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Sample Personal Statement Accounting and Finance

personal statement for account

by Talha Omer, MBA, M.Eng., Harvard & Cornell Grad

In personal statement samples by field.

The following personal statement is written by an applicant who got accepted to several top accounting and finance programs. Variations of this PS got accepted at the University of Michigan, Vanderbilt, and Indiana University. Read this personal statement to understand what a top essay in Accounting and Finance should look like.

Example Personal Statement Accounting and Finance

I have never made popular choices, whether academic or professional. Where high academic achievement irrefutably means pursuing a career in Medicine or STEM, I opted for a career in management. I was free to choose a path for myself, owing to my performance during an extensive pre-induction professional training program. Fortunately, I picked a path that everyone believed was insignificant.

My decision to move to a new city to pursue my path did not receive encouragement. Making my own decisions has given me the freedom to dream and make it a reality. It has strengthened my belief that I am the only one who can bring a difference for myself and those around me. Brazil’s institutions may seem frozen, yet, at the grassroots, Brazil is in perpetual motion with ceaseless creativity. To accelerate this motion, we need to bring better and more affordable solutions; I plan to do that.

Growing up in Brazil, I have constantly questioned why we are still not growing economically despite having abundant resources. I frequently discussed the economic factors affecting us with my father, leading me to work at local NGOs and attend voluntary programs. My interest intensified when I discovered during these experiences that the unequal distribution of resources was a major cause of our economic constriction.

Moreover, our medical, engineering and academic professionals would not work in rural areas due to a lack of facilities, further debilitating the imbalance. It made me realize that we could only reap the benefits of our efforts if there were a proportionate distribution of resources. Realizing how effective mobilization of resources can aid in eradicating social ills, I developed an interest in management. This equipped me with technical knowledge and provided room for opinion building.

Pursuing this path, I joined the leading undergraduate institution in the country. The zeal with which I made this decision led me to graduate summa cum laude. While studying, I taught communication skills to undergraduate business students from rural areas. Meeting these students compelled me to get involved even though I lacked formal teaching training. Through empathy and friendly get-togethers, I was able to help these students conveniently traverse in English. With this experience, I understood that my time and energy had been well spent and that as an agent of change, one does not necessarily need to be exceptional; instead, one requires creativity, patience, and emotional intelligence.

After graduation, I followed through with my goal of facilitating change by joining the banking sector as an accounting and finance trainee. By working in Brazil’s most vital financial sector, I was exposed to diversified experiences, from being as simple as issuing customer chequebooks to designing accounting and credit proposals to the tune of USD 1.2 billion. Furthermore, while working on individual projects, I developed an in-depth understanding of international accounting rules that regulated trade transactions; the learning opportunities were immense.

Two and a half years of experience in the finance sector brought me to work for the country’s central bank. The anxiety that accompanied moving away from home for the first time was overwhelmed by my professional and personal growth. Nine months of extensive training and on-the-job assignments exposed me to interminable learning opportunities. However, my real gain has been in the form of self-improvement and growth that accompanied my first experience living independently. Leaving the protective living that I enjoyed with my family is challenging, but it has developed and strengthened my capabilities of taking and owning my decisions. Above all, knowing that my family is not always around to guide me has instilled in me a greater sense of responsibility.

During the two a half years of experience in accounting and finance, I observed the financial exclusion experienced by some important yet financially constrained sectors of the economy. This exposure motivated me to join the Development Finance Department upon my appointment to the country’s central bank. Moreover, most of the firms operating in any country of the world are either small or medium enterprises. Thus, providing an enabling environment to such enterprises is significant for economic growth and employment generation.

In Brazil also, 90 percent of the enterprises are small and medium-sized, and lack of access to formal sources of finance is a significant impediment to these enterprises’ growth. Therefore, a huge room for improvement is available concerning the development of policy framework and market infrastructure for the financial inclusion of this sector. As a part of the central bank, I have been allowed to intervene in a system that is not effectively performing its role of financial intermediation. Innovation in financial products, development of accounting and risk mitigation strategies are requirements to alleviate this segment’s financial exclusion.

By broadening my exposure and enhancing my knowledge, I aim to equip myself better to address the shortcomings of one of the critical segments of the economy.

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How to Write a Personal Statement for Accounting (Best Tips)

It should signify your love for numbers and your passion for business and finance. It should also provide an in-depth look into your personality and evidence that you are qualified for this course. This article will show you how to write a captivating personal statement for accounting school in the simplest yet most substantial form.

What is a Personal Statement?

What to include in your personal statement.

A personal statement is not a lengthy essay to be filled with your life story and fancy goals. It must be a concise, realistic, and compelling justification of why you’re the most suitable candidate to be granted admission.

Include these in your personal statement:

According to James Seymour, Director of Marketing and Student Recruitment at the University of Gloucestershire , universities do not want a beautifully written essay with tens of achievements but a realistic picture of a candidate with all efforts, traits, goals, and hardships that shaped him for an accounting major.

How to Write a Personal Statement for Accounting (Step-by-Step Guide)

1. do your research.

Be very sure about what and where you are applying for and why you are applying for it. Do your research on:

This research will make you confident about your choice and your plans. Reflect the knowledge gained from this research into your statement. Tip: Do thorough research and make notes on the achievements of instructors, industry leaders, and related case studies. This will help you in compiling evidence-based personal statements.

2. Brainstorm and Write

Once you have done enough research and analysis on pursuing an accounting and finance program, the next step is to jot it down. Take a paper and pen, and write whatever comes to your mind regarding the course and your application. Leave the structure and language for now, and think and write whatever comes to your mind. Support your every thought with evidence from the research you did in step#1.

3. Filter it Out

Group sentences into the above sections and then write them in paragraph forms under each section.

4. Arrange and Refine

5. analyze and improve sections, 6. set the flow.

Once the content is completed, the next step is to arrange the paragraphs in a sequence. Read the individual paragraphs and make connections between them. Each new paragraph should be a smooth transition from the previous one. Arrange paragraphs in such a way that it keeps the reader engaged and gradually provides insights about you. Think of it as the art of storytelling . It goes from the introduction to the body of the story to the climax.

7. Proofread

8. peer check, 9. don’t be hasty in submitting it.

Yes, do not submit your personal statement along with your application if the deadline is still far off. Keep the final version with you and read it after a day or two. You will see lots of space for improvement after checking it with a fresh mind. Keep on improving and submit the best version a few days before the closing date. That’s it. We provided you with the best approach to writing a personal statement for an accounting school application. You may end up writing an amazing one if you follow these steps in a sequence. If you are still confused about structuring your accounting and finance personal statement, here is how you can do that.

How to Structure Personal Statement for Accounting and Finance

Making a general structure or outline for your personal statement will make your writing ten times easier and will give it a natural flow. The widely accepted personal statements usually follow the following structure:

Opening Paragraph

Begin your personal statement with an interesting opening paragraph. It is a very crucial part of your essay as it draws the reader in. Mention your interest in accounting and finance and explain what stokes your passion for choosing this course.

Middle Part

You can divide this part into academics and work experience as follows:.

Watch this and learn how to include academics and work experiences in your accounting and finance personal statement.

This part is a personal touch. This is where you can mention the least significant part of your story. Mention your interests, hobbies, and other activities and elaborate on how they help you develop relevant soft skills. Mention books, events, programs, or people by name that you follow. Tip: Even the least significant information must significantly relate to your passion for accounting and finance. For example, you can mention reading books like ‘Rich Dad, and Poor Dad’, listening to TEDx talks, etc. Check out this guide to learn how to talk about hobbies in a personal statement.

Tips for Writing a Great Accounting Personal Statement

Common mistakes:, amazing examples of personal statements.

After reading all the tips and tricks for writing a personal statement for accounting and finance, check out these successful examples that got selected for top-ranked institutes.

Want more examples? Here is a list of the best accounting statements that have been shared by the UCAS admission officer.

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Dr Fatimah Zainudin from the University of Southampton’s management school is looking for 'the "chemistry" that makes an applicant shine out,’ so try and demonstrate your enthusiasm about the course and the buzz you'll get from studying it.

