One of the dilemmas when filling in your LLM application is trying to work out how to keep it short and at the same time fit in all the relevant information? Well, it is possible to do both without compromising on content, language, and expression, the key factor is to avoid simple mistakes that can ruin your chances of getting noticed as a serious applicant.
Do not underestimate the time taken by admissions offices in vetting your application. They usually want to know why you would like to study an LLM program, why the particular institution, how your academic and professional background meets the demands of the LLM program, what field you would like to explore in your final thesis, etc.
Here are a few pointers that can help you in avoid mistakes and build up the confidence to hand in a good application.
Draw Up An Initial Checklist
Once you have shortlisted the universities you will be applying to, give a thorough read of their application process. You will usually find this in a section on their website that is meant for prospective students. Make a note of all the requirements listed out in the application – this should include details in the online form, academic transcripts, references, personal statement, etc. Drawing up an initial checklist with list of things to do step by step in line with your application requirements is a great way to keep a check on the process.
Keep An Eye On Application Deadlines
Keep a watch on those application deadlines! You don’t want to miss the deadline because your academic referee did not manage to hand in their reference to you on time. Keep a clear note of deadlines for each of the universities you are applying to and then work backwards to set your own deadlines to obtain all the information you need.
Use Correct Grammar & Spelling
Using the correct grammar and spelling is a huge factor, which can demonstrate your seriousness towards the application especially when it comes to your reasons for applying and personal statement. There can be several reasons why grammar/spelling errors may have occurred but they will not make any difference to your application however genuine the reasons may seem to you. As far as universities are concerned this is an aspect which has been overlooked by you and can earn you negative marks. Make sure you check and review the details that you put into your application. It’s a good idea to get someone else to read it through for you before you send it off in case you keep accidentally re-reading the same mistake.
Tailor Your Application
When you are in the process of looking at different courses on offer, if you narrow down to the ones that you wish to consider, you should start thinking of reasons as to why you would like to apply. This will help you in tailoring your application to your specific needs. Sometimes there is a tendency to overflow with words because you wish to detail all possible reasons to convince that you are the right candidate. Although it is important for you to list out all the essential details in support of your application, make sure that you keep the text simple and interesting for the admissions panel.
Review Your Application
Have your application checked by office colleagues, family or friends as they can review it independently and may come up with suggestions. They could spot grammatical errors and point to areas that you can highlight to make your application strong.
Include Necessary Documents
You must read information on the university website regarding the supporting documents you need to submit as part of your application. Make sure that you list and obtain these documents before beginning your application. In the same way as you don’t want to miss out any important supporting documents, you also want to avoid submitting unnecessary documents that have not been listed as a requirement. For online applications, you may be asked to upload scanned copies, make sure that they are a sensible resolution, not blurred and are of reasonable file size. Finally check that your scanned document is legible before upload.