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Posts by 0mkar
Joined: Feb 6, 2010
Last Post: Feb 12, 2010
Threads: 1
Posts: 13  

From: India

Displayed posts: 14
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Feb 12, 2010
Graduate / Politics, History and Economics - SOP- for Masters in Public Policy in the UK [3]

Hi Amruta,

Firstly, your english is excellent and your essay has a really convinving tone. Try structuring your SOP into well defined paragraphs.

Lets review it --

Ummm.. I am not too sure about this statement:

Had nature not intervened, I would have been a ballerina in a dance troupe, a geologist studying obscure landforms in a faraway land, a botanist or an actor.

I don't question its sincerity, but its appropriateness in this context; Makes it look like you were never sure what you wanted to be, and you are what you are simply because you had not been left with a choice! Very weak statement to start your essay with.. you may want to consider changing it.

The paragraph about how engineering has helped you is good stuff! You may want to build a little more on the part about you working for Symphony (since you briefly mention, that is what inspired you to take this course).

Don't use tautologies like

I have come to recognize that behind any success, hard work, patience and team spirit play a very important role.
It is entirely obvious, and completely unnecessary to mention it. It also suggests that before working in this field, you never appreciated hard work.

At some places one gets a feeling that you start off with a promising statement and end it abruptly without elaboration.

But, the seeds of giving back to the society had taken root in childhood itself.
How? What were the factors that influenced you?

After much research, I decided to apply to your Institute.
What did you find out about the institute and the course? Not general statements like "world class facilities", "expert professors", "international exposure". You have to mention the specifics, why this university, why this course?

Located in the United Kingdom, it will be the perfect place to understand the highly dynamic global political scene.
Why is UK the perfect place? Why not US, China or Australia?

This will help me in expanding my horizons and will enable me to make informed decisions.
What are these horizons and what decisions would you be making?

The faculty and visiting experts through their lectures, seminars and talks will certainly satiate and invigorate my hunger for knowledge.
"satiate and invigorate" is a contradiction!

I look forward to attending seminars by visiting experts, which is certain to further invigorate my hunger for knowledge.

Further, they will encourage me to find new and innovative solutions to existing and future global crises.
Don't preempt what they will do, you can only be certain of your own response to them. You may rephrase it,

Their insight and experience will inspire me to find new and innovative solutions to existing and future global crises.

After gaining global experience, I intend to return back to India to work constructively for alleviating the problems it faces.
What problems does it face and how will the course help you in solving those?

Forbidden statements:
Such a diverse group is rarely found in academic campuses.
I was better at understanding subjects like Project Management and Management Information Systems than most of my peers.

As a matter policy, try not using "comparitive" and "superlative" degrees. The first statement is blatantly false as well as unnecessary, and the second one is borderline arrogant.

The latter can be rephrased
I excelled in subjects like Project Management and Management Information Systems.
Conveys the same meaning without coming on too strong.

Overall, you have really good command over the language and plenty of subject matter that you can build on. Try not to leave any unanswered questions in the mind of the reader when you include a statement. Also, very sentence you write must have a definite purpose.. either in stating your motivation for taking up the course or in establishing your suitability for the course. I always tell people not to turn their SOPs into a running commentary on their résumé.

This is just honest feedback, please don't take it as criticism. I am sure you will make a fantastic SOP and get an admit to the University, All the best!
Feb 10, 2010
Graduate / SoP on MBA (summer break in Vietnam) [7]


The SOP presents some powerful ideas but you may need to refine it. Keep working at it.

Avoid: ... My purpose of mention about my job is not to boost my success.
There's no harm in mentioning anything to boost your success. Don't sound apologetic, an SOP should be confident! Of course you want to mention all your strengths to boost your success.

Also avoid: ..I also do not deny that I am far from perfection and still need to learn..
Try not to highlight your deficiencies, instead position your SOP in such a way that the MBA will take your skills in business to the next level.

