How to Write a Scholarship Essay: Structuring Tips

There are many possible ways to structure a scholarship essay. Before writing a scholarship essay, students should always look at sample essays. Many scholarship contests also include the winning essays from previous years. By reading through these samples, students can obtain a better idea of the type of writing style and format that will help them to win the scholarship.

  • Stay Professional
  • The key to making a positive first impression is to be professional. Students should make sure that the essay is well-edited and visually appealing. When someone reads the essay, the first thing that they notice is the appearance. Due to this, students have to pay close attention to how they format the paper.

  • Read the Formatting Guide
  • Although most scholarships require similar types of essays, there may be minor variations from one scholarship to another. Before submitting an essay, students must carefully read through all of the guidelines. They must make sure that the font, paper, format and length of their essay matches the guidelines sent from the scholarship committee.

  • Font and Size
  • There are hundreds of fonts available for students to use. Although it is enticing to use a font like Lucinda handwriting, students have to stick to fonts that are professional and simple to read. In general, fonts like Verdana, Arial, Times New Roman, Calibri and Tahoma work the best. Cute, script or flowing fonts should be avoided. In addition, the size of the font should follow the scholarship's guidelines. If the size is not specified, students should 10 to 12 points for the body portion of the essay and 14 points for the heading.

  • Never Fold Essays
  • It may seem obvious, but students should never fold a scholarship essay. Every year, some students send in an application form or essay that is wrinkled up and folded. Instead, students should buy an envelope that is big enough to fit all of the documents without having to fold them.

  • Check for Errors
  • After spending hours contemplating the format and content of the essay, it is far too easy to click print and be finished. Students should always check for errors before sending in their scholarship essay. They should run the document through spell check and read it out loud for grammatical issues. If there is enough time, the student should wait a day before editing it so that they have a fresh perspective. When there are any spelling or grammar problems, students should always take the time to fix them before they send in the document.

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