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personal statement examples for graduate school data science

Looking for grad school personal statement examples? Look no further! In this total guide to graduate school personal statement examples, we’ll discuss why you need a personal statement for grad school and what makes a good one. Then we’ll provide three graduate school personal statement samples from our grad school experts. After that, we’ll do a deep dive on one of our personal statement for graduate school examples. Finally, we’ll wrap up with a list of other grad school personal statements you can find online.

Why Do You Need a Personal Statement?

A personal statement is a chance for admissions committees to get to know you: your goals and passions, what you’ll bring to the program, and what you’re hoping to get out of the program.  You need to sell the admissions committee on what makes you a worthwhile applicant. The personal statement is a good chance to highlight significant things about you that don’t appear elsewhere on your application.

A personal statement is slightly different from a statement of purpose (also known as a letter of intent). A statement of purpose/letter of intent tends to be more tightly focused on your academic or professional credentials and your future research and/or professional interests.

While a personal statement also addresses your academic experiences and goals, you have more leeway to be a little more, well, personal. In a personal statement, it’s often appropriate to include information on significant life experiences or challenges that aren’t necessarily directly relevant to your field of interest.

Some programs ask for both a personal statement and a statement of purpose/letter of intent. In this case, the personal statement is likely to be much more tightly focused on your life experience and personality assets while the statement of purpose will focus in much more on your academic/research experiences and goals.

However, there’s not always a hard-and-fast demarcation between a personal statement and a statement of purpose. The two statement types should address a lot of the same themes, especially as relates to your future goals and the valuable assets you bring to the program. Some programs will ask for a personal statement but the prompt will be focused primarily on your research and professional experiences and interests. Some will ask for a statement of purpose but the prompt will be more focused on your general life experiences.

When in doubt, give the program what they are asking for in the prompt and don’t get too hung up on whether they call it a personal statement or statement of purpose. You can always call the admissions office to get more clarification on what they want you to address in your admissions essay.

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What Makes a Good Grad School Personal Statement?

A great graduate school personal statement can come in many forms and styles. However, strong grad school personal statement examples all share the same following elements:

A Clear Narrative

Above all, a good personal statement communicates clear messages about what makes you a strong applicant who is likely to have success in graduate school. So to that extent, think about a couple of key points that you want to communicate about yourself and then drill down on how you can best communicate those points. (Your key points should of course be related to what you can bring to the field and to the program specifically).

You can also decide whether to address things like setbacks or gaps in your application as part of your narrative. Have a low GPA for a couple semesters due to a health issue? Been out of a job for a while taking care of a family member? If you do decide to explain an issue like this, make sure that the overall arc is more about demonstrating positive qualities like resilience and diligence than about providing excuses.

Specific Examples

A great statement of purpose uses specific examples to illustrate its key messages. This can include anecdotes that demonstrate particular traits or even references to scholars and works that have influenced your academic trajectory to show that you are familiar and insightful about the relevant literature in your field.

Just saying “I love plants,” is pretty vague. Describing how you worked in a plant lab during undergrad and then went home and carefully cultivated your own greenhouse where you cross-bred new flower colors by hand is much more specific and vivid, which makes for better evidence.

A strong personal statement will describe why you are a good fit for the program, and why the program is a good fit for you. It’s important to identify specific things about the program that appeal to you, and how you’ll take advantage of those opportunities. It’s also a good idea to talk about specific professors you might be interested in working with. This shows that you are informed about and genuinely invested in the program.

Strong Writing

Even quantitative and science disciplines typically require some writing, so it’s important that your personal statement shows strong writing skills. Make sure that you are communicating clearly and that you don’t have any grammar and spelling errors. It’s helpful to get other people to read your statement and provide feedback. Plan on going through multiple drafts.

Another important thing here is to avoid cliches and gimmicks. Don’t deploy overused phrases and openings like “ever since I was a child.” Don’t structure your statement in a gimmicky way (i.e., writing a faux legal brief about yourself for a law school statement of purpose). The first will make your writing banal; the second is likely to make you stand out in a bad way.

Appropriate Boundaries

While you can be more personal in a personal statement than in a statement of purpose, it’s important to maintain appropriate boundaries in your writing. Don’t overshare anything too personal about relationships, bodily functions, or illegal activities. Similarly, don’t share anything that makes it seem like you may be out of control, unstable, or an otherwise risky investment. The personal statement is not a confessional booth. If you share inappropriately, you may seem like you have bad judgment, which is a huge red flag to admissions committees.

You should also be careful with how you deploy humor and jokes. Your statement doesn’t have to be totally joyless and serious, but bear in mind that the person reading the statement may not have the same sense of humor as you do. When in doubt, err towards the side of being as inoffensive as possible.

Just as being too intimate in your statement can hurt you, it’s also important not to be overly formal or staid. You should be professional, but conversational.


Graduate School Personal Statement Examples

Our graduate school experts have been kind enough to provide some successful grad school personal statement examples. We’ll provide three examples here, along with brief analysis of what makes each one successful.

Sample Personal Statement for Graduate School 1

PDF of Sample Personal Statement 1 – Japanese Studies

For this Japanese Studies master’s degree, the applicant had to provide a statement of purpose outlining her academic goals and experience with Japanese and a separate personal statement describing her personal relationship with Japanese Studies and what led her to pursue a master’s degree.

Here’s what’s successful about this personal statement:

Overall, this is a very strong statement both in terms of style and content. It flows well, is memorable, and communicates that the applicant would make the most of the graduate school experience.


Sample Personal Statement for Graduate School 2

PDF of Sample Graduate School Personal Statement 2 – Musical Composition

This personal statement for a Music Composition master’s degree discusses the factors that motivate the applicant to pursue graduate study.

Here’s what works well in this statement:

This is a strong, serviceable personal statement. And in truth, given that this for a masters in music composition, other elements of the application (like work samples) are probably the most important.  However, here are two small changes I would make to improve it:


Sample Personal Statement for Graduate School 3

PDF of Sample Graduate School Personal Statement 3 – Public Health

This is my successful personal statement for Columbia’s Master’s program in Public Health. We’ll do a deep dive on this statement paragraph-by-paragraph in the next section, but I’ll highlight a couple of things that work in this statement here:

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Grad School Personal Statement Example: Deep Dive

Now let’s do a deep dive, paragraph-by-paragraph, on one of these sample graduate school personal statements. We’ll use my personal statement that I used when I applied to Columbia’s public health program.

Paragraph One: For twenty-three years, my grandmother (a Veterinarian and an Epidemiologist) ran the Communicable Disease Department of a mid-sized urban public health department. The stories of Grandma Betty doggedly tracking down the named sexual partners of the infected are part of our family lore. Grandma Betty would persuade people to be tested for sexually transmitted diseases, encourage safer sexual practices, document the spread of infection and strive to contain and prevent it. Indeed, due to the large gay population in the city where she worked, Grandma Betty was at the forefront of the AIDS crises, and her analysis contributed greatly towards understanding how the disease was contracted and spread. My grandmother has always been a huge inspiration to me, and the reason why a career in public health was always on my radar.

This is an attention-grabbing opening anecdote that avoids most of the usual cliches about childhood dreams and proclivities. This story also subtly shows that I have a sense of public health history, given the significance of the AIDs crisis for public health as a field.

It’s good that I connect this family history to my own interests. However, if I were to revise this paragraph again, I might cut down on some of the detail because when it comes down to it, this story isn’t really about me. It’s important that even (sparingly used) anecdotes about other people ultimately reveal something about you in a personal statement.

Paragraph Two: Recent years have cemented that interest. In January 2012, my parents adopted my little brother Fred from China. Doctors in America subsequently diagnosed Fred with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). My parents were told that if Fred’s condition had been discovered in China, the (very poor) orphanage in which he spent the first 8+ years of his life would have recognized his DMD as a death sentence and denied him sustenance to hasten his demise.

Here’s another compelling anecdote to help explain my interest in public health. This is an appropriately personal detail for a personal statement—it’s a serious thing about my immediate family, but it doesn’t disclose anything that the admissions committee might find concerning or inappropriate.

If I were to take another pass through this paragraph, the main thing I would change is the last phrase. “Denied him sustenance to hasten his demise” is a little flowery. “Denied him food to hasten his death” is actually more powerful because it’s clearer and more direct.

Paragraph Three: It is not right that some people have access to the best doctors and treatment while others have no medical care. I want to pursue an MPH in Sociomedical Sciences at Columbia because studying social factors in health, with a particular focus on socio-health inequities, will prepare me to address these inequities. The interdisciplinary approach of the program appeals to me greatly as I believe interdisciplinary approaches are the most effective way to develop meaningful solutions to complex problems.

In this paragraph I make a neat and clear transition from discussing what sparked my interest in public health and health equity to what I am interested in about Columbia specifically: the interdisciplinary focus of the program, and how that focus will prepare me to solve complex health problems. This paragraph also serves as a good pivot point to start discussing my academic and professional background.

Paragraph Four: My undergraduate education has prepared me well for my chosen career. Understanding the underlying structure of a group’s culture is essential to successfully communicating with the group. In studying folklore and mythology, I’ve learned how to parse the unspoken structures of folk groups, and how those structures can be used to build bridges of understanding. For example, in a culture where most illnesses are believed to be caused by witchcraft, as is the case for the Zande people of central Africa, any successful health intervention or education program would of necessity take into account their very real belief in witchcraft.

In this paragraph, I link my undergraduate education and the skills I learned there to public health. The (very brief) analysis of tailoring health interventions to the Zande is a good way to show insight and show off the competencies I would bring to the program.

Paragraph Five: I now work in the healthcare industry for one of the largest providers of health benefits in the world. In addition to reigniting my passion for data and quantitative analytics, working for this company has immersed me in the business side of healthcare, a critical component of public health.

This brief paragraph highlights my relevant work experience in the healthcare industry. It also allows me to mention my work with data and quantitative analytics, which isn’t necessarily obvious from my academic background, which was primarily based in the social sciences.

Paragraph Six: I intend to pursue a PhD in order to become an expert in how social factors affect health, particularly as related to gender and sexuality. I intend to pursue a certificate in Sexuality, Sexual Health, and Reproduction. Working together with other experts to create effective interventions across cultures and societies, I want to help transform health landscapes both in America and abroad.

This final paragraph is about my future plans and intentions. Unfortunately, it’s a little disjointed, primarily because I discuss goals of pursuing a PhD before I talk about what certificate I want to pursue within the MPH program! Switching those two sentences and discussing my certificate goals within the MPH and then mentioning my PhD plans would make a lot more sense.

I also start two sentences in a row with “I intend,” which is repetitive.

The final sentence is a little bit generic; I might tailor it to specifically discuss a gender and sexual health issue, since that is the primary area of interest I’ve identified.

This was a successful personal statement; I got into (and attended!) the program. It has strong examples, clear organization, and outlines what interests me about the program (its interdisciplinary focus) and what competencies I would bring (a background in cultural analysis and experience with the business side of healthcare). However, a few slight tweaks would elevate this statement to the next level.


Graduate School Personal Statement Examples You Can Find Online

So you need more samples for your personal statement for graduate school? Examples are everywhere on the internet, but they aren’t all of equal quality.

Most of examples are posted as part of writing guides published online by educational institutions. We’ve rounded up some of the best ones here if you are looking for more personal statement examples for graduate school.

Penn State Personal Statement Examples for Graduate School

This selection of ten short personal statements for graduate school and fellowship programs offers an interesting mix of approaches. Some focus more on personal adversity while others focus more closely on professional work within the field.

The writing in some of these statements is a little dry, and most deploy at least a few cliches. However, these are generally strong, serviceable statements that communicate clearly why the student is interested in the field, their skills and competencies, and what about the specific program appeals to them.

Cal State Sample Graduate School Personal Statements

These are good examples of personal statements for graduate school where students deploy lots of very vivid imagery and illustrative anecdotes of life experiences. There are also helpful comments about what works in each of these essays.

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However, all of these statements are definitely pushing the boundaries of acceptable length, as all are above 1000 and one is almost 1500 words! Many programs limit you to 500 words; if you don’t have a limit, you should try to keep it to two single-spaced pages at most (which is about 1000 words).

University of Chicago Personal Statement for Graduate School Examples

These examples of successful essays to the University of Chicago law school cover a wide range of life experiences and topics. The writing in all is very vivid, and all communicate clear messages about the students’ strengths and competencies.

Note, however, that these are all essays that specifically worked for University of Chicago law school. That does not mean that they would work everywhere. In fact, one major thing to note is that many of these responses, while well-written and vivid, barely address the students’ interest in law school at all! This is something that might not work well for most graduate programs.

Wheaton College Personal Statement for Graduate School Sample 10

This successful essay for law school from a Wheaton College undergraduate does a great job tracking the student’s interest in the law in a compelling and personal way. Wheaton offers other graduate school personal statement examples, but this one offers the most persuasive case for the students’ competencies. The student accomplishes this by using clear, well-elaborated examples, showing strong and vivid writing, and highlighting positive qualities like an interest in justice and empathy without seeming grandiose or out of touch.

Wheaton College Personal Statement for Graduate School Sample 1

Based on the background information provided at the bottom of the essay, this essay was apparently successful for this applicant. However, I’ve actually included this essay because it demonstrates an extremely risky approach. While this personal statement is strikingly written and the story is very memorable, it could definitely communicate the wrong message to some admissions committees. The student’s decision not to report the drill sergeant may read incredibly poorly to some admissions committees. They may wonder if the student’s failure to report the sergeant’s violence will ultimately expose more soldiers-in-training to the same kinds of abuses. This incident perhaps reads especially poorly in light of the fact that the military has such a notable problem with violence against women being covered up and otherwise mishandled

It’s actually hard to get a complete picture of the student’s true motivations from this essay, and what we have might raise real questions about the student’s character to some admissions committees. This student took a risk and it paid off, but it could have just as easily backfired spectacularly.


Key Takeaways: Graduate School Personal Statement Examples

In this guide, we discussed why you need a personal statement and how it differs from a statement of purpose. (It’s more personal!)

We also discussed what you’ll find in a strong sample personal statement for graduate school:

Then, we provided three strong graduate school personal statement examples for different fields, along with analysis. We did a deep-dive on the third statement.

Finally, we provided a list of other sample grad school personal statements online.

What’s Next?

Want more advice on writing a personal statement ? See our guide.

