A Guide to Writing College Admissions Essays: Practical Advice for Students and Parents

Rowman & Littlefield. May 2021. 120p. ISBN 9781475858761. $33. ED
The essay has long been an important piece of the college application, and it will likely become more so as schools begin to put less weight on test scores. This title, like others published recently (Ethan Sawyer’s College Essay Essentials; Princeton Review’s Complete Guide to College Application Essays), focuses on crafting essays that address the prompts and fit within the word limits of the Common Application. It also offers strategies for tackling the supplemental essays required by some schools. The volume guides readers from getting the first word on the page, to hitting the submit button (with an added section on dealing with rejection letters). The book is distinguished by its succinct advice (even the shortest attention spans will be able to stay the course) and its four authors’ varied perspectives—Suzanne Franklin and Linda Black are college counselors, Paul Weingarten is a journalist and editor, and Cory M. Franklin is a physician who has published widely in academic and popular outlets. The inclusion of sample essays from successful applications is a plus.
VERDICT A concise primer on concise writing. Will appeal to college applicants and some parents.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing