How Long Should a College Essay Be? Expert Recommendations

Admission Essay College

Entering a college requires a lot of actions; for instance, you must submit your essay, and right here comes up the issue of how long should a college essay be to become a memorable and outstanding one.
As a rule, colleges require a specific word limit as they have a lot of applicants. The thing is that the limit of words helps admission tutors cope with all the essays, read them properly, and not lose any essential detail. 

College essay word limit: why is it important to stick to it?

Sticking to the college essay word limit is essential as it is part of your essay’s general impression. In this way, you can show that you can adhere to obligatory requirements and respond to the given task appropriately. 

Recollect your school years in mind and think about projects for ten or more pages that you had to do. You had to fit into the conditions to get the best possible grade. The same regards your college essay. You have to fit into the provided requirements to demonstrate your ability to be ready to deal with the different tasks. As preparing to enter an educational institution, doing such a thing would be a nice repetition for you to understand how the whole college process works. 

However, college essay length isn’t as giant as you may imagine. It is always something between 200 and 700 words. The average limit is frequently 500 words. A rare occurrence is when the college requires more than 600 words. It is convenient for both of you and the admissions office. In this case, you have a win-win. You mustn’t write a lot of information and think about the additional points to mention to fit the requirements. However, it may be a challenging task as you may have a lot to write down and not enough words to express everything you want. 

How many words is a college essay to express everything you want

As it is mentioned above, your college essay must be about 500 words (it is a usual requirement). It is not a random number of words. The admissions committee does it to see how you can deal with the task and express only essential information. 

It is a usual practice when college gives you a particular topic for your essay. Therefore, you have to write about some life events you had before and reduce the data that is not necessary. While doing it, you can pump your skill of summarizing. 

Some future students are not pleased with the word count for college essay, and they think that this task is not for them. As a result, they put this application step away. The thing is that you mustn’t do it in any way if you want to become an admitted student. 

Admissions officers read a great deal of documents every day while having the admissions process. They go over hundreds and thousands of papers to have a sharp eye on the essays that are written appropriately and on those that are not. Here are a few tips for you on how many words should a college essay be to fit into the requirements.

  1. Create a plan
    It is a case when you may need plan B. Try to write down a plan for the working process and try to stick to it. Use it whenever you want to add something more to remind yourself of the critical points of writing. 
  2. Write an outline
    After having your plan of the working process done, try to write an outline for your essay. Highlight the essential points from your point of view that you must mention anyway. In this way, you can stick around the structure. 
  3. Drafting is everything
    No doubts that drafting is a step to success. Write several drafts, peruse everything, and reduce all the things that are not in need and keep your college. 
  4. Ask for an editing help
    In case when you have the text right in front of your eyes, and you understand that it doesn’t meet the requirements, you can refer to college essay editing or simply ask your friends and parents for feedback. Let them imagine that they don’t know you. Reading your writing from another perspective can help you to get rid of unnecessary data. 
  5. Reduce cliches and common structures
    Don’t use such words as “Let me introduce myself,” “My essay is about…”, “In conclusion, I would like to say that…” and everything like that. The reader knows who you are and your essay topic as you have already mentioned it in the application form. The concluding sentence doesn’t have to start with a cliche, as it is evident that the final paragraph is for the conclusion. 
  6. Read guides
    If you aren’t sure what to write in your essay to keep it at the right length, read some guides on how to start a college essay and how to end it, and what should be included in the main body paragraph. People who are into writing and the admissions process can give you a piece of advice that may help you and answer the question about how many words is a college essay. Also, some articles can change your attitude towards writing, and it will become easier. 

College essay length: is it possible to flex it?

The circumstance when you have so many things to say, stories to tell, and achievements to mention isn’t a rare one. Or, vice versa, when you simply don’t know what to write in those two or three sentences to cover the requirements fully. There comes the question of the possibility of flexing the length of your essay. The answer is yes, you can do it. You can do unnoticeable deviations; for instance, when you have to write 500 words, you have 470 or 510 on the paper is a normal situation. Nobody will punish you for that as it isn’t even noticeable detail. In case when you have way more words than expected and you are in doubt about some data, ask yourself a few questions : 

  • Won’t my story work without these details? 
  • Does the admission committee really have to know this information about me?
  • How is this fact related to my future studying process?
  • Does this sentence give additional information about me?

Answering these questions may help you to reduce the information that may be unnecessary and save space.

When you don’t know what to write more, you can use some samples. It may help you to find a story related to you and get some inspiration. You can notice something similar to you and think about projecting it on your own life. That may help you to get more information in your writing. 

How many words should a college essay be if there are no requirements

Sometimes it happens when college doesn’t give any word limit requirements. In this situation, it would be a good idea to stick to general conditions. Don’t write a lot of information. Admission tutor is primarily a human. Long stories sometimes may be tiring and boring for reading. That is why you can just spoil the impression of yourself in this way even if you have the most exciting story in the world. 

However, there are cases when colleges require a page limit. Therefore, you have to stick to it. In case you have such an obligation, follow the general tips on writing the essay and look after its length. 

Keeping your in the right length is a challenging task to do. However, you must do it to do your best while writing the essay. Follow the pieces of advice and everything will become possible. 

More information about how long should a college essay be, you can find in EssayEdge blog, our professionals are to help you to cope with all the tasks. 

Your desire to tell as much about yourself as possible may be strong, but the college’s requirements are much more important. Condensing a large amount of information may require you to have exceptional editing skills, but even this challenge is easy to finish. Ask our college paper editing service for help, and together we’ll achieve the required word limit fast.

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