A diagnosed physical or learning disability is worth explaining in the Additional Information section, especially if it has impacted your education or your ability to participate in certain extracurricular activities. Whereas many students with disabilities receive reasonable accommodations for classes and testing, many do not.
If you have not, you should note that here too. However, my small school is not equipped to provide accommodations, nor have I received any for standardized tests. These obstacles havetaught me resilience, because now I know that I need to advocate for myself by asking teachers for help or extra time on assignments andexams. While my ADHD continues to challenge me in the classroomand sometimes makes it harder to complete timed tasks, I now know that I am capable of the same success as my peers.
Whether you are in the closet, have recently come out, or are an LGBTQ student in a conservative town or in a liberal city, grappling with your sexual orientation and gender identity may impact your education. They are both devout Mormons and believe that homosexuality is a sin. The stress at home made it difficult for me to focus on my schoolwork. This caused my grades to be lower than normal during the Fall of my junior year.
Though my parents have not accepted me fully, I am handling the stress better, and my grades returned to normal during the Spring semester of junior year. Any information here should be brief and in no way resemble an essay. A short sentence or two about a major award not covered in your Activities section will be appreciated by readers, whereas an additional word essay describing your love for tennis might lead your application to the rejection pile.
The Additional Information section is a great place to include them.
Make sure to include the same information requested in the main application, such as their age and educational backgrounds. Awards: Did you win an award that is not linked to an activity? This is the place to list it, with a brief explanation of the award as briefly as you would describe an activity in the Activities section.
Some schools do not offer AP or IB courses, whereas others offer only a few. Due to restraints on course schedules or offerings, many students look elsewhere to take additional classes. Maybe you took Japanese or Calculus at a local community college because they were not offered at your school. Whatever the situation may be, briefly explaining a gap in your official high school transcript is a great idea.
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Sometimes your participation in extracurricular activities warrants more than characters of explanation. Whereas you do not need to explain your duties as student council president or explain how many fashion articles you wrote for the school newspaper, you may wish to briefly explain that you received first place in a statewide math competition or that you play the incredibly rare and challenging contra bassoon in orchestra.
Briefly elaborating on a major accomplishment can give adcoms a bigger picture of your passions, interests, and commitments. I competed with over qualifying students from across Wisconsin in 6 different categories and received the highest overall score. From January to May, I spent at least 5 hours a day rehearsing, singing, and memorizing lines. Though I can sing, I am not a trained vocalist. Therefore, I took extra vocal lessons twice a week for two hours during the duration of the semester.
But if you were involved in an activity that is unusual or through a largely unknown organization, it makes sense to include a brief explanation. Maybe you founded a student group that volunteers at a Sea Turtle Rehabilitation center in Southern Florida, or perhaps you participated in a club that meets once a week to cook Nepalese food. This non-profit organization saves injured turtles from the ocean, provides them with medical services including surgery , and eventually releases them back into the ocean.
We help set up exhibitions, clean the tanks, feed the turtles, and sometimes provide free tours to visitors. I started this club because I wanted to share my passion for animal rights with my classmates. While adcoms may know what to expect from an elective class in sociology or creative writing, a brief explanation of what you took, why you took it, and how it enriched your education can provide readers insight into your passions and interests. We read a slave narrative by Harriet Jacobs, learned about the Stanford Prison Experiment, and studied the Cambodian Genocide from a historical perspective.
This class helped me develop my passion for psychology and interest in studying how and why people use torture to control others. If you spent your entire junior or senior year on a major project, you may wish to include the title of the project and a brief explanation. If your major project shows a commitment or an achievement to a specific field, especially one you may pursue academically in college, you may want to further explain the project. In addition, if your project required you to engage in an atypical amount of work or required novel research methods, you may want to mention that as well.
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You might also request a letter of recommendation from the professor who oversaw the project and kindly ask them to discuss it in their letter. I hope to pursue projects like this as an English Major. According to my research, I concluded that children who do not sleep enough are not just affected negatively physically. Sleep deprivation can also impact their ability to socialize with other students at school. Note: the examples below are examples of what not to include in the Additional Information section.