Writing a graduate school statement of purpose? See our statement of purpose samples  and a nine-step process for writing the best statement of purpose possible .

If you’re writing a graduate school CV or resume, see our how-to guide to writing a CV , a how-to guide to writing a resume , our list of sample resumes and CVs , resume and CV templates , and a special guide for writing resume objectives .

Need stellar graduate school recommendation letters ? See our guide.

See our 29 tips for successfully applying to graduate school .

Ready to improve your GRE score by 7 points?

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

Author: Ellen McCammon

Ellen is a public health graduate student and education expert. She has extensive experience mentoring students of all ages to reach their goals and in-depth knowledge on a variety of health topics. View all posts by Ellen McCammon

personal statement examples for graduate school data science



personal statement upenn

Personal Statement that got selected to MS in Data Science, University of Pennsylvania (UPenn)

Penn’s Master of Science in Engineering (MSE) in Data Science prepares students for a wide range of data-centric careers, whether in technology and engineering, consulting, science, policy-making, or understanding patterns in literature, art or communications.

It blends leading-edge courses in core topics such as machine learning, big data analytics, and statistics, with a variety of electives and an opportunity to apply these techniques in a domain specialisation – a depth area – of choice.

So, what does it take to get into one of the top 15 programs of the USA in Data Science? I mean, look at it! Wouldn’t you want to spend 2 years here?

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

So, let’s look at the ‘Personal Statement’ requirements what the UPenn lists out in its Admission Requirements:

As it is amply clear, the AdCom doesn’t want the details of EVERYTHING that you have done in your academic projects. You should answer only these 6 questions, in a way that best justifies your interest in this program. Right?

Here is where the Mridul got it wrong.

About Mridul

Mridul grew up in Mumbai, went to KJ Somaiya College Of Engineering in Mumbai, and had a GPA of 8.46.

He had a GRE score of 322 (167 Q 155 V) and a TOEFL score of 103.

His academic projects reasonably aligned with the research work at UPenn, one of his dream schools.

When he sent us the first draft, it was his entire story of all the things he has done till now. In total, it was 4 PAGES LONG!

So, our first revision was to cut short the massive piece of self-appreciation, to a workable draft of around 1000 words.

Then, we cherry picked some of the most notable projects of Mridul, and tried to address the questions that the AdCom was really looking for.

After 3 rounds of revision, we arrived at the final draft which looked like this:

As it can be seen, each paragraph of Mridul’s Personal Statement, tries to address a question which helps the AdCom to decide if you are the ‘RIGHT FIT’ for the class.

Since there was no hard limitation on the number of words, we stuck to around 1100 words to clearly and concisely tell Mridul’s story to the AdCom.

Mridul was accepted to three graduate programs – University of Pennsylvania (MS in Data Science), University of California Irvine (MS in Computer Science), and CMU (MS in Data Science)

We couldn’t be happier! Like this happy puppy.

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

Read Shrishti’s application journey to MS in Computer Science, University of Southern California (USC)

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

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personal statement examples for graduate school data science

Towards Data Skill

Amanda West

June 20, 2020


How I Caught Into 12 Input Scientists Masters Schedules

My personal stats, display of purpose vs. personal statement, everything., hello, the 🌎.

I figure that’s a fitting beginning, because that’s just with all I knew when I began collecting materials for grad school applications. I was einem econ major at the time, only realizes very late in who game that I wanted to pivot from PhD economist to data scientist— but I did it, and that means you can too.

My metrics (applying as an bachelor senior):

WOMEN in Data Science/Analytics Programs:

Oh, and did I mention the one your which rejected me was Michigan, my alma materi? Yeah, which one hit right by the feels.

Fall of Senior Current 🍁

In they maybe shall able to tell, I was suffering more of an coding deficit (as in I didn’t knowledge how to code, or what Github was, or that the Python to-be referred for wasn’t one poisons creature), so I did two things here: IODIN logged in the introductory CS class at my university and I found someone to hire me doings data visualizations for them. I also enrollees in a course that taught ROENTGEN, which has my personal favorite (for some reason I am fiercely protective of ROENTGEN for nay basic. Struggles me, bro).

Frankly, the job was quite lucky; I expressed my enthusiasm stylish learn how to code and that I would pick up the slack as much as needed. IODIN also sent a strongly thoughtful thank-you note after the interview (like a tear-out-your-hair-for-an-hour whichever to say “sincerely” or “respectfully”) real was instantaneous hired in the your to that email. Thank-you’s go a long way, folks.

By the end of the intro CS class, I had knowing up to creating basic machine-learning algorithms in Python. Insert final project created new Yule music since older Mariah Carey, Meet Bublé and Baking Crosby, and I also successfully perform a web scraper program to do is. Uniformly though I had mainly been taught C++, I quickly found these skillset were transferable and was able in pick up an lot of Python forward the final project. In the pursuit of postgraduate studies, one of the most critical aspects of the user process your writing a personal statementthat sincerely reflects your passion, ...

I highly recommend taking computer academia classes if yourself are now in undergrad. Alternatively, there’s a property out MOOCs that wish teach basically this same theme. For examples, W offers its Intro to Computer Skill and Computer Using Python class used available online (it looks super hard and useful).

Christmas_Break == “SOP Writing Time”

My grandfather lives in a secluded Florida condo, so I went there for break with my mother (oh, the days before coronavirus!). Almost of the day, I hunkered down in a corner of of place, only to come out for one coffee reload or for my mother on read over my newest draft. In the evenings, I facetimed my S.O. and asked him to be brutal with me — more than one tearing (and imposter syndrome-related meltdown) was shed over receiving my SOPs workable. Like the vast and ever-expanding universe, aforementioned big data areas are in a continuously expansion mode. Both fascinate me...

Still, I knew that where I has weak in other places, I was shine through a well-written letter.

Writing in Florida presented m a nice sunny place to feel super inspired and fresh. If you can, write from someplace that does you happy — regardless it to an coffee shop, a library with high, stained-glass windows, or a condominium smelling concerning mint and moth bales (like me!).

Research, Rinse, Repeat 🚿

This and meant which I studied all the programs, usually for about an hour. I wrote down the faculty members, their areas of specialist, and the classes they instruction. In my SOPs, ME wrote about my interests and how ones faculty members aligned. Colleges won’t accept someone people don’t think is going to attend (it worsens their ranking on U.S. News the World Report), that it’s extremely important to be as specific as you can.

I was applying until 12 schools, finishing an honoring thesis, taking two advanced math classes and an economy class, stopping a job and training taekwondo once a week our final semester. I was shortcut up time, so MYSELF would finished applications in the order they endured due — MYSELF just couldn’t think about the one after or before that one applications, and that honestly helped me focus on each software in and of oneself. Checkout aforementioned bests datas science master personal assertion examples and learn how at draft yours. Start with us!

Included gist: If you’re short up zeitraum, its ok to not spend 10+ time in each application. Emphasis the pinpointing 2–3 faculty members you can talk about, one few lessons that thrill you, and one other thing you cool about of university that showing you did your homework.

Graduate School Apps are….Weird

For one, they ask you what other schools you’re applying to; like part is either net or a negative depending on wherewith thou manage e. IODIN try to make it so everyone school wouldn look like my “reach” out of those that I listings, while also only listing the schools so are close in proximity and program type (it’s a truly annoying and imperfect art).

Often, schools will ask for a “big” essay, plus then maybe einigen small ones on an side. They might also depart some place until explain off your deficits, which you should use is you have (like me plus obtaining ampere C- in Calc 1). SOP, stats, everything.

Lastly, a statement of target and one personal statement bucket be similar. In fact, I basicly turned in the equal essay for each school IODIN applied to.

To example, here’s my custom statement for Tufts School of Engineering:

1 Tufted Analytics PS.pdf


Also here’s the statement of purpose MYSELF wrote for the University of Michigan:

2 UM SOP.pdf

Focus on one good, high-quality piece and then rework it to fit each each university. Do not, furthermore I repeat, do does exactly write a million separate essays because you think you need toward; for one, I didn’t.

The “big” essay is the most essential, so it was the one EGO always made safer I had at least one (or three) sets of eyes with. Prioritize the big essay and focus over that small with the remaining time you have in your schedule.

Parting Thoughts

I hope this article support somebody worrying about applying to graduate your. If you have any questions via programs or how I can support you get into a masters, please remarks slide. You can also reach me toward mystery personal web or Twitter. Thanks for reading!

P.S. If you’re wondering , I decidedly into go to UVA. 🧡💜

Additional Works:

10 Tips When Choosing Your Dream Data Science Select

Tips #3: focus go the median, not the average.


Art about one Graduate School Essay

5 simple tricks that got me into 12 data science masterful programs, join medium with my referral link - amanda west, join by my reference link also i’ll review your own ds sop for cost-free.


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personal statement examples for graduate school data science


Data Science Personal Statement Sample and Examples

Read it in 9 Mins

What is a Data Science Personal Statement?

The importance of creating a data science personal statement, data science personal statement sample, how to write a personal statement for masters programme in data science.

Tips to Write an Effective Data Science Personal Statement

Do’s and don’ts while writing personal statement, frequently asked questions (faqs).

Data Science Personal Statement Sample and Examples

Data science is one of the most popular career options for students, especially those pursuing a Bachelor's degree. It is also one of the most sought-after courses in universities today. If you just want some ideas on how to write a personal statement for data science, then this article is for you. Also, if you’re someone who is willing to secure a career in the field of data science, then it is recommended that you pursue Data Science Courses that will enable you to learn all aspe that will enable you to learn all aspects and principles of data science. 

In a nutshell, the personal statement for data science is a document that you write to explain why you are interested in pursuing the subject and what you can bring to the table. It should be written in a way that shows your interest in the subject and why you want to study it. You may want to include information about the following in your data science personal statement.  

You can also include the following:  

Data science personal statement is a formal document that will be used by the company to evaluate your skills. If you are applying for a Data Science job and want to impress the hiring manager, then you must write a strong data science personal statement.

A good personal statement for a master's in data science must be unique, creative, informative and interesting to read. It should describe not only your skills and experience but also showcase your ability to think critically and creatively.

A well-written data science personal statement will help you stand out from other applicants and make yourself an ideal candidate for the job that you want. Here are some useful tips for writing a strong data science personal statement: 

So now you might have understood how important data analytics personal statements are. To learn how to create a personal statement, it is recommended that you enroll in the Best Data Science Bootcamps . 

I am writing this Data Science Personal Statement for the MS in Data Science program at UC Berkeley. My goal is to explain why I want to pursue a career in data science and how my experience as an undergraduate student has prepared me for graduate school. As you can see from my resume, I have had many opportunities to work with large amounts of data through internships and research projects over the course of my academic career. These experiences have given me valuable insight into how large-scale computational problems can be tackled by applying statistical methods under tight deadlines while still maintaining quality control over your results. 

In addition, I have taken classes such as AI/ML Systems Design & Implementation and Machine Learning Algorithms. These classes have helped me develop new ways of approaching problems while also providing an understanding of why certain algorithms work better than others when applied in specific situations. 

I am a Data Science Major at UC Berkeley and have been for two years. In order to graduate with a major in Data Science, you must complete four required classes, one of which is an independent study project. 

I have chosen to take this independent study project in order to gain hands-on experience with a data science problem of my choosing and to learn how to effectively apply machine learning algorithms in the real world. My goal is to create an application that can accurately predict where students need tutoring based on their past grades. This project will require me to use various classes of statistical models, such as regression, decision trees, and neural networks. 

If you are looking for the best way to write a sample personal statement for a master in data science, you should follow these steps: 

Data Science Personal Statement Example 

Following is a data science personal statement example. You can refer to this data science statement of purpose example and keep in mind the necessary points.

Data Science Personal Statement Example

Source: personal-statement-examples.com

The following tips will help you write an effective personal statement for a master in data science: 

1. Use a Template

It's best to use a template that has been created by experienced admissions officers and other professionals in the field. This means you can skip the writing process entirely since they've already done most of it for you. 

2. Keep Your Sentences Short and Simple

Your goal should be no more than one or two paragraphs per section (including your application summary), which means keeping your sentences as short as possible without compromising clarity or coherence. If there are too many adjectives or numbers used in an otherwise simple sentence, try replacing them with action verbs like "ran" instead of "ran fast." 

3. Avoid Clichés

In your data science personal statement sample, instead of saying things like "I am dynamic," try saying something more descriptive such as “I am highly dynamic” instead because this shows off how creative your mind works while also showing off how well-rounded personas are important traits needed by anyone working at companies when writing an M.Sc data science personal statement.  

Data science is a booming field with a lot of opportunities. You can work anywhere and make a good salary with this skill. If you think that it’s not for you, then it’s time to think again. The world has changed and so have our needs as individuals. Data science professionals will be needed in the future because of their role in shaping our lives as we know them today. In order to pursue a career in this broad field of data science, it is recommended that you pursue KnowledgeHut to learn its principal aspects and gain in-depth knowledge about data science. Data Science Courses to learn its principal aspects and gain in-depth knowledge about data science.


Preethiga Narasimman

Due to her interest in Search Engine Optimization, she started her career as an SEO Intern and have contributed to the healthy digital presence for multiple brands with her mastery over web and YT search algorithms. In her free time, she plays with her Persian cat, and she loves fishkeeping. She is also good at making craftworks, painting, and cooking. 

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Find out what diploma courses are available in your area and how long it takes to complete them. Once you have this information, you need to think about how much time you will have available each day. After evaluating all these things, start writing your personal statement using templates. 

During the writing of the letter of intent for the MS in Data Science course, it is important to take into account the basic questions asked by the institution, including what kind of ambitions the prospective candidate has and the inspiration behind those ambitions. If the students do not want to sound conversational in their essays, then they should keep in mind that the tone should be formal instead of informal.

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MSc Data Science personal statement

Like the vast and ever-expanding universe, the big data fields are in a perpetual expansion mode. Both fascinate me.

My education has provided me with the fundamentals to work comfortably with computers, numbers and programming languages. My work experience in the field of technology and business management has provided me with a chance to implement my learning to solve the real-world challenges. I want to probe the field of Big data, predictive analytics and AI and satisfy my curiosity while creating solutions for some of the problems faced by humanity and businesses.

My experience as a software engineer and business consultant on large, data-intensive projects in the UK has provided me with a good exposure to the real-world challenges being faced by various industries and governments. In this era of big data, firms have realised the urgent need to transition from traditional ways of doing business to new ways by effectively managing and analysing the structured or unstructured lakes of real-time or historical data.

