schooling/undergraduate study, distinctive academics/extracurricular achievements
4) All relevant industry visits, internships, projects, workshops, dissertations taken up during your period of study. If possible, try linking them to the programme that you’re applying for.
5) Connect relevant work experience (if any) with the proposed programme of study and include awards/achievements at work (if any).
6) Community service, charity work, interests, social clubs, hobbies, sports, etc.
7) If your education will help run your family business better, be sure to emphasise on the scope and application of the programme knowledge on the family business.
8) Your career plans for the future with respect to the programme and after graduation. Additionally, explain why an overseas education will help you achieve your short term and long-term career goals.
9) Justify the choice of your university/country
How should you structure your SOP?
There are several crucial points of information which explain how to structure your SOP – right from an impressive introduction to an effective background and a promising conclusion.
1) Begin the SOP with an anecdote (meaning an instance/example) on what motivated you to pursue further studies in this particular subject.
2) Mention your source of inspiration or an incident or a story related to it. In order to achieve this, you’ll have to go back in your memory to an important event or a personal experience that influenced your academic or career choices. Select a suitable story which is significant to the theme of your programme.
3) Provide a background to what you learnt at college – through practical experiences and projects that show your competence in the subjects. Explain how all of that motivated you to take up advanced study in that field.
4) The SOP should include details on the purpose behind pursuing further education in this particular subject at this point in time. Mention a research area or a topic of specialisation of your interest (if any).
5) Talk about the skills you would like to develop through this programme and how pursuing this programme will help you accomplish your career goals.
Mention your short-term career goal. Elaborate on your plans right after completing your programme; the kind of work profile you’d like to take up; the type of company; and industry you plan to be involved in.
6) Mention your specific long-term goal. Elaborate on your career plans 10-15 years from now; and how you plan to contribute to the industry then. You must be very specific as the SOP is all about providing specific information.
7) Explain the reason behind choosing this particular country over your home country or any other international destination.
8) Explain the reason behind choosing this particular university. Mention the distinctive features of the university that fit your requirements. State the name of the faculty that offers this programme and their research areas (if applicable). Talk about how the university’s research centres/labs, events, clubs and subject areas/electives align with your study goals. Make sure to thoroughly research the university website to produce these details.
9) Elaborate in a paragraph about your volunteer work, community service or any extracurricular activities; and explain how these experiences have helped you grow. You can also explain how you would be able to contribute to the university’s student organisation.
Conclusion – Warp up the SOP with 2-3 lines of conclusion.
Universities are very serious when it comes to checking for plagiarism in SOPs. They usually have a specific plagiarism checker to spot copied content. So do NOT PLAGIARISE! Instead if you need help, come to us. We have an expert editor to support you and guide you with your SOP needs.
To conclude, remember that you need to sell yourself through your SOP – pitch your strengths and explain how you’ll be an asset to the university.