'What we love to see is a passion for the subject itself. If you fall in love with the subject, that’s what will lead to success on the course; it will give you the right chemistry,' she says.

Demonstrate your enthusiasm

If you can demonstrate what's sparked your interest in finance and accounting, that's a good start – but it’s no good just saying you’ve got a passion for it, you have to show it.

If you’re not the kind of person who gets very passionate about things, don’t worry. But do still try to explain what it is that attracts you to studying it. Then back it up with evidence of your relevant skills, knowledge or experiences and show that you understand something about what’s involved. That should solve it.

See our in-depth guides to studying finance or accounting at university, from typical modules to career paths, for some inspiration.

Finance and accounting personal statement must-haves

  • Get the basics right: good communication skills are essential to anyone working in the finance sector, so make sure your statement is well-written. Nobody is asking for a literary masterpiece here, just a well-structured and waffle- and error-free statement.
  • Interest in the subject: Sheffield Hallam University is looking for you to demonstrate 'an interest in and awareness of accounting and finance, or some level of practical experience.' Similarly, Bristol is looking for 'interest and commitment to the subject.' This means conveying enthusiasm for studying it and showing that you understand something about it, whether that comes from reading, work experience, or studying relevant topics in your A level, BTEC, or Higher course.
  • Business awareness: University of Bath selectors are expecting students to have an interest and aptitude for 'quantitative analysis of business issues.' Demonstrate this with evidence that shows your abilities for applying mathematical skills to the analysis of business problems.
  • Beyond the classroom: The University of Bristol is looking for 'intellectual curiosity – reading or research beyond the A level (or equivalent) syllabus.’ This is always good practice in personal statements, provided you then reflect on what you learned from your wider reading or research – they don’t just want a list.
  • Relevant outside interests: if you choose to include extra-curricular activities, make sure they are relevant or showcase appropriate personal characteristics, skills, or achievements. Apply the 'so what?' test: if you play the flute or basketball, can you make that relevant to your future success at university, or should other factors take priority in your 47 lines?

Make the most of any experience

If you’ve had some work experience , that’s great. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a couple of weeks spent shadowing an accountant, a couple of hours just talking to one, a part-time job in a financial, retail, or business environment, or a scheme like Young Enterprise. What does matter is that you write about something relevant that you have learned from it. But, as Sheffield Hallam and LSE say on their websites, experience is not essential, so don’t panic if you don’t have any.

Your commitment to studying accounting or finance as an academic subject is usually the key requirement. However, if you can also show that extra ingredient of passion and a glimpse of the ‘chemistry’ that exists between you and the subject, then your application really will stand out.

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PERSONAL STATEMENT EXAMPLE Accounting and Finance (with a Placement Year) Personal Statement

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Accounting and Finance (with a Placement Year) Personal Statement

Having an interest in the world of commerce and industry, I believe that studying Accounting and Finance at a higher level will help me to reach my goal of becoming an accountant. I first came to realize that I have a deep interest in this course when I took part in a fundraising competition in year 6. I had to trade to capitalize on profit, to raise money for Children in Need. At this very young age, I had to do some bookkeeping of what I’d purchased, the prices of the items, profit and loss. Bookkeeping experience has developed and enabled me to win the competition. I was awarded a certificate for raising the largest sum for charity. This was the most memorable achievement for me.

I am outstanding with problem-solving and thinking from a businessperson’s perspective. Therefore, I decided to do business studies as a subject. During my studies in Business, I came to be more inquisitive in what I was learning, as I once had to analyse and interpret financial statements of various mainstream companies. This has given me the opportunity to explore the basic methods of bookkeeping in the corporate world.

I'm currently studying ICT, which involves many mathematical programmes such as learning various types of functions on Excel and performing a range of calculations using data models. I strongly believe that this subject is relevant in modern day accountancy. Business has expanded my knowledge of operations. Currently, I work with customer services and advise in the retail sector. Moreover, ICT will broaden my acquaintance of Microsoft Excel, as this is the key component for Accounting; Excel was designed to support accounting functions such as preparing financial statements. Travel and Tourism is a way to see the world and I have learnt a lot on globalisation and GDP. I’m also doing an Extended Project Qualification on the globalization of financial reporting.

I recently completed my work experience with Bank of England and my role was a learning & development assistant placed in the Human Resources department, where I had to manage spreadsheets of upcoming events. I also helped the Learning & Development team by inputting data of their stock take from their suppliers into Excel. Working in this department has strengthened my public speaking and communication skills, as I did a presentation in front of many departments who work for the bank. When working as a teaching assistant, at a primary school I taught mini maths lessons from this I commended on my time management and adaptability.

I’ve always met deadlines. Adaptability skill was gained as I’ve adapted into every department I’ve worked in the school and I knew how to deal with the different year groups. Outside of academic pursuits, I enjoy watching The Apprentice and Dragons Den as these shows expand my business skills. I also like to go shopping with my friends and families; as these activities help me relax, especially during the exam period. I’m planning to do both an under and post-graduate degree in Accounting.

As Steve Jobs said: “The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” It is fundamentally crucial to choose that which you love, to be able to be that which you can be.

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  • Accounting personal statements

Accounting and finance degree personal statement example (1a)

This is a real personal statement written by a student for their university application. It might help you decide what to include in your own. There are lots more examples in our . 

My decision to apply for a degree course in Accounting and Finance stems from my research in the college library and my career aspiration to become a chartered accountant. I particularly enjoy administrative work, numerical and statistical exercises, and opportunities to work with others as a team. I am confident that these strengths and transferable skills will be developed in a degree course, and valuable in my subsequent career

In order to get a head start, I have arranged a two-week work experience programme with Ahmed and Co accountancy, which provides services for well-known restaurants, cafes and other businesses. These two week work experience will provide me with a greater understanding of the basic skills required of an accountant, and introduce me to techniques such as cash balance appraisal, budgetary control and current cost accounting

I am currently studying A- Level ICT and History and AS- Level Urdu and Business Studies. Studying AS-Level Business Studies will provide the foundations and understanding of real life problems faced by businesses and the right solutions that are used by professional businesses in order to succeed and A-Level in ICT will give me a better understanding of advanced technology available that can be used in order to process more easily with less time consuming

I am a very active sportsman, taking advantage all sports facilities that my college provides. I have represented my college in cricket, football, basketball and cross-country and the medals, certificates and trophies accomplished can represent these. I hope to take these achievements further by representing the university in the sports facilities it will provide and by achieving more medals and trophies as possible

I believe university offers an excellent opportunity to further my learning in a challenging environment so I am applying for a degree in accounting and finance, which will enable me to acquire the skills required to understand the world of business and help me become a chartered accountant

I look forward to the challenge of a demanding degree course, and am confident that I have the personal qualities and academic motivation to make a success of it.

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By Nik Taylor (Editor, The Uni Guide) | 18 August 2023 | 22 min read

How to write an excellent personal statement in 10 steps

Stand out from the crowd: here's how to write a good personal statement that will get you noticed

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personal statement for account

Your personal statement forms a core part of your university application, and the sooner you get going, the better you can make it. You may think that your personal statement won’t matter as much to unis as your grades and experience but a great personal statement could make all the difference between you and a candidate with the same grades. Sure, your application might not reach that deal breaker stage. But is it something you want to leave to chance?  Here we’ll take you through the process of planning, writing and checking a good personal statement, so you end up with something you can submit with confidence. And to make sure the advice we're giving you is sound, we’ve spoken to admissions staff at loads of UK universities to get their view. Look out for video interviews and advice on applying for specific subjects throughout this piece or watch our personal statement playlist on YouTube .

  • Are you looking for personal statement examples? Check our library of hundreds of real personal statements, on The Student Room

Personal statement deadlines

You'll need to make sure you've got your personal statement written well in advance of your application deadline. Below are the main university application deadline dates for 2024 entry.