These days, it is essential to understand and process all aspects of data and analyse it to arrive at the most optimal choice for decision making as there are endless possibilities. I find the processes of gathering, analysing and presenting data, fulfilling as these provide new insights from converting the raw data into meaningful information to help make weighted decisions. I have analysed data and have ample hands on experience in programming languages (like SQL and JSON etc.) and making graphs using Excel and Tableau.

Building mission-critical, data-driven systems that can answer demanding questions has improved and enhanced my learning and contributed to my growth as a consultant. I have observed and appreciated the radical shift from old to new ways with increasing reliance on data analysis in making business decisions. My education and experience have made me aware the various possibilities, tools and methods for data analysis.

My goal is to be a Data Scientist in an organisation after completing this degree and later to build my own enterprise focusing on mentoring new generation of data scientists working on ideas towards addressing real-world problems. I aim to help businesses make informed, data-driven decisions based on trends in key metrics by applying the most appropriate application of information analytics and statistical techniques to increase business value. I wish to join the MSc Data Science program with industry placement at Essex university. The specific course content is thorough, comprehensive, and it will fill in the gaps in my knowledge of mathematical and statistical theory.

This program resonates with my ideas and will be a perfect place to continue my education. Learning Data Science and practising it in a live scenario will make me future ready to face any challenges in my career. I look forward to sharing my transferable skills and knowledge gained in the last 10 years with my peer group and thus contribute my little share to the university.

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personal statement examples for graduate school data science

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January 4th, 2023

Data Science Masters Personal Statement Example – With Writing Guide 2023

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

You have got a good GPA to apply for a master’s in Data science.

You know that you meet all admission criteria.

But one thing is missing. Data science personal statement.

Have you found yourself in this situation?

Well, you have come to the right place for help . Because this blog is rightfully meant for you.

By reading it, you will have answers for

  • How to write a personal statement?
  • What to include and what to omit in it?
  • Data science personal statement samples

What Is Data Science Master Personal Statement? Why Is It So Important for Your Admission?

A data science personal statement is a written document to show your college admission committee that you have the qualities, skills, and strengths that they are looking for in their prospective candidates.

A well-crafted personal statement for data science comes at the forefront of your application for admission to a data science program for the following reasons.

  • It explains who you are and what your background is.
  • It proves your skills, strengths and qualities for getting admitted into the data science program
  • It shows how you are different from other applicants.
  • It shows how much you know about data science and whether you are fit for a career in it.
  • It elucidates how you plan to utilize the program for your knowledge acquisition.


When Should You Begin Writing Your Personal Statement Data Science?

  • The earlier your data science personal statement is ready, the better it is.
  • If applications are invited in December, start preparing the personal statement by October.
  • Don’t wait for the due date to submit your application. Some colleges give preference to early applicants.
  • Having the personal statement in advance gives you enough time to review and perfect or seek a second opinion and modify your writing.

What Does the Admission Committee Expect to See in an MSc Data Science Personal Statement?

When the admission panel reviews your personal statement , they will closely inspect:

  • How motivated are you to take up the data science program?
  • Questions to ask you during the face-to-face interview if you get shortlisted.
  • Whether you have a relevant background in data science
  • Whether you have gone through the course structure
  • Whether you can uphold the goodwill and reputation of the institute

Questions You Shouldn’t Forget to Answer in A Data Science Personal Statement

While writing your personal statement, make sure you answer the following questions.

  • How did you get introduced to the field of data science and what made you choose it as a career path?
  • Why do you think you can excel in a profession dealing with data science?
  • Why do you think data science is so important?
  • What have you done so far to enhance your understanding of data science?
  • Where do you see yourself ten years down the line?

What Should You Not Include in your Data Science Master Personal Statement?

Try to avoid the following information in your data science personal statement.

  • Personal information.
  • Irrelevant achievements or accomplishments
  • Your family details
  • Very old details. Include only the most recent and relevant ones.
  • Setbacks or failures if you cannot present them from a positive angle.

How Long Should Your Personal Statement Be?

Unlike a statement of purpose, a personal statement is much shorter. So, keep the below figures in mind when you write it.

No of pages:

No. of characters:, best fonts:, font style:, personal statement data science examples.

Here is a data science personal statement sample for you to review. Go through it carefully to understand how the writer has addressed the aforementioned questions.

Big data is meaningless if it isn’t used in conjunction with experts who can interpret cutting-edge technology into brilliant insights. More businesses are opening their doors to big data as they realise its potential and power as the globe develops swiftly. The basis of this new prospect, mathematics and technology, piqued my curiosity. Since middle school, I have been interested in how mathematics is used in factuality. I was so captivated by the topic’s abstract aspect that I queried my lecturers about its potential application to benefit mankind. I desired to consistently put my understanding and skills to use in real life scenarios.

I have completed my 10th and 12th from xxx School in Kerala. Since I was interested in mathematics and technology, I completed a degree in Computer Science at xxx College in Chennai. My analytical and problem-solving skills evolved as I continued my studies of operational research in college. I believed it was important for the development of model types. Along with mathematics, my involvement in computing started when I built my first C++ programme for my bachelor’s project. My interest was piqued by the backend programming that occurs while using smartphones, sites like Facebook, scanning a code at the shop, or doing online shopping. I was a strong believer in programming’s complex nature and capacity to engage audiences on a worldwide platform.

I questioned whether it was possible to merge my love of mathematics with computer science. The better outcomes that can transform the world of science and technology can be produced by the fusion of these two potent disciplines. My class teacher and I were talking about it, and she gave me a brief introduction to the field of data science. It was exactly what I was looking for because it brought together aspects of statistics, computers, and mathematics. I had my preference for a related field, and it was data science.

I wanted to develop my programming and technical skills once I made the decision to study MS Data Science at XYZ University in the UK. So, using online learning resources like Coursera and NPTEL, I enrolled in a number of courses to acquire Python programming principles, SQL fundamentals, and the Foundations of Data Science.

In addition to my academic activities, I was also paying attention to playing football. I have competed in a lot of provincial and national competitions and received awards. While in high school and college, I was also active in extracurricular and cultural pursuits. I realised from my participation in a variety of programmes that having both hard and soft skills is essential for success in both career and life. To get the desired results, one needs to possess strong organisational, time management, and leadership abilities. I believe my involvement in extracurricular activities enabled me to acquire such skills.

I am planning on joining a reputable company after I finish my master’s degree so I can learn data science first-hand and become an expert. But, in the long term, I hope to establish a business where I can use the knowledge and skills I have gained from all these different disciplines to build sophisticated models. With the aid of one of the industries with the fastest growth rates worldwide, data science, I aim to advance technology and the economy.

Example 2 – Data Science Masters Personal Statement

It used to be a strange term, but as technology developed, the word “data scientist” became more prevalent. The advancement of technology and its evolution generated a demand for specialists who could efficiently manipulate and analyse data. If used properly, this data can guide you in making the best choices possible. This was what my father, a computer science Ph.D. scholar and professor, said to me when I wanted to get admission at your prestigious university to pursue a master’s in Data Science. Thus, I came to understand that data science is a special area of technology that can assist the professional in me achieve great things down the road.

Throughout my undergraduate studies, I learned about the field of data science. When I studied about it more, I began to wonder which industries could make use of data. I am aware of the significant contribution that technology has made to the growth of businesses and the world thanks to my father. My mother, a doctor, also frequently discussed how far the medical industry had come. When I was younger, I would always combine their professions into one. After learning data science, I realised that although I cannot practise medicine, I can significantly advance the field of healthcare through the use of technology and data. In the world of data science, I find that idea fascinating.

I made my decision and then started researching the significance of data in the context of medical science. Hence, I discovered that data science helps with disease diagnosis and medication development. I decided to concentrate my graduation project on the medical industry because of data science’s significance and potential applications in this field. I created a system to aid doctors in locating cancer cells in any area of the body during the clinical assessment of cancer patients. My understanding of data science has expanded due to this endeavour. Knowing that this area of research can save lives in humans astounded me.

I joined many data science-related online courses after realising I lacked the requisite understanding in the discipline. As a result, I learned from the course about key data science stages, such as identifying business problems, analysing data, developing a model, and so forth. I joined Accenture as a data science intern for 4 months after finishing my undergraduate degree. Finding trustworthy sources of data, information gathering, analysing vast amounts of data to uncover insights, developing data analysis techniques, etc. were all under my purview. With the assistance of this internship programme, I was able to improve my abilities and gain more practical knowledge.

Your university’s master’s in Data Science programme combines a focus on applications with a range of research facets. That impressed me a lot. My ability to comprehend, observe, and apply data science concepts will be strengthened by the course’s curriculum. One of the features of your university is the mix of lectures, projects, workshops that combine theory and practise, smaller class sizes, and cutting-edge lab facilities. I can develop the technical, mathematical, and analytical skills necessary to analyse, interpret, and retain enormous amounts of data by taking advantage of the opportunities offered by your knowledgeable faculty. The course also reflects the fact that a combination of technical and management skills are required to enter and advance in the business world. When the programme is over, I am confident that I will be an expert in data science and able to accomplish my goals.

My goal is to establish myself as a data scientist with a concentration on the healthcare industry. I want to create and develop models and systems that would assist the Indian health sector work more effectively and efficiently. My development as a data scientist can be accelerated by gaining knowledge and experience in the industry. I would enjoy a vibrant career that involved assisting medical institutions in making better choices and decisions. I am eager to master the systems, practises, and techniques required for data analysis. My knowledge of advanced statistical and analytical theories are currently limited. My profession will be greatly enhanced by the aforementioned course due to the pertinent information it contains.

I have been a committed learner throughout my career and have concentrated on developing my employability skills to raise my visibility. I can achieve my professional ambitions with a spot at your esteemed university. I want people to be aware of the term “data scientist” and how it can be used to save lives. I want to show the world through my actions that going after unconventional goals is also acceptable.

How to Structure Your Personal Statement?

Your personal statement must have three parts – an introduction, the main body and a conclusion.


Write a catchy introduction. The introduction must achieve three goals:

  • It should make the reader want to read your write-up further
  • Give the reader an idea of what you have in store
  • Provide the reader with your background.

Eg: Data has started to define and control our life. When we wake up, the first thing we crave to get hold of is our mobile phone. We go through all social media notifications and emails. The underlying thing of all is data. The AI-enabled social media site stores our browsing history and gives us recommendations. Data will be the backbone of artificial intelligence, the very technology that will rule the world in the future. Reading more about data got me more interested in it. When it came to me to choose a career path, I didn’t have a second thought but to go for data science.

In the above introduction, the writer has

  • Created a curiosity in the reader through the very first two sentences.
  • Addressed the question “How did you get interested in data science?”

The main body consists of multiple paragraphs.

Each paragraph should be dedicated to describing a particular question or point.

For instance, in the first body paragraph, elaborate on your motivation to choose a career path in data science.

In the second, describe how your past academics and professional experiences prepared you towards choosing a definitive career in data science.

The main body should answer questions like:

  • How strongly do you identify with your passion to take up a career in data science?
  • How did your academics and professional experiences shape you?
  • How relevant are your skills and strengths?

The conclusion of your data science personal statement must contain the essence of all points you discussed in the essay.

Also, make sure that:

  • It is capable of convincing the admission committee to take a decision in your favour.
  • Exudes your confidence and hope in getting the admission

Five Personal Statement Mistakes to Avoid at All Costs

Writing without focus:.

Be clear about what you are writing and why you are writing it.


Avoid plagiarism. Instead, write an original copy that perfectly defines you.

All kinds of mistakes are big no. They can damage the appeal of your document.

Overused cliches won’t make your personal statement look great. Avoid them.

Passive voice:

Avoid passive voice and write in active voice instead. It will make your data science master personal statement more powerful.

Top Personal Statement Writing Tips

Here are the top five tips to help you write a powerful personal statement for data science.

Start early:

When you write your personal statement at the last minute, you will miss important points. Moreover, you will be worried about the deadline. Start early instead to avoid these drawbacks.

Read samples:

Reading a data science masters personal statement example is a great way to teach yourself what sort of points to brainstorm for during the preparation.

Work on an outline:

An outline is necessary to build your personal statement in the correct format and structure. Moreover, it will save you from getting stuck in the middle.

Proofread multiple times:

Each proofreading is a step towards perfection. When you proofread, you will notice the mistakes and be able to correct them.

Seek a second opinion:

Some of the mistakes that you overlook may be spotted by a second person who reads through your personal statement.

Top Ten Data Science Programs and Universities

Top Ten Data Science Programs

  • MS in Social Data Science
  • Data Science and Machine Learning
  • Advanced Program in Data Science
  • Data Science Specialization from Johns Hopkins University
  • Data Science with R and Python
  • Machine Learning, Data Science, and Deep Learning with Python
  • MS in Data Science
  • Data science and information technology
  • IBM Data Science Professional Certificate
  • MS in Statistics and Data Science from MIT

Top Ten Universities for Data Science

  • Harvard University
  • University of Oxford
  • University of Melbourne
  • Simon Fraser University
  • Imperial College London
  • tanford University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • University College London
  • University of Toronto
  • Tsinghua University

Top Ten Highest Paying Jobs for Data Science Graduates

Data science is a fast-evolving and dynamic career path.

It offers a wide range of opportunities under different designations or roles.

Take a look at the top ten highest-paying jobs you can look for after completing your post-graduation in data science.

  • Data Engineers
  • Machine Learning Engineer
  • Data Architect
  • Business Analyst
  • Application Architect
  • Data Analyst
  • Database Administrator
  • Data Scientist
  • Statistician
  • Data and Analytics Manager

When Should I Apply?

If you are determined to take up a master’s in data science, you can begin your application process directly after graduation .

Start working on key documents like data science personal statement even before the final year finishes.

This way, you can have plenty of time for reviewing your application.

How to Apply?

  • Finalize the college/ university you want to apply to.
  • Understand the application procedure by visiting the university/college website.
  • Duly filled application form
  • Data science master personal statement
  • Letter of recommendation
  • Any other documents that the university has specified.
  • Submit the application before the due date
  • Wait for the university’s reply with your admission confirmation.

Final thoughts…

Data science personal statement is an important document in the application for a data science master’s admission.

So, write it carefully incorporating all the insights we shared in this blog.

How helpful was this blog to you?

We would like to know your feedback.

Please write it in the comments below.

