How to Write a Scholarship Essay: Writing Tips, Format and Outline

How to Write a Scholarship Essay: Writing Tips, Format and Outline

A new academic year is around the corner, which means that it’s high time to think of additional sources to pay for your college. 

If you are going to apply for a scholarship to get extra money for obtaining a degree, you probably know that you are requested to submit a pile of documents and files to get a chance to be reviewed by the committee. 

Along with a copy of your ID, application forms, test scores, and resumes, you’ve also got to submit a scholarship essay. It makes no trouble to fill out the application form or copy your ID, but how do you write a scholarship essay? That’s where you feel confused and even a little bit afraid. But calm down, our friend, we’ll explain how to craft the paper that would help you win as many scholarships as you want.

Your scholarship essay is the only chance to show what type of a personality you are and persuade the scholarship officers to consider your candidacy. Yes, you got us right. The objective of this essay is to convince the commission to grant a scholarship to you rather than to some other student.

Ok, so now you might feel the burden of greater responsibility, but let us assure you. If you do things right and follow our tips, you are guaranteed to craft the paper that would melt the hearts of the commission members and win a so-desired scholarship.

So, let’s figure out how to write scholarship essays that would make the wanted persuasive effect.

Proven Writing Tips That Would Bring You More Scholarships

We are convinced that there is a little bit of art in writing and formatting a scholarship essay. Even though a bunch of creativity won’t do any harm, the knowledge of the right instruments, techniques, and structure is the core of a result-oriented paper. So, if you are not virtuous in writing like Hemingway, do not worry. You can grow the writing muscle without the inborn talent and craft some decent essays. Just follow the tips we will share with you below, and you’ll see the results.

The Classic Essay Structure Is the Best Strategy

The classic essay structure is the eternal thing and your paper will only win if you stick with it. So, mind that every strong essay has an introduction, body, and conclusion. Structure your paper in a way so that the reader could easily spot the beginning, middle, and end of your work. 

The introduction should gently guide the committee member into the topic and ignite the desire to read further. So, the introduction of a scholarship essay should have a kind of a hook, which stands for the intriguing idea or statement that would fire up the curiosity and the thirst for reading more. End the first passage with an open statement, an unfinished idea and this would keep the person-in-charge reading.

The body of the paper should continue the introduction and be dwelling on the prompt. You usually have 2-4 paragraphs to deliver your ideas. Combine your own thoughts or persuasive sentences with real-life stories that demonstrate your viewpoints. Make sure you make smooth transitions between the paragraphs so that the essay flows easily.

Finally, think of how to conclude a scholarship essay in a powerful way. End your essay on a positive note by summing up the key points of the work. 

Make Your Essay Easy to Digest

Most likely, the person who assigns the scholarship looks through hundreds if not thousands of papers every day. So it would be nice from your side to show a little bit of appreciation and keep the scholarship essay format and the verbal side of the paper simple. Here are several things that would help you enhance the readability and clarity of your work:

  • leave enough space between the lines;
  • use simple fonts in the appropriate size;
  • keep your sentences short (5-7 words);
  • combine long sentences with medium and short ones;
  • make short paragraphs (3-5 sentences on average);
  • mix short paragraphs with longer ones;
  • prefer simple yet not primitive words;
  • deliver one idea in one paragraph.

These simple tips will significantly boost the readability of your essay. Thus, you will increase your odds of winning more financial support for your college.

Go with the Topic That Excites You

Since this is an unusual essay that should be centered on your own practical knowledge and translate your values or personality, you can’t just pick a random topic when you are given a chance to choose. Of course, you might be offered only one subject matter, so you’ve got to engage every effort to deliver the message according to the prompt. But sometimes you can select the topic, so carefully consider which you will pick.

We suggest selecting the one that resonates with your personality in the best way. If you are concerned about your future career and already have a clear vision about what kind of an expert you will become, then pick the prompt that would enable you to talk about that. Do you take an active role in nature conservation in your local area? It would be nice to select the topic that would give you a chance to showcase your contribution in this field.

Just remember once and for all. You will get more satisfaction from the process of writing and will produce a much better paper if you feel excited about the subject.

Do Not Wait Till It’s Too Late - Start Early

A successful essay for scholarship format is not a one-night thing. It might take several days or even weeks to craft a decent paper. 

Most students rely on the flow of inspiration or some other magical ways of getting the essay done, but let’s face it. Sometimes words flow, but the other day you might be staring at the screen with absolutely no idea what to write next. You should budget some time for the days when you are unproductive.