2024 entry deadlines

16 October 2023: Deadline for applications to Oxford and Cambridge universities, along with most medicine, dentistry, and veterinary courses.   31 January 2024: Deadline for applications to the majority of undergraduate courses. After this date, universities will start allocating places on these courses –   but you can still apply after the 31 January deadline , as this article explains . 30 June 2024:  Students who apply after this date will be entered into Clearing .

  • Read more: Ucas deadlines and key application dates

What is a personal statement?

A personal statement is a central part of your Ucas application, where you explain why you’ve chosen a particular course and why you’ll be good at it. It's your chance to stand out against other candidates and hopefully get that all-important offer. You only write one personal statement which is then read by each university you apply to, so if you are applying for more than one subject (or it's a combined course) it's crucial that you include common themes or reference the overall skills needed for all subjects. Personal statements are especially important if you’re trying to get on a very competitive course, where you need to do anything you can to stand out to admissions tutors. Courteney Sheppard, senior customer experience manager at Ucas, advises that your personal statement is "the only part of the application that you have direct control over. Do lots of research to demonstrate your passion, curiosity and drive to pursue your chosen subject." There’s a limit on how much you can write: your personal statement can be up to 4,000 characters (including spaces) or 47 lines of 95 characters (including spaces); whichever is shorter. This may appear generous (read: long) but once you've got going you may find yourself having to edit heavily.

  • Read more: teacher secrets for writing a great personal statement

1. Plan what you want to cover

The first thing you need to do is make a plan. Writing a personal statement off the top of your head is difficult. Start by making some notes, answering the following questions:

  • What do you want to study?
  • Why do you want to study it?
  • What is there about you that shows you’re suited to studying this subject at university? Think about your personality, as well as your experiences.
  • What are your other interests and skills?

These few points are going to form the spine of your personal statement, so write them in a way that makes sense to you. You might want to make a simple bulleted list or you might want to get all arty and use a mindmap. Whatever you choose, your aim is the same. You want to get it clear in your own head why a university should offer you a place on its course. Getting those details down isn't always easy, and some people find it helpful to make notes over time. You might try carrying a notebook with you or set up a memo on your phone. Whenever you think of something useful for your personal statement, jot it down. Inspiration sometimes comes more easily when you’re thinking about something else entirely. It might help to take a look at The Student Room for some sample personal statements by university and sample personal statements by subjects , to give you an idea of the kind of thing you want to include. 

  • Read more: personal statement FAQs

2. Show off your experience

Some things are worth adding to your personal statement, some things are not. Firmly in the second camp are your qualifications. You don’t need to mention these as there’s a whole other section of your personal statement where you get to detail them very precisely. Don’t waste a single character going on about how great your GCSE grades are – it’s not what the admissions tutor wants to read. What they do want to see is: what have you done? OK, so you’ve got some good grades, but so do a lot of other applicants. What have you done that’s different, that shows you off as someone who really loves the subject you’re applying for? Spend some time thinking about all the experience you have in that subject. If you’re lucky, this might be direct work experience. That’s going to be particularly appropriate if you’re applying for one of the more vocational subjects such as medicine or journalism . But uni staff realise getting plum work experience placements is easier for some people than others, so cast your net wider when you’re thinking about what you’ve done. How about after-school clubs? Debating societies? Are you running a blog or vlog? What key skills and experience have you picked up elsewhere (eg from hobbies) that could be tied in with your course choice? Remember, you’re looking for experience that shows why you want to study your chosen subject. You’re not just writing an essay about what you're doing in your A-level syllabus. Use this checklist as a guide for what to include:

  • Your interest in the course. Why do you want to spend three years studying this subject at university?
  • What have you done outside school or college that demonstrates this interest? Think about things like fairs/exhibitions, public lectures or voluntary work that is relevant to your subject.
  • Relevant work experience (essential for the likes of medicine, not required for non-vocational courses such as English )
  • Skills and qualities required for that career if appropriate (medicine, nursing and law as obvious examples)
  • Interest in your current studies – what particular topics have made an impression on you?
  • Any other interests/hobbies/experiences you wish to mention that are relevant either to the subject or 'going to uni'. Don't just list your hobbies, you need to be very selective and state clearly what difference doing these things has made to you.
  • Plans for a gap year if you’re deferring entry.

Read more: 6 steps you need to take to apply to university

3. Be bold about your achievements

Don't be bashful about your achievements; that’s not going to help you get into uni. It's time to unleash your inner Muhammed Ali and get all “I am the greatest” with your writing. Do keep it focused and accurate. Do keep your language professional. But don’t hide your qualities beneath a layer of false modesty. Your personal statement is a sell – you are selling yourself as a brilliant student and you need to show the reader why that is true. This doesn’t come naturally to everyone, and if you’re finding it difficult to write about how great you are it’s time to enlist some help. Round up a friend or two, a family member, a teacher, whoever and get them to write down your qualities. Getting someone else’s view here can help you get some perspective. Don’t be shy. You are selling your skills, your experience and your enthusiasm – make sure they all leap off the screen with the way you have described them.

  • Read more: the ten biggest mistakes when writing your personal statement  

4. How to start your personal statement

Type your personal statement in a cloud-based word processing program, such as Google Docs or Microsoft Word and don’t copy and paste it into Ucas Hub until it’s finished.  One of the benefits of doing it this way is that you can run spell check easily. (Please note, though, that Word adds "curly" quotation marks and other characters (like é or ü) that won't show up on your Ucas form, so do proofread it on Ucas Hub before submitting it to ensure it is how you typed it.)  Another big benefit is that you'll always have a backup of what you've written. If you're being super careful, you could always save your statement in another place as well. Bear in mind that extra spaces (eg adding spaces to the beginnings of paragraphs as indentation) are removed on Ucas. In your first sentence, cut to the chase. Why do you want to do the course? Don’t waste any time rambling on about the daydreams you had when you were five. Just be clear and concise – describe in one line why this course is so important to you. Then, in the rest of your intro, go into more detail in demonstrating your enthusiasm for the course and explaining how you decided this is what you want to do for the next three or more years. However you choose to start your statement, just avoid the following hoary old chestnuts. These have been some of the most used lines in personal statements over the years – they are beyond cliche, so don’t even think about it.

  • From a young age I have (always) been [interested in/fascinated by]…
  • For as long as I can remember, I have…
  • I am applying for this course because… 
  • I have always been interested in… 
  • Throughout my life I have always enjoyed… 
  • Reflecting on my educational experiences… 
  • [Subject] is a very challenging and demanding [career/profession/course]… 
  • Academically, I have always been… 
  • I have always wanted to pursue a career in… 
  • I have always been passionate about…   

5. Focus your writing on why you've chosen that subject

So you’ve got your intro done – time to nail the rest of it. Bear in mind that you’ve got to be a little bit careful when following a personal statement template. It’s easy to fall into the trap of copying someone else’s style, and in the process lose all of your own voice and personality from your writing. But there is a rough order that you can follow, which should help keep you in your flow. After your opening paragraph or two, get into any work experience (if you’ve got it). Talk about extracurriculars: anything you've done which is relevant to the subject can go here – hobbies, interests, volunteering. Touch on your career aspirations – where do you want this course to take you? Next, show your enthusiasm for your current studies. Cite some specific examples of current work that you enjoyed. Show off your relevant skills and qualities by explaining how you’ve used these in the past. Make sure you’re giving real-world examples here, not just vague assertions like “I’m really organised and motivated”. Try to use examples that are relevant.   Follow this up with something about you as a person. Talk about non-academic stuff that you like to do, but link it in some way with the course, or with how it shows your maturity for dealing with uni life. Round it all off by bringing your main points together, including a final emphasis of your commitment to studying this particular course.

