A nursing essay is one of the documents that you need to present in order to be admitted to a nursing school. It is often considered the most important part of the admission process since this essay is meant to demonstrate your good command of the given field of knowledge, as well as your ability to apply this knowledge in your daily practice. Therefore, if you want to be admitted to a nursing school, it is critical that you perform your best when writing your admission essay. Here are some tips:
BE AWARE OF THE POSSIBLE TOPICS
At some nursing schools, the applicants are allowed to pick the topics for their admission essays themselves. More often, however, this is not the case, and candidates will be handed out topics to write about. Therefore, it only makes sense to be aware of as many of the potential essay topics as possible. You would like to be as prepared as you can be, so you need to be able to show sufficient level of expertise in every topic that you may need to cope with.
You can try and brainstorm all these possible topics yourself, you are also welcome to try and find such sample lists online. Here are a few examples of such topics for you to get the idea:
- Pros and cons of legalizing euthanasia;
- Diagnosing dementia at earliest stages;
- Possible dangers of nursing at home;
- Would you refuse to nurse an offensive patient?
If you get to choose the subject yourself, take care that this is the kind of topic where you can provide an insightful view that you will later be able to implement in your practice. You should mind that your essay’s reader – the committee – are experts in the subject.
Therefore, it is not such a good idea to bombard your reader with facts that they are quite aware of. This will merely reveal you as someone who wants to get a good impression of themselves at any cost. Such impression is hardly ever appealing. Instead, you should focus on your individual approach to the topic and reveal how you relate to it. This is the only sure way to make your application essay truly stand out.
CONDUCT AN EFFECTIVE RESEARCH
Only by performing a quality research can you gather the sufficient basis for writing an excellent admission essay. While researching on a topic, not only do you become more aware of the subject, but you also develop a better understanding thereof, as well as an individual view of the issue.
Online resources are a great source of information – they are accessible and up to date. However, be careful to double-check the facts that you come across online, since – sadly – they are not always trustworthy. Also, they tend to cover specific cases, so they are more helpful when we talk about more narrow and precise topics. When the topic in question is more general, on the other hand, it is extremely useful to refer to more traditional textbook where the information is given in a more generalized way.
As a part of your research, you are also welcome to look through the examples of nursing school admission essays written by successful applicants. These can be found in abundance online. Apart from examples of how nursing essays should be written, it can also be a good idea to look at some of the worse examples – how such essays should not be written. This will give you the idea of which mistakes are the most common and how you can avoid making them.
Mind that nursing school essays are normally required to comply with the MLA format. Therefore, you can sort out the samples that do and discard those that don’t. This will get you more used to the MLA format and save your precious time when you will be finalizing your essay.
CONSIDER THE STRUCTURE OF YOUR ESSAY
When you need to write an essay, just as with other activities, it is quite useful to know beforehand where to begin and what to do next. This is why it is good to structurize your writing process. It will help you stay more focused and avoid writer’s blocks.
Normally, an essay consists of an introduction, main body, and conclusion. This, however, does not mean that you should necessarily begin writing your nursing essay with the introduction. It is a better idea first to organize your the facts and ideas that you have gathered during your research in a comprehensive manner to shape the main body of your essay. In the original draft, remember to list them together with the sources (textbooks, magazine articles, websites, etc.) from which you got them, in case you should need some extra information on this bit. Your task here is to organize the pieces of information into a steady flow so that it was easy for your reader to follow. Avoid being tempted to overload your text with information as an attempt to impress your reader, because instead, you will only make your writing less dynamic and harder to follow, which will have a bad effect on your reader’s final impression upon finishing your essay.
The paragraphs must represent finished small ideas, but at the same time, every previous paragraph should set up a question to be answered in the consequent paragraph. Practical examples are a good way to liven up the text and make it sound more personal. Substantiate your every conclusion and every solution you offer with practical evidence. This is meant to increase your credibility as an expert on the issue, to reveal that you are not just throwing fancy words at the reader, but actually know what you are talking about and know how to apply this knowledge in practice. It is crucial to eliminate any ungrounded opinions, because they are a sign of an amateur, and you don’t want to present yourself as one.
