Application essay draft can be very helpful

Drafts are important in any type of essay. Sure, you might get lucky once or twice with rushing an essay the night before and getting a semi decent grade, but when your whole college career depends on one essay? It's not something you can put off until the very last second.

There are four important 'draft stages':

  1. Pre-draft.
  2. First Draft.
  3. Redraft.
  4. Final Draft.


The first thing that you want to do is jot down all of the ideas that come to your mind. Even if it's just a memory or a word, make sure to write it down on a piece of paper and keep it in a secure spot so you can find it later to make more sense of it.

A great technique that people use is called 'word webs' for their pre-drafts. You start with one word, or topic (usually the thesis) in a circle, and branch out to four or five different topics, and expand until you have enough detail to organize your paragraphs. Keeping your thoughts organized is important and extremely helpful when you start to work on your actual first draft.

First Draft.

Once you have all your thoughts laid out, it's time to start trying to take your thoughts and form them into actual sentences. Focus on really nailing the prompt. A key to a great first draft is to always act as if you were going to turn in that draft. All your drafts should be treated like the final draft, even if you know that with the first draft you have room for error.  Just put everything on paper and make sure to keep on task and avoid drifting away from the prompt.

When your first draft is finished, pin down at least three different trusted adults who will be honest with you. You're not looking for a 'looks good, kid' opinion. You're looking for a 'this is a nice beginning, but here's how it can be improved in my eyes' opinion. Having multiple people look over your work means more feedback for you to work with on your next step.


After all your drafts are handed back to you, it's time to review everyone's corrections and feedback. See what they think and take it into consideration. Though you trust them, you don’t have to completely take all of their advice. Compile all of your ideas together and start working on making your essay as clear as possible. Keep in mind that this is supposed to be something that will really prove that you should be accepted to this college and that the administration would lose an amazing asset to their school if you were denied.

Final Draft.

After fixing all these errors from the redraft, you finally have your final product. Make sure to ask at least one trusted adult to review your essay and then read it out loud to check for any final grammar mistakes, or issues in the way words flow. If you think your essay is ready and there are no issues that you or anyone else can point out, then just submit it and enjoy the long wait to hear back if you were accepted.

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