  • Read more: how to write your personal statement in an evening  

6. How long should a personal statement be?

You've got to work to a very specific limit when writing your personal statement. In theory you could use up to 4,000 characters – but you’re probably more likely to be limited by the line count. That's because it's a good idea to put line breaks in between your paragraphs (to make it more readable) and you only get a maximum of 47 lines. With this in mind, 3,500 characters is a more realistic limit. But when you’re getting started you should ignore these limits completely. At first, you just want to get down everything that you feel is important. You'll probably end up with something that is far too long, but that's fine. This is where you get to do some polishing and pruning. Keep the focus of your piece on the course you’re applying for, why you want to do it and why you’re perfectly suited to it. Look through what you’ve written so far – have you got the balance right? Chop out anything that goes on a bit, as you want each point to be snappy and succinct.

  • Read more: universities reveal all about personal statements  

7. Keep it simple

8. Smart ways to end your personal statement

Writing a closing line that you’re happy with can feel as tricky as coming up with your opener. What you’re looking for here is a sign-off that is bold and memorable. The final couple of sentences in your statement give you the opportunity to emphasise all the good stuff you’ve already covered. Use this space to leave the reader in no doubt as to what an excellent addition you would be to their university. Pull together all your key points and – most importantly – address the central question that your personal statement should answer: why should you get a place on the course?

  • Read more: universities explain how to end your personal statement with a bang  

9. Make sure your personal statement has no mistakes

Now you’ve got a personal statement you’re happy with, you need to make sure there are no mistakes. Check it, check it a second time, then check it again. Once you’ve done that, get someone else to check it, too. You will be doing yourself a massive disservice if you send through a personal statement with spelling and/or grammatical errors. You’ve got months to put this together so there really is no excuse for sending through something that looks like a rush job. Ask your teachers to look at it, and be prepared to accept their feedback without getting defensive. They will have seen many personal statements before; use what they tell you to make yours even better. You’ve also got another chance here to look through the content of your personal statement, so you can make sure the balance is right. Make sure your focus is very clearly on the subject you are applying for and why you want to study it. Don’t post your personal statement on the internet or social media where anyone can see it. You will get picked up by the Ucas plagiarism checker. Similarly, don't copy any that you find online. Instead, now is a good time to make your parents feel useful. Read your personal statement out to them and get them to give you feedback. Or try printing it out and mixing it up with a few others (you can find sample personal statements on The Student Room). Get them to read them all and then try to pick yours out. If they can't, perhaps there's not enough of your personality in there.  

10. Don't think about your personal statement for a whole week

If you followed the advice at the very start of this guide, you’ve started your personal statement early. Good job! There are months before you need to submit it. Use one of these weeks to forget about your personal statement completely. Get on with other things – anything you like. Just don’t go near your statement. Give it a whole week and then open up the document again and read through it with fresh eyes. You’ll gain a whole new perspective on what you’ve written and will be well placed to make more changes, if needed.

  • Read more: how to write your personal statement when you have nothing interesting to say  

10 steps to your ideal personal statement

In summary, here are the ten steps you should follow to create the perfect personal statement.  

Personal statement dos and don'ts

  • Remember that your personal statement is your personal statement, not an article written about your intended field of study. It should tell the reader about you, not about the subject.
  • Only put in things that you’re prepared to talk about at the interviews.
  • Give convincing reasons for why you want to study the course – more than just "enjoying the subject" (this should be a given).
  • For very competitive courses, find out as much as you can about the nature of the course and try to make your personal statement relevant to this.
  • Be reflective. If you make a point like 'I like reading', 'I travelled abroad', say what you got from it.
  • Go through the whole thing checking your grammar and your spelling. Do this at least twice. It doesn’t matter if you’re not applying to an essay-based course – a personal statement riddled with spelling mistakes is just going to irritate the reader, which is the last thing you want to do. If this is something you find difficult then have someone look over it for you.
  • Leave blank lines between your paragraphs. It’s easier for the reader to get through your personal statement when it’s broken into easily digestible chunks. Remember that they’re going to be reading a lot of these! Make yours easy to get through.
  • Get someone else's opinion on your statement. Read it out to family or friends. Share it with your teacher. Look for feedback wherever you can find it, then act upon it.
  • Don’t write it like a letter. Kicking off with a greeting such as "Dear Sir/Madam" not only looks weird, it also wastes precious space.
  • Don’t make jokes. This is simply not the time – save them for your first night in the union.
  • Don’t criticise your current school or college or try to blame teachers for any disappointing grades you might have got.
  • Be afraid of details – if you want your PS to be personal to you that means explaining exactly which bits of work or topics or activities you've taken part in/enjoyed. It's much more compelling to read about one or two detailed examples than a paragraph that brushes over five or six.
  • Just list what you're doing now. You should pull out the experiences that are relevant to the courses which you're applying to.
  • Mention skills and activities without giving examples of when they have been demonstrated by you or what you learnt from them. Anyone can write "I have great leadership skills" in a PS, actually using a sentence to explain when you demonstrated good leadership skills is much rarer and more valuable.
  • Refer to experiences that took place before your GCSEs (or equivalent).
  • Give explanations about medical or mental health problems. These should be explained in your reference, not your PS.
  • Apply for too many different courses, making it difficult to write a convincing personal statement which supports the application.
  • Write a statement specific to just one institution, unless you're only applying to that one choice.
  • Copy and paste the statement from somewhere else! This means do not plagiarise. All statements are automatically checked for plagiarism by Ucas. Those that are highlighted by the computer system are checked manually by Ucas staff. If you’re found to have plagiarised parts of your statement, the universities you apply to will be informed and it could jeopardise your applications.
  • Use ChatGPT or another AI program to write your personal statement for you. Or, if you do, make sure you thoroughly edit and personalise the text so it's truly yours. Otherwise you're very much at risk of the plagiarism point above.

You may want to look at these...

How to write your university application.

Tips for writing your university application, including deadlines and personal statements

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How long does it take for universities to reply to your application?

It might feel like it's taking forever for your uni offers to come through. Find out what's going on, and when you should hear back

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  • How to Write Your Personal Statement | Strategies & Examples

How to Write Your Personal Statement | Strategies & Examples

Published on February 12, 2019 by Shona McCombes . Revised on July 3, 2023.

A personal statement is a short essay of around 500–1,000 words, in which you tell a compelling story about who you are, what drives you, and why you’re applying.

To write a successful personal statement for a graduate school application , don’t just summarize your experience; instead, craft a focused narrative in your own voice. Aim to demonstrate three things:

  • Your personality: what are your interests, values, and motivations?
  • Your talents: what can you bring to the program?
  • Your goals: what do you hope the program will do for you?

This article guides you through some winning strategies to build a strong, well-structured personal statement for a master’s or PhD application. You can download the full examples below.

Urban Planning Psychology History

Table of contents

Getting started with your personal statement, the introduction: start with an attention-grabbing opening, the main body: craft your narrative, the conclusion: look ahead, revising, editing, and proofreading your personal statement, frequently asked questions, other interesting articles.

Before you start writing, the first step is to understand exactly what’s expected of you. If the application gives you a question or prompt for your personal statement, the most important thing is to respond to it directly.

For example, you might be asked to focus on the development of your personal identity; challenges you have faced in your life; or your career motivations. This will shape your focus and emphasis—but you still need to find your own unique approach to answering it.

There’s no universal template for a personal statement; it’s your chance to be creative and let your own voice shine through. But there are strategies you can use to build a compelling, well-structured story.

The first paragraph of your personal statement should set the tone and lead smoothly into the story you want to tell.

Strategy 1: Open with a concrete scene

An effective way to catch the reader’s attention is to set up a scene that illustrates something about your character and interests. If you’re stuck, try thinking about:

  • A personal experience that changed your perspective
  • A story from your family’s history
  • A memorable teacher or learning experience
  • An unusual or unexpected encounter

To write an effective scene, try to go beyond straightforward description; start with an intriguing sentence that pulls the reader in, and give concrete details to create a convincing atmosphere.

Strategy 2: Open with your motivations

To emphasize your enthusiasm and commitment, you can start by explaining your interest in the subject you want to study or the career path you want to follow.

Just stating that it interests you isn’t enough: first, you need to figure out why you’re interested in this field:

  • Is it a longstanding passion or a recent discovery?
  • Does it come naturally or have you had to work hard at it?
  • How does it fit into the rest of your life?
  • What do you think it contributes to society?