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

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Data Science Personal Statement Example

Ever since the commencement of high school studies, I was keen to know application of mathematics in factuality. Its abstract nature intrigued me to question my teachers about relevance and usefulness to mankind. I wanted to apply my learning and understanding invariably in real world circumstances.

It was until the introduction of Operations Research, while studying at college, which satiated my yearning to a certain extent. The problem solving and analytical techniques in Operations Research fostered the logic and decision making, which I believe, is one key component for developing models in real world or an approach towards mathematical modeling.

The process of creating mathematical representation of a real-world scenario to make predictions or provide insights captivated my interest. Although real world problems are often open ended and require iterative methods, but would also promote problem solving skills, creativity and innovation.

Besides Math, my interest in computing initiated right while coding the first program in C++ during bachelors. The backend scripting while using mobile phone, social media, scanning barcode at grocery or making online transactions, escalated my enthusiasm. I believed in the vigorous nature of programming and its effectiveness to engage world dynamically.

Also the symbiotic relation of computing and mathematics led me towards researching pathways blending the two disciplines, to evolve more powerful outcomes which would inherit the scientific and analytic approaches. While discussing it with a friend last year, I got introduced to the big data world and the interdisciplinary field of Data Science, combining aspects of statistics, mathematics, programming and domain expertise to address real problems. I was looking forward to traverse a similar realm and hence Data Science receives preference.

My previous studies helped to gain essential strategic and adaptive reasoning in the study of Algebra, Geometry, Statistics and Calculus. Integration of mathematics with computing widens the scopes and facilitates challenging yet interesting opportunities. This has instilled passion in me to explore computing specializations like Algorithms, Data structures and Programming fundamentals.

For the past six months I have been working diligently, enrolled in several courses to learn programming fundamentals with Python, SQL basics, Foundations of Data Science, k-Means clustering in Python and also Machine Learning concepts on self-learning platforms like Coursera, Udemy, Simplilearn and Youtube. Successful execution of programs like Conversion scales, time zones, board game and DNA processing using Python, exhilarated me and imparted encouragement. Although this helped me immensely to acquire foundational understanding of the subject. However, I needed more holistic education to gain mastery by pursuing formal studies and enrolling in university.

I started looking for reputed universities to pursue masters in Data science or related computer science streams. I figured that the role of data scientist is one of the most in-demand jobs currently in UK and US. Most likely its demand will originate in other regions of the world. My preference towards UK was obvious for couple of reasons. One year master’s program itself is an advantage from an international student perspective. Ever since inception, British universities are known for quality education and accreditation across the world. Many prominent world personalities from all walks of life, have graduated from English universities.

Joining on campus program at foreign land is much more than just universities. It is about the place, environment, people and also the facilities prevailing. As an expatriate living in Saudi Arabia, for about ten years, I have learnt this significantly. Cities like London, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds provide residence to several expatriate communities exhibiting diverse vibrant cultures.

The world has reached a stage when every conceivable organization is becoming data-driven. Like the vast and ever-expanding universe, the big data fields are in a perpetual expansion mode, both fascinate me. Data is becoming more valuable in fast-paced life and this is creating a plethora of opportunities for data-centric roles in reputed organizations. It is no exaggeration to state that Data Science is making astonishing progress in the multiple domains of technology, economy, commerce and medicine.

After completing masters, I look forward to join established organization to acquire mastery and gain hands on experience in Data Science. However, time ahead, I would like to start a company where I can design advance models with the acquired knowledge and expertise from all the domains. For instance model like – ‘Accident free zones’ by collecting information from traffic flow, speed, regulations to make informed decisions regarding public safety or a ‘model school’ to be implemented by combining the best from several curriculums, adaptable for future generations.

For the past ten years I have been in the field of education, gaining expertise in teaching mathematics, designing curriculums and mentoring learning community. Although teaching-learning is my passion, and would definitely continue it as a hobby, however I am also a kind of person who believe in constant change and progress in life. This instinct supports me to accept demanding expeditions. My future endeavors would be to take slight detour from my current profession to establish myself in another exciting province, to leverage my knowledge, skills and career.

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></center></p><h2>Personal Statement</h2><p>A complete guide for writing data science personal statement with examples.</p><ul><li>January 5, 2023</li></ul><h2>Share this article</h2><p>Writing services.</p><ul><li>Admission Essay Writing Service</li><li>Personal Statement Writing Service</li><li>LOR Writing Service</li><li>Motivation Letter Writing Service</li><li>SOP Writing Service</li><li>Proofreading Service</li><li>Letter Writing Service</li></ul><h2>Table of Contents</h2><p>Do you want to impress your university selection committee with your data science personal statement? </p><p>There is no shortcut to it but write it as perfectly and flawlessly as possible. The overall appeal of your data science master personal statement depends on a number of factors such as its format, writing tone, structure and more. </p><p>In this blog, we will help you get familiarized with all of them and write an impeccable document on your own.  </p><p>As you read on, you will come across: </p><ul><li>The definition of data science personal statement </li><li> Comprehensive guide on how to write a data science master personal statement</li><li>Data Science Personal Statement Examples PDF</li></ul><h2>What is Data Science?</h2><p>Data science is a field of study which focuses on gathering data from various complex and unstructured data sources and converting them into useful information for human understanding.</p><h2>A Brief History of Data Science</h2><p>It is believed that the term ‘data science’ was coined by the Danish computer scientist Peter Naur in the year 1974. He, in fact, suggested this name to refer to computer science. </p><p>However, William S. Cleveland developed the concept of data science as an independent field of study as we identify it today. Known as the father of Data Science, Cleveland understood the need to make statistics more inclusive, particularly of technical areas rather than theory. He realized that an independent field of data science would make that possible.</p><p><center><a href=

Why is Data Science Important in the Modern World?

  • With the help of data science, companies can analyse huge chunks of data simultaneously and draw useful conclusions from them. 
  • Data science enables companies to take data-driven and accurate decisions on critical issues. 
  • Data science has applications in almost all fields in the modern world such as banking, healthcare, marketing and finance.

What Is a Data Science Personal Statement? Why Is It Important?

Data science personal statement is a written statement by a prospective applicant who wishes to pursue data science showing his interest in the program, future plans, and motivations. 

Applicants write this document to impress the selectors so that they can secure their seats at their desired institute. 

Your data science personal statement is an important document because: 

  • It talks to the selection panel on behalf of you at a personal level before any face-to-face interview
  • It enables you to show evidence of your achievements
  • On your personal statement, you can contextualize your relevant experiences
  • With a profoundly written MSc data science personal statement, you can prove your uniqueness and suitability for the data science course
  • Your personal statement helps you show how you differ from other applicants 

How to Write a Well-Structured Personal Statement for Data Science?

Here is a useful guide for you to get started with writing your data science masters personal statement. If you have reviewed any data science masters personal statement example, the following tips will be of immense help as you put your hand into this. 

Investigate the program and its scope:

Read as much as you can about data science and its scope. In order to write a profound personal statement, you need to have profound knowledge about your chosen program and its scope. 

Analyse institute requirements and prompts:

Read the university guidelines to students for personal statement writing. Go through their prompts, if given any. Brainstorm for answers to all the questions.

Draw your outline:

Next, prepare an outline by logically and chronologically arranging all the points you have gathered from different sources. An outline is like a content skeleton which you can develop later on.  

Start writing

Don’t wait any longer once you have the points, know the requirements and are familiar with the structure. Start working on your personal statement right away. If you get stuck at any point, don’t wait there. Move on and come back once you are finished with the rest. 

Revise and correct:

After you are done with the first draft writing, the next step is improvising each sentence. Read each paragraph multiple times and check how appropriately the words are used and sentences are connected. Improve sentences which look dull.

Seek a second opinion:

We highly recommend you seek a second opinion before submitting your data science personal statement. Some of the flaws you may have overlooked as a writer might get noticed by another person when he reads it. 

Learn How to Structure Your Write-up Through Data Science Personal Statement Examples

A professionally written MSc data science personal statement will get noticed faster and impress the selection committee. In such write-ups, you will find a perfect format and structure. 

If you want to learn how to structure your personal statement data science, read on. 

We are dissecting a data science personal statement sample here to help you learn the structure. 

How to Write an Impressive Introduction in A Masters in Data Science Personal Statement?

We thrive in a digitized world, where data largely defines our lifestyles, purchasing habits, quality of entertainment, and almost every decision we make. Every morning, I wake up with my smartphone buzzing, and I find Amazon recommending me customized products. Opening Facebook, I come across advertisements that are perfectly targeted to me. Then as I set off to my office, my phone beeps to push notifications each day as I cross Pizza Hut or KFC. Geo-location-triggered alerts also work largely on data. Eventually, I have thought intensively of a career revolving around data, where I can remain within the learning loop throughout my life. Now that I have completed my B. Tech in Computer Science, I am bracing up to pursue a Master’s degree in Data Science from your revered institution.

Be extra careful about writing a meaningful and catchy introductory paragraph for your personal statement. 

The introduction should: 

  • Encourage the reader to read further
  • Give the audience a clue about what the write-up is all about 
  • Provide a sneak peek into the applicant

Second Paragraph – Elaborate on Your Motivation

Being goal oriented and organized, I have channelized my efforts into quality education all these years. Here I stand today, at the juncture of a committed academic life and a dynamic profession awaiting me. Presently, I am well-versed in the fundamentals of numbers, programming languages, and computers. Besides, I have capitalized on my internships as a part of my graduation course to draw relevant insights into data analytics. Particularly, I am drawn towards the field of Big Data and analytics. It is interesting to explore how analytics can solve real-world challenges. My inquisitive mind pushes me further to explore domains such as predictive analytics, Big Data and AI. I look forward to embracing a gratifying career, feeding my curiosity throughout my life, as I leverage operations for my organization.

The second paragraph is quite crucial in your personal statement because this is where you contextualize your interest in data science and elaborate on how it developed into your passion. 

  • Keep your focus fixed on elaborating on your interest in data science in the second paragraph
  • Keep the word count of your second paragraph between 100 and 120 words 
  • Provide relevant examples that support your interest in data science.

Third Paragraph – Tell How Your Professional Journey Shaped Your Ambitions

My experience at Cognizant as a business consultant and a software engineer over the last couple of years significantly helped me pilot my career. I capitalized on the opportunity to work on data-intensive projects in India. In the process, I got a direct exposure to handling real-world challenges that various organizations face in the digitized world. Data pours in from several sources, and forward-thinking businesses draw valuable insights on evaluating the same. At a time when data serves more value than merely being a digital entity, it’s imperative for me to acquire industry-oriented knowledge in data science and propel my career. The need of this moment for me is to master relevant skills to effectively analyze and manage structured and unstructured masses of historical or real-time data

In this paragraph, elaborate on your professional experiences and the roles you handled and explain how they influenced your goals. 

Keep the following points in mind while you develop this paragraph. 

  • List out the skills you developed during your professional tenure and explain how they eased your responsibilities 
  • At what point in your career did you realize the need to take up further education in data science? 

Fourth Paragraph – Talk About Your Existing Skills and New Skills You Want to Improve

As a part of my career, I have already gained familiarity with data analytics. Complemented with my degree in Computer Science, I believe that my previous academic knowledge further supports me as I strive to gain a professional excrescence in data science. To leverage my career, I need to gain detailed knowledge on all the aspects and processes involved in data analytics. What appeals to me the most is the process of collecting, evaluating, categorizing, presenting and incorporating data. It’s amazing to draw fresh business-oriented insights from raw data, making informed and calculated decisions. Now that I am well-versed in making graphs using Tableau and Excel and am familiar with relevant programming languages, I can streamline my career in data science.

When you write about your skills in the personal statement, it is important to support them with contextual information so that the reader knows that you are not creating stories to impress them. 

In this example, the applicant shows how his previous academics have supported him and adds that he wants to improve a specific set of skills in data science such as:  

  • Data collection
  • Data sorting 
  • Incorporating data into practical applications

Fifth Paragraph – Establish Your Long-Term Goals

Establishing myself as a successful data scientist, I would like to launch my consultancy business. A data-driven and mission-centric system holds the answer to demanding questions. Acquiring industry-oriented knowledge, I can propel my growth as a consultant. Over the last decade, I have witnessed the growing career prospects for skilled and certified data scientists. It would be a challenging, yet gratifying career for me to embrace a dynamic career, helping organizations make intelligent decisions. I look forward to mastering the necessary tools, procedures and methods for evaluating data. Presently, I lack advanced skills in statistical and mathematical theory. The mentioned course will significantly strengthen my career with relevant knowledge of these aspects.

Start this paragraph by giving a summary of your long-term goal as a data scientist. 

Develop the paragraph by carefully showing: 

  • How you wish to see yourself in the future 
  • How you hope the course to benefit your career aspiration

In addition, make sure that the paragraph does not go overly lengthy. 

Keep it within 100 to 120 words. 

How to Conclude a Data Science Master Personal Statement?

Five years from now, I would like to see myself working with one of the global companies as an established data scientist. Next, I would channel my efforts to establish my brand, capitalizing on my industry experience and international exposure. All these years, I have been a fervent learner, and focused on my transferable skills to elevate my profile. A berth in your revered university will help me realize my career goals.

Coming to the conclusion of your personal statement for data science pdf, ensure that it is straight to the point and contains the essence of your entire document. 

As you write the conclusion, bear in mind that your conclusion: 

  • Is capable of influencing the decision-making of the admission committee
  • Shows your confidence in getting the admission and how that would impact your career.

Personal Statement for Data Science Sample

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

The fact that data science is in high demand, is exclusively due to the heroic capability of digital data to soar and sink organizations if treated well. Businesses are widely utilizing raw data to make crucial decisions, and at present, one can find a handful of organizations harvesting revenues and profits due to some sheer digital data. The term ‘Data Scientist’ was once a rare word only limited to a few blog posts in online career portals. The spread of technology and the origin of the tech transformation era caused the demand for professionals skilled in manipulating data and creating meaningful decisions from them. These capable individuals started receiving huge shout outs as time progressed, and in this age, Data Science is one of the most valuable and distinguished additions to the tech world. Therefore, upgrading my background with such a qualification will take the professional in me to esteemed places.

