Here is an example of a personal statement suitable for applying for an English course at University: (alternative)
People say curious things. My Uncle is fond of saying, “I like nice things” but it’s always struck me as odd. Who doesn’t like nice things?
I like freedom. And unlike my Uncle’s example I think that freedom is something which can genuinely be liked. Like many teenagers around the world I have been allotted ever increasing amounts of it over the last few years in preparation for my graduation into adulthood. My freedom began with rebellion, morphed into bargaining and, on a good day, was arrived at through discussion. It was never about staying up late to watch television or about wanting to stay longer round a friends’ house – it was about having the freedom make my own decisions.
For many of those years, books provided a refuge. At school we lined up in single file, at home my room was always kept in a reasonable state of tidiness, but within the world of books anything was possible. In my younger years I really enjoyed the Harry Potter series as well as the work of Phillip Pullman. Some commentators can be sneery about “child fiction” but fail to recognise they provide a gateway to other forms of literature. These days I may enjoy Dickens and Bronte but that does not mean I do not recognise the value of other genres too.
I like the freedom to imagine. When I used to walk to school I would let my imagination wander, it would pick on anything at first. Sometimes I would think about some of the storylines I had seen on Grange Hill the evening before and think how different they were to my life and the going-ons in my school. I would re-write the script in my head, giving prominence to my favourite characters and killing off the ones I didn’t like.
Having always had the freedom to imagine, I am now enjoying the freedom of choosing which course I would like my life to follow. Of course, much I cannot predict and, within this process, I must take nothing for granted; however, this does not prevent me from setting goals and having dreams.
Going to school wasn’t a choice but, given the option, I would have chosen to go. The same can be said for college. However, going to University is a choice I’ve been given and want to take. Looking back over the last few years there is not a subject I’ve enjoyed more than English. I have my English teachers at school and College to thank for that because I relish the thought of studying English at University; visiting the libraries, discussing literature in seminars and again later, back in Halls until the small hours. Mine is indeed a romanticised view although I hasten to add that I am fully aware of the hard toil involved in such endeavours. It is, however, a challenge I am sure that I am ready for so I hope you will be able to consider my application.