Brown University 2020-21: Supplemental Essay Guide

Requirements: 3 essays of 250 words; 1 essay of 150 words

Supplemental Essay Types: #Activity, #Community, #Why


1. Brown’s Open Curriculum allows students to explore broadly while also diving deeply into their academic pursuits. Tell us about an academic interest (or interests) that excites you, and how you might use the Open Curriculum


to pursue it. (250 words)


Brown wants to hear exactly how you plan to use the advantages of the education system that they offer. It is not enough to say what you intend to study and that you want to go to Brown just because they have an Open Curriculum. You need to go far beyond that and conduct plenty of research before you tell them exactly how the Open Curriculum fits within your academic plans.

Firstly, you need to get to know and fully understand what the Open Curriculum is and what it offers. According to Brown, its flexible yet rigorous approach to education pushes undergraduates to be deeply creative thinkers, intellectual risk-takers and entrepreneurial problem-solvers. Secondly, you need to know what you want to study and show that you have a plan to pursue your own personal growth.

Remember that all essays are made more memorable with personal stories, so feel free to tell them about any experiences you've had in high school that are similar to this or you can give them any personal examples of why and how the Open Curriculum would benefit you.




2. At Brown, you will learn as much from your peers outside the classroom as in academic spaces. How will you contribute to the Brown community? (250 words)


Most universities ask this question and don't get tempted to reuse the same answers from elsewhere. Try to find out specific information about the student body, projects, societies and clubs that are offered at Brown. Imagine yourself there as a part of the community. You've already been through high school and spent time at other educational institutions - describe times when and how you've learned from peers and put focus on teamwork. Much of the learning and projects at college happen in teams so that's why answering this is so important.


3. Tell us about a place or community you call home. How has it shaped your perspective? (250 words)



Answering this question is supposed to give Brown a clearer insight into who you really are. The places which the university refers to here can be anything that provided you with refuge, support, love or room to grow. These can also be places into which you invested a great amount of effort and time. Think about any charities, communities, sports clubs, societies that you feel are very important and close to your heart.


EXTRA - Please briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities or work experiences. (150 words)



This topic is not part of the supplemental essays but it is included in the "Activity" section. Cases like these are one of the main reasons you should never leave anything for the last minute so you can have enough time to prepare and present a great application.

When it comes to essays and writing, they should include topics that are not mentioned anywhere else in your application, so make sure that you don't repeat anything that the Admissions Team has already heard. Write about the activity that you're most passionate about and one that will give the Team the best insight into your personality.


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