Personal Statement Requirements

Haven’t started your personal statement? Take a look at this list of personal statement requirements for local 4 year colleges!




University of California

Personal Statement Requirements

  • Two prompts
  • Responses must be 1000 words or less combined
  • Responses must be at least 250 words

Personal Statement Questions

  1. Describe the world you come from — for example, your family, community or school — and tell us how your world has shaped your dreams and aspirations. 
  2. Tell us about a personal quality, talent, accomplishment, contribution or experience that is important to you. What about this quality or accomplishment makes you proud and how does it relate to the person you are?

Due Date: November 30, 2015

California State Universities

Personal Statement Requirements

  • There is no personal statement requirement for applying to CSUs. However, students who are low-income, first generation college students, or from disadvantaged educational backgrounds can apply to the CSU Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) which offers more advising and financial assistance - and does require personal statements. 

EOP Application Questions - Answers to the following questions will help us determine your motivation and preparation to undertake college work. Please answer as precisely and honestly as possible. Use complete sentences and avoid responses such as “yes” or “no.” (3-4 sentences):

  1. List any volunteer, extracurricular activities, or work experience in which you are or have been involved in the past two years.
  2. Why would you like to attend college? Discuss your career and personal goals. Are there any particular circumstances, school experiences, or persons that influenced your preparation or motivation to attend college (e.g., cultural/financial background, family, teachers, schools you attended)? Please explain.
  3. Briefly discuss your academic background. Did you utilize any additional support at your high school, such as tutoring? Do your grades in high school and/or college reflect your academic ability or potential?
  4. Briefly describe your family’s economic background. Include information about your financial challenges.
  5. Please tell us more about yourself. Is there any additional information you would like EOP to consider in determining your admission to the program?

Due Date: November 30, 2015 (EOP applications are rolling and open on October 1, students fill out an EOP app as well as the standard CSU app)

Common App

(Stanford, Cal Tech, Claremont Colleges, Loyola Maramount, Pepperdine, USC, Redlands, U of SD)

Personal Statement Requirements

  • Response must be between 250-650 words.
  • Choose one of the following five prompts.

Personal Statement Questions

  1. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
  2. The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
  3. Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
  4. Describe a problem you’ve solved or a problem you’d like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma-anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
  5. Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

Due Date: Varies by College

Find supplemental questions for local universities here!


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