14 Mar

Write a Winning Economics Personal Statement

A strong personal statement is the single strongest determining factor in securing a place at a top-tier university to study economics. It’s your chance to showcase your passion, skills, and achievements, and make a compelling case as to why you deserve a spot in the program. In this article, we will share 5 points on how to write a compelling economics personal statement that will set you apart from the competition.

If you’re wondering why write and economics personal statement specifically and not some other subject – see our thoughts here.

And if yore’ wondering why it even matters to attend a top-tier university – see our thoughts here.

Your UK university economics personal statement and Oxbridge application done with you from start to finish.

To begin, what exactly do you have to produce? A personal statement is a piece of text that should be a maximum of 4,000 characters or 47 lines, whichever comes first. Its purpose is to give admissions officers an insight into who you are, your motivation for choosing a particular course, and evidence of your suitability for the program for which you are applying.

Below we share our top 5 points for a strong economics personal statement. We will keep the advice general and brief but of course go into a lot more detail in our student consulting and mentorship program.

  1. Uniqueness and authenticity, without coming across as immature/crazy
    Put yourself in the shoes of an admissions officer who has to review hundreds of applications, maybe even thousands. Is there something you can write to catch his/her attention, something that will put a smile on a face, get them thinking that this candidate stands out? Examples include opening with a thought-provoking question or an intriguing personal anecdote.
  2. Demonstrate your knowledge
    Put simply, you do need to convey to the admissions officer you understand what economics is. As simple as it may sound, many applicants convey a very skewed understanding by talking about how they want to learn about money, business, the stock market and finance. These fields certainly fall under the overall umbrella but are not core to economics.
  3. Demonstrate your passion
    This is something that just needs to flow throughout the entire personal statement. You need to show the reader that you have a true passion for economics by discussing the reasons for your interests in the field. This could include your first encounter with the subject, what intrigued you, or recent macro events that you find interesting. Try and be specific about why you are drawn to economics and how it has influenced your perspective on the world.
  4. Prove your passion
    Note this is an area where we would say most students fall short and what differentiates a strong from a mediocre personal statement. Point 3 was more a general comment to demonstrate you have a passion for the subject. To really stand out, you need to show you have done something to prove your passion. This includes internships, extra-curricula courses, attending public lectures, debate clubs, writing articles for a local magazine etc.. This is an area we focus on heavily during our work with applicants.
  5. Language & tone – concise, clear and not informal
    Referring back to point 1, when the admissions officer has hundreds or thousands of personal statements to read, you don’t want to make their life harder with complex and long winded sentence structures. Focus on a clean, grammatically correct, spell-checked simple and genuine writing style. Avoid an informal tone, the downsides far outweigh any potential upsides, this includes making jokes or coming across as immature.