If you want to study a philosophy degree, then you’re probably thinking about how to write an excellent personal statement for philosophy. Applying to uni certainly isn’t a five minute process; once you’ve filled out the application form and found a referee, you also need to provide a personal statement. This 4000 character document is an opportunity for you to broadcast your talents, dreams and passion to course leaders in the hopes of securing a place on their course.
Make a mind-map of all your skills and strengths. What are you proud of? What qualities do you have that will help you study philosophy at degree level? This can form your writing plan.
The essential factor in any successful statement is enthusiasm. Showing a genuine interest and commitment to a subject is going to make you an appealing student. Check out some philosophy personal statement examples here to see how others have managed it.
Use clear and simple language: this isn’t the place to try out every new word you find in the thesaurus. It’s much more important to communicate your attributes and ambitions than wow them with your polysyllabic vocabulary. Remember: read, edit, proof-read and read again!
So if it’s all about enthusiasm, you just have to talk about how much you love Cambridge, right? Oh, but wait… Can you apply for different courses at different universities? Hmm. Oh dear. Your personal statement philosophy Cambridge is also your Durham personal statement, which is also your St Andrews statement… ! Better keep location out of it, and just talk about the subject and the skills you can bring.
If you’re applying for joint honours, discuss both subjects. An English and philosophy personal statement might mention recent reading, whilst a history and philosophy personal statement might include details about a museum exhibition you attended. Similarly, your maths and philosophy personal statement could have something about your coding hobby. You get the idea.
Think about more general study skills too. Perhaps babysitting has helped you become more responsible, while a part-time job in a cafe has enhanced your time-management skills.