Using AI Tools to Write College Essays

College admissions officers are increasingly expecting students to use AI tools to help them write their college essays. However, students should use AI tools in addition to, not instead of, their own creativity and effort.

Students can use AI tools to brainstorm ideas for essays. Students prompt AI responses with details about themselves and their experiences, students can “interact” with the machines to deepen their own reflections. 

Additionally, using AI tools, students can build outlines for their essays, organizing their thoughts and testing the flow of their ideas. With the AI generated outlines, students can discern whether they’re telling admissions officers the story they want to tell

Furthermore, some admissions officers may scan each essay for plagiarized content or AI-generated ideas. Therefore, it is important to thoroughly review any AI-generated suggestions for inconsistencies or errors and discern what information to use or not.

And, like David Hawkins, chief education and policy officer at the National Association for College Admission Counseling, stated recently, 

…while GPT’s writing is clean, grammatically correct and well structured, it is likely too vague and flat to stand out in a crowded applicant pool.

Forbes, December 9, 2022

Ultimately, students should tell their own story in their own voice. After all, the student is writing the story of their lives, not a story about themselves as told by a machine.

Creative Marbles was founded by teachers who appreciate helping students craft insightful essays, first in the academic classroom, now as part of the complex college admissions process. For more information, please contact us.

Tagged , , , , , , ,

About Jill Yoshikawa, Ed M, Partner of Creative Marbles Consultancy

Jill Yoshikawa, EdM, Harvard ’99, a seasoned, 25 year educator and consultant, is meticulous in helping clients navigate all aspects of the educational experience, no matter the level of complexity. She combines educational theory with experience to advise families, schools and educators. A UCSD and Harvard graduate, as well as a former high school teacher, Jill works tirelessly to help her clients succeed.
View all posts by Jill Yoshikawa, Ed M, Partner of Creative Marbles Consultancy →