Again: ..and that they teach courses in person, not like many universities, where classes are conducted by Teaching Assistants..
Don't compare. Ask yourself, why do you want to be in this university... and not why do you not want to be in other universities. You should rigorously remove any negative tone in your SOP.

Lastly, avoid excessive use of words like "hope", "believe"... these are slightly weak. Of course, you may use them.. but only when they seek to tone down over-optimism in a statement. Use phrases like, "I am sure", "I am confident", etc. In your SOP, you should come across as a strong person who believes he deserves a place in the university, not someone who's pleading to be accepted!
Feb 10, 2010
Graduate / I Am Applying For Masters In Advertising, statement of purpose [4]

1. You should include the "prompt" for the SOP.. that gives us a better idea of how to help you.

2. Prefer not to have a negative tone in your SOP. The reader would feel like you are trying to "escape" from your home country -- creates a weak impression. You may highlight the positives of studying in the UK if you like, but don't go on about how bad the education in your homeland is!

3. You mention that you find commerce very interesting, your passion for "advertising" doesn't come through strongly. Is your knowledge of commerce and accounts relevant to your course?

4. This is a redundant statement: "Moreover, the course content of the programme is such that out of all the subjects offered, I have interest for all the subjects." You are obviously applying because you love the subjects. You have to establish "WHY" you love them!

5. "..but also make me a more responsible and mature human being." Does it mean you aren't already responsible and mature? Avoid statements that are open to interpretation. The reader must know exactly what you are trying to convey, no two ways about it!

Hope this helps!
Feb 10, 2010
Book Reports / Precious based on book Push by Sapphire - English Essay for school [5]

You should make sure you include definite and indefinite articles (a/an/the) wherever necessary, and drop them wherever they're unnescessary.

For example:
..Due to her pregnancy, the school sends her to.. (Add 'the')
..After giving a birth and.. (Drop 'a')

This line doesn't make much grammatical sense:
..She is pregnant with a second child whom the father is also her father.

..She finds joy and happy happiness in that place.
Feb 10, 2010
Graduate / PhD SOP for swiching career from Corporate to Higher education [4]

You should elaborate on what inspired you to come to this decision. Also, education being a noble profession, you will have plenty of nuts (ideas) to pack in the candy-bar (SOP)! Of course, try not to focus too much on the negatives of what you leave behind and more on the positives of what lies ahead :) Ideal length of an SOP (in case there isn't a limit imposed by the school), should be around 2 pages. The more you can express in less words, the more impressive is your essay.
Feb 8, 2010
Graduate / 'healthcare training center' - Personal Statement for MA in language studies [6]

Use the word "relationships" rather than "contacts"
..not just in enhancing relationships between people..

And "exchange of ideas" instead of "knowledge transfer"
..and exchange of ideas, but also..

Also, you might want to specify how language is important "in smoothening one's career path"?

Correction (intellect should be singular, not plural):
..environment to nurture my intellect ..

Other than that, your essay looks good. All the best!
Feb 8, 2010
Graduate / SOP: M.Sc. in High Performance Computing from the University of Edinburgh [6]

Thanks for the feedback Kevin. I have created another lean and mean version of my SOP. This one is more to-the-point and talks about why I am ideally suited for this course and how the course in turn helps me achieve my goals. Please have a look and let me know which one would improve my chances of getting an admission. Thanks!
Feb 7, 2010
Graduate / "Why did you choose the health profession", short response from my post-bacc app [6]

The second paragraph vaguely relates "art" to medicine, but nothing concrete there. I would like to see how exactly do you think art is relevant to medicine? I can understand how a pharmacist can be a research scientist (by inventing new drugs) and a philanthropist (by helping people overcome illness), but how exactly does he become an artist? You may want to elaborate here.