Tips for the introduction

  • Don’t start on a cliche: avoid phrases like “Ever since I was a child…” or “For as long as I can remember…”
  • Do save the introduction for last. If you’re struggling to come up with a strong opening, leave it aside, and note down any interesting ideas that occur to you as you write the rest of the personal statement.

Once you’ve set up the main themes of your personal statement, you’ll delve into more detail about your experiences and motivations.

To structure the body of your personal statement, there are various strategies you can use.

Strategy 1: Describe your development over time

One of the simplest strategies is to give a chronological overview of key experiences that have led you to apply for graduate school.

  • What first sparked your interest in the field?
  • Which classes, assignments, classmates, internships, or other activities helped you develop your knowledge and skills?
  • Where do you want to go next? How does this program fit into your future plans?

Don’t try to include absolutely everything you’ve done—pick out highlights that are relevant to your application. Aim to craft a compelling narrative that shows how you’ve changed and actively developed yourself.

My interest in psychology was first sparked early in my high school career. Though somewhat scientifically inclined, I found that what interested me most was not the equations we learned about in physics and chemistry, but the motivations and perceptions of my fellow students, and the subtle social dynamics that I observed inside and outside the classroom. I wanted to learn how our identities, beliefs, and behaviours are shaped through our interactions with others, so I decided to major in Social Psychology. My undergraduate studies deepened my understanding of, and fascination with, the interplay between an individual mind and its social context.During my studies, I acquired a solid foundation of knowledge about concepts like social influence and group dynamics, but I also took classes on various topics not strictly related to my major. I was particularly interested in how other fields intersect with psychology—the classes I took on media studies, biology, and literature all enhanced my understanding of psychological concepts by providing different lenses through which to look at the issues involved.

Strategy 2: Own your challenges and obstacles

If your path to graduate school hasn’t been easy or straightforward, you can turn this into a strength, and structure your personal statement as a story of overcoming obstacles.

  • Is your social, cultural or economic background underrepresented in the field? Show how your experiences will contribute a unique perspective.
  • Do you have gaps in your resume or lower-than-ideal grades? Explain the challenges you faced and how you dealt with them.

Don’t focus too heavily on negatives, but use them to highlight your positive qualities. Resilience, resourcefulness and perseverance make you a promising graduate school candidate.

Growing up working class, urban decay becomes depressingly familiar. The sight of a row of abandoned houses does not surprise me, but it continues to bother me. Since high school, I have been determined to pursue a career in urban planning. While people of my background experience the consequences of urban planning decisions first-hand, we are underrepresented in the field itself. Ironically, given my motivation, my economic background has made my studies challenging. I was fortunate enough to be awarded a scholarship for my undergraduate studies, but after graduation I took jobs in unrelated fields to help support my parents. In the three years since, I have not lost my ambition. Now I am keen to resume my studies, and I believe I can bring an invaluable perspective to the table: that of the people most impacted by the decisions of urban planners.

Strategy 3: Demonstrate your knowledge of the field

Especially if you’re applying for a PhD or another research-focused program, it’s a good idea to show your familiarity with the subject and the department. Your personal statement can focus on the area you want to specialize in and reflect on why it matters to you.

  • Reflect on the topics or themes that you’ve focused on in your studies. What draws you to them?
  • Discuss any academic achievements, influential teachers, or other highlights of your education.
  • Talk about the questions you’d like to explore in your research and why you think they’re important.

The personal statement isn’t a research proposal , so don’t go overboard on detail—but it’s a great opportunity to show your enthusiasm for the field and your capacity for original thinking.

In applying for this research program, my intention is to build on the multidisciplinary approach I have taken in my studies so far, combining knowledge from disparate fields of study to better understand psychological concepts and issues. The Media Psychology program stands out to me as the perfect environment for this kind of research, given its researchers’ openness to collaboration across diverse fields. I am impressed by the department’s innovative interdisciplinary projects that focus on the shifting landscape of media and technology, and I hope that my own work can follow a similarly trailblazing approach. More specifically, I want to develop my understanding of the intersection of psychology and media studies, and explore how media psychology theories and methods might be applied to neurodivergent minds. I am interested not only in media psychology but also in psychological disorders, and how the two interact. This is something I touched on during my undergraduate studies and that I’m excited to delve into further.

Strategy 4: Discuss your professional ambitions

Especially if you’re applying for a more professionally-oriented program (such as an MBA), it’s a good idea to focus on concrete goals and how the program will help you achieve them.

  • If your career is just getting started, show how your character is suited to the field, and explain how graduate school will help you develop your talents.
  • If you have already worked in the profession, show what you’ve achieved so far, and explain how the program will allow you to take the next step.
  • If you are planning a career change, explain what has driven this decision and how your existing experience will help you succeed.

Don’t just state the position you want to achieve. You should demonstrate that you’ve put plenty of thought into your career plans and show why you’re well-suited to this profession.

One thing that fascinated me about the field during my undergraduate studies was the sheer number of different elements whose interactions constitute a person’s experience of an urban environment. Any number of factors could transform the scene I described at the beginning: What if there were no bus route? Better community outreach in the neighborhood? Worse law enforcement? More or fewer jobs available in the area? Some of these factors are out of the hands of an urban planner, but without taking them all into consideration, the planner has an incomplete picture of their task. Through further study I hope to develop my understanding of how these disparate elements combine and interact to create the urban environment. I am interested in the social, psychological and political effects our surroundings have on our lives. My studies will allow me to work on projects directly affecting the kinds of working-class urban communities I know well. I believe I can bring my own experiences, as well as my education, to bear upon the problem of improving infrastructure and quality of life in these communities.

Tips for the main body

  • Don’t rehash your resume by trying to summarize everything you’ve done so far; the personal statement isn’t about listing your academic or professional experience, but about reflecting, evaluating, and relating it to broader themes.
  • Do make your statements into stories: Instead of saying you’re hard-working and self-motivated, write about your internship where you took the initiative to start a new project. Instead of saying you’ve always loved reading, reflect on a novel or poem that changed your perspective.

Your conclusion should bring the focus back to the program and what you hope to get out of it, whether that’s developing practical skills, exploring intellectual questions, or both.

Emphasize the fit with your specific interests, showing why this program would be the best way to achieve your aims.

Strategy 1: What do you want to know?

If you’re applying for a more academic or research-focused program, end on a note of curiosity: what do you hope to learn, and why do you think this is the best place to learn it?

If there are specific classes or faculty members that you’re excited to learn from, this is the place to express your enthusiasm.

Strategy 2: What do you want to do?

If you’re applying for a program that focuses more on professional training, your conclusion can look to your career aspirations: what role do you want to play in society, and why is this program the best choice to help you get there?

Tips for the conclusion

  • Don’t summarize what you’ve already said. You have limited space in a personal statement, so use it wisely!
  • Do think bigger than yourself: try to express how your individual aspirations relate to your local community, your academic field, or society more broadly. It’s not just about what you’ll get out of graduate school, but about what you’ll be able to give back.

You’ll be expected to do a lot of writing in graduate school, so make a good first impression: leave yourself plenty of time to revise and polish the text.

Your style doesn’t have to be as formal as other kinds of academic writing, but it should be clear, direct and coherent. Make sure that each paragraph flows smoothly from the last, using topic sentences and transitions to create clear connections between each part.

Don’t be afraid to rewrite and restructure as much as necessary. Since you have a lot of freedom in the structure of a personal statement, you can experiment and move information around to see what works best.

Finally, it’s essential to carefully proofread your personal statement and fix any language errors. Before you submit your application, consider investing in professional personal statement editing . For $150, you have the peace of mind that your personal statement is grammatically correct, strong in term of your arguments, and free of awkward mistakes.

A statement of purpose is usually more formal, focusing on your academic or professional goals. It shouldn’t include anything that isn’t directly relevant to the application.

A personal statement can often be more creative. It might tell a story that isn’t directly related to the application, but that shows something about your personality, values, and motivations.

