Are you planning to pursue an MBA degree from a prestigious university in the United Kingdom? Then you must know that a Statement of Purpose (SoP) or Personal Statement is a mandatory requirement for your application process. You may have already searched for sample and tips on writing the best Statement of Purpose, but to no avail. Here we will guide you specifically about SoPs to study in the UK that too specifically for the MBA program.
Are you confused about what an SoP exactly means? What are you expected to write in it? Why is it mandatory for an application? How to write one? What to include? What to exclude? What are the different formats in which SoPs can be written and which is the best one? If some or all of these questions are bothering you and posing an obstruction to your application process, you need not worry anymore! Here we provide a guideline for the perfect SoP which will set you in motion towards your dream university.
What is SoP?
Top universities abroad, especially in the UK, require applicants to submit Statements of Purpose along with their application. Sometimes, the terms ‘Letter of Motivation’ or ‘Personal Statement’ are used in place of SoP. More or less, they mean the same thing. SoPs are mandatory for MBA aspirants and are also sometimes required for MS, undergraduate and PhD applications.
SoPs are an extremely significant part of your application to foreign universities. But no need to freak out because of its potential role in determining your future! Instead, consider SoPs as a brilliant opportunity for you to impress the selection committee. It is your first chance to give a personal introduction to the university and if you manage to impress them at first go, bingo!
This is a suitable window for you to go beyond your marks and eligibility requirements. This one essay gives you the much-needed opening to speak about yourself, your goals and ambitions. Consider this as a golden opportunity to let the faculty members know in your own words who you are and what makes you the best fit for the program. It is here that you can mention your talents which probably did not get reflected in the mundane grade sheets.
Why is SoP such a pivotal part of your application?
Whether your mark sheet is excellent or runs of the mill, SoPs are the determining factor in your selection. If you are a student with an unexceptional academic record, SoP offers you the chance to prove your mettle. If you have a low score in exams like GRE or GMAT, this is where you get to showcase your talents. A brilliantly written SoP can make you conspicuous in spite of ordinary scores. However, an unskilled SoP can ruin the chances of an otherwise bright and intelligent student. It is crucial that you make the best of this opportunity. It can indeed make or break your chances.
How to write a winning SoP?
The content of SoP will vary according to the course you are applying for. But the basic structure remains more or less the same. There are some crucial points that you need to keep in mind while writing your SoP:
- Keep a check on the word limit. Ideally, the word limit of SoPs range between 800 to 1200. Check if your university has provided any specific guidelines about the word limit. Make it crisp, make it precise so that it makes you stand out among your competitors.
- Make sure your SoP is easily understandable, well organised and has a smooth flow of thought and words.
- The good idea is to write your SoP in reverse order. This means that you start with now and go back to the past. Mention what your current ambitions are and then demonstrate that your activities in the past support this.
- Include only relevant information. When asked to write an SoP, students are confused about what to include and what to leave out among all the experiences in life. First of all, jot down what you think are the significant achievements you have had. And then carefully pick out the ones that are pertinent to your MBA degree. It might be difficult but learn to use the scissors on your SoP so that it is short and to the point.
- Do NOT plagiarise. Copy-pasting someone else’s work will get you rejected for sure. Be original, be innovative.
- Make sure that your SoP is error-free. Carefully proofread your Statement of Purpose before hitting the ‘send’ button. You do not want your one chance of selection to be littered with grammatical errors and spelling mistakes. If required, redraft. It is a great idea to share your SoP with friends and family and get them to proofread your work, in case you miss out on some errors.
What should be the ideal structure of SoP?
Your Statement of Purpose should have a clearly defined Introduction, Body and Conclusion.
- What to write in your Introduction? Write your introduction in such an enticing manner that the reader feels eager to read the rest of your SoP. Grab the eyeballs from the very first line. There are many possible ways to write the opening paragraph. What you have to ensure is that it gives birth to an interest in the reader’s mind. A good introduction will help you keep them hooked until the very end. Make your introduction as creative as you want to. If you want, begin with a personal anecdote or share an experience which motivated you to study MBA in the first place.
- What to include in the body of your SoP? This is the main part of your SoP. Some significant points that you should include here are:
- Your ambitions and aims in life
- Your previous experience in education or work life
- Your reason behind choosing this university in the UK
- Your reason behind choosing the degree course of MBA
- The way you believe this university will help you fulfil your academic objectives and career goals.
- How to end your SoP with a good Conclusion? Remember, all’s well that ends well. So you must have a killer conclusion. Otherwise, all your efforts have gone waste. In your closing paragraph, emphasise the most significant parts of your Statement once more. Reiterate your desire to study this particular course in this particular university. Highlight how you can productively contribute to the university as well as the chosen field of study.
How is an MBA SoP different from others?
MBA SoPs expect a degree of maturity from the applicants. Unlike undergraduate students, they are expected to bring with them a sufficient amount of experience. Unlike another course where the technical expertise is the main concern, MBA aspirants need to write a balanced SoP where they can make space for their technical aptitude as well as their managerial capabilities.
So make sure you highlight your leadership qualities and your ability to work in groups. In a nutshell, demonstrate, along with your technical skills, an attitude that makes you a perfect fit for a business degree.