Writing a successful personal statement for your MSc application
10 February 2023

Stuck on how to make your personal statement stand out from the crowd? Members of our Recruitment and Business Development teams, Danielle and Laura, dig into how to write a successful personal statement to support your application to our one-year, full-time MSc courses.

What is a personal statement?

Danielle: A personal statement supports your application to study at a university. It’s your opportunity to share any achievements and ambitions you have; we want to understand how a WBS MSc course will help you to develop both personally and professionally.

Laura: Your personal statement is your opportunity to sell yourself and differentiate yourself from any other applicant, share your passion for joining WBS and link your life experiences and skills to how you could contribute to a cohort here at WBS.

How long should a personal statement be, and how should it be structured?

Danielle: Your personal statement should be around 500 words, but if it is slightly longer, please don’t worry as you will not be penalised for this. Please try to keep it within two pages of A4.

Aim to keep your personal statement to the point by making sure you answer the following questions, addressing the key points our Selection Committee will be looking for:

  • Why have you selected this course? What are your motivating factors?
  • How do you see this course impacting your career plans?
  • What experience will you contribute to your cohort?
  • How do you align with our CORE values?
  • What is your proudest achievement?

It is essential that you demonstrate the research you have done on the course you are applying for. All of our course webpages feature extensive information on the course modules, so take the time to show you’ve done your research in your personal statement. Your personal statement is your chance to relate yourself to our core values and demonstrate what a strong candidate you will be for one of our programmes. Ensure you also use this as an opportunity to link our programme to your future career.

Laura: Danielle mentioned our CORE values, and these are really important to consider – they should guide you through your application, your journey at WBS, and beyond.

Think about how you fit use these CORE values and how you might align them with your experience and your future studies with us.

Curiosity: Learning as a way of life: We challenge, we embrace different perspectives, and we think creatively to build our future.
Openness: Embracing diversity: We’re open to new voices, viewpoints, and ideas, recognising there may be multiple solutions to any problem.
Restlessness: Challenging convention to find a better way: We use our initiative, drive, and resourcefulness to find answers and create real change.
Excellence: Never compromising our high standards: Everything is done to the best of our ability and driven by a passion to achieve our goals.

What are your top tips for writing a personal statement?

Danielle: These are based on the key things we look out for when reading:

  • Avoid rewriting your CV in your personal statement.
  • Write your personal statement based on the key points required, ensuring you hit the criteria the Selection Committee are looking for, as mentioned above.
  • Take time to look at the content of the course you are applying for; although course titles may be the same at different universities the course content will be different. Do your research and demonstrate this in your personal statement, showing how invested you are in studying at WBS.
  • When thinking about your career after graduation, ensure you take a look at our Graduate Careers Destination brochures to understand what kind of careers come from your course of interest.

What are the Selection Committee looking for in your personal statement?

Laura: It may sound simple but the first answer to this question is that the Selection Committee want to see a well written, clearly structured personal statement which demonstrates good preparation and research.

The Selection Committee review thousands of applications each year so stand out in your personal statement by showing that you have taken the time to prepare and research Warwick Business School and the opportunities/platforms it can provide you with and how these may influence your personal and professional goals.

We would encourage you to be clear, honest and realistic with your motivations to join one of WBS MSc courses. Try to follow the advice on how a personal statement should be structured above to assist when it comes to putting all of your thoughts together.

Are you ready to discover more about our range of MSc courses before making your application? View our Postgraduate course web pages, or contact our MSc Recruitment & Admissions Team.