Think of a 500- to 650-word essay as a smooth and enjoyable flight from D.C. to Disney World. In 500 to 650 words students have the space they need to achieve proper cruising altitude: writing a strong introductory paragraph that both grabs readers’ attention and clearly states the essay’s thesis. Next, just as one wants to have an enjoyable in-flight experience with the fasten seatbelt sight off and flight attendants passing out drinks and snacks, so to does a 500- to 650-word essay allow readers to relax a bit. In 500 to 650 words students are able to produce non-rushed, non-turbulent, highly valuable descriptive and specific body paragraphs that go a long way toward proving the essay’s thesis. Finally, landing a plane takes great skill, as does writing a conclusion to a college application essay. It’s not a simple rehash of the lift off (thesis); it should be complementary to it. Students who have 500 to 650 words to work with are able to smoothly touch down in a way that puts the cherry on top of the entire flying/essay reading experience. At the end of the day, admissions officers read your essays because they want to fly the friendly skies with you into your world. 500 to 600 words allows you to give them a proper flying experience and gives you the words necessary to differentiate your world from the world of other applicants.
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To write a killer essay for the new Common Application Prompt 6, you do not need to pick a topic, idea or concept that is impressive in nature, such as quantum physics or artificial intelligence or genetic mapping.
“How long should my Common Application essay be?”
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All of the Common Application essay prompts, in one way or another, are asking you to demonstrate your critical thinking skills. How do you deal with complicated issues and situations? A student who can grapple with difficult problems effectively is a student who will succeed in college. The mention of an "intellectual challenge" in this prompt signals your need to choose a problem that isn't simple. An intellectual challenge is a problem that requires the application of your reasoning and critical thinking skills to solve. The problem of dry skin can typically be solved with the simple application of moisturizer. The problem bird deaths caused by wind turbines requires extensive study, planning, and designing to even begin arriving at a solution, and any proposed solution is going to have pros and cons. If you want to write about an intellectual challenge, make sure it is more like the latter problem than dry skin.