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Sample Statement of Purpose – Guidelines

Statement of Purpose SOP

Guidelines for writing your Statement of Purpose (SOP) – Sample SOP

One of the most important parts of your application to an overseas institution is a well-written Statement of Purpose (SOP). The SOP is your opportunity to introduce yourself to our admissions team and may be the single most important document you provide. Your SOP might determine whether your application is accepted or rejected.

SOPs generally cover three areas:

  • your personal, educational and professional background
  • your reasons for seeking an international education and interest in our program
  • your employment goals on your return to your home country.

Successful SOPs give our admissions team a genuine snapshot of who you are including your personal circumstances in your home country.

Key points to cover include:

  • detail your educational achievements in your senior school years and any subsequent studies.
  • describe your work history and addresses any and all relevant work related to your chosen career goal.
  • describe your family circumstances and if you have dependents (spouse or children) let the institution know if you intend to bring them with you or will remain until your return.
  • if you have family in the country you going to, what relationship do they have to you and where do they live. Let the institution know if they will support you financially.
  • if you have travelled abroad before (visitor, business, working or holiday visa) or had a previous visa application rejected you should discuss the circumstances in the first part of your SOP.

Importantly, the SOP allows you to discuss any education or employment ‘gaps’ of more than 12 months.

Why is this important? In many cases, any unexplained gaps could indicate a lack of career progression or focus or at risk of not being considered a genuine student applicant.

In the second part of your SOP, the institution would prefer looking for the reasons why you want to study overseas, in the country specifically you are going to. You should be clear about the benefits of the city you have chosen to study in.

The SOP should show your understanding of our program – including specific units of interest.

Key points to cover:

  • discuss why you could not do a similar program in your home country
  • discuss why you would choose a specific institute over another institute.
  • explain how your program complements any previous studies and enhances your career prospects.
  • The final part of your SOP must cover your employment and salary expectations when you return to your home country and have completed your studies and/or period of work rights.

Successful applications often include a clear explanation of a return on investment.  You should clearly state how your studies and time overseas will be funded.

This is your chance to describe the value of gaining international experience, real-world skills and a competitive edge in the global marketplace.