Meaning of Statement of Purpose (SOP) with Samples, & Format


What is Statement of Purpose?

A statement of purpose (SOP) is an essay that highlights your educational background, goals, and achievements. In an SOP, you should share why you would like to study your desired program at the University of your Choice.

For students planning to study abroad, writing an SOP is a crucial part of their admission application process. Thus, one should have a clear idea about the usage, function, format, and importance of the SOP. So, if you want to write an impressive SOP, read this blog post till the end.

The main aim of the SOP is to introduce yourself, your academic background, career goals, and qualities that make you a meritorious candidate for the selected course. It is important to have a readable statement of purpose format.

The admission committee and supervisors go through the statement of purpose to check your thought process and how good you are at expressing yourself. It allows them to know more about you via your SOP. It also tells the supervisors about your maturity level and your plans for the future.

The candidates need to express their strengths and achievements to impress the faculty members and admission officers. This is an important step to get admission at overseas universities.

The SOP comprises various elements – starting from academic qualifications to personal experiences.  You should check the university’s official website to see the format they accept, as it might vary per the institute.

Statement of Purpose (SOP) Format

Here are some points that you need to keep in your SOP review checklist:

  1. The SOP should be written in precise paragraphs like an essay. You can use bullet points but you need to limit them to a bare minimum.
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  3. Usually, an SOP is two pages long, written in 12-point fonts, and double-spaced. Depending upon the size and type of font used, you can write 800-1000 words.
  4. The complete SOP lies between 5-7 paragraphs of 150-250 words each.
  5. You should keep your SOP simple and avoid using colorful text and images. If you are using pen and paper, use black ink.

Statement of Purpose (SOP) Samples

Below are five excellent SOP Samples:

  • Statement of Purpose (SOP) Sample for Undergraduate

Statement of Purpose Sample for Undergraduate

For undergraduate admission, students must present their statement of purpose that can help them achieve their future goals. The document serves as a weapon to get educated in one of the top institutions of a country. This education will help them widen their knowledge and augment their learning.

  • Statement of Purpose (SOP) Sample for MSc by Harvard University, USA:

Statement of Purpose Sample for MSc

  • Statement of Purpose (SOP) Sample for PhD

Statement of Purpose (SOP) Sample for PhD

How do you start a statement of purpose?

After brainstorming and writing down your ideas, you must start drafting your SOP that must cover the following elements when applying to a desired university or school:

  1. Introduction, introduce yourself and talk about your goal.
  2. Write about what motivated you to choose a specific degree/program.
  3. In the next step, explain why you deserve to be considered for the program.
  4. Also, mention what you want to achieve by studying this field.

Thanks for reading this guide.