Rock School Exams Ucas Personal Statement

We hope our collection of UCAS Music personal statements provides inspiration for writing your own. Please do not plagiarise them in any way, or UCAS will penalise your application. Our Personal Statement Editing & Review Services are available if you feel you need a little extra help.

If you are applying to university in the USA, please visit Studential.com/us.

My interest in music was well established at the age of 5 when I won a National Composition Competition to compose a song for the Rainbow Guides. I began piano and recorder lessons shortly afterwards and was consequently able to perform with a renaissance ensemble, where I played a variety of renaissance recorders and crumhorns...

From a young age I have been very interested in popular music and It's culture. My interest started at my family gatherings. My older cousins used to bring their instruments with them and play pop songs everyone knew and most times it ended up with everyone jamming and singing along...

Music/Music Technology Personal Statement

Music has always been one of my main interests and passions and I have always strived to learn and develop my skills and understanding of music as much as possible in my free time. It was only recently that I decided to pursue this interest further and study it full-time, academically at university as it is what I truly believe I want to be doing all my life...

Having come from two extremely musical families, music has always been a prominent part of my life. My love for music developed from recording the radio onto cassettes when I was small, to wanting to know everything about how it all worked...

Music Technology Personal Statement

Music is something I feel very passionate about, my experience in various areas of the industry has fed this passion and I am very keen to strive towards a career in this very area. Although being 24 years of age I am pushing myself as far as need be to achieve where I want to be in the future...

Business/Music Personal Statement

I am studying for A levels in Music, Music Technology and Business Studies at the Bournemouth and Poole College of Further Education From a young age I developed an interest in music and music technoloy which led to me playing in school and local bands...

There are many reasons why I want to study music and why I believe that I would make a great asset to the University of Liverpool. The earliest musical memory I have is singing along to ‘Puff The Magic Dragon’ and crying my heart out...

Musical Theatre Personal Statement

For as long as I can remember I have had a very deep passion for Musical Theatre. A passion that was accompanied by a burning ambition to succeed, and even as a small child that ambition was enough to make any sacrifices that were necessary to ensure I would always perform at my best, and since I was about ten years old, small things such as not eating chocolate before a performance, wearing a distasteful, but very warm coat and scarf to prevent catching a cold, and just always taking care of my body and my voice, even if it does mean missing that party that “everyone is going to” and instead holding my head over a bowl of hot water, and inhaling the steam for fifteen minutes! No sacrifice has or will ever be too much...

Music Practise Personal Statement

My interest in music came at a later part of my teens, after a family member who has been in a number music projects and performances with his local church for many years. With his inspiration I started taking interests in many different areas with in the music practise area, such as notation, different playing techniques and styles, and many new genre of music...

Music Personal Statement

I am currently enrolled in St. Andrews University, in my final year of studying Mathematics at honours level. As my Advanced Higher's indicate, I found myself at the end of school with two interests, Mathematics and Music; I saw the former as a convenient skill to pursue, but nearing the end of this degree, one begins to consider life after university...

Academic Music Personal Statement

Like many, my love of music was first cultivated through my love of performing. However, over time I realised that my true interests lie in studying music as an academic discipline. For me, the sheer beauty of music is its ability to communicate emotion...

Music Technology Personal Statement

After building a career in the music industry, albeit at grass roots level, it is now time for me to progress and take the next step on the ladder. This degree will offer me the chance to explore new areas of the industry, specifically composition, Film & TV and the gaming industry, whilst providing a sound base for a variety of job opportunities...

Five years ago, during the last night of the proms and there was a pivotal moment whilst watching the orchestra that changed me forever. Rapidly developing a love for music I realised that the influence exerted by history over music is profound...

Music Personal Statement

My inspiration to study music first came from when my music teacher played passages from different periods of music. I was amazed at how diverse music could be and the range of emotions music could convey...

Sound Design/Music Tech Personal Statement

My interest in music was sparked at an early age, while coming across a biopic of a 50's rock star. The music had energy, feel, and beautiful melodies whilst still being tremendously simple. It instantly grabbed my imagination and from that moment on I was transfixed with music...

From an early age music has been more than a hobby to me. It is a serious passion. I understand the importance of developing my vocal techniques and skills but I also want to have an in-depth knowledge of music and the way in which it has evolved over the years...

Popular Music Personal Statement

An early introduction to music was something I welcomed enthusiastically, not only in primary school (recorder etc), but also outside school. Many of my family being musicians, I was very much brought up amidst musical surroundings...