I was introduced to the domain of data science during my undergraduate tenure and I gradually became fascinated by the domain. Although data science can be applied in different industries, what interested me the most was how it could be utilized in the healthcare sector. Through my research I learned that data science assists in diagnosing various diseases and also in drug research. I was intrigued by how IoT devices could be used for medical research and analysis. Motivated by these innovations, I decided to take up my final project related to the application of data science in hospitals. I developed a system for Medical Image Analysis that assisted doctors to identify cancer cells and tumors in any part of the body. This project helped me to dive deeper into aspects of data science like predictive analytics and sentiment analytics. I was overwhelmed in learning that this field of study had the power to save human lives.

Because analytics fits with my interests and my ability to solve challenging problems, it has inspired me to seek a career in the field. I made the decision to enroll in an online course for the “Data Science for Professionals Certification” through Coursera after realising that I lacked the necessary knowledge in the field. I gained knowledge of essential data science steps from the course, including establishing a specific business challenge, gathering and analysing data, creating a model, and understanding feedback after model deployment. My internship as a Data Science intern at Infosys further helped me to gather practical knowledge and hone my skills. In my role, I was in charge of finding reliable data sources, automating information gathering procedures, studying vast quantities of data to find insights and changes, and creating prediction systems and data analysis tools. I had the opportunity to collaborate with senior professionals and through their guidance, I have become more diligent.

I have selected the MS Data Science program offered by your institution because I was impressed by the application oriented nature and research aspects of the program. This course will help me understand, observe and apply the knowledge in data science well in advance of my professional adventures in it. The course structure strictly consists of theory and practical workshops, lectures and projects on data science from which I can gain the analytical, computing, statistical and mathematical skills to identify, analyze, process and store massive raw data. Besides these vital skills, the program is stern about making the candidates strong in management skills. Since a blend of technical and management skills is required to enter and grow in the corporate world, the program reflects the same.

Moreover, the course is provided by such a university famed for critical roles in the tech world. Therefore, graduating from this program will be the dawn of a new-age professional whose presence will uproot existing strategies with advanced and peculiar data-driven decisions. I am interested in learning more about tools like Tableau, SAS, Stata, Hadoop, and Python. Students have the option to select either data science or accounting analytics from the cohort selections. I have faith that this programme will help me develop into a well-rounded professional with the analytical and technical abilities needed to excel in the corporate world.

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

Professional Tips for Turning Your Personal Statement for Masters in Data Science into A Winning One

You have learnt how to compose and structure your personal statement for data science. But you got to write it even more perfectly because the venue is going to be highly competitive. 

The following expert tips should help you write it.

Avoid repetition:

Ensure that your personal statement doesn’t contain any repetitive information. Every point must be new and capable of giving new insight about your profile.

Emphasize why this university:

Be specific and clear about your motivation for choosing the specific university and how it will be a good choice for your growth in data science.

Balance your writing:

Engaging tone is needed to keep the reader glued to your essay while professionalism in writing is necessary to impress the reader. 

Keep errors out of the way:

There should be no room for any grammatical or spelling errors. Similarly, your essay should be accurate in the use of correct punctuation.

Write early:

Get ready with your personal statement as early as you can. By submitting your write-up earlier, you can have the benefit of early bird selection. 

Common Personal Statement Writing Mistakes to Keep Out of Your Way

As a first-time writer of a personal statement, you might not necessarily know what kind of mistakes will ruin the appeal of your essay. 

Here is a list of mistakes you must keep out of your way in order to ensure maximum acceptance for your write-up. 


Perhaps you may have already read personal statement samples. But they should only be for your reference and not for modifying to write your own story. 

Flowery writing:

Your proficiency in a language is gauged by how deftly you articulate your thoughts in simple words. So, don’t complicate your write-up using flowery language.

Some cliches like starting a personal statement using quotes are overly used these days. Write uniquely banking on your personal experience to write more impressively. 

Not being personal:

As the title indicates, a personal statement should be very personal. If the reader can’t feel a sense of personal touch in your writing, chances are that it would fail to make an impact.


Don’t sound too negative in your writing even if you have a desperate and disappointing past. Instead, try to sound positive and enthusiastic. 

Most Popular Data Science Programs and Universities

Most chosen career paths after masters in data science.

  • Data Analyst
  • Big Data Engineer
  • Data Architect
  • Data Scientist
  • Business Intelligence Analyst
  • Database Administrator 
  • Machine Learning Engineer

Writing a perfect data science personal statement is a necessity rather than a choice. 

If you want to settle for a prosperous career in data science, you need an impeccable personal statement. 

We hope to have clarified all of your doubts. 

Are you still left with any questions regarding this topic? 

If yes, we are eager to know them. Feel free to write all your suggestions, feedback and questions in the comment section below.   


I am Anjit.V.S, a freelance writer, overseas education consultant and an academic documentation expert. Over the years, I have written documents for thousands of students and hundreds of businesses and individuals worldwide. Many of the prominent study abroad counsellors in India refer me to their students for SOP, LOR, admission essays. personal statements and other similar documents. Not just the academic documents but whatever content needs you have, stay assured. Perfectly impeccable services are delivered.

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Writing Personal Statements for Graduate School

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Personal Statements

Preparing a well-written and effective personal statement (sometimes referred to as statements of purpose or personal essays) that clearly articulates your preparation, goals, and motivation for pursuing that specific graduate degree is critically important. You will need to spend a considerable amount of time and effort in crafting these statements. The focus, structure, and length of personal statements vary from program to program. Some will have prompts or questions you need to answer, while others will leave the topic open-ended. The length varies widely as well. Read instructions carefully and make sure to adhere to all parameters laid out in the application guidelines.

Clear writing is the result of clear thinking. The first and most important task is to decide on a message. Consider carefully which two or three points you wish to impress upon the reader, remembering that your audience is composed of academics who are experts in their fields. Your statement should show that you are able to think logically and express your thoughts in a clear and concise manner. Remember that the reader already has a record of your activities and your transcript; avoid simply restating your resume and transcript. Writing your statement will take time; start early and give yourself more than enough time for revisions. If no prompts are given, you can use the questions below to begin brainstorming content to include in your statement; for more information, see our Writing Personal Statement presentation Prezi  and our three-minute video on Writing Personal Statements .

  • What experiences and academic preparation do you have that are relevant to the degree you’re seeking?
  • Why are you choosing to pursue a graduate degree at this time?
  • Why do you want to pursue this particular degree and how will this degree and the specific program fit into your career plans and your long-term goals?
  • What specific topics are you aiming to explore and what does the current literature say about those topics?

After you’ve written a first draft, start the work of editing, refining, simplifying, and polishing. Provide specific examples that will help illustrate your points and convey your interests, intentions, and motivations. Is any section, sentence, or word superfluous, ambiguous, apologetic, or awkward? Are your verbs strong and active? Have you removed most of the qualifiers? Are you sure that each activity or interest you mention supports one of your main ideas? Spelling and grammatical errors are inexcusable. Don’t rely on spell-check to catch all errors; read your statement aloud and have it reviewed by multiple people whose opinion you trust. If possible, have your statement reviewed by a writing tutor. For individual assistance with writing your personal statement, consult with the writing tutor in your residential college  or the Writing Center within the Yale Center for Teaching and Learning .

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personal statement examples for graduate school data science

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Home / Data Science Programs / Best Master’s in Data Science Programs / Statement of Purpose

How to Write a Statement of Purpose for Master’s in Data Science

Many colleges and universities require a statement of purpose for master’s in data science student applications. The statement of purpose can play an important role in your application, as it allows admissions staff to learn about your goals, experience and education outside of scores and grades. This guide will cover what a statement of purpose is, what needs to be included in it, frequently asked questions and tips to help craft your own.

What Is a Statement of Purpose for Master’s in Data Science?

A statement of purpose is a short essay written by master’s of data science applicants discussing their work and educational history, goals for the program and future career interests. A statement of purpose for master’s in data science programs may also detail any deficiencies in an application such as an employment gap, low GRE or GMAT test scores or grades and information about independent study in lieu of other relevant coursework. The statement of purpose provides a space to highlight your specific life experiences and goals in your own words.

What Is the Admissions Committee Looking for in Your Application?

Admissions committees typically look for the following information:

  • Who is applying?  What about the student’s academic or personal background, work experience or extracurricular activities stands out? Does the applicant show a history of demonstrated interest in data science? What will they be able to add to a graduate program environment?
  • Does the applicant have analytical skills or experience?  Data science requires a person to deeply analyze large and complex data sets. While some core capacities, like mathematics, may be taught, a statement of purpose provides a space to demonstrate analytical skills or relevant experience.

Statement of Purpose Format Requirements

While every school has different requirements, the general format for a data science master’s statement of purpose may include:

  • Length: 1-2 pages; school will specify length.
  • Word Count: 250-500 words; some schools allow up to 1,000 words.
  • Spacing: Double or single spaced
  • Font: Times New Roman in 12-point font
  • Margins: No less than 1 inch
  • Format: Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx) or PDF format

Refer to the college or university’s requirements before submitting, particularly if you are sending out multiple statements of purpose to different schools.

Statement of Purpose vs. Personal Statement

Master’s in data science programs may ask for a statement of purpose or a personal statement—some may ask for both. While these might seem like the same thing, there are a few distinctions.

A statement of purpose typically is focused on academic and analytical information. A school requesting a statement of purpose may request information about reasons for applying for graduate study as well as relevant professional interests and goals. A personal statement might be a broader essay asking about life experiences and interests—though still as they relate to the program.

It’s important to read admissions requirements carefully to determine what information each school wants from either a statement of purpose or a personal statement.

10 Tips for Statement of Purpose for Data Science Programs

A statement of purpose may be daunting for master’s in data science applicants, but there are some steps you can take to make sure you’re delivering a good effort. The tips below can help guide you while writing your statements of purpose for data science programs.

Read Examples of Statements of Purpose for Data Science

Read samples of statements of purpose. If you have access to successful applicants’ essays, read them. If not, read a wide variety of statements of purpose and notice what does and does not work. Be sure not to plagiarize as it could be grounds to deny your application.

Brainstorm Topics and Decide on a Structure

As mentioned above, a statement of purpose should highlight who you are and how you work analytically. Take time to brainstorm relevant topics that showcase experience as well as signs of interest in the data science field. After you have your bullet points set, focus on a structure that best highlights you as an applicant. Make an outline before you start writing.

Pick One or Two Narrow Topics and Stay Focused

A statement of purpose should be clear and to the point. It’s not a recap of your entire life or resume. Avoid covering too much information in your statement of purpose. Stay focused on one or two key topics and provide plenty of supporting information to showcase your analytical skills as it relates to those points.

Make Your First Paragraph Interesting

Admissions committees read hundreds of applications. A focused and interesting introductory paragraph can grab the attention of the reader and keep them from putting your statement down. A personal anecdote, a thought-provoking question or an emotionally compelling story at the beginning of your statement of purpose can all grab a reader’s attention.

Highlight Information That Sets You Apart

Write about any activity that highlights your strengths as a data scientist. If you have relevant experience on a resume or affiliations with a professional organization, make sure you highlight that. A statement of purpose, in part, is about what makes you qualified to  become a data scientist .

Keep the Focus on YOU

A statement of purpose is about how your experience, culture and background has helped prepare you for a career in data science. This is not the time to write at length about your professor’s career or general concepts of data science. A statement of purpose often requires a limited amount of space. Make sure you are using it effectively to highlight your own strengths.

Be Yourself and Don’t Fake Experience

Take the truthful approach and recall your experiences and accomplishments with complete honesty and authenticity. While it may be tempting to inflate your experience or accomplishments in data science or analysis, misrepresenting data—or outright lying—will hurt more than it will help.

Keep Language Concise and Tone Positive

Data science is used to draw information from raw data sets and as such, those working in data science may need to be able to explain their findings. A statement of purpose is the first place you can showcase an ability to effectively communicate. Avoid rambling, vague or repetitive language and keep the tone positive and outcome-focused.

Double Check Schools’ Instructions

Read and re-read the school’s instructions for submitting a statement of purpose. Data science requires attention to detail. You don’t want to disqualify yourself by not following basic instructions. Make sure you meet all the stated requirements, and don’t make mistakes like exceeding word count or incorrectly formatting a document.

Proofread, Proofread and Proofread

Check your essay for any grammatical errors. While data scientists often deal with numbers more than writing, it’s still important to proofread because it will show the admissions committee you pay attention to details.

FAQs About Data Science Statements of Purpose

Before beginning your master’s in data science application, get answers to any final questions about statements of purpose. If you’re still unsure about the process, consider asking your admissions counselor.

Take the statement of purpose seriously. Often, it is the only part of your application where the admissions committee gets to hear directly from you. A well-crafted statement of purpose can help provide context around low test scores or grades as well as highlight how your experience has helped prepare you for the program.

Whether applying to a campus-based or  online master’s in data science , it’s better to start working on your statement of purpose earlier to ensure you have sufficient time to think and prepare. Since some master’s in data science programs may have rolling application and start dates, it’s best to double check admissions deadlines and make sure you have plenty of time to write and edit your statement of purpose.

Schools may have different requirements for statement of purpose submissions. Check directly with your school of interest. In general, keep statements of purpose concise—word counts may range from 250 to 1,000 words—and focused on academic and professional achievements that may help you succeed in a data science program.

Different schools have different word count requirements. Some schools will specify the length, but others do not. In general, a statement of purpose is between 300 and 500 words. Some schools allow up to 1,000 words. If word count isn’t explicitly stated, try to be concise. These are short essays. Writing a statement of purpose is one of the first steps toward studying and working in data science. If you want to better prepare for your application, it’s best to start searching for programs early to understand their requirements. Students can either look at  data science programs by state  or consider  data science scholarships available  for students.

Last updated: March 2022

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Free Personal Statement On Ms In Analytics (Big Data, Data Analysis)

Type of paper: Personal Statement

Topic: Big Data , Path , Mining , Analytics , My Career

Words: 1100

Published: 02/02/2020


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With digital technology developing in leaps and bounds, modern day research has become increasingly data intensive. Constant innovation has become the need of the hour if one is to keep pace with day to day technological advanced. The field of analytics is no exception to this demand. In fact, with data and technology becoming inseparable, the role on analysts is continuously evolving. I consider attending the Master of Science in Analytics program at McCormick Nothwestern Engineering as the next phase in my evolution.