However, both types of document have the same overall goal: to demonstrate your potential as a graduate student and s how why you’re a great match for the program.

The typical length of a personal statement for graduate school applications is between 500 and 1,000 words.

Different programs have different requirements, so always check if there’s a minimum or maximum length and stick to the guidelines. If there is no recommended word count, aim for no more than 1-2 pages.

If you’re applying to multiple graduate school programs, you should tailor your personal statement to each application.

Some applications provide a prompt or question. In this case, you might have to write a new personal statement from scratch: the most important task is to respond to what you have been asked.

If there’s no prompt or guidelines, you can re-use the same idea for your personal statement – but change the details wherever relevant, making sure to emphasize why you’re applying to this specific program.

If the application also includes other essays, such as a statement of purpose , you might have to revise your personal statement to avoid repeating the same information.

If you want to know more about college essays , academic writing , and AI tools , make sure to check out some of our other language articles with explanations, examples, and quizzes.

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  • Personal Finance

Personal Financial Statement: Definition, Uses, and Example

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What Is a Personal Financial Statement?

The term personal financial statement refers to a document or spreadsheet that outlines an individual's financial position at a given point in time. The statement typically includes general information about the individual, such as name and address, along with a breakdown of total assets and liabilities . The statement can help individuals track their financial goals and wealth, and can be used when they apply for credit .

Key Takeaways

  • A personal financial statement lists all assets and liabilities of an individual or couple.
  • An individual's net worth is determined by subtracting their liabilities from their assets—a positive net worth shows more assets than liabilities.
  • Net worth can fluctuate over time as the values of assets and liabilities change.
  • Personal financial statements are helpful for tracking wealth and goals, as well as applying for credit.
  • Although they may be included in a personal financial statement, income and expenses are generally placed on a separate sheet called the income statement.

Understanding the Personal Financial Statement

Financial statements can be prepared for either companies or individuals. An individual’s financial statement is referred to as a personal financial statement and is a simpler version of corporate statements . Both are tools that can show the financial health of the subject.

A personal financial statement shows the individual's net worth —their assets minus their liabilities—which reflects what that person has in cash if they sell all their assets and pay off all their debts. If their liabilities are greater than their assets, the financial statement indicates a negative net worth. If the individual has more assets than liabilities, they end up with a positive net worth.

Keeping an updated personal financial statement allows an individual to track how their financial health improves or deteriorates over time. These can be invaluable tools when consumers want to change their financial situation or apply for credit such as a loan or a mortgage . Knowing where they stand financially allows consumers to avoid unnecessary inquiries on their credit reports and the hassles of declined credit applications.

The statement allows also credit officers to easily gain perspective into the applicant's financial situation in order to make an informed credit decision. In many cases, the individual or couple may be asked to provide a personal guarantee for part of the loan or they may be required to put up collateral to secure the loan.

Special Considerations

A personal financial statement is broken down into assets and liabilities. Assets include the value of securities and funds held in checking or savings accounts , retirement account balances, trading accounts , and real estate. Liabilities include any debts the individual may have including personal loans, credit cards, student loans, unpaid taxes , and mortgages. Debts that are jointly owned are also included. Married couples may create joint personal financial statements by combining their assets and liabilities.

Income and expenses are also included if the statement is used to attain credit or to show someone's overall financial position. This can be tracked on a separate sheet or an addendum, called the income statement . This includes all forms of income and expenses—typically expressed in the form of monthly or yearly amounts.

The following items are not included in a personal financial statement:

  • Business-related assets and liabilities: These are excluded unless the individual is directly and personally responsible. So if someone personally guarantees a loan for their business—similar to cosigning —the loan is included in their personal financial statement.
  • Rented items: Anything rented is not included in personal financial statements because the assets aren't owned. This changes if you own the property and rent it out to someone else. In this case, the value of the property is included in your asset list.
  • Personal property: Items such as furniture and household goods are typically not included as assets on a personal balance sheet because these items can’t easily be sold to pay off a loan. Personal property with significant value, such as jewelry and antiques, may be included if their value can be verified with an appraisal .

Business liabilities are only included in a personal financial statement if an individual provides the creditor with a personal guarantee.

Keep in mind. Your credit report and credit history are big considerations when it comes to getting new credit and every lender has different requirements for issuing credit. So, even if you have a positive net worth—more assets than liabilities—you may still be refused a loan or credit card if you haven't paid your previous debts on time or have too many inquiries on file.

Example of a Personal Financial Statement

Let's assume that River wants to track their net worth as they move toward retirement . They have been paying off debts, saving money, investing , and are getting closer to owning their home. Each year, they update the statement to see the progress they have made.

Here's how they would break it down. They would list all their assets—$20,000 for a car, $200,000 for their house, $300,000 in investments, and $50,000 in cash and equivalents . They also own some highly collectible stamps and art valued at $20,000 that they can list. Their total assets are, therefore, $590,000. As for liabilities, River owes $5,000 on the car and $50,000 for their house. Although River makes all of their purchases with a credit card, they pay the balance off each month and never carry a balance. River cosigned a loan for their daughter and $10,000 remains on that. Even though it is not River's loan, they are still responsible, so it is included in the statement. River's liabilities are $65,000.

When we subtract their liabilities from their assets, River's net worth is $525,000. Although they use it mainly to track their financial health, River can use this information—and the statement as a whole—if they want to apply for any other credit.

Small Business Administration. “ Personal Financial Statement .” Pages 2-3.

Experian. “ What Happens If Your Loan Is Denied? ”

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How to Write a Strong Personal Statement

  • Ruth Gotian
  • Ushma S. Neill

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A few adjustments can get your application noticed.

Whether applying for a summer internship, a professional development opportunity, such as a Fulbright, an executive MBA program, or a senior leadership development course, a personal statement threads the ideas of your CV, and is longer and has a different tone and purpose than a traditional cover letter. A few adjustments to your personal statement can get your application noticed by the reviewer.

  • Make sure you’re writing what they want to hear. Most organizations that offer a fellowship or internship are using the experience as a pipeline: It’s smart to spend 10 weeks and $15,000 on someone before committing five years and $300,000. Rarely are the organizations being charitable or altruistic, so align your stated goals with theirs
  • Know when to bury the lead, and when to get to the point. It’s hard to paint a picture and explain your motivations in 200 words, but if you have two pages, give the reader a story arc or ease into your point by setting the scene.
  • Recognize that the reviewer will be reading your statement subjectively, meaning you’re being assessed on unknowable criteria. Most people on evaluation committees are reading for whether or not you’re interesting. Stated differently, do they want to go out to dinner with you to hear more? Write it so that the person reading it wants to hear more.
  • Address the elephant in the room (if there is one). Maybe your grades weren’t great in core courses, or perhaps you’ve never worked in the field you’re applying to. Make sure to address the deficiency rather than hoping the reader ignores it because they won’t. A few sentences suffice. Deficiencies do not need to be the cornerstone of the application.

At multiple points in your life, you will need to take action to transition from where you are to where you want to be. This process is layered and time-consuming, and getting yourself to stand out among the masses is an arduous but not impossible task. Having a polished resume that explains what you’ve done is the common first step. But, when an application asks for it, a personal statement can add color and depth to your list of accomplishments. It moves you from a one-dimensional indistinguishable candidate to someone with drive, interest, and nuance.

personal statement for account

  • Ruth Gotian is the chief learning officer and associate professor of education in anesthesiology at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City, and the author of The Success Factor and Financial Times Guide to Mentoring . She was named the #1 emerging management thinker by Thinkers50. You can access her free list of conversation starters and test your mentoring impact . RuthGotian
  • Ushma S. Neill is the Vice President, Scientific Education & Training at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. She runs several summer internships and is involved with the NYC Marshall Scholar Selection Committee. ushmaneill

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Social Security

Frequently asked questions, how can i get a social security statement.