At the risk of sounding redundant myself, please, please do not repeat anything that you cover elsewhere in your application! For instance, if you decide to describe an extracurricular activity, make sure that you do not repeat information from the Activities Section. Similarly, if you wrote about your passion for violin in your Common App Essay, you probably do not need to expand upon your love for playing violin in the Additional Information section. As treasurer, my job was to manage fundraising endeavors. I helped fundraise for prom, the Halloween dance, and many other events. Schools will require essays they want you to submit.
Therefore, the Additional Information section is not the place to submit another personal-statement-type or even supplemental essay. By requiring students to write the same number of essays, colleges ensure a fairer evaluation system.
Many students quit extracurricular activities over the course of their high school career for a variety of reasons, from scheduling conflicts to the development of new passions and hobbies. You do not need to explain why you left student council or what caused you to give up playing the oboe.
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Though I really wanted to continue pursuing my passion for the oboe, my commitments to varsity hockey, 6 AP classes, choir, volunteering, academic decathlon, and the many other things I participate in made it difficult to take band. We are all imperfect. Unfortunately, many students are often quick to look back at their freshman or sophomore or junior selves and criticize something they could have done better. That said, it is important to maintain an objective tone in the Additional Information section. Be factual and concise.
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If you are a straight-A student who received a B- in chemistry sophomore year because you happened to perform poorly on a few exams or happened to receive a low grade on an important lab report, I recommend leaving those details out. One-time grade drops happen and will not jeopardize your admissions odds.
Even though I got a B-, I learned a lot about myself from the process. I now know how to persevere, as well as what it takes to succeed academically while balancing all of my commitments. If your freshman year grades were lower than your sophomore and junior year grades, you do not need to explain that here.
Why unnecessarily draw additional attention to a negative? Many students feel pressure to include everything that they have ever done in their Activities section, from a weekend spent volunteering at the library to teaching yoga lessons once a year at the local park. Showcasing your ten most meaningful activities in your Activities section helps adcoms understand what you are truly passionate about. Standardized tests are by no means perfect measures of your abilities, and you may have sometimes scored slightly lower than you had hoped. If you received a 3 on your AP Language exam but expected a 5, or if your SAT Math Level 2 Subject Test score was but you had been scoring an on practice tests, there is no need to explain why you scored slightly lower than you had expected.
Though my teacher expected that I would receive a 4 or a 5, I got a 3 because of additional stress that morning from running late to school. Whereas you should highlight major extracurricular accomplishments and achievements or explain unusual and niche activities, you do not need to explain conventional activities, especially if they were not the most important during your high school career. Adcoms do not want to know every play you acted in, every song you sang in choir, a detailed explanation of every office position you held in Model UN, or every race you won in cross country.
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You may fall into the trap of telling adcoms everything you have ever done in hopes of impressing them. If a hobby or an interest is important to you, include it in your Activities section or discuss it in an essay. I learned a lot about my passion for literature reading these novels.
In fact, I have read a few books in the past month about how the Democratic Party in the United States embraced aspects of socialism in the s and s. This has been very difficult for my family, even though it has not impacted my academics or home life. That said, they will have plenty to learn about you from your Common App Essay, Activities section, letters of recommendation, and supplemental essays. But, if a school does ask for an optional additional essay in their supplemental section as Harvard does , be sure to submit one! Answer: If the activity or interest is not represented in your Common App Essay, Activities section, transcript, or supplemental essays, you probably do not need to include it in the Additional Information section.
That said, if you feel that a certain activity or interest was the most important to you or that the lessons you learned from it are qualities you want to showcase in your application e. On the other hand, if you have other topics you wish to pursue in your Common App Essay or supplemental essays e. Answer: Yes, you can! If you need to explain two unrelated topics, you can include two or more separate topics or entries. Write the two entries and separate them with a line break.
For example, if you want to talk about a discontinuity in your transcript and include an additional test score, you could write:.