Is there a specific word limit to this?
Feb 6, 2010
Graduate / SOP: M.Sc. in High Performance Computing from the University of Edinburgh [6]

Thanks a lot for the input Will. I had to cut it down because the limit is 3500 characters. Also, it is impressive to the reader if more information can be conveyed in less words. My only inhibition is that an SOP should not become a running commentary on one's résumé. Rather than talking about what I have done so far, I should probably elaborate on what I want to do in the future and how this particular course/university fits into the picture. At the end of it, the reader should be able to judge what my big plan is and how motivated am I to pursue it! Do you think that point comes across sufficiently?
Feb 6, 2010
Graduate / Singapore Master in Electrical Engineering with Communications as my major - SOP [8]

Ranjit is right, please be very careful when you rip content off the web. As a matter of policy, while writing an SOP, you should not even read any sample SOPs at first. This helps you focus on yourself and the ideas you want to express. Once you're done expressing yourself, you may look at sample SOPs to help you structure your thoughts and express yourself lucidly. A lot of Universities have software programs that crawl the web and search for essays on similar topics. The program then compares essays for similarity in use of words, sentence formations, etc and generates analysis to determine whether the essay has been plagiarized.
Feb 6, 2010
Graduate / SOP: M.Sc. in High Performance Computing from the University of Edinburgh [6]


I have been working on my SOP for the past few days and have gone over it a few times in order to refine it. I was wondering if the experts out here could review it and offer suggestions to improve it. Any feedback or criticism is welcome, and would be highly appreciated.


Prompt: Please give a short statement that describes your academic interests, purpose, objectives and motivation in undertaking this postgraduate study. (max 3500 chars - approx. 500 words)

Details: 511 Words, 3195 Characters

My association with computers started at the age of 15, when my elder sister took up a part-time job at a cybercafé. She would allow me to use one of the machines there, and I would explore it endlessly for hours. Shortly thereafter, I wrote my first "Turbo C" program and thus began my journey as a programmer. Ten years hence, I am employed with one of India's leading engineering companies, Larsen and Toubro (L&T), as a senior programmer and thriving professionally. My career has spanned almost four years and I have had extensive experience programming mission-critical enterprise applications. I have also led a team to develop TestNav 7.0, a brand new product for Pearson Educational Measurements (PEM), currently being used by students across USA for taking K-12 examinations online.

I hardly consider professional success as the culmination of learning, having always harboured the desire to constantly challenge myself and push the limits of my abilities. I have a fascination for synergism in large systems and developed an intense interest in the areas of Computer Networks, Operating Systems and Distributed Computing during my undergraduate years at the Thadomal Shahani Engineering College (University of Mumbai). I was able to apply advanced concepts such as multithreading, inter-process communication and n-tier architectures while writing software. By taking up the M.Sc. course in High Performance Computing offered by EPCC at the University of Edinburgh, my goal is to take my skills to the next level by being able to develop software capable of exploiting emergent parallel and multi-core hardware architectures. Due to its practical orientation and emphasis on programming techniques, the course is ideal for me and the modules contained therein coincide with my areas of interest. I can rely upon my strong foundations in C++ and Java programming as well as in-depth understanding of modern software development paradigms such as object-oriented design patterns and life-cycle processes, to excel at this course.

EPCC's strong link with the industry is sure to provide me with tremendous exposure to the commercial use of high-performance computing and numerous opportunities to participate in global forums on the subject. I look forward to working hands-on with some of the world's most advanced supercomputers such as the Cray XT4 MPP and the IBM Blue Gene hosted at EPCC. Going forward, I would like to delve deeper into the subject by following it up with a PhD and the Master's degree will equip me with the requisite knowledge for such an undertaking. My stint as a software professional has inculcated in me, the maturity required to take on the rigours of a career in research. I have had sufficient experience working on real-world projects to be able to translate the products of learning into commercially viable solutions. Securing a place within the M.Sc. course at the University of Edinburgh is a giant leap in my career and only the first step towards finding my niche in the rapidly evolving arena of high-performance computing.