Top 5 Mistakes When Applying for Scholarships

The most commonly made mistakes when students apply for scholarships.


Not all the requirements are met

Prior to submitting your application, make sure you have a complete application with all the required documents. Proofread your application, double check all the dates, and ensure all documents are signed properly. If the scholarship provides a checklist, use it! Submitting an incomplete or faulty application will disqualify you before the judges even get a chance to read it. All your hard work putting it together will be put to waste.


Weak reference letters

Reference letters are very important because they give the scholarship committee a second (or third) person’s opinion on your personality and achievements. They help convince the committee that you are the scholarship winner they are looking for. For more tips on reference letters, refer to “The Do’s and Don’ts of Reference Letters” and the “3P’s”.


Failed to make your application memorable

Scholarship committee can get hundreds or thousands of applicants. You need to make sure you are memorable and can stand out of the crowd. Brainstorm on what could set you apart from others and incorporate that in your scholarship application.


Lacking a key theme

When answering a question, think of a theme and stick with it. Your ideas and examples should all relate back to your main theme for a coherent answer.


Answers are too short or too long

The majority of applications have a word count limit. This may seem simple, but you would be surprised at the number of students who forget about the word count! Use all available writing spaces with solid content. When appropriate, provide examples and elaborate on your ideas. Double check before submitting your application to ensure that you have met the word limit requirement.

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