A 7-Step Guide: How to Write a Winning Scholarship Essay?

How to Write a Winning Scholarship Essay

Writing a scholarship essay is never easy. Not only it takes time, creativity, and skills to reflect your thoughts on a paper; it also puts too much pressure on students because an essay is what defines whether they will get a scholarship or not.

If you feel stuck and can’t write this paper on your own, remember that experts from https://essaypro.com/admission-essay.html are always happy to give you a helping hand. Professional writers from EssayPro can create a flawless paper for you. However, if you are up for the challenge and willing to do everything yourself, our simple guide will help you get started!

Writing a Winning Scholarship Essay

Writing a Winning Scholarship Essay in 7 Steps

1. Read and Re-Read the Instructions

What should a winning scholarship essay look like? It is personal, engaging, clear, and well-structured, but most importantly – it is written in accordance with provided guidelines.

Although this tip may sound obvious, many students still skip the instructions because they don’t want to spend time reading them. Feeling pressed for time, it can be easy to miss out on details. However, this can have unpleasant consequences and even result in an automatic discard of your essay.

If you don’t want to risk and waste time on writing for no gain, make sure you carefully read and re-read the given instructions. Some of the key details to keep an eye for are:

  • Topic or main questions;
  • Formatting rules;
  • Word count;

Make Sure You Are Aware of All the Details Before You Get Started

2.  Brainstorm

As a rule, common scholarship essay topics give students a fair amount of freedom in terms of the contents. You may be given a specific topic or several prompts to choose from. In any case, brainstorming should be one of the first steps!

It may sound tempting to rush into writing right away. However, in most cases, without brainstorming, your drive will vanish rather soon, as you will realize you have no ideas.

Take a piece of paper and quickly outline your key ideas, examples, and thoughts related to the topic. This trick will help you organize your thoughts and define what you should be writing about.

3. Choose a Topic

This tip doesn’t apply if you are given a specific topic. However, if in the instructions you find a list of prompts, your next move is a choice of the best one.

The perfect topic for a winning scholarship essay is the one that:

  • You are personally interested in;
  • Can help you reflect your personality and potential;
  • Speaks to your core values;
  • Helps you to connect the dots with a particular organization.

Ideally, a chosen topic should give you enough space to highlight your best qualities and accomplishments and explain why you deserve a scholarship. Also, it is vital that you find it engaging. If you are interested in a topic, writing won’t seem too hard, and your enthusiasm will not vanish too soon.

Choose a Topic

4. Make an Outline

Creating an outline is one of the most responsible steps that should be approached, respectively. At this stage, you are creating the foundation for your winning essay, so it is important to structure it properly and include all key ideas and details you came up with.

All scholarship essays typically have a standard structure. There should be an introductory passage, several body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Here is a sample outline of a winning paper:


  • Attention-grabbing sentence.
  • Brief insight into the topic.
  • Thesis statement that addresses the given prompt.


  • 1st paragraph: a short description of the main point + supporting argument, example, or story.
  • 2nd paragraph with the same structure.
  • 3rd paragraph.

(Note that every paragraph should focus on a single point/idea)


  • Summary of all points.

Make sure you make smooth transitions between all parts of your text to ensure readability and logic.

5. Write the First Draft

When you have all your ideas at hand and organized, and your outline is all set and ready, you can finally get to writing your essay.

While working on your paper, always keep the outline at hand. Writing will be much easier and effective if you follow a specific plan. Also, this will help you ensure that you are not missing out something important.

Keep in mind that this is just your first draft, so it can be rough. Later on, you will have to refine it anyways. Thus, try to focus mostly on your ideas and the content of your text. Unleash your creativity and let those ideas flow onto the paper. Remember that everything, including spelling and grammar, can be adjusted.

6. Ask for an Outside Opinion

It never hurts to get objective feedback about your text from someone else. It can be a friend, teacher, or family member. Ask someone to read your essay and provide you with constructive critics. This may help you get a fresh opinion about the quality of your work and define the weak points that need improvement.

7. Polish Your Paper

Take a day or a few off after you finish your paper. This will allow you to refresh and disengage from your topic so that later you could take a fresh look at your draft.

Carefully proofread your text to define any errors. Then, get to editing. Pay special attention to spelling, grammar, punctuation, as well as the style, word choice, and ease of reading. Also, keep in mind the feedback you got from the outside.

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