Also, you should consider the research, brainstorming, and planning time as well. These are the essential parts of the process, and they should be taken into account when setting deadlines. The research might take several days. Then, you might be brainstorming for the relevant experience of your own and then planning which details about your persona to include. 

So, you’d better start early to be able to craft the important essay at a convenient pace to be able to polish it to perfection.

Be Genuine and True to Yourself

If you are looking for an effective tip on how to write an essay for a scholarship format - here is one for you. Do not pretend to be the person you are not. You might be surprised, but here is the deal. You and your authenticity are the most powerful things that are capable of winning you some prestigious scholarships. 

Just imagine it. You have the same test scores with, let’s say, John. You both get stunning recommendations. So, when the commission selects between you and John, they will be looking at what type of a person you are and why you deserve to win the grant. 

That is why make sure you reveal your individuality without any fake stories or facts. You are who you are and you should be proud of yourself.

Do Not Write For the Sake of Writing, Write to Persuade

The idea and format of a scholarship essay presuppose that you do not just showcase your writing skills. The utmost goal of this paper is to convince the committee that you are worth the money. 

Note that clichés, standard and general phrases, some quotes are not the best instruments to demonstrate your superiority. What’s the plan then?

We bet you want your essay to be persuasive, so you’ve got to get a better idea of the decision-making process. Usually, we are guided by rational and emotional appeals. You have no clue which one will work better since you know nothing about the person who will be reading your essay. But you can maximize your odds by adding the arguments that address both decision-making strategies:

  • emotional - powerful story, descriptive words, vivid language;
  • rational - rough facts, achievements, exact figures, measurable results.

If you mix them all, you will target people who make their decisions either rationally or emotionally. Thus, you will more likely be successful in the persuasion thing.

Do Not Beat Around the Bush, Tell Bright Stories

The story format for scholarship essays is one of the best strategies for crafting an incredible paper.

You can just claim, “I am an awesome soccer player” and that’s it. This piece of information sounds like bragging and nothing else. It doesn’t awaken emotions; thus, as you remember from the previous tip, you are losing precious instruments to convey the committee members to invest money in your education.

Instead of making the claim, describe the situation that shows that you are a stunning soccer player. Tell how you scored the winning goal in the trying game with a strong rival. Think of a story as a book. Add characters, obstacles, and feelings to increase the dramatic effect and maximize your effort.

Stay Professional, No Matter What

Even though we recommend writing in a simple language, we do not mean becoming primitive. A scholarship essay is still a type of academic writing. So, even though you can write in a more relaxed fashion, do not use slang, emoji, swearing, or other things that would question the seriousness of your intentions and your professional skills.

There is a fine line between writing in your own tone of voice and using overly conversational language. We are both hands for writing in the style that feels like you, but unless it doesn’t ruin your reputation.

How to Format an Essay for a Scholarship

You should have been provided with detailed guidelines on how to format a scholarship essay. They will contain information about the heading, font type and size, margins, spacing, and so on. If none of the instructions are provided, follow the general scholarship essay format example:

  • a standard font like 12-pointed Times New Roman or Arial;
  • 1-inch margins on all sides;
  • double spacing;
  • indent every paragraph.

Keep the essay within the specified word limit. Usually, this paper should have 500-600 words or less. 

Create an Essay Outline Before You Start Writing

When you’ve selected the topic and have an understanding of what you are going to tell about in your paper, create a scholarship essay outline.

Of course, this is an optional step and you can skip it, but just keep in mind that the plan will help you write in a more concise and structured way. When you have an outline, you have a roadmap that won’t let you change the course. You are more likely to deliver the idea if you know what element follows another.

Detail every element of your work based on the traditional essay structure. You can make adjustments and use different layouts of your essay. Here is an example of an outline for your paper.

    1. Hook - An intro to the story, a fascinating fact about you.
    2. Statement - What you are going to talk about.
  2. BODY
    1. Paragraph 1 - Continue the story.
    2. Paragraph 2 - Show how the story is relevant to the prompt.
    3. Paragraph 3 - What you’ve learned or what are your thoughts about the topic.
    1. Summarize the paragraphs.
    2. Accentuate the statement.

The outline of your essay will depend on the prompt or the arguments you are going to use. Just remember that you are free to modify the outline unless it concisely shapes the paper.

Does It Look Too Cumbersome?

If you believe that you won’t craft the captivating scholarship essay that would attract money to support your education, there is an alternative way that would allow you to skip the writing process by yourself.

As a professional company qualified in compiling academic assignments of different levels and types, we will take on your paper. Our masters of the word will pick the right instruments to convince the committee that you are a worthy candidate for their academic investment.