Then you proceed to the introduction. This section is where you set up your research question and present your readership with the expected outcomes. You can also specify the terminology that you are going to use in your essay. The main objective of this section is to prepare your audience for the information that they are about to receive. Therefore, when you are writing your introduction, you should imagine your reader – someone who is aware of the topic but is not quite in line with what you are about to say. Basically, your task here is to bring your reader in line.
Finally, the conclusion of your essay is where you summarize all the data and evidence that you have given in the main body by presenting your reader with the conclusions to which your research has lead you. These should be briefly summarized in the same order in which your thought was flowing as you were on your way to your main conclusion. Make sure not to miss any significant pieces, and, of course, remember to keep it individual – reveal how exactly you have come from your research data to your conclusions.
PERFECT YOUR DRAFT
Once your first draft is complete, you should not immediately jump to editing it into the final version. At this point, you need a break – some time to settle your thoughts in your mind. The recommended interval is one to three days. After that, you will be able to give your draft a fresh look that it desperately needs. Whether you want it or not, you will keep thinking about your topic, and upon returning to you draft, you may come up with new approaches to some details, things you haven’t thought of before.
Your essay will be required to be of a certain amount. You do not need to think about it when preparing the first draft. First, you include all the information that you have gathered, and then you slice off the less relevant and meaningful pieces until you reach the required volume, thus refining the end result. While doing this, make sure that every question that you have put forward in your essay is answered. If a question is not answered (or it get you confused, you are not positive about your expertise on the issue, etc.), consider avoiding such a question altogether.
Use reliable online services or software to check the spelling and grammar. Try to read the text out loud to see how it flows, mark the areas where the flow of the text seems somewhat sloppy and give those areas some serious consideration.
Since the author’s view on his or her work is always biased (we are always our own fiercest critic), it can also be useful to share your essay with someone reliable to get some quality feedback – in terms of both essence and style. Such people should meet two requirements: first, they should be trustworthy – because your essay is your intellectual property, and second, they should have the upper level of expertise in writing. Also, remember that you are not obliged to implement all of their suggestions, feedback should be treated with a healthy dose of criticism.
Very importantly, take care that you begin early so that you had enough time to refine your nursing essay properly. The process of perfecting your essay can last forever, so stick strictly to the timeframe that you have allocated for refining your draft.
PUT THE FINISHING TOUCHES
Once you feel like your nursing essay is what it should be, it is the high time to put it in the required shape. Take care that you follow the formatting instructions from your nursing school. It would be a crying shame to let such small details get in your way. The important details here are the font, spacing, margins, etc. Normally, the required font is Times New Roman 12, the spacing is 1.5 or double, and the margins can be up to 2 cm.
As mentioned before, it is a good idea to use online tools, but they do not necessarily need to be limited to grammar and spellcheck. You can use a keyword density tool to see if some words or phrases repeat too often. If they do – replace them with synonyms to make your text more colorful and pleasant to read.
Consider finding and employing online plagiarism-checking tools to avoid any incidental plagiarism. Because even if plagiarism is not intended, it still counts as such. If you happen to have found some pieces of such unintended plagiarism, it is no reason to get disappointed. It does not mean that you have to start your essay from scratch. You can turn it into your benefit by referencing the works that your plagiarism-checker has found and thus expand your bibliography.
Speaking of your bibliography, make sure that it lists your sources in the required format. The needed format for bibliography should be mentioned in your nursing school’s requirements. There are online tools where you simply input your literature, and it processes the list into the required format.
Some of the online tools are free, others are available by paid subscription. Do not discard the paid ones by default, but consider them also. Their price may be well worth it to make your nursing application essay truly shine.
NEED SOME HELP?
While writing is always a useful skill, it is clearly not essential to the job of a nurse. In other words, writing is not what makes a good nurse. Therefore, if nursing essay requirements and instructions seem somewhat confusing to you, don’t get discouraged. It is always possible to get professional writing help at a reasonable price.
So, if you don’t feel confident about your writing skills or have no time to write your own nursing essay properly, you can always go online and look for some custom essay writing services. If you find and address the right one, you can be sure that your essay will be to the point, well-written, and delivered on time.