Personal statements in the radiology field are the least effective way to bolster your application. (1) Rarely, do they help an applicant. Occasionally, they hurt the applicant’s case. Regardless, I am aware that the personal statement will often become essentially important to many viewers of this article who apply to radiology regardless of whatever I say. Therefore, I am creating this blog for anyone that is applying for a radiology related job to learn to create that killer radiology personal statement. And, today I am going to recount some of the basics for creating one. Specifically, I am going to start by explaining the parts of a great radiology personal statement and then give you some general tips that I have learned over the years from blogging and reading many personal statements.
After having rummaged through thousands of radiology personal statements and writing lots of blogs, I can definitely say that the key paragraph for the reader begins at the beginning. If it is average/boring, I have almost zero desire to read the rest of the statement, especially when you have another 10 more to read that day. Something in the few first few sentences needs to draw the reader in quickly. You are not writing a short story or novel where you can slowly develop your characters and plot. Rather, you need to write using a technique that I like to call the hook. Reel that program director in.
There are several techniques that I have seen over the years. Let’s start by using the writing technique of irony. Notice the irony I chose in the first paragraph of this article. I started by saying personal statements are the least effective way to bolster your application. Whoa, wait a minute! The title of the article is How To Create A Killer Personal Statement. That’s somewhat interesting. The dissonance in that first paragraph draws the reader in.
So, what other techniques can you use to maintain the interest of the reader? Sometimes quotes can certainly help. Once in a while, I come across a quote that really interests me. I tend to like quotes from Albert Einstein. They tend to be witty and have double meanings. But, there are certainly millions to choose from. A good quote can set the tone for the rest of the personal statement.
Finally, you can write about an interesting theatrical description of a life-altering event that caused you to want to go into radiology. Use descriptive novel-like adjectives and adverbs. Go to town. However, be careful. Don’t choose the same events as everyone else. Read my other blog called Radiology Personal Statement Mythbusters to give you some other ideas about what not to choose!
Tell Why You Are Interested In Radiology
The first paragraph is also an important place to tell the reader why you are interested in radiology. Many times I will read a radiology personal statement and say to myself that was kind of interesting, but why does this person want to go into the radiology field? He/she never quite answers the question and I am left feeling that this person does not know why they want to enter the field. Don’t let that be you!
Explain Any Problems/Issues
I like the applicant to be upfront with the reader rather quickly if there was an issue that may cause a program director or resident to discard an application. It could be addressing something as serious as a former conviction for drunk driving when you were young and stupid or something milder like a questionable quotation from a mentor that you found in your Deans Letter. Either way, you need to explain yourself. Otherwise, the problem/issue can declare itself as a red flag and prevent you from getting the interview that you really want.
Second and Third Paragraphs
Expand Upon Your Application
Let’s say you don’t really have any red flags in your application. Well then, now you can write about some of the things that you accomplished that you want to bring to the attention of your reader. Typically, these may be items in your application that are partially explained in the experience or research sections of the ERAS application but really deserve further emphasis or explanation.
Show Not Tell
In addition, the meat of any personal statement should contain information about what you did, not to describe all about the characteristics you had to allow you to do it. This is a cardinal mistake I often see in many personal statements. What do I mean by that? If you have been working at NASA on the Webb Space Telescope, you don’t want to say I was a hard worker and was well liked by everybody. Rather you would want to say I spent 1000 hours building the mirror for the telescope constantly correcting for mistakes to such a fine degree that the engineering societies considered it to be almost perfect. And to show you were well liked by everybody, you can say when you were done completing the telescope, NASA held a ticker tape parade for me!!! (Well, that’s probably not the case. But, hopefully, you get the idea.)
Time to Sum Up
This can be the most difficult part of writing a personal statement (and blog too!) How do you tie everything together into a tight knot so that everything comes together and makes sense? Well, one thing you can write about is what you will bring to the table if you residency program selects you based on what you have stated in your radiology personal statement. Back to the Webb telescope example: Given my experience with my successful quest for perfection by creating an almost perfect telescope mirror, similarly, I plan to hone my skills to become an incredible radiologist by always learning from others and my fellow clinicians to get as close to perfection as possible. Bottom line. You want to make sure to apply your experiences to the job that you want to get.
General Issues With Editing
1. I have learned a few things about writing over the past years whether it is blogs, personal statements, letters, or whatever else you need to write. However, the most important is the obsessive need to review and re-review whatever you are writing for editing. It may take 100 edits to get it right!!!
2. Have a friend or a relative read your personal statement to catch errors you may not see. Your brain is trained to already know what you have written. Many times the only way to catch your own mistakes is to have another person read your writings.
3. Also, make sure to the read the personal statement out loud. Sometimes you can only detect errors by listening to what you have actually written. It happened many times when I edited my book Radsresident: A Guidebook For The Radiology Applicant And Radiology Resident
4. Finally, I recommend the use of grammar correcting programs. The one that I would like to bring to your attention is the program called Grammarly. I am an affiliate of Grammarly, but that is only because I use the program myself for my blogs all the time. It has saved me from really stupid mistakes. One version is for free and corrects simple critical errors. The other uses more complex grammatical corrections and is a paid service. Regardless, either version will assist you in catching those silly errors. In addition, I usually paste my blogs into the Microsoft Word program to correct any other possible errors. I have found both programs to be complementary.
