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At the same time, you'll impress the college admissions folks greatly if you can show your ability to learn from your failures and mistakes.Be sure to devote significant space to the second half of the question—how did you learn and grow from the experience?For the 2019-20 application cycle, the Common Application essay prompts remain unchanged from the 2018-19 cycle.
However you approach this prompt, your essay needs to reveal one of your core personal values.
If the belief you challenged doesn't give the admissions folks a window into your personality, then you haven't succeeded with this prompt.
With the ability to write about an "intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma," you can essentially write about any issue that you find important.
Note that you do not have to have solved the problem, and some of the best essays will explore problems that need to be solved in the future.
Introspection and honesty are key with this prompt. The "belief or idea" you explore could be your own, someone else's, or that of a group.
The best essays will be honest as they explore the difficulty of working against the status quo or a firmly held belief.Be careful with that opening word "describe"—you'll want to spend much more time analyzing the problem than describing it.This essay prompt, like all of the options, is asking you to be introspective and share with the admissions folks what it is that you value.Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.Here, again, the Common Application gives you a lot of options for approaching the question.Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve.It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma--anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale.Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. The prompt gives you a lot of latitude for answering the question since you can write a story about your "background, identity, interest, or talent." Your "background" can be a broad environmental factor that contributed to your development such as growing up in a military family, living in an interesting place, or dealing with an unusual family situation.If this sounds like you, then please share your story. You could write about an event or series of events that had a profound impact on your identity.Your "interest" or "talent" could be a passion that has driven you to become the person you are today.However you approach the prompt, make sure you are inward looking and explain The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success.