“Problems were not the actual ‘problem’, it is thinking of problems as problematic that is the problem” someone once told me. I had found the statement to be funny, honest and thoughtful all at the same time. I had discovered very early in my life that I naturally took a very logically and analytical approach towards problem solving. Whenever I was faced with an issue, whether it was at a personal level or in academics, I always sought to first evaluate the situation, seeking out the causes of my predicaments and then taking a good look around to find a way out. Once I knew the way out, all I needed to do was connect the dots that would lead me out. Over time, I developed a taste for solving problems through analysis. I proved to be exceptionally good in the field of mathematics, being able to find solutions to questions that others found perplexing. Personally, I loved the challenge of finding the answer to a tough question. It gave me a sense of achievement. Another aspect of mathematics that I found to be very interesting is that, while every problem presented a unique challenge, it could be solved using a common set of knowledge and analytical approach. It was in pursuit of my love for mathematics that I completed my Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Statistics from the University of Missouri Kansas City in the year 2004. I attained a high GPA of 3.9/4.0 in my major, with an overall GPA of 3.5/4.0. I saw my high GPA as further proof of my mathematical and statistical problem solving abilities.

As the time to choose a career path drew near, the field of analytics seemed to be the obvious choice for me. I like to call it ‘natural selection’. While I knew that the field of analytics would be ideal for me, I did not fully anticipate just how thrillingly versatile the role of an analyst could be. It came as a present surprise to me when, over the course of my education and work experience, I realized that I could fit into any industry and use my skills to drive growth and efficiencies in business. Just the thought of the plethora of unique challenges that each industry and business could pose is tremendously exciting to me. Every company, with its many departments, each department having a variety of functions, presents an analyst with a multitude of opportunities to drive efficiencies. The ability to bring about positive change from the process level to corporate strategizing is another aspect of analytics that I found to be extremely attractive. Beginning my career as a Senior Account Receivable Analyst to being the primary Energy Analyst to the Vice President of HIS Purvin & Gertz, the 9 years that I have worked as an analyist have been extremely fruitful and proved to be a continuous journey of learning, growth and development. However, as the realm of business grows and technological advances bring changes to the field of analytics, it is crucial for analysts to ‘upgrade’ themselves too. I personally do not believe in stagnation at any level and would like to keep myself in a perpetual state of learning and knowledge acquisition. I believe that attaining a Masters Degree with a focus on Analytics will allow me to further hone my skills and will prove to be a major boon to my professional growth. What primarily drew me to McCormick Northwestern’s M.Sc. in Analytics programs is the fact that the program takes a holistic approach towards student education and development. The three core areas of data analysis - predictive (forecasting), descriptive (business intelligence and data mining), and prescriptive (optimization and simulation) – are covered under the program. This will give me a well rounded, in-depth academic understanding focused on analytics. While I have a B.Sc. Degree in Mathematics and Statistics, my analytics specific knowledge has mainly been derived from experience. I believe, in order to acquire sharp comprehension, sound knowledge, and effective skills, academic qualification is a crucial factor. I would like to develop this aspect of my professional profile through this course. Further, the program has a focus on training students in a host of industry tools, wherein students get training directly from vendors. I am looking forward to updating my technological competency as this is crucial for effectively mining and reporting data. Finally, I am looking forward to learning from the one of the best analytics faculty in the nation as well as industry experts and instructors from other prominent schools such as the Kellogg School of Management. I believe this will allow me to develop a fresh, comprehensive perspective towards the integration of the realms of business, technology and analytics. With the massive growth in databases, I believe Big Data Analytics and Management will be the major influence in the field of business and analytics. Data volumes that analysts today have to deal with are nearly incomprehensible. Data is derived from a host of sources that may be disparate and managing to draw sensible analytical data will be the challenge over the next five years. In order to ‘tame the beast’, there have already been several key developments. The Discovery Platform has become commonly used to provide analysts with a stable workstation from where they can explore data and perform experiments within a fraction of the time taken using traditional methods. Big Data applications will also see a major boom as businesses seek to harness mobile and web technologies to tap into big data insights. I believe that this will be the sphere in which businesses will be able to attain a competitive edge through early adaptation. That is exactly what I intend to do through the M.Sc. in Analytics program at McCormick Northwestern University – adapt early. I believe this program will prepare me for the technological changes expected in the near future and the impact that they will have on the field of analytics. By taking this step towards the next stage in my career path, I will be able to work towards higher competencies in assisting senior management to make effective business decisions and strategies and preparing them to adopt the new world of analytics.

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personal statement examples for graduate school data science

The Data Science Statement of Purpose: A Guide with Examples

Data Science Statement of Purpose Guide and Examples

Ready to start writing your Data Science statement of purpose? Well, it’s your lucky day. This article isn’t just a “how to” guide — it’s an object lesson in so many of the common anxieties grad applicants face every year:

  • How do I write about overcoming obstacles (health, low grades, family death) as an undergraduate?
  • How do I describe my career path (I’ve been away from school for awhile)?
  • Should I mention MOOCs in my SOP?
  • Can I get admitted with no research experience?
  • Can I get admitted if I wasn’t a Data Science or CS major in undergrad?

The sample essay you’re about to read and model is a perfect answer to these questions. Why? Because the applicant, despite his circuitous background and previous academic struggles, earned admission to 6 of the best MSDS programs in the US .

To protect the author’s privacy, we won’t name the schools. But rest assured, it’s a “Who’s Who” list of sterling, fancy-pants universities that you’re definitely also considering. Thus, this isn’t just a brilliant data science statement of purpose — it’s a brilliant SOP in general. The author employed this framework successfully for both DS and CS programs, and honestly, ANY applicant in ANY field can use this essay as inspiration…

…and hopefully achieve the same wild success as my fascinating friend, Bennett.

The Student

As an applicant, Bennett ticked a lot of boxes:

  • First-gen college student and child of immigrants;
  • Undergrad Cognitive Science major at elite state university;
  • Modest, less-than-perfect GPA;
  • Multiple DS certifications with supplemental CS coursework (essentially self-taught);
  • Online Executive MBA graduate;
  • 4 years of post-undergrad work experience;
  • Extensive work experience during undergrad;
  • ZERO research experience

Some aspects of Bennett’s profile were fascinating. (He was an NSA analyst in undergrad!) Other parts were fairly normal. (No research, average GPA.)

What then made Bennett and his SOP so special? What made top MSDS programs excited to admit him?

The Structure of a Successful Data Science SOP

It goes without saying that Bennett used the SOP Starter Kit to outline his essay. That means he structured the paragraphs as follows:

  • Introduction Frame Narrative – 1 paragraph (12% of word count)
  • Why This Program – 2 paragraphs (23% of word count)
  • Why I’m Qualified – 4 paragraphs (58% of word count…extremely long, but more on this later)
  • Concluding Frame Narrative – 1 paragraph (7% of word count)

Before we read the actual essay, let’s examine these sections and see how you can mirror Bennett’s example in your own SOP.

1. Introduction Frame Narrative

In the intro, Bennett describes his work as a software engineer. He gets specific. He tells us exactly what he does, and the company he does it for. Most importantly, he describes a moment when he discovered a new intellectual purpose at work:

“Thus, for the first time, I was able to personalize parameters in the pipeline for unaccounted customers. Learning the importance of context for efficient yet equitable automation, I found myself incredibly curious about data-modeling methodologies that can truly represent real-world situations .”

You should do the same as Bennett. Your intro should have some color, some life. It should allow us to see a real human being in there. But it MUST also introduce the sub-niche intellectual problems you hope to tackle in grad school. Chances are, these problems and this sub-niche will define your professional career afterward. They’re the hinge of your whole candidacy.

Common Question #1: “What if I don’t know which sub-niche I want to specialize in?”

Find one. (The SOP Starter Kit has an exercise that will help you figure this out.) Otherwise, you won’t be as competitive as you could be.

Common Question #2: “What if I don’t have an interesting moment (or moments) to write about?”

Stop lying to yourself. No matter where you are, no matter what you’ve done, there was a moment when you decided you needed a graduate degree. There is absolutely a subfield of data science that’s most interesting to you. There are undoubtedly specific applications, in specific industries, you want to work on in the future. How did you discover them?

Bennett wants to study representation of data minorities in ML models for the healthcare industry. That’s the work he wants to do in the future. What kind of work do you want to do in the future? When did you realize this?

That’s the story you tell in your Introduction.

2. Why This Program

Either at the end of your introduction, or in the beginning of this new section, you’re going to include a Sentence of Purpose . It’s a thesis statement for your essay. Bennett’s looks like this:

“Through Gotham University’s Master’s program in Data Science, I hope to further explore how to enhance representation of data minorities in ML models, and thus ensure inclusive healthcare access for the customers I serve.”

The “Why This Program” section of your SOP provides all the evidence for how you’ll pursue this goal in grad school. It should take about 2 paragraphs. Which classes will you take? Which professors do you hope to work with? What will you study in your capstone project?

Let’s make this easy. Just complete the exercise in this article: How to Dominate Your SOP’s Why This Program Section . Trust me, it’s that easy! Then, you’re halfway done with your essay.

3. Why I’m Qualified

This section of your SOP is the easiest to write. It’s your “greatest hits” list – all the proof that you’re a smart student. Everything you write here should support the argument that you’re going to succeed in grad school: your GPA, advanced classes you’ve taken, research experience, etc. It doesn’t have to be long, and shouldn’t include every menial detail of every project you’ve ever done. (That’s what the CV is for .)

Yet, if it shouldn’t be long…why did Bennett write 4 paragraphs?!

Typically, I’d yell and scream at an applicant who spends half the SOP talking about his past credentials. That’s what most applicants do, and why most get rejected .

But Bennett had a unique situation.

His career was wild and fascinating. He’d never formally studied Data Science. He’d even done an MBA. But he had taken lots of MOOCS and online certification courses (seriously, like 10+), he did have amazing experience as a software engineer, and he also had one bad undergrad semester he felt he needed to explain. Thus, he’s a very atypical applicant, and his background required a lot of explaining.

Unless you too have an MBA, 10+ MOOCs, and a completely unrelated major, then I suggest you keep your “Why I’m Qualified” section much shorter – 2 paragraphs is enough.

4. Concluding Frame Narrative

If you have the previous sections in order, this final paragraph should write itself. Make sure to reemphasize the topical problem (your hopeful subfield) from the Intro Frame Narrative. Consider including a career goals statement . But in the end, this section should be easy to write.

That’s it. Four sections, tightly interwoven, all supporting the argument that you are going to be an A+ data science grad student. Now, let’s see how Bennett brought it altogether, so you can attempt to do the same.

A Brilliant Data Science Statement of Purpose

As a software engineer with WayneHealth Group, I maintain data pipelines and batch processing in the modernization team. In 2020, following a health check on existing infrastructure, I discovered that pipelines were delivering data too slowly to clients. After comparing our runtimes to industry standards, I pitched a project using open-source Apache Airflow to help automate pipelines and centralize patient data into a single workflow. However, when considering how to automate 35% of the data, I learned from the billing team how frequently bills are refinanced in our long-term elderly care programs. Thus, for the first time, I was able to personalize parameters in the pipeline for unaccounted customers. Learning the importance of context for efficient yet equitable automation, I found myself incredibly curious about data-modeling methodologies that can truly represent real-world situations.

Through Gotham University’s Master’s program in Data Science, I hope to further explore how to enhance representation of data minorities in ML models, and thus ensure inclusive healthcare access for the customers I serve. Earning my MBA at Metropolis University taught me how to coordinate the need for quantitative reasoning and human intuition through A/B testing, and I believe the MSDS program will build on that foundation. Mathematical Foundations in Computer Science , for example, will help me build real-time analytics dashboards that account for insurance claim data-entry errors through discrete probabilistic models. In the same vein, elective offerings such as Big Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence will enable me to choose predictive models and evaluate their accuracy when applied to large data sets — particularly useful when predicting whether an insurance claim will necessitate revisions.

Resources like the IGNITE competition will also offer opportunities to collaborate on flexible models that solve real-world situations. Having worked on Apache Airflow implementation in WayneHealth, I understand how collaboration can play a key role in implementing a new idea. Having my IGNITE team’s project evaluated by MSDS professors, with their expertise in modular design and user experience, will only help me evaluate my own performance as I translate my education into functional healthcare applications. Thus, I am certain that Gotham’s MSDS program will prepare me to succeed in a team setting that balances many developer roles, while equipping me to better deliver sales pitches to investors.

Upon graduating, I endeavor to apply my education toward applied healthcare projects that focus on providing easy access to preventative care. Transparency is an integral part of healthcare access because it reduces the expenses and time necessary to find patient care. To help facilitate this transparency, I plan to transition into a Senior Data Scientist role in the Emerging Technologies Collaborative (ETC) at WayneHealth, hopefully working on projects that implement data-driven recommendations for our automated batch processes and servers. When storing vast amounts of patient data across different platforms, vulnerability patches and triage alerts often lead to reactive outcomes that can create downtime for end users. As a result, I seek to implement agentless server monitoring to, first, predict unscheduled outages for our billing and medical coverage systems, and second, recognize patterns in server behavior. Helping recognize outage patterns will not only help me identify problems beforehand, but also decipher the causes of live servers crashing. However, projects outside of WayneHealth excite me as well, including Amgen’s Crystal Bone algorithm which uses AI and machine-learning models to detect bones at risk for osteoporotic fractures. This project was the first tool I have ever seen that uses diagnostic codes sourced from WayneHealth electronic health records, and it inspired me to create my own model using EHR data. In the future, I hope to use EHR diagnostic codes to predict the cost of treatment for those prone to risk, as indicated by the algorithm.

Not only has my position as a software engineer equipped me with strong technical skills, but it has also given me the discipline to continuously learn what I do not yet know. On a project named Karra, an optical-character recognition engine which scans personal information from faxed hospital claim forms, I learned how to develop my own algorithms to calculate the coordinates of form fields to parse data. The technical skills I have gained, in tandem with the unwavering tenacity I developed in this position, will allow me to face any challenge that arises during the MSDS program.

To further prepare for the rigors of the MSDS program, I completed University of Pennsylvania Engineering MOOCs on Coursera, including the Introduction to Python and Java specialization taught by Brandon Krakowsky and the course Computational Thinking for Problem Solving by Susan Davidson. These MOOCs helped me comprehend important programming paradigms such as unit testing and debugging, which will help me test edge cases in MSDS course projects. Also, MOOCs from UC San Diego, such as Python for Data Science and Probability and Statistics in Data Science Using Python , enabled me to optimize data-cleansing techniques for better runtimes. The MCDS program’s Big Data Analytics course will culminate this self-learning effort, providing a solid theoretical understanding of the tools and techniques used to extract insights from large datasets.