Other Useful Tidbits
Avoid Too Many I Words
When writing a radiology personal statement, try to reduce the usage of the word I for multiple reasons. First, it begins to sound very redundant. Second, you appear selfish. (It’s always about you isn’t it?) And finally, you want to create the impression that you are going to be a team player, not in the field of radiology just for yourself.
Active Not Passive Tense
If you want a passage to sound great, make sure to almost always use the active tense, not the passive variety. When using the passive form, the reader has more work to do because he/she has to figure out who is doing the activity. In addition, the environment appears to control you rather than you controlling the environment. And finally, sentences sound more verbose when using the passive tense. Think about the following phrases: The job of creating a computer algorithm was completed over the course of 10 years vs. My colleagues and I created a computer algorithm over the course of 10 years. Which sounds better to you?
Use Sentence Transitions
If you want your personal statement to sound smooth, I find words other than the subject at the beginning of the sentence help to diversify the sound of the individual sentence. Also (notice this transition word!), it allows for a change of idea without being so abrupt.
Don’t Use The Same Word At The Beginning Of Each Sentence
In that same train of thought, try not to use the same word to begin a sentence over and over again. It’s a surefire way to bore the reader!!!
Creating That Perfect Radiology Personal Statement
Now you know some of the rules I would utilize to create an interesting radiology personal statement. Some of these are general rules that I apply to my blog on a weekly basis that I also see in the best personal statements, so I know that they work well. So, go forth and write that killer radiology personal statement. You now have all the tools you need!!!
Radiology fellowships offer radiology students the chance to gain the experience and expertise they need to be good in their niche but applying for such a neuroradiology fellowship program or musculoskeletal radiology fellowship is not that easy. A good academic background is just one of the requirements to be considered for the fellowship so is your radiology fellowship personal statement or your radiation oncology personal statement.
Check out useful professional expert advice about writing quality medical fellowship personal statements here.
Radiology personal statements, as well as, musculoskeletal radiology fellowship are valuable in a fellowship application because this will set you apart from other applicants. Unfortunately, only a handful knows how to draft an impressive radiology residency personal statement but this can be remedied by getting tips on how to write a good personal statement.
Tips in Writing a Radiology Fellowship Personal Statement
- Write why you wish to pursue the program – A good personal statement should reflect why you wish to apply for a fellowship. This may be in the form of an event in your life that made an impact to you which made you pursue this course. Keep in mind that when writing this part of your personal statement you should be brief and straight to the point.
- Describe your goal – This should be tailored based on the institution that is offering the radiology fellowship. You can write in general here if you wish. For example, you can write about how you want to do research or teaching as well as develop a clinical career or both. You should choose a goal that best suits you and the radiology program that you are applying for.
- Share your interests – Your radiology personal statement isn’t just about your reasons or your goals but it is also about who you are as an individual. Write about your interests because these will set you apart from other applicants. If you have interests that are related to radiology feel free to add them in your personal statement. However, you need to keep this part of your radiology personal statement shorter compared to the other sections.
- Formatting and length – When writing your personal statement for radiology you need to consider its format and how long it should be. There are some institutions that provide the amount of words to be used but for others they let the applicant decide. As much as you would like to write several pages worth to explain yourself in detail, limit your statement into two pages at least. Keep in mind that the admissions panel will be reviewing several papers in one day so you need to keep your statement brief but meaningful.
- Be unique – Personal statement radiology should be professionally written but there is no harm in injecting a bit of wit to your paper. You need to make your personal statement stand out and although sticking with the tried and tested formula of being straight to the point using less flowery words in your paper, adding a bit of eye catching phrases or sentences will certainly help you be remembered.
These are just a few things you should keep in mind when writing a radiology fellowship personal statement. Remembering these tips as you write your personal statement for radiology can help you build a unique statement that will not only reflect who you are as an individual but also as an aspiring applicant who is the perfect candidate for the best fellowship program.
Radiology Fellowship Personal Statement Sample
Technology has greatly facilitated the diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. In many cases, it has also saved lives and prevented misdiagnosis. As a young boy I was often sick, and was fascinated by the images that the doctors took of me. I knew that I wanted to learn about how to interpret these diagrams and use that knowledge to ensure that the correct information about physiology was being conveyed. The field of radiology particularly interested me, and I it was the reason I went to medical school to train myself as a clinician. I strongly believe that a fellowship in radiology will enable me to focus on my medical studies to learn more about the fundamentals of radiology.
The importance of medical diagrams in a hospital setting was truly remarkable to me as a hospital intern. During my internship at a local emergency ward, I have seen different diagnoses drawn from the same medical diagram. The importance of gathering multiple opinions on a diagram sometimes stems from the lack of understanding of how many imaging systems work. From that experience, I learned that it is crucial to fully consider all possibilities before drawing conclusions from an image. From my fellowship in radiology, I hope to learn not only how to draw accurate conclusions, but also what additional tests are needed to validate a diagnosis.
As a person who interprets patient data, a radiologist has a great responsibility to both doctors and patients. Hasty and incorrect diagnoses could result in both patient and doctor harm. With such a great responsibility, I feel it is my duty to prepare myself as fully as possible through obtaining a world-class education. This fellowship in radiology will provide me the hands-on experience that will allow me to better understand the field as well as better serve my patients.
Be ready to write an amasing neuroradiology fellowship program with us professional help.