Forty-Eight (48) College Essay FAQ on Quora

I love to answer Essay Coaching questions on  This popular question has been viewed nearly 17,000 times:

How bored do admissions officers get when they read college essays?

These questions and answers on Quora may help you. As a group, they have been viewed 110,000 times.

Please pose your own questions, and please upvote answers you find helpful. My most recent is about COVID-19:

What will college admissions officers do when everyone’s application essay is about COVID-19 next year?    [News flash as of May 28, 2020:  the Common App in 2020 will have a special place for your COVID-19 related information.Read more about the COVID-19 space on the Common App here]

Is it ever a good idea to use borderline-offensive language in a college essay if they’re quotes from other people?

How much will an outstanding college essay increase my chances for acceptance?

What constitutes a strong college application?

Should my daughter apply to top schools relying on the strength of an exceptional essay?

What are the things that you should never mention on a college application essay?

What are some good imaginative essay topics?

What are some good economics essay topics that are related to health/medical economics?

What did Bill Gates write on his college essay?

How do you write a good college application essay? What are the qualities of a good essay?

What are your thoughts on Harvard rescinding acceptance for ten students for posting offensive memes?

How do I write a passive-aggressive “apology” letter to someone who you have to, but someone who has been rude to you?

What is a good way to describe two people as opposites in a topic sentence in a college essay?

Is it okay to exaggerate a little on a college essay to make it more interesting?

How can I get my college essay reviewed online?

Why do college admissions and other programs for students value essay writing so highly?

How do I write the introduction to my application essay for S.T.E.A.M.?

What are the best places to eat out in Ann Arbor for students of the University of Michigan with parents in town visiting?

Is it a bad idea to begin a personal statement for an undergrad program (not necessarily creative writing) with a short poem written by you?

Can you write an essay describing yourself in not more than 20 words?

What are 3 main ideas about smoking that I should write about in my essay?

What are the best questions that I can use for introduction in essay?

I have a diversity statement for my college application to the US. How would you write it?

What can make a college application essay unique?

Which college essay topics make admissions officers want to roll their eyes and stop reading?

Who can review your essay to make sure that you did it right?

How honest should one be when writing a college application essay?

How can I write an essay about a scene in a football ground before the main event starts?

In an academic essay, can you say I visualized her feelings in her face? I am writing a paper on my art piece. However, as I am an international student, there are quite a few unsure sentences.

Should I rewrite my child’s college admission essay?

What is the format of speech?

If my passion for writing is evident in my transcript, should the topic of my college essay revolve around writing?

How can I write an essay for a culinary arts application form?

For my college essay, I wanted to write about my father’s brain cancer and how that has shaped my perspective and character. Is that too personal?

How many pages is a 700-word essay?

How can I make my admission/scholarship essay stand out?

In what circumstances should you use the same MBA essay that got you rejected in your first stint at applying for the top 5 programs?

If you had to choose one “iron law” of essay writing, what would it be?

What is a college application essay topic that is not normally seen?

Is grief an appropriate subject for a college admissions essay?

Should I explain the B+ I got in an otherwise 4.0 transcript because of personal reasons on my college application?

What goes on in a large admissions office for college/university? How are decisions made? Are there any confessions?

How does a student that got deferred from Northwestern ED increase their chances of acceptance?

Who could a homeschooled 21-year old get to write their letters of recommendation for college? Would enrolling in community college for one year before beginning a four year college simply for letters of recommendation be a bad idea?

My most-read answer has nothing to do with writing or essays.  As of this writing, over 18,000 people have read about an experience I had in a movie theater:

What’s the funniest thing you heard in a movie theater?

Need more assistance with writing your college application essay?  Check out the free Essay Coaching quizzes here.  Would you like to work one-on-one with a principled, honest, award-winning writer who helps businesses, authors and students tell their story in a compelling, meaningful way?  Write Debbie Merion:

Read more from the Essay Coaching blog:

College Deferral? Eight Steps to Take If You Receive One