You can get your Social Security Statement ( Statement ) online by using your personal my Social Security account. Your online Statement gives you secure and convenient access to estimates for retirement, disability, and survivors benefits you and your family may be eligible for. It also shows your current earnings record and history. If you do not have a personal my Social Security account, you can easily create one at www.ssa.gov/myaccount .

If you have not created a personal my Social Security account and do not receive Social Security benefits, we will mail a paper Statement to you 3 months before your 60th birthday. If you don’t want to wait for your scheduled mailing you can request your Statement by following these instructions . The Statement will arrive by mail in 4 to 6 weeks.

For more information visit the Get Your Social Security Statement webpage.

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How to open a checking account: a step-by-step guide.

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A checking account is typically used for everyday transactions and purchases. With a checking account , you can deposit and withdraw money (either through the bank or an ATM ), write checks , pay bills , and make purchases with a debit card .

There are different types of checking accounts to consider when deciding which is right for you, so it’s important to understand the benefits of each. When you’re ready, opening a checking account can be relatively easy if you’re prepared with the right information and documentation.

What do I need to open a checking account? 

There are a few documents you will need to open a checking account whether it is online or in-person. Banks and other financial institutions may have different requirements for opening a bank account. If you are a U.S. citizen or non-U.S. citizen residing in the U.S., here’s a list of a few documents you may need to open your account. However, check with your financial institution to determine what documents you will need.

  • U.S. government issued photo ID, driver's license or state ID
  • Social security card or individual taxpayer identification card
  • Passport with photo
  • Birth certificate (minors only)
  • Utility bill,  bank statement or credit card statement with name and address
  • Employer pay stub or pay check with name and address
  • Mortgage or lease documents
  • ACH transfer
  • Application.  To open a checking account you will likely need to complete an application for approval either in-person or online.

What to consider before opening a checking account

Before you apply for a checking account, it’s important to know the potential upsides and downsides of different types of accounts. This may help you decide which account is right for you. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Checking account perks.  Premium checking accounts may offer perks you'd typically have to pay for, such as checks, official checks, money orders, waived out-of-network ATM fees or a no fee safe deposit box, if offered by your bank. Rewards checking accounts allow you to earn points or cash back through purchases with your debit card.
  • Service and ATM fees.  Depending on the account, you may have to pay monthly service or maintenance fees. There may be options to waive the monthly service or maintenance fee if you meet certain requirements. Other fees such as out-of-network ATM fees or overdraft fees and other miscellaneous fees may apply.
  • Fund access.  The benefit to checking accounts is that you can access your funds through a debit card or checks. However, because some checking accounts have minimum balance requirements to waive the monthly service fee, consider how important it is for you to have access to all your funds on demand.
  • In-person vs. online.  Some checking accounts through traditional banks give you access to brick-and-mortar locations you can visit for assistance, account management and transactions. Others, like online or checkless accounts, are online only. Weigh whether it’s important to have access to a real person vs. conducting all of your needs online or over the phone.

You should also consider the different  types of checking accounts . Whether it be student checking , college checking, or a traditional checking account, each plays an important role when it comes to managing your finances .

Checking account features to look out for

In addition to checking account requirements, there are a few steps to take to open your account and get it all set up. Because there are several types of checking accounts available depending on your financial goals , it’s important to do research and compare your options before choosing one.

First, think about which services, perks, and checking account features are important to you—and which aren’t. Also consider potential downsides like monthly service fees, withdrawal fees, and minimum deposit requirements. 

Where to get a checking account

Another consideration is having an account through a traditional bank, a credit union, or an online bank. Think about whether having an in-person place to go is a requirement for you, or if you are comfortable managing your account completely online.

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What to read next

Banking basics a guide to opening a checking account online.

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Open a checking account online today by selecting the one that best fits your needs and follow these steps to opening a checking account online.

banking basics How to deposit a check online

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You can deposit a check online using a mobile device. Learn more about the preliminary steps to take before doing so, and how depositing a check online works.

banking basics Stop payment: How does it work?

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A stop payment stops a check or other payment types from processing in the case of any errors or fraud. Learn how a stop payment may protect account holders.

banking basics What do you need to open a bank account?

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Find out more about bank's specific eligibility requirements when opening a new bank account. Make sure you have the needed documentation in order to open a bank account.

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Understand, get, and improve your credit score

Learn how to get your credit score, how it is calculated, and what you can do to improve it.

What is a credit score?

A credit score is a number that creditors use to determine your credit behavior, including how likely you are to make payments on a loan.

Having a high credit score can make it easier to get a loan, rent an apartment, or lower your insurance rate. Learn how to get your credit score, how it is calculated, and what you can do to improve it.

How to get your credit score

There are four main ways to get your credit score:

  • Check your credit or loan statements.
  • Talk to a credit or housing counselor.
  • Find a credit score service. 
  • Buy your score from one of the three major credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion.

Learn more from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) about each method of obtaining your credit score.

How your credit score is calculated

The three major credit reporting agencies create credit reports which include a history of your credit, loans, and other financial information. These credit reports are used to calculate your credit score.

The information from your credit report that affects your score includes:

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Ways to improve your credit score

Your credit history directly affects your credit score. If you want to improve your score, there are some things you can do, including:

  • Paying your loans on time
  • Not getting too close to your credit limit
  • Having a long credit history
  • Making sure your credit report doesn’t have errors

Learn more about improving your credit score and what you can do to fix errors on your credit report .

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Accounting and finance personal statement example 18.

When thinking of how much power polymer notes hold, it was normal for a child like myself to ask, 'What is money?'. Looking back the answer was obvious. The literal meaning might be 'a medium of exchange' but I simply see it as 'to sustain'. I came to my interpretation of money through a trip to my motherland, Ghana.

For years, Ghana has experienced severe electricity supply challenges due to the economic crisis that led to the scarcity of consumers' payments. The frequent lack of electricity during my time there, impacted my daily activities. Although this was a short stay, having to come up with solutions everyday was frustrating, but it also made me think about the people who go through it every day.

This made me acknowledge the importance of business strategy and investment management. The ability of the Ghanaian government to come up with solutions for their monetary purposes is what inspired me to choose Accounting and Finance.

Studying A-Level Accounting has re-enforced the idea of wanting a to pursue a career in Accounting and Finance. I really enjoyed learning about suspense accounts due to their ability to give clarity to transaction errors along with doubtful entries. I believe that my further comprehension of basic accounting principles, shows transferable academic skills such as communication and debate. Heartland Payment Systems data breach in 2008 was the debate topic that questioned whether businesses should modernise their accounting records or not.

As a student of Business, A-level, I discovered how to form a profitable organisation through conducting internal and external analysis and judge financial performances. Learning about the techniques used in strategic analysis enabled me to assess the strategic position of a business, which is also one of the key components of a business' approach to become financially stable, and it’s something that’s vital to know for the work done in Accounting and Finance.

Studying Spanish and Italian, helped to improve my overall understanding and enhanced my knowledge on Spain's cultures and traditions along with both countries political and economic issues which were covered in the course. The courses brought various skills such as interpreting skills gained via translation and understating the link between ideas, acquired through linking topics of the course like financial impacts of tourism in Spain to employment.

The EPQ was an opportunity of fulfilling my curiosity gained from crime documentaries and series. Their cases are inhumane. This stimulated an interest to investigate an understanding of morality and the human brain distinctions. My independent study and time management skills have all come from the commitment and dedication I have put throughout the project, which shows traits that will support me in higher education.

When volunteering to the British Heart Foundation as a cashier, I realised the deeper sentiment of customer service. The existence of Gift Aid which I promoted when taking donations, is for charities to have extra money from HRMC but only if the donator pays tax. This gave me a broader understanding of the different types of businesses. To be more involved in the world of music, I learned guitar. I now play in my free time and I'm able to play complex pieces of music like 'Tears in Heaven' by Eric Clapton and thanks to joining a band, I played in a concert at the Staller Hall in Manchester in front of hundreds of spectators.

I’m eager to enhance my skills and I believe that my maturity, persistence, and curiosity are traits that will support me throughout the journey at university.

