Step 2: Decide what to include in your Personal statement

Now that you have a list of possible things to say, you need to think about how to use the ideas. Don’t worry yet about the exact words or order of sentences, but think about how the things you have listed might fill the available space when you write about them.
Your reasons for choice of course should take up 30% or more of the Personal Statement. Achievements, experience and interests will occupy most of the rest, leaving a final line or two for a conclusion. You can enter up to 4,000 characters (including spaces) or 47 lines of text (including blank lines between paragraphs), whichever comes first. With any luck you will find that your points just about fit the space – you don’t have to fill every line, but a half-filled page looks thin.
If you have too much material, drop the points which are old / trivial / repetitive, and thin out points which emphasise the same area of achievement (eg lists of awards). Getting rid of nothing-words (as one student puts it) like ‘particularly’ and ‘really’ and ‘very’ and ‘relatively’ can save a surprising amount of space.
If you don’t have enough material, review your lists from Step 1. Did you leave out something because you felt it wasn’t important? You don’t have to be an expert to be able to include an interest – you just need to be able to say a little bit about the interest if you go for interview. Another option is simply to say more about each of the points you have got. Supporting detail is an important part of the statement anyway (see below). But….it is better to be concise than to fill lots of space with generalisations – quality is more important than quantity.
If you are asking for ‘deferred entry’ (you have decided you want to have a GAP year) you must include a brief comment on your plans for the year off. This often fits naturally at the very end of the Personal Statement.
Next: Step 3. Coming soon…