Contemporary Arts and Music Personal Statement

Like sparkling prisms, contemporary artistic expressions have been significantly arising in multifaceted forms. In fact, we have been constantly under several simultaneous stimuli nowadays and as a result it seems our perception is increasingly getting used to this pattern...

Music Personal Statement

My interest in music came at a fairly early age when I used to love listening to Radio 1 and Classic FM as a toddler but it wasn’t until, after watching my sister and aunty at dance festivals who had been in a number of music projects and performances with dancing schools for many years that I also became involved...

Music and French Personal Statement

What really interests me about music is the process through which one takes the ‘notes on a page’ and forms their own musical meaning; the way an interpretation is influenced by so many different factors...

Music Technology Personal Statement

The practice of using technology to enhance music has been at the heart of the innovations that see the art constantly evolving; both practically and creatively the combination allows us to reach new markets and I see myself as being part of this...

Music & East Asian Studies Personal Statement

Growing up in a family of music lovers, I was accustomed from an early age to different genres ranging from progressive rock to jazz. It was classical music though that gave me the impetus to move on from being a passive listener to actually playing an instrument myself...

Music Personal Statement

Music is an art which can captivate our emotions in a way nothing else can; it can inspire and help us convey thoughts and ideas through a unique medium. The study of how music affects culture and has been developed by history fascinates me...

For students in year 12 it is probably the hardest thing they’ve had to sell: themselves. Blood, sweat, toil and – in many cases – school, parental and financial help goes into writing the Ucas personal statement. But with the cap on student numbers lifted and universities desperate to fill places, will anyone actually read them?

In the past, it was largely admissions tutors working in departments reviewing personal statements. But as applications have increased – some universities get over 45,000 applicants per year – many institutions now employ external “professional selectors” to do the job for them. As a result, although some universities do scrutinise them carefully, many statements won’t even make it through an initial paper sift, according to Paul Teulon, director of admissions at King’s College London. Others are simply looked at for an “overall sense check”.

“My instinct is that they’re probably not being read by teaching staff and I suspect they are being read less and less,” says Steven Jones, researcher in higher education at Manchester Institute of Education. As participation has gone up and many universities have become less selective, he says, the attention paid to personal statements has lessened even further. “Even the more elite universities need to fill places and beneath that level there’s a whole raft that don’t even look at them at all.”

Perhaps a reduced focus on statements would be fairer on students anyway. The 2004 Schwartz Report suggested that personal statements often were not the applicant’s own work, which might tell you more about a candidate’s socio-economic background than their ability. Ucas didn’t accept the report’s recommendation to change the process, even though figures show that the most advantaged applicants are six times more likely to enter a high-tariff institution compared to the most disadvantaged.

Lee Elliot Major, CEO of the Sutton Trust, questions the usefulness of the personal statement. There’s a whole industry built around them, he says, because there’s so much at stake. “Private tutors and former graduates prepare and write them for these young people. You have to look at the system and ask the question: is it fair? I don’t think it is. Ucas should review it.”

Clare Marchant, chief executive of Ucas, said a survey of 118 universities by Ucas in 2016 found that 89% of them used personal statements in their initial decision making.

“Writing a personal statement gives students the opportunity to use their own words to create their own stories about their ambitions and to advocate for what they want,” Marchant said.

Some departments have already changed their admissions policies. “We now use them for 50% of ratings of candidates and I anticipate that will fall in years to come,” explains Simon Atkinson, who interviews medicine, veterinary and dentistry students at the University of Bristol, and thinks that personal statements will eventually not be used in medicine at all. “They’re too unreliable, too easy to get a lot of help with writing, and too easy to write things that aren’t terribly true,” he says.

Independent schools tend to like personal statements because they advantage their own students – and these schools are powerful lobbyists in the higher education sector. But are there any reasons to keep them? The statement arguably helps to inform the overall picture of an applicant. Some students may meanwhile have extenuating reasons for under-performance, and a statement can let universities know about it.

What do universities look for in a personal statement?

In cases where a decision is not clear cut, academics say a strong personal statement can tip the balance in the applicant’s favour. Students might get lower grade offers based on how good their personal statement is. But how often does this actually happen? There is little transparency or consistency in the way they are read. Even within universities, it differs between departments.

As for students submitting applications next week (15 January), best not worry about who’s reading it – just make sure you send it off on time and follow our dos and don’ts.

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