A motivation letter is required whenever you decide to study for a postgraduate degree in an international University. It is considered to be one of the trickiest and most intimidating documents that can help you to get a fully-funded scholarship.
A personal statement, motivation, or cover letter is a document that highlights significant details about your past; such as your academic scores, experiences, goals, ambitions, acquired skillset, and interests. A motivation letter should be honest and professional and should be able to sell the applicant to the admission authority, so writing it will obviously be hard as students often face writer’s block during the process.
In this article, we are covering the basics of how to draft a perfect motivation letter that can make you stand out from the other candidates to help you win a scholarship.
How to Write a Motivation Letter | Format, Outline, and Writing Style:
Writing an effective and winning motivation letter needs time and patience. You need to work your way toward it in a methodical way. You should follow the following five steps in order to write an effective motivation letter.
#1 Formulate an Outline:
First of all, make points on what you need to include in the letter of motivation. Organize your content by answering the questions like;
- Why do you deserve a scholarship?
- Why organization will be awarding you this scholarship?
- Why do you want to enroll in a particular course or program?
- What skills, abilities, knowledge, and qualities do you have that might benefit the university that you want to get admission to?
- Why are you interested in this school?
You need to be specific about your academic and work experiences. You will have to talk clearly about your future plans and how they corroborate with studying this particular course. See what the university is looking for in its candidates and align your motivation letter accordingly.
#2 Make an Introduction:
Give an introduction of yourself and your past academic record. Address your recipient by his/her name if possible. It gives the letter of motivation a personal touch. Talk a little about your relevant experiences in this section compelling the reader to dive into specifics.
#3 Make valid Points:
Use your outline and expand it in different paragraphs talking about each experience and relevant fact in detail. You need to compel the admissions committee that you are the perfect candidate for the master’s or Ph.D. position so use facts and figures to build your case. Include references to your previous study projects or research publications.
#4 Conclude the Letter:
Conclude the letter of motivation for scholarship on a positive note stating your goal one last time and its relevance to your admission to this program. Thank your reader/recipient for taking time out to read the motivation letter and politely ask them to contact you in case they need further details.
#5 Proofread, Proofread, Proofread:
Proofread the motivation letter to make it sound even more professional, to the point, relevant, and concise. Look for typos, grammatical errors, awkward sentence structuring, and generic phrases. Don’t repeat the things that are already in your CV. Draft the motivation letter as unique and as convincing as it is possible.
Secrets of a Winning Motivation Letter:
- Cover the Necessary Aspects:
The main goal of a motivation letter is to convince the admissions committee to grant you admission with a scholarship. Make sure that you give them enough reasons to do so in your letter of motivation. Don’t forget to ask them to give a follow-up like a grant you an offer letter or invite you in for an interview (whatever the next step of the admission process is). Have a look at the templates of motivation letters related to your field of study to have a point to start with.
- Be a little Personal:
Make the Motivation letter personalized by addressing the person who is the rightful recipient of the letter. Address them with their name (if you know it) and designation. This goes on to show that you have done your homework and you are serious about what you want.
- Be concrete:
Talk about your actions and do not sound generic. Don’t just say that you have leadership qualities. Talk about the times when you took the lead and got the job done. Use concrete words and use facts and figures to sound more authentic and honest. If you have mentioned something in your CV that needs more clarification, by all means, dive into details. Make a compelling case for yourself.
- Sound Specific:
Students often make the mistake of not stating the reasons why they chose a certain institution. Instead, they go on and on about why they want to study a certain subject. Don’t delve into too much detail about why you want to pursue law, instead, talk about why you want to study law at this university. If you are not sure how to answer this question, it is advised that you research the institution to answer this question as adequately as possible.