What Is the Worst Admission Essay Topic?

When it comes to writing an admission essay, the topic you choose can make or break your application. While a good topic can set you up to write a unique, memorable essay, certain topics are best avoided. Here, we delve into some of the worst admission essay topics and why they can spell disaster for your chances of getting into the university of your choice.

The Resume Regurgitation

One of the most common mistakes students make is treating their admission essay like a resume. They list their academic and personal achievements, assuming that this will impress admissions officers. However, this approach is incredibly dry and boring. Admissions officers are not interested in regurgitation of what you’ve already outlined on your standard application. Instead, focus on a specific experience or accomplishment and discuss its impact on you.

The Sports Game

Another common pitfall is the sports game essay. Whether it’s about the camaraderie you felt with teammates, overcoming obstacles, the excitement of winning, or the sadness of losing, these topics are too obvious and too common. They don’t show enough depth and have been covered countless times in pop culture.

The Breakup

While a breakup might feel like the biggest hardship you have faced thus far, your audience does not think anything about your high school relationship sounds impressive. College admission officers have not been in high school for a very long time. They have a bit more perspective on relationships than the average high school senior.

The Service Trip

Writing about your experience seeing real Third World poverty for the first time is a topic that’s been covered countless times. It’s better to talk about a specific experience, like a conversation you had with someone who lived there.

The Vice Confession

Topics about your involvement in narcotics, binge or underage drinking, and jail term among other vices are risky discussions because universities prefer well-behaved students. You should stay clear of topics about negative behavior even if you have quit.

Facts and Figures Related to Admission Essay Topics

  • A strong essay topic sets you up to write a unique, memorable college application essay.
  • Your topic should be personal, original, and specific.
  • Some topics are easier to make work than others.
  • It’s possible to write an exceptional essay on a common topic.
  • A good essay topic answers the 4 core questions: Who am I, Why do I matter, What is my story, and What do I bring to the table?
  • The word limit for the University of North Carolina at Asheville’s application essay is 650 words.

Remember, the goal of the admission essay is to share your voice, personality, and story. Avoid clichés and choose a topic that allows you to share your positive stories and qualities