Applying to a UC in Fall 2017? Check Out the New Essay Prompts!

The University of California has just released their 8 essay prompts for their applications.  They’ve modified 2 questions but the other 6 remain the same.  Like last year, you’ll choose just 4 of the 8 essay questionsEach essay is limited to just 350 words.

Freshman Prompts:

1. Describe an example of your leadership experience in which you have positively influenced others, helped resolve disputes or contributed to group efforts over time.  

2. Every person has a creative side, and it can be expressed in many ways: problem solving, original and innovative thinking, and artistically, to name a few. Describe how you express your creative side.  

3. What would you say is your greatest talent or skill? How have you developed and demonstrated that talent over time?  

4. Describe how you have taken advantage of a significant educational opportunity or worked to overcome an educational barrier you have faced.

5. Describe the most significant challenge you have faced and the steps you have taken to overcome this challenge. How has this challenge affected your academic achievement?

6.  Think about an academic subject that inspires you. Describe how you have furthered this interest inside and/or outside of the classroom. 

7. What have you done to make your school or your community a better place? 

8. Beyond what has already been shared in your application, what do you believe makes you stand out as a strong candidate for admissions to the University of California?

Transfer Prompts:

Required question for transfer students:             

1. Please describe how you have prepared for your intended major, including your readiness to succeed in your upper-division courses once you enroll at the university.

Choose any three of the following seven prompts:

1. Describe an example of your leadership experience in which you have positively influenced others, helped resolve disputes, or contributed to group efforts over time.  

2. Every person has a creative side, and it can be expressed in many ways: problem solving, original and innovative thinking, and artistically, to name a few. Describe how you express your creative side.  

3. What would you say is your greatest talent or skill? How have you developed and demonstrated that talent over time?  

4. Describe how you have taken advantage of a significant educational opportunity or worked to overcome an educational barrier you have faced.

5. Describe the most significant challenge you have faced and the steps you have taken to overcome this challenge. How has this challenge affected your academic achievement?

6. What have you done to make your school or your community a better place?  

7. Beyond what has already been shared in your application, what do you believe makes you stand out as a strong candidate for admissions to the University of California?

Get started on these essays now so you can rework them over the summer.  First, make a list of possible topics.  Second, make an outline for each topic that includes interesting information that you want to share with UC.  And, third, write a rough draft.  Save your drafts and revisit them in a few weeks.  When you feel that the essays highlight your strengths and feature your stories, ask others to critique and edit them. 

Make sure that you write these essays yourself and only get help with editingCollege admissions officers recognize essays written by tutors or parents, and you may be denied admission as a result.  So, get started now!