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Introducing Microsoft 365 Copilot – your copilot for work

Mar 16, 2023 | Jared Spataro - CVP, AI at Work

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Screenshot Microsoft 365 Copilot

Humans are hard-wired to dream, to create, to innovate. Each of us seeks to do work that gives us purpose — to write a great novel, to make a discovery, to build strong communities, to care for the sick. The urge to connect to the core of our work lives in all of us. But today, we spend too much time consumed by the drudgery of work on tasks that zap our time, creativity and energy. To reconnect to the soul of our work, we don’t just need a better way of doing the same things. We need a whole new way to work.

Today, we are bringing the power of next-generation AI to work. Introducing Microsoft 365 Copilot — your copilot for work . It combines the power of large language models (LLMs) with your data in the Microsoft Graph and the Microsoft 365 apps to turn your words into the most powerful productivity tool on the planet.

“Today marks the next major step in the evolution of how we interact with computing, which will fundamentally change the way we work and unlock a new wave of productivity growth,” said Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO, Microsoft. “With our new copilot for work, we’re giving people more agency and making technology more accessible through the most universal interface — natural language.”

Copilot is integrated into Microsoft 365 in two ways. It works alongside you, embedded in the Microsoft 365 apps you use every day — Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Teams and more — to unleash creativity, unlock productivity and uplevel skills. Today we’re also announcing an entirely new experience: Business Chat . Business Chat works across the LLM, the Microsoft 365 apps, and your data — your calendar, emails, chats, documents, meetings and contacts — to do things you’ve never been able to do before. You can give it natural language prompts like “Tell my team how we updated the product strategy,” and it will generate a status update based on the morning’s meetings, emails and chat threads.

With Copilot, you’re always in control. You decide what to keep, modify or discard. Now, you can be more creative in Word, more analytical in Excel, more expressive in PowerPoint, more productive in Outlook and more collaborative in Teams.

Microsoft 365 Copilot transforms work in three ways:

Unleash creativity. With Copilot in Word, you can jump-start the creative process so you never start with a blank slate again. Copilot gives you a first draft to edit and iterate on — saving hours in writing, sourcing, and editing time. Sometimes Copilot will be right, other times usefully wrong — but it will always put you further ahead. You’re always in control as the author, driving your unique ideas forward, prompting Copilot to shorten, rewrite or give feedback. Copilot in PowerPoint helps you create beautiful presentations with a simple prompt, adding relevant content from a document you made last week or last year. And with Copilot in Excel, you can analyze trends and create professional-looking data visualizations in seconds.

Unlock productivity. We all want to focus on the 20% of our work that really matters, but 80% of our time is consumed with busywork that bogs us down. Copilot lightens the load. From summarizing long email threads to quickly drafting suggested replies, Copilot in Outlook helps you clear your inbox in minutes, not hours. And every meeting is a productive meeting with Copilot in Teams. It can summarize key discussion points — including who said what and where people are aligned and where they disagree — and suggest action items, all in real time during a meeting. And with Copilot in Power Platform, anyone can automate repetitive tasks, create chatbots and go from idea to working app in minutes.

GitHub data shows that Copilot promises to unlock productivity for everyone. Among developers who use GitHub Copilot, 88% say they are more productive, 74% say that they can focus on more satisfying work, and 77% say it helps them spend less time searching for information or examples.

But Copilot doesn’t just supercharge individual productivity. It creates a new knowledge model for every organization — harnessing the massive reservoir of data and insights that lies largely inaccessible and untapped today. Business Chat works across all your business data and apps to surface the information and insights you need from a sea of data — so knowledge flows freely across the organization, saving you valuable time searching for answers. You will be able to access Business Chat from Microsoft 365.com, from Bing when you’re signed in with your work account, or from Teams.

Uplevel skills. Copilot makes you better at what you’re good at and lets you quickly master what you’ve yet to learn. The average person uses only a handful of commands — such as “animate a slide” or “insert a table” — from the thousands available across Microsoft 365. Now, all that rich functionality is unlocked using just natural language. And this is only the beginning.

Copilot will fundamentally change how people work with AI and how AI works with people. As with any new pattern of work, there’s a learning curve — but those who embrace this new way of working will quickly gain an edge.

Screenshot Microsoft 365 Copilot

The Copilot System: Enterprise-ready AI

Microsoft is uniquely positioned to deliver enterprise-ready AI with the Copilot System . Copilot is more than OpenAI’s ChatGPT embedded into Microsoft 365. It’s a sophisticated processing and orchestration engine working behind the scenes to combine the power of LLMs, including GPT-4, with the Microsoft 365 apps and your business data in the Microsoft Graph — now accessible to everyone through natural language.

Grounded in your business data. AI-powered LLMs are trained on a large but limited corpus of data. The key to unlocking productivity in business lies in connecting LLMs to your business data — in a secure, compliant, privacy-preserving way. Microsoft 365 Copilot has real-time access to both your content and context in the Microsoft Graph. This means it generates answers anchored in your business content — your documents, emails, calendar, chats, meetings, contacts and other business data — and combines them with your working context — the meeting you’re in now, the email exchanges you’ve had on a topic, the chat conversations you had last week — to deliver accurate, relevant, contextual responses.

Built on Microsoft’s comprehensive approach to security, compliance and privacy. Copilot is integrated into Microsoft 365 and automatically inherits all your company’s valuable security, compliance, and privacy policies and processes. Two-factor authentication, compliance boundaries, privacy protections, and more make Copilot the AI solution you can trust.

Architected to protect tenant, group and individual data. We know data leakage is a concern for customers. Copilot LLMs are not trained on your tenant data or your prompts. Within your tenant, our time-tested permissioning model ensures that data won’t leak across user groups. And on an individual level, Copilot presents only data you can access using the same technology that we’ve been using for years to secure customer data.

Integrated into the apps millions use every day. Microsoft 365 Copilot is integrated in the productivity apps millions of people use and rely on every day for work and life — Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Teams and more. An intuitive and consistent user experience ensures it looks, feels and behaves the same way in Teams as it does in Outlook, with a shared design language for prompts, refinements and commands.

Designed to learn new skills.  Microsoft 365 Copilot’s foundational skills are a game changer for productivity: It can already create, summarize, analyze, collaborate and automate using your specific business content and context. But it doesn’t stop there. Copilot knows how to command apps (e.g., “animate this slide”) and work across apps, translating a Word document into a PowerPoint presentation. And Copilot is designed to learn new skills. For example, with Viva Sales, Copilot can learn how to connect to CRM systems of record to pull customer data — like interaction and order histories — into communications. As Copilot learns about new domains and processes, it will be able to perform even more sophisticated tasks and queries.

Committed to building responsibly

At Microsoft, we are guided by our AI principles and Responsible AI Standard and decades of research on AI, grounding and privacy-preserving machine learning. A multidisciplinary team of researchers, engineers and policy experts reviews our AI systems for potential harms and mitigations — refining training data, filtering to limit harmful content, query- and result-blocking sensitive topics, and applying Microsoft technologies like InterpretML and Fairlearn to help detect and correct data bias. We make it clear how the system makes decisions by noting limitations, linking to sources, and prompting users to review, fact-check and adjust content based on subject-matter expertise.

Moving boldly as we learn  

In the months ahead, we’re bringing Copilot to all our productivity apps—Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Teams, Viva, Power Platform, and more. We’ll share more on pricing and licensing soon. Earlier this month we announced Dynamics 365 Copilot as the world’s first AI Copilot in both CRM and ERP to bring the next-generation AI to every line of business.

Everyone deserves to find purpose and meaning in their work — and Microsoft 365 Copilot can help. To serve the unmet needs of our customers, we must move quickly and responsibly, learning as we go. We’re testing Copilot with a small group of customers to get feedback and improve our models as we scale, and we will expand to more soon.

Learn more on the Microsoft 365 blog and visit WorkLab to get expert insights on how AI will create a brighter future of work for everyone.

And for all the blogs, videos and assets related to today’s announcements, please visit our microsite .

Tags: AI , Microsoft 365 , Microsoft 365 Copilot

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