While I have taken on a breadth of challenging problems in computer science and implemented solutions at WayneHealth, my prior undergraduate performance did not always reflect my best ability. Between Spring 2016 and Spring 2017, I experienced a personal health challenge that required substantial time away from the UC Coast City campus. I was further distracted by the realities of personally financing my education – working full-time for the National Security Agency (NSA) – while also suffering the loss of a close family member. Even as I struggled I knew the importance of higher education, and, advocating for my own success, I persisted. To strengthen my educational background, I enrolled in online courses and built coping mechanisms, such as managing my time between online courses and on-campus courses efficiently. In the end, these efforts helped me graduate early in the fall of 2018, and I plan to apply the same level of resilience throughout the rest of my academic and professional career.

As I grow increasingly aware of the intersection between ML and social computing, I am determined to study learning techniques such as principal component analysis, and to perform research in data organization/completeness. With my strong self-guided background in applied computer science, and my professional experience with ML and software development in the healthcare insurance industry, the practical knowledge I build at Gotham will help me make voices heard in the data we interact with in our daily lives.

What Makes This SOP Truly Special?

Some might argue that Bennett’s essay doesn’t fit the template described in the SOP Starter Kit. I disagree. The virtuosity of Bennett’s writing shows that the model is adaptable to all kinds of intellectual demands.

(In fact, he’s pointed out himself that the framework helped beautifully with his Computer Science SOPs, which should give confidence to anyone who may be still deciding between DS and CS.)

Personally, I love how Bennett began his Why I’m Qualified section with an expanded Career Goals Statement. It shows us, in painstaking detail, exactly what he’s going to achieve if the school admits him:

“Upon graduating, I endeavor to apply my education toward applied healthcare projects that focus on providing easy access to preventative care.”

There are real data problems in the healthcare insurance industry. Bennett is all-too-familiar with them. Few if any other applicants will ever be able to solve these problems the way he will. We know this because he tells us exactly what he’s going to do in his career afterward :

  • Pursue a Senior Data Scientist role in his company;
  • Automate batch processes and servers to predict unscheduled outages medical coverage systems;
  • And use EHR diagnostic codes to predict treatment costs for high-risk patients.

In this way, Bennett’s expansive, thoughtful SOP makes certain that he isn’t just a boring applicant looking to acquire base knowledge in data science. He already has it! He got it for free from Coursera!

Instead, it shows that he’s deadly focused on his unique sub-niche — solving real data problems in the healthcare insurance industry — and will do everything it takes to succeed. Thus, when Bennett discusses the many obstacles he overcame in the past, we don’t worry about them. We have tremendous confidence in Bennett because he’s already succeeded. He’s already acquired great expertise. And he knows exactly what he needs to do to make an impact in the future.

Though the middle paragraphs are somewhat long, they never feel boring or clunky. They feel intelligent and interesting. Finally, when we get to the last paragraph, we can’t help feeling certain of one thing: “Wow, this guy is unstoppable.”

As you start planning your own data science statement of purpose, there’s one aspect of Bennett’s essay you should mimic. It’s not the MOOCs , his atypical background, or the obstacles he overcame. It’s this:

Bennett mapped out the intellectual problems he wants to study in grad school, and how he will address them pragmatically in his career afterward. It’s not a complex argument:

  • In the last few years, I’ve grown fascinated with Problem X in Industry Z;
  • At Gotham University, I plan to study Problem X in these specific ways;
  • After graduating, I will be able to solve Problem X for companies in Industry Z;
  • I know I’m capable of this because of my skills and record of success;
  • Admission to Gotham is my immediate and necessary next step, so I hope we can begin solving these problems together.

I offer endless gratitude to Bennett for allowing me to share his story, his brilliant essay, and his resounding success. Data Science, Analytics, and Applied Statistics have become insanely competitive. But if you take the time to follow his example, you too can become a champion in the field, and start your journey toward solving unique problems that the world desperately needs you to solve.

Still need help structuring your own data science statement of purpose? The SOP Starter Kit will help, or, I’d love to hear from you !

Which data science problems do you plan to solve in grad school and beyond?

Need advice on other application essays? Check out our free guides!

  • Structure is Magic: A Guide to the Graduate SOP
  • Statement of Purpose for PhD Admission: A Universal Formula
  • Diversity Statements 101: A Guide to All Personal Essays

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personal statement examples for graduate school data science

© 2022 WriteIvy

BrightLink Prep

100+ Grad School Personal Statement Examples

personal statement examples for graduate school data science

by Talha Omer, MBA, M.Eng., Harvard & Cornell Grad

In personal statement, get a free personal statement course, you have successfully subscribed.

In this Article

Importance of a Strong Personal Statement

Purpose of this blog post, length and format, tone and style, general tips for success, computer science and engineering, economics and finance, management and business, healthcare and medicine, environment and sustainability, public affairs, international relations and politics, architecture, arts and film, mathematics and statistics, religion and philosophy, phd personal statement examples, scholarship & fellowship personal statements, word count-specific personal statements, prompt-specific grad school personal statements examples, academic achievements and experiences, research experiences, work and internship experiences, volunteer and community service, personal growth and overcoming challenges, future goals and career aspirations, research the program and faculty, emphasize alignment with program objectives, highlight unique program offerings, overused phrases and clichés , excessive self-praise, lack of focus or organization, consulting mentors, and advisors, incorporating feedback and refine, introduction.

A personal statement is essential in the graduate school application process, as it plays a significant role in shaping the admissions committee’s perception of you. In fact, a survey conducted by the Council of Graduate Schools revealed that 64% of graduate admissions officers consider the personal statement to be the most crucial factor in the admissions process. Furthermore, according to a study by Kaplan Test Prep, a well-crafted personal statement can boost an applicant’s chances of acceptance by up to 50%.

The personal statement’s importance stems from its ability to create a lasting impression on the admissions committee. 

Consider this: the admissions committee (adcom) does not know you personally. They have never met or spoken to you, nor have they ever interviewed you. They only know you through quantifiable aspects such as your GPA, test scores, and work experience. However, they lack insight into your thought processes, aspirations, background, and personal experiences. In essence, they need to connect with you on a personal level. The personal statement serves as a bridge, enabling the adcom, who are human beings themselves, to gain insight into your personality, motivations, and aspirations beyond your grades and test scores.

Time and again, adcoms at top universities emphasize the critical role of personal statements in their decision-making process. Drafting a personal statement is your opportunity to market yourself, showcasing your unique qualities and demonstrating your genuine interest in their program. By investing time and effort into creating a powerful personal statement, you can significantly enhance your chances of securing a place in your desired graduate program.

In this blog post, I will be sharing over 100 authentic graduate school personal statement examples from successful applicants across the globe who have secured admission to prestigious programs in the United States and across the world.

These samples encompass a wide range of fields, including MBA, Law, Medicine, Engineering, and Social Work, and originate from esteemed institutions such as Harvard, Stanford, and MIT. You will find examples of personal statements for various degrees, including MSc, MA, LLM, Residency, MBA, and PhD programs. You will also find examples of statements written by applicants who obtained fellowships, and scholarships. By sharing these diverse examples, I aim to achieve the following goals:

  • Inspiration and guidance: I want to provide you guys with a wide range of personal statement examples to serve as inspiration and offer guidance for making your own statements.
  • Addressing common topics: These samples will cover all the common personal statement elements, helping you understand how to effectively discuss your academic achievements, research experiences, work history, volunteer work, personal growth, and future goals.
  • Tips for success: The post will also provide helpful tips on tailoring personal statements to specific graduate programs, avoiding common pitfalls, and seeking feedback to improve the final draft.
  • Empowerment: Ultimately, the goal of sharing these for free is to empower you guys to create compelling and unique personal statements that will increase your chances of being accepted into your dream graduate program.

By providing this comprehensive resource, I hope to demystify the personal statement writing process and equip you with the tools and inspiration necessary to craft a captivating narrative that reflects your unique journey and aspirations. 

Personal Statement Basics

When writing your personal statement, it’s crucial to pay attention to three key areas: length and format, tone and style, and general tips for success.

It’s important to create a well-structured personal statement that adheres to the specified word count and follows proper formatting guidelines. Some programs, particularly MBA programs, might not request a single personal statement. Instead, they may pose several questions and require you to write a brief essay for each one. Such programs typically break down a personal statement into multiple short questions, expecting essay responses tailored to each query. 

As a result, it’s crucial to carefully read the guidelines before you start writing, as students often mistakenly create a single personal statement and try to tweak it for various programs without realizing that different requirements exist. By doing so, they lose time and waste considerable effort and energy. 

Adhering to instructions and responding appropriately will leave a positive impression on the admissions committee. To accomplish this, consider these key aspects:

  • Word count: Most graduate programs provide guidelines on the desired length of personal statements, typically ranging from 500 to 2,000 words.Adhere to these limits to show that you can follow instructions and communicate concisely.
  • Formatting: Use a clear and easy-to-read font (e.g., Times New Roman or Arial) at a standard size (e.g., 11 or 12 points) with 1-inch margins. Ensure your document is well-organized with paragraphs and headings where appropriate.
  • Structure: Start with a strong opening paragraph that hooks the reader, followed by body paragraphs addressing the key topics, and conclude with a memorable closing paragraph that reinforces your main points. This structure will ensure a cohesive and engaging narrative that effectively communicates your experiences and aspirations to the admissions committee.

In terms of tone and style, your personal statement should strike a balance between professionalism and authenticity to effectively convey your unique experiences and perspective. To accomplish this, consider the following aspects:

  • Professional and confident: Adopt a professional tone in your writing, using clear, concise language. Be confident in presenting your accomplishments without being overly boastful.
  • Authentic and personal: Avoid overly formal or academic language that may make your writing feel impersonal. Showcasing your authentic self will help the admissions committee connect with you on a personal level.
  • Engaging storytelling: Use storytelling techniques to make your personal statement more engaging and memorable. This can include anecdotes, vivid descriptions, and a strong narrative structure. Starting with a quote that is relevant to your story is also a good way to begin your personal statement.

Lastly, adhering to tried and tested tips can greatly improve your personal statement, ensuring you present a polished and compelling narrative that effectively showcases your strengths and aspirations to the admissions committee. Some general advice is as follows::

  • Start early: Give yourself ample time to brainstorm, write, revise, and seek feedback on your personal statement. On average. Grad school applicants spend 20+ hours in perfecting a personal statement of 1000 words. Moreover, they have their personal statement reviewed and redrafted 5 times on average.  
  • Be focused and organized: Clearly structure your personal statement, addressing the main topics and ensuring your narrative flows logically from one point to the next. A well-organized statement will demonstrate your ability to communicate effectively and coherently.
  • Proofread and edit: Carefully review your personal statement for grammar, punctuation, and spelling errors. Use free tools like grammarly to remove any unwanted errors in your writing.
  • Seek feedback: Share your personal statement with your mentors, or peers, to gather valuable feedback. I especially recommend that you show your essay to someone who has already gone through the process successfully as they know the ins and outs well. Then, incorporate this feedback to refine and strengthen your final draft.

To help you get started and see everything that I just discussed in action, here is a list of 100+ personal statement examples from successful graduate school applicants.

Grad School Personal Statement Examples by Field of Study

  • Example Personal Statement Computer Science (Admitted to Oxford with Low GPA )
  • Example Personal Statement Computer Science (Admitted to Stanford )
  • Example Personal Statement Computer Science (Admitted to Cambridge PhD )
  • Example Personal Statement Artificial Intelligence (Admitted to UCLA)
  • Example Personal Statement Machine Learning (Admitted to Duke )
  • Example Personal Statement Data Science and Analytics (Admitted to CMU )
  • Example Personal Statement Data Analytics (Admitted to Georgia Tech )
  • Example Personal Statement Advanced Analytics (Admitted to NCSU )
  • Example Personal Statement Mechanical Engineering (Admitted to USC , Imperial )
  • Example Personal Statement Economics (Admitted to LSE )
  • Example Personal Statement Economics (Admitted to Oxbridge )
  • Example Personal Statement Finance (Admitted to MIT Sloan )
  • Example Personal Statement Financial Engineering (Admitted to UC Berkeley )
  • Example Personal Statement Financial Engineering (Admitted to UCLA )
  • Example Personal Statement Accounting & Finance (Admitted to Michigan University)
  • Example Personal Statement Investment Banking (Admitted to UPenn )
  • Example Personal Statement (Admitted to Georgetown )
  • Example Personal Statement (Admitted to Harvard LLM )
  • Example Personal Statement (Admitted to Northwestern )
  • Example Personal Statement (Admitted to NYU , Duke )
  • 8 MBA Personal Statements (All IVY LEAGUES )
  • Example BA Essays ( INSEAD )
  • Example MBA Essays ( Kellogg Northwestern )
  • Example Personal Statement Operations Management (Admitted to MIT PHD)
  • Example Personal Statement Management (Admitted to Duke )
  • Example Personal Statement Marketing (Admitted to NYU , Cornell )
  • Example Personal Statement Business Analytics (Admitted to MIT , CMU )
  • Example Personal Statement Management & Analytics (Admitted to LBS )
  • Example Personal Statement Project Management (Admitted to UT Austin )
  • Example Personal Statement Logistics & Supply Chain (Admitted to Boston . Penn State )
  • Example Personal Statement Supply Chain Management (Admitted to MIT )
  • Example Personal Statement Teaching ( Scholarship US State Department)
  • Example Education Personal Statement (Admitted to UPenn , NYU , UCLA )
  • Example Personal Statement Education Policy (Admitted to USC )
  • Example Personal Statement Special Education Teacher (Admitted to TUFTS )
  • Example Personal Statement of an Aspiring Teacher (Admitted to American University )
  • Example Personal Statement Residency in Internal Medicine (Admitted to ASU )
  • Example Personal Statement Counseling (Admitted to Harvard , Yale )
  • Example Personal Statement Psychology (Admitted to NYU Steinhardt)
  • Example Personal Statement Nursing (Admitted to Duke , Ohio)
  • Example Personal Statement Public Health (MPH) (Admitted to Columbia , Emory)
  • Example Personal Statement Social Work (MSW) (Admitted to Columbia )
  • Example Personal Statement Veterinary (Admitted to UC Davis , CSU , Edinburgh)
  • Example Personal Statement Biochemistry (Admitted to Johns Hopkins )
  • Example Personal Statement Biology (Admitted to JHU )
  • Example Personal Statement Anthropology (Admitted to Stanford )
  • Example Personal Statement Environment and Sustainability (admitted to Stanford , CALTECH )
  • Example Personal Statement Environmental Sustainability and Energy Management (Admitted to Yale , Duke )
  • Example Personal Statement International Relations (Admitted to Columbia , Cornell )
  • Example Personal Statement Political Science (Admitted to Duke , UCLA , NYU )
  • Example Personal Statement Public Administration MPA (Admitted to Columbia , Harvard )
  • Example Personal Statement Public Policy MPP (Admitted to Harvard , Brown , Erasmus Mundus Scholarship )
  • Example Personal Statement Architecture (Admitted to Cambridge , Cornell , Yale )
  • Example Personal Statement MFA (Admitted to New School and Rhode Island )
  • Example Personal Statement in Filmmaking (Admitted to New York Film Academy )
  • Example Personal Statement Fashion and Textile (Admitted to Parsons , Royal College of Arts )
  • Example Personal Statement Math (Admitted to Oxbridge )
  • Example Personal Statement Statistics (Admitted to NCSU , Cornell )
  • Example Personal Statement Religious Studies (Admitted to Columbia , Harvard )
  • Example Personal Statement 1 (Admitted to MIT )
  • Example Personal Statement 2 (Admitted to Cambridge )
  • Example Research Statement (Admitted to JHU )
  • Example Statement of Research Interests (Admitted to Scripps )
  • Example Statement of Objectives (Admitted to MIT )
  • Example Personal StatemenT MS leading to Ph.D. (Admitted to Notre Dame )

These essays are written by applicants who are seeking financial aid or funding to support their graduate studies. In most cases, the program does not require a separate essay or application for the scholarship or fellowship, but in a few cases they do.

