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As a graduate student, I appreciated my university's commitment to teaching skills development and providing teaching experience....
Meet Siobhan McGuirk
at American University
Some universities or scholarship programmes will request a separate research statement, in addition to your personal statement. This is an opportunity to share your research interests with the selection committee.
Be smart in how you use the space allotted for your application. If you are writing a research statement, this will allow you to be more personal in your personal statement, focusing on your extracurriculars, character, background and academic/work experience.
Keep in mind the objective of the research statement is to capture your plans and interests as they stand now. These of course may evolve or be refined through the coursework, developments in your field or your own changing interests before you begin your thesis. However, your goal is to show the selection committee that you have compelling ideas that you can confidently execute as part of their department or programme. Where possible, link your interests to that of the department (specific professors you could collaborate with or its facilities) or the scholarship programme.
Note that both faculty members and admissions staff / alumni may be on the committee. So write with both audiences in mind. Flex your intellectual muscle, but keep the jargon to a minimum and explain the broader relevance of your work to the field and briefly to society.
As you write your research statement, be sure to show off your: