Thursday, November 8, 2007

Personal Statements for the Law School

Personal Traits – Getting Personal Irrespective of whatever you write in your personal statement, the content within should be based upon a few underlying characteristics of human personality and acquired skills. Basing your content on this will give you a fair chance of seeing your application through the initial screening process. Some of them are as follows:

* Intellectual Ability: Intellectual ability refers to your skill to see beyond the obvious. A person with intellectual ability will be able to draw inferences easily. This person will also be the one who enjoys manipulating information and enjoys hypothesizing.
* Analytical Ability: As a lawyer, your first and foremost job is to crack down a case. To achieve this, one of the primary skills that can come to your rescue is your ability to analyse a problem and break it down into smaller chunks. Further, it can also touch upon ideas of the methodology that you adopt to solve a problem.
* Speaking Ability: What good is a lawyer, if he is not able to express what he wants. This is a prime aspect of a lawyer. Your voice and diction are large contributing factors towards your skill to convince people.
* Writing Ability: Your writing skills come into play as a lawyer when you start writing legal documents. You will need to write documents and record legal proceedings. It is essential that any piece of writing that comes off your table should be free of ambiguity.
* Creativity and imagination: Successful lawyers are those who tend to see what the others do not. Creativity and imagination form one of the prime requisites for a successful lawyer that can help him deter the course of the case in discussion.
* Self-confidence: This is a personal trait characteristic of every successful lawyer. While arguing in a court of law, you will be a one-man army fighting against the world. This requires a lot of self-confidence to represent yourself in a firm and convincing manner. If you are not confident about yourself, you will not be able to get your point across to anyone.
* Leadership Skills: This is the most essential of all traits of human personality. Your position as a lawyer requires that you lead from the front. People will look forward to you for a solution to all their problems. This will also require you to be a firm and effective decision maker.
* Motivation: As a lawyer, you need to be a self-learner. You need to motivate yourself from within. You will need to do a lot of research into case studies and current happenings. This will also require you to collaborate with people in your profession to update yourself with happenings around the world. This would reflect on your ability to work with others.
* Comprehensiveness: You always need to have a 360-degree view of a problem. The person should be extremely fact-conscious. This means that when you draw a conclusion, you need to avoid assumptions.

Personal Statements – Addressing Weaknesses Weaknesses need to be addressed somewhere. Especially, if you have a fabulous history of scoring low grades all through your education, it does need a mention somewhere. These things can influence your selection process. However, you can play it smart using one of the two ways:

* If you want to cite it within your personal statement, you can do so. However, you need to take the extra precaution that the content gels with the rest. This means that it should flow along well with the story mentioned in your personal statement.
* The second way of doing this is to use an addendum. An addendum is like an appendix of a book. It gives the reviewer supplementary information about yourself, which you would rather prefer, does not take the centre stage.

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