Most external donors do require a separate application such as the Fulbright program.

The purpose of these essays is to convince the selection committee that the applicant is the best candidate for the scholarship or fellowship.

  • Scholarship Personal Statement Example (Won $250,000 Scholarship )
  • Scholarship Personal Statement Example (Won Erasmus Mundus Scholarship )
  • Fellowship Personal Statement Example (Won MIT Sloan Fellowship )
  • Scholarship Personal Statement Example 1 (Won Fulbright Scholarship )
  • Scholarship Personal Statement Example 2 (Won Fulbright Scholarship )

Word Count-Specific Personal Statements have a specific word count limit, which must be adhered to by the applicant. These are often required as part of graduate school applications, where the admissions committee wants to ensure that all applicants are providing the same amount of information and not exceeding or falling short of the specified word count.

Writing a word count-specific personal statement can be challenging, as applicants must balance providing enough detail to adequately convey their story and goals, while also being concise and staying within the specified limit. However, meeting the word count requirement is essential for demonstrating an applicant’s ability to communicate effectively, follow instructions, and prioritize information.

Here are a few examples of word-count specific personal statements.

  • 100 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 150 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 200 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 250 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 300 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 400 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 500 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 600 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 700 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 750 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 800 Word Personal Statement Example
  • 1000 Word Personal Statement Example

Prompt specific personal statements are statements that are tailored to answer a specific question or prompt in a personal statement. These statements are typically used in graduate school applications, especially MBA apps. These essays usually have a word-limit as well.

The purpose of a question specific personal statement is to demonstrate to the admissions committee that the applicant has the skills, knowledge, and experience required to succeed in the program. By directly addressing the prompt or question, the applicant can provide a focused and coherent response that highlights their relevant qualities and accomplishments.

For example, if a prompt asks an applicant to discuss their leadership experience, a question specific personal statement would focus on describing specific instances where the applicant demonstrated leadership skills and qualities, such as problem-solving, decision-making, and effective communication.

Here are some samples on Question or Prompt Specific Personal Statements.

  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on Career Goals
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on Values that have Influenced You
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on Leadership
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on 25 Things You Don’t Know About Me
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on Describe a Challenge you Faced and How you Overcame it?
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on My Passion in Life
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement on Why do you want to become a doctor?
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement Example 1 ( Responses to 6 Prompts for Fellowship)
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement Example 2 ( Responses to 5 Prompts for Duke)
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement Example 3 ( Responses to 3 Prompts for MIT)
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement Example 4 ( Responses to 4 Prompts for LBS)
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement Example 5 ( Responses to 4 Prompts for UC Berkeley)
  • Prompt-specific Personal Statement Example 6 ( Responses to 4 Prompts for MIT)

Addressing Common Personal Statement Components

In this section, I will explore the various components that commonly make up a well-rounded personal statement.I have also discussed these in a lot more detail in a blog post here . In that post, I have also shared various examples of personal statements that show how you can put these components in an essay form. Furthermore, that blog post also introduces an 8-point framework designed to assist you in evaluating and rating your personal statement draft.

When applying for graduate programs that are academic in nature, such as PhD, Master of Science, or Master of Arts, it’s essential to emphasize your academic achievements and experiences in your personal statement. To effectively showcase your educational background, you can do the following:

  • Highlight relevant coursework: Discuss courses that have prepared you for graduate study and demonstrate your passion for the subject.
  • Showcase your academic accomplishments: Mention awards, honors, high GPA, or scholarships you’ve received, and explain their significance.
  • Share influential academic experiences: Describe any conferences, workshops, or seminars you’ve attended, and explain how they’ve shaped your understanding of your field.

When applying for research-oriented programs such as PhD, post-doc, or research-based masters, it’s crucial to emphasize your research background, experiences, and achievements in your personal statement. To effectively highlight your research accomplishments, consider including the following in your personal statement:

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  • Describe your research projects: Outline the relevant research you’ve conducted, including the objectives, methodology, and results.
  • Emphasize your role: Detail your specific contributions (co-contributor, co-author, lead researcher) to the research project, highlighting your skills and expertise.
  • Discuss the impact: Explain how your research has contributed to the field (maybe you got published in a journal, got a patent or published a white paper). You can also discuss how it influenced your career goals.

When composing your personal statement, it’s a good idea to show your work and internship experiences, as they highlight your practical skills and dedication to your chosen field. These experiences are especially significant for those applying to professional programs such as MBA, Project Management, and Masters in Engineering. 

However, they can also add considerable value to applications for academic or research-based programs. To effectively emphasize your work experiences and their relevance to your graduate studies, take into account the following aspects:

  • Detail relevant experiences: Discuss any internships, part-time jobs, or full-time positions related to your field, highlighting the skills you’ve gained.
  • Demonstrate transferable skills: Show how your work experience has equipped you with valuable skills (e.g., teamwork, leadership, problem-solving) that can be applied to your graduate studies.
  • Share meaningful moments: Describe any significant projects, accomplishments, or challenges you’ve encountered during your work experience that have shaped your perspective or goals.

In your personal statement, highlighting your volunteer and community service experiences can be a valuable addition, particularly for programs that emphasize social impact or community engagement, such as social work, public health, or education.

These experiences demonstrate your commitment to making a difference, and they showcase your ability to apply the skills and knowledge gained in real-world situations. Additionally, they reflect your extroverted nature, openness to new ideas, and willingness to engage with people from diverse backgrounds. 

Emphasizing your involvement in volunteer work and community service not only reveals your personal growth and alignment with your field of study but also highlights your ability to work collaboratively, appreciate different perspectives, and contribute positively to society. To give you some idea, you can demonstrate your service to the community by doing the following in your personal statement:

  • Showcase your involvement: Discuss volunteer work, community service, or extracurricular activities you’ve participated in that are relevant to your field of study or personal growth.
  • Emphasize personal growth: Describe the impact of these experiences on your personal development, such as gaining empathy, cultural competence, or leadership skills.
  • Connect to your field: Explain how your volunteer or community service experiences relate to your graduate studies and future career aspirations.

By sharing the obstacles you’ve faced and the lessons you’ve learned from them, you demonstrate your resilience, adaptability, and motivation. Connecting these experiences to your academic and career goals will further emphasize your determination to succeed in your chosen field and your readiness for the rigors of graduate study. Here are some ideas to get you started with this:

  • Share your story: Discuss any personal challenges or obstacles you’ve faced and how they’ve shaped your character, values, or motivations.
  • Demonstrate resilience: Explain how you’ve overcome these challenges and what you’ve learned from the experience.
  • Relate to your academic and career goals: Show how your personal growth and experiences have influenced your decision to pursue graduate studies and your future career aspirations.

Your personal statement should also address your future goals and career aspirations. You should discuss both your short-term (3-5 year) and long-term (10-15 year) goals in your grad school personal statement. 

Explain the motivation behind them, and connect these goals to the graduate program you’re applying to. This will show that you have a clear plan for your academic and professional journey, and that the program is an essential stepping stone toward achieving your goals. Here is a helping hand that will assist you include this element in your essay.

  • Outline your short-term and long-term goals: Discuss your objectives for both your graduate studies and your future career, demonstrating a clear vision of your path.
  • Explain your passion and motivation: Share the driving forces behind your goals, showcasing your enthusiasm and dedication to your field of study.
  • Connect your goals to the graduate program: Illustrate how the specific graduate program you’re applying to will help you achieve your academic and career objectives.

Tailoring your Personal Statement for Specific Schools

One common mistake that applicants make is submitting a generic personal statement to multiple programs. This can significantly reduce their chances of admission. 

Universities appreciate when applicants have taken the time to research the specific program, courses, faculty, and research facilities, demonstrating genuine interest and effort. 

While it’s acceptable to have a core personal statement that outlines your personal story, achievements, and interests, it’s crucial to tailor part of the essay to the particular program you are applying to. By customizing your personal statement, you show the admissions committee that you’ve done your homework.

Here I have some suggestions for you that you can use to tailor your personal statement for the specific program.

To tailor your personal statement for specific schools, it’s essential to thoroughly research the program and faculty at each institution. This involves exploring the program’s curriculum, core and optional course offerings, summer internship placement opportunities, industry-affiliated projects that are available, faculty research interests, and the school’s overall reputation in your field. By understanding these aspects, you can demonstrate your genuine interest in the program and highlight how your background and goals align with the faculty and coursework offered.

Once you have a solid understanding of the program and faculty, emphasize the alignment between your own values, objectives, and the program’s values and objectives in your personal statement. This can include showcasing your commitment to the program’s core principles, highlighting your passion for the program’s focus areas, and demonstrating your enthusiasm for working with particular faculty members on research or projects that align with your interests.

Each graduate program may have unique offerings that set it apart from others, such as specialized courses, research centers, or industry partnerships. In your personal statement, highlight these distinctive features and explain how they will benefit you. By doing this, you show the admissions committee that you have carefully considered the program’s offerings and have a clear understanding of how they will contribute to your academic and professional growth.

Personal Statement Pitfalls to Avoid

When writing your personal statement, you should be watchful of common traps that can diminish the impact of your narrative. Avoiding these mistakes will help you create a nice, well-rounded and unique story that will stand out to the adcom.

I have also discussed these in a lot more detail in a blog post here . In that post, I have also shared various examples of personal statements that avoid these traps and some that fall for them.

Here are some critical pitfalls to avoid:

Avoid relying on common phrases or clichés in your personal statement. Nearly all the personal statement templates use clichés like, such as “I’ve always known that I wanted to…”, “I have a thirst for knowledge.”, “I want to give back to society.”, “Ever since I can remember…”. These can make your writing appear as copy paste, dull and boring. Instead, you should try to be creative and unique and use expressions that genuinely reflect your own individual experiences and motivations.

While it’s essential to showcase your achievements and strengths, be cautious not to overdo self-promotion. Overly boastful or self-aggrandizing language can be off-putting to the reader and you could come across as arrogant and self-conceited. Focus on presenting your accomplishments and experiences in a balanced and authentic manner, highlighting the impact and the lessons learned from them. In short, stay humble.

A disorganized or unfocused personal statement can make it difficult for the admissions committee to grasp your main points or understand your narrative. Ensure your personal statement is well-structured, with clear coherence between paragraphs and a logical progression of ideas. Stay focused on only talking about experiences that are relevant to your field of study. However, if you want to talk about something that you feel is important for the application but is not relevant to the chosen program, just touch upon it in your essay.

Get Free Feedback on your Personal Statement!

Again, I would recommend you to go through this post where I have delved deeper into the things you should avoid. Additionally, in that post I have also provided you with a 7-point framework that you can use to circumvent the common pitfalls often encountered in personal statements.

Seeking Feedback and Revising Your Personal Statement

Before submitting your personal statement, it’s essential to seek and incorporate feedback. Applicants who create successful personal statements spend 20 hours on average on creating the perfect essay. You should consult mentors, advisors, and peers, to refine your narrative. This section will guide you through the process of seeking feedback and making revisions to optimize your personal statement.

Seek input from individuals who know you well and have experience with the application process. I would also recommend that you should ask feedback from people who have successfully gone through the process in the past. Their feedback can help you identify areas for improvement, and ensure your narrative aligns properly.

After receiving feedback from various sources, take the time to thoughtfully consider their suggestions and incorporate them into your personal statement. Remember that not all feedback may be applicable or useful, so use your judgment to determine which revisions will enhance your narrative. Continue refining your personal statement through multiple drafts, ensuring your final version presents a polished and compelling story that showcases your strengths and aspirations.

I hope that these 100+ personal statement examples for graduate school and all the associated tips will provide you with the inspiration, guidance, and ideas you need to create a captivating narrative of your own. As you embark on this journey, remember that dedication, self-reflection, and resilience are key to putting up a persuasive narrative. Remember, there is no short-cut to success. Good luck, and we can’t wait to see where your academic journey takes you!


  • 100+ Outstanding Examples of Personal Statements
  • The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Winning Personal Statement
  • Common Pitfalls to Avoid in Your Personal Statement
  • Writing a Killer Opening Paragraph for Your Personal Statement
  • Ideal Length for a Graduate School Personal Statement
  • 100 Inspiring Quotes to Jumpstart Your Personal Statement

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100+ Outstanding Examples of Personal Statements The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Winning Personal Statement Writing a Killer Opening Paragraph for Your Personal Statement


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    Your personal statement should also address your future goals and career aspirations. You should discuss both your short-term (3-5 year) and long-term (10-15 year) goals in your grad school personal statement. Explain the motivation behind them, and connect these goals to the graduate program you're applying to.