Sample College Essay Prompts

There are hundreds of college essay prompts that various colleges and universities have used in recent years. If you are required to write a “Personal statement” along with your college application, then the prompt below may help you. Universities may not use the exact prompts that are listed here, but these will give you a good idea of what they will ask.

  • Tell us about an experience where you were not successful and what you learned from the experience.
  • Recall a situation when you took a risk and you know you did the right thing.
  • Answer this question. How can I prepare educationally to survive in today’s global society?
  • What has been your most profound intellectual experience?
  • Select a novel, a movie, a poem, a musical masterpiece , or other work of art that has influenced your view on the world and the way you view yourself.
  • Describe an experience you had that caused you to question or change a value that you have.
  • Please provide information about yourself that you feel will completely and accurately portray you, e.g., your background, personal traits, goals, etc. Be sure to describe what influenced these factors.
  • What tasks have you undertaken or done in the last year or two that has nothing to do with academics.
  • If you could have a conversation with someone (living or deceased) that you consider important, who would that person be and what would the conversation be about?
  • If you could be any animal you wanted, what would it be and why?
  • Describe how the negative experiences in your life (death, injury, illness) have had a positive effect on your life.
  • What single adjective do you think your friends and family would use to best describe you and why?
  • If you could choose one quotation to describe yourself, what would it be and why?
  • If you were completely free of money and family obligations, where would you spend the summer before starting college?
  • If you could become someone else (real or fictional), who would it be and why?

These are just examples of college essay prompts. Colleges change their prompts from year to year, so just remember to be as complete and personal as you can. This essay will help in the determination of your educational future.